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Taco Pasta

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.
A cast iron skillet filled with the finished pasta.

Taco Pasta

4.9 from 24 votes
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Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 8 Cups


  • 1 Pound Lean Ground Beef we used 93/7
  • 1 ½ Cups Beef Broth
  • ½ Cup Water
  • 10 Ounces Diced Tomatoes and Green Chiles 1 Can, undrained
  • 1 Cup Frozen Corn
  • 1 Ounce Taco Seasoning 1 packet
  • 8 Ounces Short Pasta uncooked (ziti, penne, rigatoni, etc)
  • 2 Cups 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.
  • 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.
  • After 15 minutes, check the pasta for desired consistency. Stir in half the cheese, and place the remaining cheese on top. Garnish with your favorite toppings.
  • Serve hot and store any leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • Garnishes: diced tomatoes, sour cream, guacamole, cilantro, or parsley


The calories listed are an approximation based on the ingredients in the recipe card and a serving size of about 1 1/3 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.


Serving: 1.33 Cups | Calories: 443kcal | Carbohydrates: 24g | Protein: 35g | Fat: 22g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 9g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 105mg | Sodium: 933mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 4g
Recipe Rating


Monday 14th of May 2018

This sounds DELISH! Love taco salad already, but really loving the idea of making it a pasta salad. So creative and delicious!


Monday 14th of May 2018

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


Monday 14th of May 2018

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.

Tamara Andersen

Sunday 13th of May 2018

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


Sunday 13th of May 2018

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