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    Taco Pasta

    Taco Pasta!! Now that’s a taco lover’s sweet dream. All your favorite taco flavors get cheesy and creamy!! I choose any type of pasta I love, mix it up with some homemade taco seasoning for that essential kick, and there you have it: Taco Pasta!

    Believe me, this dish is hands down irresistible. I make it Tex-Mex style, turning ordinary pasta into a comfort food treat with a Mexican twist. It’s my quick, go-to meal when I need something delicious, and it’s ready in just 30 minutes.

    Tonight, I’m all about adding new flavors to my dinner with this easy Mexican Pasta… Taco Pasta!

    Combine two of your favorite meals, and you get... Taco Pasta! This 30-minute recipe fuses taco flavors with comforting goodness of creamy, cheesy pasta.

    Who doesn’t like some delicious pasta any time, any day of the year?

    Jason salivates with just the thought of any Italian meal with pasta in it. Be his all time favorite Spaghetti with Meat Sauce or Creamy Sausage Pasta or good old Johnny Marzetti. It’s all good when that pasta comes to the table.

    Todays pasta is very unique, though it may remind you of one meal that you grew up on, Hamburger Helper. It’s just gets more creamy, more tasty and more cheesy, along with a good dose of veggie power.

    Combine two of your favorite meals, and you get... Taco Pasta! This 30-minute recipe fuses taco flavors with comforting goodness of creamy, cheesy pasta.

    Homemade Taco Seasoning

    Making your own taco seasoning is so simple, and can be done in minutes. It’s a secret for the delicious taco meat that is the base of this taco pasta.

    I swear by my simple Taco Seasoning recipe, which I use in so many of my recipes. All you need is a few simple ingredients, which you probably already have in your pantry:

    • Chili powder
    • Cumin
    • Garlic powder
    • Onion powder
    • Paprika
    • Red chili flakes
    • Oregano
    • Salt
    • Pepper

    I just measure everything according to the amounts in the recipe card, mix it up, and I am all set for some great taco pasta.

    taco seasoning in a bowl

    Ingredients Needed

    • Ground Beef – You can make this taco pasta with any kind of ground meat on hand, but I typically use 85/15 ground beef.
    • Veggies and aromatics – Onion, bell peppers (use different colored peppers for color), sweet corn (we use frozen), Rotel tomatoes, garlic.
    • Taco seasoning – See above.
    • For sauce – Heavy cream, beef broth, cream cheese and cheddar cheese.
    • Pasta – Any of your favorite pasta shape would work here. I like to use shapes that hold the sauce well, like rotini, shells, or elbow macaroni.
    • Olive oil – Or any other cooking oil.
    • Salt – To taste.
    • Cilantro – For garnish.

    Ground Beef Taco Pasta Recipe

    1. Cook the pasta: I bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil and cook the pasta al dente, according to the package instructions. Then, I drain it and set it aside.

    2. Brown the meat: While the pasta is cooking, I make the taco pasta sauce. I heat some olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Then I add ground beef and sauté it until it’s no longer pink. I toss in diced onions, bell peppers, corn, and garlic, and sauté everything until the veggies start to soften. Next, I stir in taco seasoning and Rotel tomatoes, mixing everything well. I let it all cook together for about 10 minutes. While its cooking, you can check out our collection of favorite Ground Beef Recipes.

    ground beef mixture

    3. Make taco pasta sauce: I create a space in the middle of the skillet by pushing the meat mixture to the edges. Then, I add in beef broth, heavy cream, softened cream cheese, and cheddar cheese right in the center.

    making the sauce

    I swirl it all together, cooking until I have a smooth and creamy sauce. Then, I mix the taco meat mixture with the sauce and combine everything well. I taste it and season with salt to taste.

    meat mixture combined with sauce

    4. Finish the taco pasta: I add the cooked pasta into the skillet and combine it well with the taco mixture.

    adding in pasta

    I cook everything together for about 5 minutes until all the flavors blend nicely. Then, I garnish it with chopped cilantro and serve it immediately.

    finished pasta in a skillet

    Variations:

    Swap the meat: I swap the ground beef for ground turkey or chicken if I want a lower fat option. Mixing ground beef and ground pork also makes a great combo for this pasta. I’ve even thought about using ground sausage, which would be delicious.

    Add different types of tomatoes: For the tomatoes, some days I use regular diced tomatoes instead of Rotel, or try any salsa or even enchilada sauce for a different flavor profile.

    Add in extra flavors: To add extra flavors, I throw in black beans and other veggies like mushrooms, peas, black olives, or pickled jalapeños.

    Play with the sauce: When it comes to playing with the sauce, I have plenty of options. Sometimes I make it with just cream and cheddar cheese, skipping the cream cheese. Or I might skip the cream and use just cream cheese, or even sour cream. Sometimes, I skip the creamy factor altogether and just add cheddar cheese to the meat sauce. Substituting Monterey Jack or mozzarella for cheddar cheese is also a great idea.

    Add toppings: For toppings, I like to serve this pasta with extras like diced scallions, fresh salsa, fresh diced tomatoes, sliced avocados, or a dollop of sour cream.

    Combine two of you favorite meals, and you get... Taco Pasta! This 30-minute recipe fuses taco flavors with comforting goodness of creamy, cheesy pasta.

    Alpana’s Tips

    • I cook the pasta al dente because it will finish cooking when I mix it with the taco meat sauce.
    • If I don’t have Rotel tomatoes and still want a little heat, I simply use diced canned tomatoes and add a jalapeño to the mix.
    • For the ground beef, I like to use 85/15 (ground round) for this pasta. It adds a lot of flavor to the dish. I can always drain the excess fat as much as I want, though I recommend leaving a little behind for the flavor.
    • I use block cheddar cheese and shred it fresh. It makes a big difference in the melt and flavor of the cheese in the dish.
    Combine two of you favorite meals, and you get... Taco Pasta! This 30-minute recipe fuses taco flavors with comforting goodness of creamy, cheesy pasta.

    In our home, I can’t live without tacos, and Jason’s eyes light up at the thought of pasta. So this Taco Pasta dinner is our dream come true for any night.

    Try my version of taco pasta, and see how beautifully cheesy and creamy it turns out, full of all the taco flavors. Tex-Mex flavors in your pasta is the new sensation you can create in your kitchen. Go the taco way… Taco Pasta way. You will love it.

    Taco Pasta, on our Gypsy Plate… enjoy!

    bowl of taco pasta atop the Gypsy Plate

    Try these other creamy pasta dishes!
    Creamy Ground Chicken Pasta
    Creamy Salmon Pasta
    Jambalaya Pasta
    Fettuccine Alfredo
    Gigi Hadid Pasta
    Tortellini al Forno
    Cajun Chicken Pasta
    Rasta Pasta

    Taco Pasta

    Taco Pasta

    Yield: 4 servings
    Prep Time: 5 minutes
    Cook Time: 25 minutes
    Total Time: 30 minutes

    Combine two of your favorite meals, and you get... Taco Pasta! This 30-minute recipe fuses taco flavors with comforting goodness of creamy, cheesy pasta. Big time YUM!

    Ingredients

    • 2 Tbsp olive oil
    • 1 to 1½ pounds ground beef
    • 1 small red onion, diced
    • 1 red bell pepper. diced
    • 1 green bell pepper, diced
    • 1 cup sweet corn, frozen
    • 4 garlic cloves, finely diced
    • Taco Seasoning (see note 1)
    • 1 10oz can Rotel tomatoes (see note 2)
    • 1 cup beef broth
    • ½ cup heavy cream
    • 4oz cream cheese, softened
    • 2 cups cheddar cheese, shredded
    • 8oz pasta of your choice
    • salt to taste
    • cilantro to garnish

    Instructions

    1. Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil and cook the pasta al dente according to the package instructions. Drain and set aside.
    2. While the pasta is cooking, make the taco pasta sauce. Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium high heat. Add ground beef and sauté till no longer pink. Add in diced onion, bell peppers, corn and garlic, and sauté till veggies start to soften.
    3. Add in taco seasoning and rotel tomatoes, and mix well. Cook for 10 minutes.
    4. Create a space in the middle by pushing meat mixture to the edges of the pan. Add beef broth, heavy cream, softened cream cheese and cheddar cheese to the center. Mix well until it becomes a smooth and creamy sauce. Mix in the taco meat mixture with the sauce and combine well. Taste and season with salt to taste.
    5. Add in cooked pasta and combine well with the meat sauce. Cook for 5 minutes, till all flavors mix well.
    6. Garnish with chopped cilantro, and serve immediately.

    Notes

    1. Taco Seasoning:
      1 Tbsp chili powder
      1.5 tsp cumin
      1 tsp garlic powder
      ½ tsp onion powder
      1 tsp oregano
      1 tsp paprika (we use smoked)
      ¼ tsp red chili flakes
      1 tsp salt
      ½ tsp black pepper
      - Mix ingredients in a bowl and use all for this recipe.
    2. You can use diced tomatoes instead of rotel.
    3. Leftovers: Leftover taco pasta is great for 3-4 days in an airtight container in your fridge. Reheat: You can warm it in a saucepan slowly and over low heat for best results. Add in a splash of cream if it dries out. Alternately, you can also warm it up in the microwave. We don't recommend freezing this taco pasta. Cheesy sauces don't do well in the freezer.

    Did you make this recipe?

    Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest

    Picture of Alpana, blogger and recipe developer at GypsyPlate

    Welcome to GypsyPlate! I'm Alpana, former wordwide tour manager and professional caterer, now full time blogger. I love exploring cuisines from around the world, and my recipes have been featured on sites such as MSN, Parade, Brit + Co, CNET and AOL. You can explore my entire collection of sortable recipes in my Recipe Index or learn more about me here.

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