We used to eat these really delicious meat pies when we were growing up. I’m not sure exactly what was in them, but I do know that the mix had ground beef seasoned with curry powder, tender cubed potatoes, and sweet peas. It was so simple, hearty, filling, and one of my absolute favorite things to eat. But these days I’m a busy person, so when I got the craving for those tasty meat pies I just whipped up the curried ground beef filling and ate it in a bowl instead of fiddling with dough and stuffing it into hand pies. It was still totally satisfying and way easier. There are a few different ways you can serve this curried ground beef, so keep reading to see some options!
Originally posted 10-10-2012, updated 9-4-2021.
I ate this delicious ground beef mixture throughout my entire childhood without ever realizing that it’s basically an Americanized version of Keema, a spiced ground meat dish from India. It’s also very similar to the filling often used for Samosas. The recipe below is not going to be nearly as amazing as real keema, since it uses a store-bought curry powder blend of spices and a very simplified list of ingredients, so I don’t want to call it Keema and do the name such an injustice. If you’d like to try an authentic version of Keema, check out Keema Matar from Tea for Turmeric, Pakistani Aloo Keema from Flour and Spice Blog, or Classic Keema Matar from Afelia’s Kitchen. And if you’d like to try a Samosa, try this Samosa Recipe from Swasthi’s Recipes.
What Kind of Beef to Use
Since the spices and aromatics are going in the skillet before the beef, you won’t want to have to drain off any fat after browning the ground beef, or else you’ll lose some of the flavor. For that reason, you’ll want to use a lower fat ground beef, maybe 10-15% max. Having some fat is good for flavor, but you don’t want it pooling in the bottom of the skillet.
What Kind of Curry Powder to Use
Curry powder blends can vary a LOT from brand to brand, so it’s important to choose one that you’re familiar with and that you know you like. The kind I happen to be using today is 365 brand curry powder, but I’ve also enjoyed Sharwood’s brand in the past. You can use a mild curry powder, or spicy if you prefer. If you’d like to try making your own homemade curry powder, here is a great recipe for homemade curry powder from Spice it Up.
How to Serve Curried Ground Beef with Peas and Potatoes
This dish is quite filling on its own since it contains meat, potatoes, and vegetables, but I like to add a little bread on the side. I love serving naan with this curried ground beef so I can scoop up some of the beef mixture with the piece of naan and get everything in one bite (just like those meat pies I used to eat, but open-faced!). You could also serve the curried beef over a bed of rice for a little extra inexpensive filler.
Can I Add More Vegetables?
Yes! This mixture is so flexible. If you want to incorporate a few extra vegetables, consider adding a diced onion, sliced carrots, and maybe even broccoli. If you want to swap out the potatoes for a lower carb option, you can use small cauliflower florets.
Curried Ground Beef with Peas and Potatoes
- 4 cloves garlic, minced ($0.32)
- 1 tsp grated fresh ginger ($0.10)
- 2 Tbsp cooking oil ($0.08)
- 1 Tbsp curry powder ($0.30)
- 1 tsp turmeric ($0.10)
- 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper (optional) ($0.02)
- 1 lb. ground beef (15% fat or less) ($5.49)
- 1 russet potato (¾ lb.) ($0.63)
- 1 cup beef broth ($0.13)
- 1 cup frozen peas ($0.50)
- 1/2 tsp salt ($0.02)
- 2 green onions, sliced (optional) ($0.22)
- Add the minced garlic, grated ginger, and cooking oil to a large deep skillet. Sauté the garlic and ginger over medium heat for 1-2 minutes. Add the curry powder, turmeric, and crushed red pepper and sauté for one minute more.
- Add the ground beef to the skillet with the spices and sauté until the beef is cooked through.
- While the beef is cooking, peel and cube the potato into ½-inch pieces.
- Add the cubed potato and beef broth to the skillet. Stir to combine with the ground beef. Place a lid on the skillet and turn the heat up to medium-high. Allow the broth to come up to a boil.
- Once the broth reaches a boil, turn the heat down to medium-low and allow it to continue to simmer for 10 minutes with the lid in place (stir occasionally). After ten minutes, the potatoes should be tender. Remove the lid and simmer for a few more minutes, or until most of the broth is evaporated.
- Finally, stir the frozen peas into the beef and potato mixture and heat through. Give the curry beef a taste and add salt to taste (about ½ tsp). Top with sliced green onions and serve hot.
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How to Make Curried Ground Beef with Peas and Potatoes – Step By Step Photos
Start by mincing four cloves of garlic and grating about 1 teaspoon fresh ginger. Add the garlic and ginger to a skillet with 2 tablespoons of cooking oil. Sauté the garlic and ginger over medium heat for one to two minutes.
Next, add 1 tablespoon curry powder, 1 teaspoon turmeric, and ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper (optional) to the skillet. Continue to sauté over medium heat for about one more minute to toast the spices.
Add one pound of ground beef to the skillet and continue sautéing until it is cooked through.
While the beef is browning, peel and cube one russet potato into ½-inch pieces. My potato was about ¾ lb. total, but it’s flexible so you can add a little more or less if you have it.
Once the beef is browned, add the cubed potato and one cup beef broth. Stir to combine.
Place a lid on the skillet, turn the heat up to medium-high, and bring the broth up to a boil. Once boiling, turn the heat down to medium-low and let the skillet simmer for about 10 minutes, with the lid in place, stirring occasionally. After ten minutes the potatoes should be nice and tender. Remove the lid and let it simmer a few more minutes, or until most of the broth is evaporated.
Add one cup of frozen peas to the skillet and stir to combine, then allow the peas to heat through.
Give the curried beef with peas and potatoes a taste and add salt to your liking (I added about ½ teaspoon).
Top with sliced green onions and enjoy!