I got this recipe back when I worked at the Farm Service Agency in La Grande. Tim, a guy that also worked there, brought this soup to a potluck. Everyone loved it, and I stole the recipe. It's very simple, I almost always have the ingredients on-hand, and my kids will eat it. There are no measurements, and it cooks all together in one pan (less dish-washing!). I will list the ingredients, you adjust the amounts to suit you. We always top it with sour cream or shredded cheese, and a side of bread. And it's even better the second day...
Since this is my first post, let me clarify what I mean by "ground beef". That means hamburger cut by Gary at the Wasco Market. Nobody does it better. In fact, I wouldn't even bother buying hamburger anywhere else. Gary's is lean, you never have to drain any grease, and it is yummy. Hopefully it comes from beef cattle that have benefited from growth hormones and antibiotics. None of that organic stuff. Since we haven't fattened our own in awhile, we buy 50 pounds at a time from Gary. Okay, here is the recipe:
Ground Beef (my packages are about 1 1/2 pounds, so that's how much I use)
Taco Seasoning Packet
Ranch Dressing Packet
2-4 Cans of Beans (Kidney or Black, or Both)
Canned Diced Tomatoes
Cook the beef, then add the other ingredients and simmer as long as you like.