Taco Pasta

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A quick and delicious taco pasta loaded with ground beef, tomatoes, green chiles, Tex-Mex spices, and lots of cheddar cheese!

We originally published this post about 2 years ago. Sadly, it hasn’t gone over so well. It seems, not many people were interested in a taco pasta salad. So, Kim completely revamped the recipe.

Today, I’m excited to present to you our one-pan taco pasta! It’s a cheesy, comforting, Tex-Mex pasta. Looking back, I completely understand why people wouldn’t want to try a cold taco pasta salad.

Chilled ground beef and cold cheese doesn’t appeal to everyone. That’s why Kim rewrote the recipe. The end result is something that, I feel, will get a much better reception. So, shall we get started?

A cast iron skillet filled with the finished pasta.

How to make one pan taco pasta with ground beef?

First, place a large skillet over low-medium heat. Add in the ground beef and cook it until it browns.

After that, remove it from the pan, drain the excess grease, and return the beef to the skillet.

Cooked ground beef in a cast iron skillet.

Next, sprinkle the taco seasoning over the ground beef.

Afterward, add beef broth, water, tomatoes and green chiles, and corn.

Taco seasoning, water, and other ingredients added to the beef.

Now, stir the mixture and then bring it to a boil. Once the liquid is boiling, toss in the dry (uncooked) pasta noodles.

Then, reduce the heat to a simmer, cover the skillet, and let mixture cook to for about 15-minutes.

Dry pasta noodles added to the skillet.

Once the time has passed, check the pasta and see if it’s done. If not, let it cook a little longer.

However, if it is done, then stir in half (1-cup) of the cheddar cheese and then sprinkle the rest of the cheese (1-cup) over the top of the pasta.

The noodles have cooked and pasta is ready to serve.

That’s it, your taco pasta is done! Top it with chipotle guacamole, sour cream, or whatever garnishes you desire.

Kim and I hope you enjoy the recipe and wish you all the best 🙂

Recipe Tips:

  • For a crispy topping, crumble some tortilla chips or tortilla strips and sprinkle them over the pasta.
  • Try using 93/7 ground beef, low-fat sour cream, and low-fat cheese to lighten up this recipe.
  • This taco dish can be made gluten-free by substituting a couple of the base ingredients. For example, use gluten-free noodles and seasoning blends.
  • Also, don’t be afraid to add more liquid if the noodles soak it up too quickly. Personally, I would use beef stock so the flavors aren’t diluted.
The finished pasta dish topped with sour cream.
Top-view of the taco pasta in a cast iron skillet.

Taco Pasta

4.8 from 14 votes
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Author: Kimberly
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4 Servings


  • 1 pound ground beef, We used 93/7
  • 1 ounce taco seasoning, 1 packet
  • 1 ½ cups low-sodium beef broth
  • ½ cup water
  • 10 ounces diced tomatoes and green chiles, 1 can, undrained
  • 1 cup frozen corn
  • 8 ounces short pasta, uncooked (ziti, penne, rigatoni, etc)
  • 2 cups sharp cheddar cheese, shredded


  • In a large skillet, cook the ground over low to medium heat. Cook until no longer pink. Drain the excess grease. Then return the beef to the skillet.
    1 pound ground beef
  • Add the taco seasoning, water, broth, tomatoes and green chiles, and corn. Stir to combine. Add the uncooked pasta, ensuring that it’s fully submerged in the liquid. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer, cover, and cook for about 15 minutes.
    1 ounce taco seasoning
    1 ½ cups low-sodium beef broth
    ½ cup water
    10 ounces diced tomatoes and green chiles
    1 cup frozen corn
    8 ounces short pasta
  • After 15 minutes, check the pasta for desired consistency. Stir in 1 cup of cheese, and place the remaining cheese on top. Garnish with your favorite toppings.
    1 pound ground beef
    2 cups sharp cheddar cheese
  • Serve hot and store any leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • Garnishes: diced tomatoes, sour cream, guacamole, cilantro, or parsley


Serving: 2cups | Calories: 717kcal | Carbohydrates: 61g | Protein: 46g | Fat: 32g | Saturated Fat: 16g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 130mg | Sodium: 1467mg | Potassium: 704mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 1516IU | Vitamin C: 7mg | Calcium: 454mg | Iron: 5mg


The calories listed are an approximation based on the ingredients in the recipe card and a serving size of about 2 cups of the taco pasta. Additionally, the calorie count does NOT include any garnishes seen in the photos.
Actual calories will vary. For more information and tips, please refer to the post.
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  1. This sounds DELISH! Love taco salad already, but really loving the idea of making it a pasta salad. So creative and delicious!

  2. This is the perfect salad for summer and especially Game Day! So versatile and super easy.. great classic flavors and perfectly simple to make.

  3. I love a good summer pasta salad and this version looks delicious! I can’t get enough of tacos, so I know this will be a new favorite.

  4. It’s that time of year when pasta salads sound so good. I love the southwest flavors in this one!

  5. This is a great summer meal. My family is seriously into tacos.I’ll love putting this into my Taco Tuesday rotation

  6. Ok, so these ingredients have just gone on my shopping list. I can’t wait to try this recipe!

  7. Mexican food is my favorite cuisine! I love all the flavors you have going with this taco pasta salad and I can’t wait to make your delicious recipe! Hubby’s going to be happy when I do, but not as happy as I will be!! 🙂

  8. Tacos in a bowl! I love this idea and so would my family! Thanks for sharing!

  9. Ground beef + Pasta + Cheese + Taco.S. Wow, you make food sound so so good. Love your recipes

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