I know summer is already here for some of you, but I have one more week to go before those glorious days begin.
I. Can’t. Wait.
I looooovvvve the days/weeks/months of family togetherness.
Because those days are deliciously crazy and loosey-goosey, I’m doing what I can to help us survive the summer without getting on a first-name basis with the person at the chicken-place drive-thru.
The slushie-place-on-the-way-to-the-pool drive-thru? Yeah, they’ll know us.
Anyway, having cooked ground beef in the freezer is one of THE best ways I’ve found to get simple meals on the table quickly.
The only bad part is that cooking lots of ground beef at once is
rather extremely messy.
Over time, I’ve found some methods that make the kitchen prep and clean-up for cooking ground beef as non-messy as possible.
The main thing that makes it easier? Paper towels. And of course, as a spokesperson for Bounty DuraTowels, I use . . . . Bounty DuraTowels.
I do love how strong and absorbent these cloth-like paper towels are. They did the job perfectly, and worked better than some others I’ve used over the years.
I generally buy 85/15 ground beef. Mostly, that’s what I find on sale. And because I buy it in bulk and freeze some already shaped for hamburgers, it’s also best to have something with a little fat in it. In my experience, 93/7 ground beef doesn’t stick together enough to keep from falling through the cracks in the grill.
How I Drain the Grease from Ground Beef:
First, I put the cooked ground beef in my metal colander which is sitting on top of a plate and several layers of paper towels. I use my pasta spoon (do you call it a spoon?) to transfer the ground beef from the cooking pot to the colander so I’m transferring as little of the grease as possible.
Once it’s in the colander, I let the ground beef cool (and continue draining onto the paper towels) and then package it into quart-sized freezer bags and freeze.
The grease-soaked paper towels go straight in the trash.
But then there’s the other (ickiest) issue. What do you do with the grease left in the pot?
I love this trick (which also happens to use those handy-dandy Bounty DuraTowels) I learned from my aunt :
Put a wadded up paper towel in a ceramic coffee cup, and then carefully pour the grease into the cup. I wait until the grease has cooled a little so it’s not as dangerous.
Let it cool/solidify, and then just pull the paper towel out and pitch it in the trash.
Not the greatest picture, but that’s a cup that can go straight into the dishwasher.
Yes. Sometimes there is residue in the cup, and I do have to use a clean paper towel to wipe it out.
Yes. I do use my least favorite coffee cup for this.
The cup pictured was from a smaller (single-meal-sized) amount of ground beef than the first picture in the post. I didn’t remember to take pictures of the coffee-cup-trick the first time around, but I do use this trick whenever I drain the grease off of ground beef, and it works! Sometimes I just have to use a bigger coffee cup.
The thickness and absorbancy of the cloth-like Bounty DuraTowel are perfect for this kitchen prep ritual I go through on a regular basis!
Disclosure: I am a paid spokesperson for Bounty DuraTowel. The experiences, opinions, and Christmas-coffee-cup-still-out-in-May are all mine, though!