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Thursday 7 December 2023 Dublin: 9°C

7 essential mince dishes you need to learn to cook

It’s more than just spag bol (but relax – we have that too).

MINCED MEAT IS the staple of many a dinner – particularly for the time-strapped amongst us.

It can be whipped into a number of classic dishes from spaghetti bolognese to chilli to a nice burger, and best of all – it’s not restricted to one type of meat. You can have lamb mince burgers, turkey meatballs, beef bolognese – the options are endless.

And within each recipe there’s room for experimentation – whether for health or taste reasons. Spice up your bolognese with chorizo for example, or swap the pasta for courgette noodles (we’ll show you how).

Here we round up a few of the more interesting recipes starring this dinner hero in order to give you delicious twists on familiar recipes – and another excuse to spice up dinner.

1. Moussaka

Taste Taste

This is Greeky, cheesy comfort food. Subtle spices and tomato flavours are combined with the minced lamb, aubergine and topped with cheese. This is a great dish to serve with a light salad. Here’s a wonderful classic recipe.

2. Spaghetti with courgette (or zucchini) noodles

Italian Foodies Italian Foodies

Spaghetti is so easy to make, you could probably make it in your sleep. As we said above, it’s also a great one to try to experiment with. Red wine and red peppers are a nice combination, or using different meats with the appropriate complementary flavours (lamb mince with rosemary for instance).

All Recipes All Recipes

Here’s a recipe for a classic spaghetti and to increase the health stakes, or for those with any kind of gluten issues, here’s a nice alternative to wheat pasta – although calling it ‘pasta’ is a bit of a stretch.

3. Baked meatballs with garlic mash

Taste Taste

Keeping to the Italian theme for just a moment more, here’s a really delish recipe for meatballs and mash. Filled with loads of flavour and a healthy option using turkey mince, we defy you not to go back for seconds.

4. Pork mince chilli con carne

Johan Johansen Johan Johansen

No ordinary chilli con carne here, oh no. We bring to you a pork mince chilli con carne (which can of course be made with the more traditional beef). Interesting additions here are wine and cocoa… sounds good to us. 

5. Korean hamburgers

Food Food

You can’t beat a burger for sheer taste satisfaction and a classic beef burger with mustard, ketchup and some chips on the side…heaven. But in our quest to keep things interesting we found this Korean burger. Utilising Asian influences such as teriyaki sauce and sesame seeds with loads of garlic, it’s unusual and really tasty.

6. Easy skillet (frying pan) lasagne

How sweet it is How sweet it is

While not quite a one-pot dish, as the lasagne needs to be cooked separately, this is a nice quick way to make a lasagne without looking through the oven window for the hours it takes to cook normally*. Here’s a nice recipe that takes a mere 30 minutes.

*Alright, not quite hours, but surely you feel our waiting pain.

7. Mince and mushroom polenta bake

goodtoknow goodtoknow

And now for something completely different. Polenta is a type of cornmeal, so good for those following a gluten-free diet and is a really easy to use ingredient (can be ready in 2-3 minutes). There’s a nice recipe here, which kind of seems to be a giant casserole sandwich… no complaints here.

Are you tempted to try any of our dishes? Tell us your best mince recipes in the comments below.

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