– 1-2 lbs ground beef – ½ cup onion, diced – 2 tsp garlic powder – 2 tsp onion powder – 1 tsp paprika – ½ tsp salt – ½ tsp pepper – 1 pinch cayenne pepper – 2 oz cream cheese – 2 cups milk – 2 cups water – 1 16oz box elbow noodles – 8 oz cheddar cheese, shredded – ½ cup cherry red tomatoes, quartered
In a large pot over medium/high heat, combine your ground beef and diced onion.
Brown the ground beef and drain all excess grease. Add in the seasonings and stir until combined.
Add in the cream cheese and stir until it's melted and fully incorporated.
Turn the heat up to high and add in the water and milk. Bring to a boil and add in the elbow noodles.
Return to a boil. Cover the pot with a lid and turn the heat down to medium-low. Boil for 5 minutes. Stir, and then boil for another 5 minutes. You may notice the curdle appearance of the liquid at this point. This is normal.
Remove the pot from the heat
Add your cheddar cheese. Place the lid on and wait a minute or two for the cheese to melt. This makes it easier to stir in. Stir the cheese in until it's fully combined.
Gently fold in the cherry tomatoes. The heat of the noodle dish will warm them up and cook them slightly, but you don't want to crush them.
Let the pot stand for 5 minutes before serving to help the sauce thicken and cool.