Cheeseburger Stuffed Bread (a.k.a. Garbage Bread)

Cheeseburger Stuffed Bread (a.k.a. Garbage Bread)

This Cheeseburger Stuffed Bread recipe is an easy appetizer or main meal!  Take a loaf of crusty french bread and fill it with ground beef and lots of cheese.  While “Garbage Bread” may not sound delicious, I assure you this meaty, cheesy, savory meal is always a busy weeknight family favorite.   


This recipe was originally published in 2018.  It was updated in 2021 to include fabulous new photos!  

baked cheeseburger stuffed french bread sliced on white plate


Welcome to My Kitchen Serenity!  I hope you enjoy this beef and cheese stuffed french bread as much as we have over the years. The kids will think this meal is fun to eat and the grown-ups will love a delicious, quick, and easy home-cooked meal.  


Why You Need To Make “Garbage Bread”

Look, y’all. I didn’t come up with the name for this delicious, meaty, cheesy, WONDROUS stuffed bread, but if Oscar the Grouch ate this for every single meal, I wouldn’t blame him one bit. Whatever the etymology, “Garbage Bread” is delightful.


Stuffed bread is no new concept. Sandwiches, stromboli, stuffed croissants, even clam chowder filled bread bowls are all working on the same concept with slightly different approaches. This particular stuffed bread recipe is an excellent meal choice for busy families.


It all starts with a store bought loaf of French or Italian bread. Slice it, hollow it out a bit (gathering some fodder for homemade breadcrumbs in the process), then stuff it with a ground beef and cheese mixture and bake it. It’s basically a large format cheeseburger that you just slice into individual open faced sliders. Garbage Bread is magic!


If you’re someone who likes to meal prep, this is also an excellent candidate. Prepare the beef filling ahead of time, then simply slice, fill and bake the bread for a dreamy weeknight dinner. Serve with a quick side salad for a satisfying, inexpensive and complete dinner.


Stuffed bread is also endlessly adaptable, making it an ideal template to plug into your weekly meal plan. Meatless Monday? Taco Tuesday? How about Stuffed Bread EVERYDAY? Okay, maybe that’s a little extreme, but you get the idea!  So grab your ingredients and meet me in the kitchen, k?


Ingredients and Substitutions

Let’s take a quick glance at what’s needed:


stuffed french bread ingredients laid out on table


Ingredients for this Stuffed Bread

  • Ground Beef – Substitute ground turkey, ground chicken, or meatless crumbles (like Impossible Meat) if desired.
  • Onion – Chop it finely if you don’t like chunks. Mince the onion, and the kids will never know there’s onion in it! You can also substitute red, yellow, or even green onions.
  • Evaporated Milk – If you are unfamiliar with this magical product, go get yourself a can ASAP. Evaporated milk is real milk that has had about 60% of its water removed by an evaporation process. This process creates a much more creamy, rich, savory milk than regular milk, which results in a dreamy filling for this cheeseburger stuffed bread. 
  • Egg – In this instance, the egg is working as a binder to help the mixture stay together. If you are allergic to eggs, try using a vegan egg replacer (like Bob’s Red Mill).
  • Oats – The oats are also used to bind and thicken the filling but have the added benefit of giving you a bit of fiber. Use either quick oats or old-fashioned. Do not use instant or steel cut oats. And don’t worry! Your kids won’t even know they are there.
  • Steak Sauce – A1 is my top choice, but feel free to use your own favorites.
  • Cheddar Cheese – Mild or sharp both taste great. You could also sub in any other melty cheese your family likes! American, mozzarella, pepper jack, or swiss would all be great too!
  • Yellow Mustard – Mustard adds a little bit of a “twang” to the flavor, so please don’t leave it out!
  • French Bread – Instead of french bread, you can stuff small crusty rolls, or use a loaf of ciabatta, Italian, or any other sturdy loaf.


How to Make Cheeseburger Stuffed Bread

Step 1: Slice the french bread in half lengthwise and scoop some of the bread out of the middle.  Set aside.

MONEY SAVING TIP: Save the centers of the loaves that you pull out. Let them go stale overnight, then blitz into breadcrumbs so you can make my Best Southern Meatloaf with it later in the week! 

french bread that has been sliced in half and some contents removed to make garbage bread

Step 2: Brown and crumble the hamburger meat with the onion and drain off the fat. 

cooked ground beef and onion in pot

Step 3:  Mix in the remaining ingredients (save 1 cup cheese for topping).  

stuffed bread filling in pot

Step 4:  Spoon the ground beef mixture into the french bread halves. 

unbaked stuffed garbage breadStep 5: Top with remaining cheese and bake as directed.  After baking, slice into hand-held size serving pieces. 

baked stuffed bread before slicing


These little open-faced “cheeseburgers” are creamy, cheesy, and delicious all by themselves.  But you can drizzle some mustard or ketchup on top, or dip them into whatever special sauce suits your fancy. 

A vinegar-based hot sauce really adds extra flavor, so put a few drops on top.  And don’t forget pickles or slaw on the side!


slices of baked stuffed bread on white plate


Other Yummy Bread Stuffing Ideas

We love cheeseburgers in this house, but don’t for a second feel limited to stuffing your bread with just that! Here are just a few ideas to get you started:

  • For a change of pace, you could use cooked chuck roast instead of the ground hamburger meat.  Just cook and shred the roast; then proceed with the rest of the recipe instructions. 
  • Cooked, shredded chicken is a great substitution for ground beef.
  • Play with the flavors!  


You also don’t have to feel limited by the type of bread you use. Instead of french bread, use yeast rolls or small hoagie buns for true slider style stuffed bread. You could also use pizza dough or crescent rolls to stretch the concept a little further! Have fun and embrace all the goodness that is Garbage Bread. 🙂


Frequently Asked Questions

What is Evaporated Milk?

If evaporated milk sounds weird to you, let me assure you that it is an AWESOME item to keep in the pantry. It is made with real milk that has had about 60% of the water removed, and then is canned to keep it shelf stable. The resulting ingredient is a thicker, creamier milk that is perfect for cooking.

There are so many excellent ways to use evaporated milk instead of regular milk or cream in your recipes and even in your coffee!  From creamy desserts to savory main dishes, evaporated milk is an excellent replacement for regular milk. 


What is the best kind of oatmeal for the meat mix?

It really doesn’t matter whether you use quick oats or old-fashioned oats for this recipe, but I would NOT recommend using instant oatmeal or steel oats. And trust me, your kids won’t even know they’re eating oatmeal. I love having healthy mommy tricks! Ha! 


Is stuffed bread good for meal prep?

Heck yeah! Just make the filling ahead of time. It’ll last in the fridge for up to 5 days, and in the freezer for up to three months! On the night you need dinner in a flash, simply halve the loaf, stuff it with your pre-made filling and cheese, then bake!


Wondering what else is for dinner? Check out these yummy sides to serve with stuffed bread:


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Please leave me a comment if you make this Easy Cheeseburger Stuffed Bread (a.k.a Garbage Bread) recipe.  I’d love to hear from you. Let’s keep in touch!

cheeseburger stuffed french bread

Family Favorite Stuffed French Bread

Stuffed french bread is an excellent meal choice for a busy family.  In a short amount of time, you'll have a delicious hot homemade meal with easy cleanup. After baking, slice the loaves into easy to hold individual mini sandwiches.  
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin For Later Rate
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes


  • large pan
  • measuring cup(s)
  • measuring spoons


  • 1 Loaf of French Bread
  • 1 pound Ground beef
  • 1/2 cup Onion, diced
  • 1 5-oz can Evaporated milk
  • 1 Egg, beaten
  • 1/2 cup Oats, uncooked, quick or regular
  • 1 tablespoon Yellow mustard
  • 1 tablespoon Steak sauce (such as A-1)
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon Pepper
  • 3 cups Cheddar cheese, shredded (2 cups for beef mixture, 1 cup for topping)


  • Preheat oven to 350F. Slice the french bread in half lengthwise. Press down the inside of each half with your fingers, (or remove some of the bread) creating an indention to hold the meat mixture. Place each half onto a baking sheet. 
  • Brown and crumble the ground beef with the onion until the beef is done, remove from heat, and drain off the fat. Mix in the evaporated milk, egg, oats, mustard, steak sauce, salt, pepper, and 2 cups cheddar cheese.
  • Stuff equally into each half, top with remaining 1 cup cheese, and bake for about 20 minutes. Midway through cooking, check to see if the edges of the bread are browning too quickly. If so, loosely cover the loaves with foil and continue baking.  
  • After baking, slice into hand-held size serving pieces.


Make-Ahead Instructions: Prepare the beef filling a day or two in advance; then stuff the french bread right before baking.
Easy Substitutions
  • For a change of pace, you could use cooked chuck roast instead of the ground hamburger meat.  Just cook and shred the roast; then proceed with the rest of the recipe instructions. 
  • Cooked, shredded chicken is a great substitution for ground beef.
  • Instead of french bread, use yeast rolls or small hoagie buns.
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1 thought on “Cheeseburger Stuffed Bread (a.k.a. Garbage Bread)”

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