The Pioneer Woman

Is a liar. A fake. A fraud. Not real. She’s not a real “pioneer” woman. She is a real person. A real woman. But pioneer? I don’t think so. Not on your cast-iron skillet. I don’t buy it.


Notice if you will exhibit A. She cooks on a stove. True, one could claim a gas stove is the same as cooking over an open fire, but I don’t think it qualifies.

(from Mormon Pioneer cooking)

I rather rest my case.

When I was 11 or 12ish, I started spending 2 weeks in the summer with my Grandma. It was great! She worked full-time, so I was on my own. Being a middle-child, it was great to be an only child, even if it was only for 2 weeks. While I was there, I usually spent a couple of days with my aunt and uncle. My aunt could make the best burritos in the world!

I distinctly remember one night when she made them. My uncle and I had a contest..who could eat the most burritos. I’m sure he “let” me win, but I ate 6.5 to his mere 6. I was proud. And stuffed.

I have tried over the years to replicate her recipeand sometimes I’ve been able to. Other times, it seems an impossible dream.

Okay now everyone sing!

It actually fits! (Although Frank Sinatra just sings it wrong. Forgive me.)

I’ve been feeling in a rut of my own making when it comes to cooking. Roast, roast chicken, meatloaf. Those get old really rather quickly. Really old. Really quickly.  So I’ve been browsing websites, cookbook and recipes for ideas. I’ve found some really great recipes. All have been a huge hit. But the night I made the beef and bean burritos, and my youngest child said, in awe,

“Momma!! This is like eating at a restaurant!” 

I had all the praise I needed. I knew they were good. More than good. They were great! They were restaurant quality!

I didn’t start this blog by calling out (Oh now that’s funny!) Ree Drummond, aka The Pioneer Woman by accident. I found the recipe on…gulp…her blog. I did.

Now a disclaimer, the photos you’re about to see are…well…I’m not a professional. And my little camera is getting old and wonky, so bear with me.

I have made this recipe twice now, and I’ll shoot straight, the first time it was much better than the second. Much better! And the pictures would have been better, but I wasn’t sure how they would taste and who wants pictures on their camera of bad food?

Exactly my point.

You’ll need to start with hamburger, one pound makes about 8 burritos, so if you need more (and trust me, even if you think 8 is plenty, it’s not) add a pound or two. Also, dice an onion. Yes, a whole onion. If you need directions, check out the Pioneer Woman’s blog, she tells you. Or google it. Or ask me.

100_8403That is 2 pounds of hamburger and 1.5 onions diced. As you can see, I’m a real precise type of person and all my onions are the diced the same size.

Or not.

I used 1.5 onions because I had half an onion left over from lunch, so I tossed it in with the extra meat. It was good! Brown the meat, and drain the excess fat…but that seems so rude to say. Typically I like very lean meat, I find it has more flavor. I know I know. That’s not right. But it’s my blog, and I say it’s more flavorful.

When the meat is browned, add enchilada sauce, (red is best!), and any spices/herbs you feel like adding. I love cumin, cayenne pepper, and garlic. I know you’re going to ask me how much, honestly, I have no earthly idea. I just dump. But a good rule of thumb is start with 1/2 teaspoon and go up from there. (Oh, and if you’ve only browned 1 pound of hamburger, use about 1/2 a can of the sauce)

100_8405 100_8404

While that is cooking away,  open a can of refried beans. Put that in a pan with grated cheese, cook on low stirring a lot. Not constantly but don’t leave it alone for too long. And my rule of thumb, if it burns you left it alone too long.

You can see I grated a LOT of cheese. That is one small block, or 2 of the smallest blocks at the grocery store. You can kind of see the size in the background of the bottom picture.

When the cheese and beans are a melty glob of goodness, plop some in the center of a tortilla. You thought I was going to say to add to the meat, didn’t you?

To that add some of the meat/onion mixture.



Now, here’s a trick I learned about rolling burritos. Who hates to have all the innards come out when eating a burrito? Ever notice that doesn’t happen at a restaurant? Heres the secret, fold two of the sides in, I usually do the smaller sides. Then start with the end closest to you and roll up. I usually get about 3 rolls after I fold the sides in.

Then take some of the leftover enchilada sauce and spoon over the top. Top with more grated cheese. Microwave until the cheese is melted.



(On this you can see I used green enchilada sauce, and we were  not fans. Use red!)

Top with chopped lettuce, tomato, green peppers, etc.




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