• 1 teaspoon vegetable or olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, minced
  • 1 green bell pepper, cored, seeded and finely chopped
  • 1 pound 80% lean ground beef
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Sugar
  • 1 tablespoon store-bought or homemade onion soup mix
  • One 16-ounce can tomato paste
  • ½ pound medium shrimp, shelled and deveined (optional)
  • ½ pound andouille sausage, sliced ½-inch thick (optional)
  • 1 pound cooked spaghetti


Serves: 4-6


Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat and add the onion and bell pepper. Cook until the vegetables start to soften, 2-3 minutes, then add the ground beef.  Stir to break up the meat and cook for 5-7 minutes, until browned all over.
Pour off about half of the fat that comes out of the ground meat and stir in the salt, pepper, sugar to taste and the onion soup mix. Add the tomato paste and stir well to coat the beef. Add 2 cups of water to the skillet, bring to a simmer then reduce the heat to medium-low. Simmer for about 10 minutes, until the sauce thickens up.

Add the shrimp (if using) and cook until the shrimp are just pink; remove pan from the heat.
If you are adding the sausage, while the sauce is simmering, heat a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the sausage and cook until browned all over, about 7-8 minutes.  Remove it from the skillet with a slotted spoon and add it to the meat sauce.
Combine the meat sauce with the cooked spaghetti and give it a good mix so all the pasta is coated. Serve immediately.