How to Cook Ground Beef in a Crockpot

Have you ever cooked ground beef in a crockpot?

how to cook ground beef in a crockpot

Because we know a lot goes into keeping families moving, MOMables is always sharing ways to simplify things on the “feeding your family” front. Just as you will find prep-ahead tips in the weekly plans, today we’re sharing a prep-ahead tip for how you can cook ground beef in a crock-pot, for all of your meals for the week, at once.

Cook once and eliminate a step later on in the week when you’re making meals. If you can eliminate one of the more time consuming steps like this, your dinner prep moves a lot faster, which gets dinner on the table faster and leaves more time for you to cross other things off that never-ending mommy list.

how to cook ground beef

All you do is add however many pounds of ground beef you plan on needing for the week to your crock-pot (I have done as many as 5 lbs. at one time). Break up the beef and add ¼ cup water (per pound of beef). Turn your crock-pot on and cook on HIGH for 2-3 hours or LOW for 4-6 hours. Cooking time will vary depending on how many pounds of beef you are cooking.

During the cooking process, I stir the meat mixture occasionally to help the meat cook evenly. Once your meat has fully cooked, drain off the grease. I then divide the meat out and store in plastic bags in the refrigerator. Then later on in the week, when I need to add it to a casserole, sauce, etc., I just pull it out of the refrigerator and add it along with the other ingredients. It is a huge time saver. Not to mention, it means dirtying one less pan that night!

I don’t exactly know what it is about the onset of colder weather that makes me feel compelled to start stocking my freezer with meals, but it happens every year around this time. If this happens to you as well, this method for cooking ground beef in a crockpot is also great to do and instead of using the beef right away, you can stock your freezer with the cooked beef.

I use this method to cook up a bunch of ground beef and then freeze the cooked meat in a freezer safe plastic bag. Then on days when I am in need of a quick meal, I can pull out the beef, let it thaw, and add it to any dish (spaghetti sauce, taco meat, etc).

A quick and easy way to cook ground beef that requires very little work…count me in!


  1. Dorothy says

    googled this while in the process of trying it for the first time…… But I used chicken broth instead of water. Will that work?

  2. Marley says

    Is it possible to use this method for frozen ground beef? I often will throw frozen chicken thighs in the crock pot and it’s the best for casseroles, I can never remember to defrost my meats before the day I need them.

  3. AJ says

    I love this idea sooooo much! I love using my crockpot since I live in FL and I do anything to keep the heat to a minimum. I just remembered this too. I want to make a casserole tomorrow night but didn’t want to have to cook the meat, then cook the casserole. I’m gonna through the meat in my crock pot to cook tonight before I go to bed. Then tomorrow all I’ll have to do is prep & steam my veggies, throw the meat in with a can of tomatoes and I’m all set! Thanks again!!!!!!

  4. Jess says

    I used my 7qt crock pot and browned 6.75lbs of ground turkey using this method. There was a lot of liquid, so after it was cooked, I drained it well and put it back in the crock pot and let it cook for a little while longer, this gave it some of that browned/seared look. It worked awesomely well. I used some for sloppy joes, we’ll be having tacos this week and the rest will go into the freezer. Thank you!

  5. Joann says

    But how does it look? I haven’t found that ground beef looks very appetizing if I don’t cook it first before making something that calls for it in the crock pot. I like that browner, seared look.

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