Ground Beef Know How - Canadian Beef | Canada Beef

Ground Beef

Ground beef’s got a lot going for it — it’s fast and easy to cook, versatile and enjoyed by all. Is it any wonder that ground beef is the #1 Canadian meal-maker! And there‘s more to ground beef’s benefits – plain and simple, ground beef’s good for you! Here’s all you need to know to make dinner – made easy with Canadian Ground Beef!

Get Ready

Forever flexible, ground beef can be pan-fried for meat sauces and casseroles or shaped into burgers, meatballs and more.

  1. COOK ground beef in non-stick skillet over medium-high heat for 8 to 10 minutes, breaking into small chunks with cooking. Cook thoroughly, until browned throughout.
  2. DRAIN.
  3. ADD to pasta sauce or soups or use in chili, casserole, taco and soup recipes, seasoning to taste.

Watch

Common Cuts

Extra lean ground beef
Maximum fat content 10% (90% lean)

Lean ground beef
Maximum fat content 17% (83% lean)

Medium ground beef
Maximum fat content 23% (77% lean)

Regular ground beef
Maximum fat content 30% (70% lean)

Myth Buster

MYTH:

Ground beef has colour added to it – that is why it is purple in the centre of the pack but bright red on the surface.

TRUTH:

Ground beef is 100% beef with no additives, fillers or colours. As beef is exposed to oxygen, it naturally develops a red hue – so the meat at the surface of a package is bright red. The meat at the centre will turn red too once it’s opened up to the air.

Tips for Ground Beef

Cook’s Notes:

  • All ground beef comes designated as Extra Lean, Lean, Medium or Regular, based on the maximum fat content. This designation is the same for all ground meats: beef, turkey, veal, chicken, pork and lamb.

Ground beef types

  • EXTRA LEAN (10% maximum fat) great for flavour-packed recipes that you don’t drain after cooking. Use in meat loaf or cabbage rolls.
  • LEAN (17% maximum fat) Canada’s No. 1 grind is a good all-purpose choice. Use in all kinds of ground beef recipes.
  • MEDIUM (23% maximum fat)
  • REGULAR (30% maximum fat) use for grilling, broiling and drain to reduce fat before adding to your recipe. Use Medium in burgers and meatballs, and Regular or Medium in pasta sauces and casseroles.
  • Have you tried “Steak Experience” Ground Beef? Look for the names Sirloin, Chuck and Round on packages of ground beef. These names indicate that the ground beef is made from a single cut, not a mix. Ground Sirloin tastes like Sirloin Steak for example – it’s ground beef gone gourmet.
  • Refrigerate ground beef within 1 to 2 hours of purchase.
  • Refrigerate at 40° F (4° C) or lower, on bottom shelf to avoid dripping on to other foods.
  • Thaw in the fridge, allowing 12 to 15 hours per pound, OR thaw in the microwave, cooking immediately after thawing.
  • Cook all ground beef thoroughly to 160° F (71° C). Test temperatures with a digital read thermometer. Never eat ground beef raw.

The Question of Colour

Contrary to popular belief, the colour of beef is not a reliable indicator of freshness. In its initial state, beef is a deep purple colour. As it is exposed to oxygen in the air, the pigment turns cherry red. That same beef can turn purple again if oxygen is removed. The perfect example is vacuum-packaged beef.

With certain packaging types, that initial cherry red pigment will begin to take on a slightly brown hue quite quickly. The meat is still fresh and safe to eat, but just not as bright a red as when it was first exposed to oxygen. The Best Before date is still the best way to know if your fresh beef needs to be prepared and eaten right away or frozen.

Some ground beef can be brownish in the centre. This is because the small amount of oxygen present in the centre gives the meat pigment a brownish hue. However, the meat remains fresh and safe to eat up to its Best Before date.

Cuts used with Ground Beef

Ground Beef Options

regular-ground-beef-canadian-beef
EXTRA LEAN GROUND BEEF
Maximum fat content 10% (90% lean)

regular-ground-beef-canadian-beef
LEAN GROUND BEEF
Maximum fat content 17% (83% lean)

regular-ground-beef-canadian-beef
MEDIUM GROUND BEEF
Maximum fat content 23% (77% lean)

regular-ground-beef-canadian-beef
REGULAR GROUND BEEF
Maximum fat content 30% (70% lean)

Ground Beef recipes:

prep time

25 min

cook time

20 min
Moroccan Meatballs with Herbed SlawGround beef and smashed kidney beans are seasoned with warm spices and formed into delicious meatballs packed with protein and fibre – perfect for make-ahead lunches and quick weeknight dinners. Use white kidney beans if you don’t want the kids to spot them.

prep time

15 min

cook time

20 min
Korean Bibimbap Burger with Cucumber SaladA sweet-salty contrast and a touch of chili heat pack this Asian-inspired recipe with a real flavour punch. Topped with a mound of delicious sautéed vegetables and served with a cucumber side salad, this weeknight burger recipe will impress and satisfy all.

prep time

30 min

cook time

25 min
Big Batch Beef BurritosThe Big Batch Beef Burrito recipe was created by Andrea Buckett and it’s a staple in my house. "As a mom to two active teenage boys it can sometimes be hard to keep up with the amount of food they require. Taking some time to make a batch of these burritos means we have an easy, healthy, grab and go lunch that is delicious and budget friendly. Setting up a burrito assembly line where the boys pitch in is a win win for everyone."

prep time

20 min

cook time

15 min
Big Batch Beef and Cheddar Sheet Pan OmeletteThis big batch recipe makes a great breakfast-for-dinner or just freeze ahead for a grab-and-go breakfast sandwich that’s fast, nutritious and delicious!

prep time

15 min

cook time

20 min
Big Batch Mini Mexican Meat LoavesComfort food with a twist! This make-ahead big batch beef recipe takes the stress out of the weeknight rush. Just 10-12 minutes from the freezer and a delicious meal is on the table fast!

prep time

15 min

cook time

20 min
Big Batch BurgersA big batch ground beef recipe that is fast and easy. All you need is a few minutes to mix and then shape into burgers, sliders or square meatballs.The square shape is a fun twist of traditional burgers and meatballs. Less rolling and mess.

prep time

20 min

cook time

35 min
Big Batch Italian StromboliStromboli is like the rolled-up cousin of pizza – its easy to eat with your hands so kids love it! This recipe uses pre-made pizza dough. But bread dough can be used as well. It’s a perfect brunch idea or simple. This Big Batch recipe created by Andrea Buckett Cooks is a simple dish that will feed a crowd.

prep time

20 min

cook time

1:10
Cheesy Beef & Lentil Pasta Bake with Roasted VegHealthy AND delicious come together in this baked pasta dish inspired by the cuisine of Northern Italy. A beefy tomato sauce studded with plenty of roasted vegetables and fibre-rich lentils enrobes whole-grain noodles. Topped with creamy ricotta cheese, this recipe is perfect for serving a hungry crowd.

prep time

15 min

cook time

20 min
Thai Curry Beef ‘Ramen’Warm and rich Thai flavours come together in this take on a popular street food. Featuring slurp-worthy noodles and plenty of colourful vegetables, this recipe is a complete meal in a bowl.

prep time

15 min

cook time

40 min
Roasted Greek Stuffed Sweet PeppersThis recipe is an updated version of traditional stuffed peppers, having the peppers roasted before stuffing and using heart-healthy ingredients.

prep time

20 min

cook time

20 min
Lettuce Wrapped Swiss & Bacon Burger with Barley SlawA gourmet burger recipe gets lightened up by using lettuce instead of a burger bun. Served with a fresh yet hearty coleslaw accented with barley, grainy mustard and fresh dill, this dinner will satisfy a hungry appetite. Easily transform this recipe into a gluten-free option by using cooked quinoa instead of the barley.

prep time

20 min

cook time

25 min
Cuban Picadillo Burger Rice BowlThe ever-popular rice bowl gets a new twist in this Latin-inspired version with its bold flavours and textures. This is a new way to think about the traditional ‘burger’ meal with the Cuban influence of olives, raisins and warm spices in the beef burger patty, lots of colourful veggies and NO bun!

prep time

10 min

cook time

16 min
Cheeseburger FrittataAll the classic flavour of a cheeseburger baked into a frittata! A frittata is a great meal option for breakfast, lunch or dinner. The flavour combinations are endless. Feel free to get creative and add your favourite cheeseburger toppings.

prep time

15 min

cook time

20 min
Tortellini SoupOn a cold day nothing beats a hearty soup! This is a delicious way to get your veggies along with your protein via extra lean ground beef. This is a simple and quick recipe for first time cooks to try.

prep time

5 min

cook time

25 min
One Pot Cheesy Broccoli Ground Beef and RiceOne pot meals are perfect for a busy night and an easy clean up ! Impress your family with the delicious all-in-one meal, healthy and tasty, using ingredients you have right in your pantry and freezer. Make meals faster then take-out with Big Batch Beef and 20-minute rice.

prep time

10 min

cook time

40 min
Rainbow Beef Stir-FryThe colours alone could knock this one out of the park, but the sweet, savoury and somewhat exotic flavours carry it the extra mile. This is a fantastic dish for any occasion, any time of year.

prep time

10 min

cook time

30 min
Golden Rice & BeefThe colours alone could knock this one out of the park, but the sweet, savoury and somewhat exotic flavours carry it the extra mile. This is a fantastic dish for any occasion, any time of year.