Crockpot Hamburgers in Gravy & Menu Monday

Recently, I posted how to cook ground beef in the crock pot (aka slow cooker), and it got me to thinking…what about hamburger patties in the crock pot?  I wasn’t sure if it would work or not, I was afraid the patties would just fall apart, but they didn’t!  It actually worked out well.  I started with lean frozen hamburger patties…

Excuse my terrible cell phone picture. The patties look gross and freezer burned, but they weren’t.
 I stacked 6 patties in my crock pot (with a liner – completely optional, it just makes clean up so easy!)  I added hamburger seasoning, water and beef bouillon. (You could use a cup of beef broth or beef consomme)  I would have added onions too, but I was out.  I let them cook for 6 hours on high.
If you have a packet of gravy mix, or a can of Cream of Mushroom, you could go ahead and add those too, I would think.  I, however, didn’t have either of those (can you tell I needed to go to the store!), so I removed the hamburgers at the end of the cook time and added the liquid to a skillet. To the liquid (basically beef broth, because I used lean ground beef), I added homemade cream of chicken and brought it to a boil so it would thicken up.  I then put the hamburger in the skillet with the gravy and let it all simmer together while I got the sides done and table set, etc.  It only took a few minutes.  As you can tell, I’m not a gravy connoisseur.  If you actually know how to make gravy, you may be able to do it all in the crock pot and skip this step, or make the gravy and add to it.  This is just what worked for me with the stuff I had on hand.

Crock Pot Hamburgers in Gravy

Lean Beef Hamburger Patties (I used 6)
1 cup water
1 tsp beef bouillon
homemade cream of chicken (equivalent to 1 can)
salt and pepper – to taste
Place patties (mine were frozen, I think you would need to reduce cook time if using fresh) in crock pot with water and beef bouillon (or beef broth). Cook on high for 6 hours.  Remove patties and use broth to make gravy. Add broth to skillet and add homemade cream of chicken soup, bring to a boil, stirring frequently, until thickened.  Add hamburgers, stir, and add salt and pepper as needed.  I don’t like to add salt at the beginning of a dish in the crock pot, b/c sometimes it ends up way too salty.
NOTES: As stated above, you could probably make the gravy in the pot with the patties if you have prepared Cream of Chicken, Cream of Mushroom, Golden Mushroom, gravy mix, etc.  Also, this is a very basic version of hamburgers in gravy.  If your family likes mushrooms, onions, peppers, garlic, etc., have at it!
I served this with Cauliflower Gratin and canned green beans. We love some canned green beans.  Exciting, I know.
Something new I am trying to do is MENU PLAN! I don’t know about y’all, but for me, it’s hard and time consuming!  However, it really helps me out during the week to have a plan.  Granted, it often changes, but at least I have a general idea of what I want to make based on the ingredients I have on hand.  I base our meals for the week on what is already in the pantry/freezer and then make a list of things I need to get to finish out a recipe.  I’ve been doing menu plans since January, and thought I would begin to post them on the blog.  Maybe it will help someone else out!  I can also keep up with what I have made, what worked, etc.  So here goes…
MondayChicken & Dumpling Casserole (I have a rotisserie chicken in the fridge that I am going to use)
TuesdaySausage, Egg & Biscuit Breakfast Casserole (We love breakfast for dinner. I have some homemade turkey sausage in the freezer.)
WednesdayCrockpot BBQ Beer Chicken (hopefully I will make homemade buns to put it on, but we’ll see how that goes!)
Thursday – leftovers or pasta
Friday – French Bread Pizzas (loaf of bread in freezer, easy homemade pizza sauce in fridge)
Saturday & Sunday – I’ve left open because I don’t know what our plans are yet.
If you do not have time to menu plan, you should check out Eat at Home’s Weekly Meal Plans.  She does all the work for you!  You get a slow cooker AND traditional menu plan each week, emailed to you, with a grocery list, printable recipes, side dish suggestions and more, for only $4 a MONTH!
So what about you? Do you plan out your meals or just wing it?