This Taco Pasta is creamy, cheesy, and is done from start to finish in just 30 minutes! Picture seasoned taco meat, noodles, the yummiest creamy cheese sauce, and black beans, all topped with fresh taco-style toppings. It’s the kind of dinner that can be thrown together at the end of a busy day and will be gobbled up by the entire family – you’ll be so glad that you have this recipe in your back pocket.

Cheese taco pasta, still in the pot, sits on a light teal countertop. A purple dish cloth and bowls of toppings sit to the side.

This recipe is…

Taco pasta, anyone? This cheesy, delicious dish combines the spices and bold flavors of ground beef tacos with, well, pasta. While it may seem like an unconventional pairing at first, trust us when we say that this duo is truly a match made in heaven.

If you’re looking for a family-friendly dinner, you’ve found it! We can guarantee that no matter the age or flavor preferences of your typical dinnertime guests, this is one recipe that everyone will be on the same page about.

Want more family dinner ideas? This homemade hamburger helper is a better-for-you version than the boxed stuff but still every bit as delicious, this tuna noodle casserole is, again, a cleaned up version of the beloved classic, and this chicken Alfredo bake is the tastiest no-boil pasta recipe around.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • It’s quick – dinner done in less than 30 minutes? Sign me up. This recipe is ideal for busy days when you don’t want to have to rely on take-out.
  • It’s a crowd-pleaser – the entire family is going to love this zesty noodle recipe.

Taco Pasta Recipe Ingredients

The ingredients here are pretty simple. You’ll need a lot of what would be on your list if you were making ground beef tacos, plus a couple of ingredients to turn this into the family-friendly pasta dish that it is! Find ingredient notes (including substitutions and swaps) below.

Ingredients for cheesy taco pasta sit in a variety of bowls on a light teal countertop.
  • Pasta shells – we chose pasta shells for the noodle here, but you can absolutely use any short pasta shape that you love. Farfalle, penne, and fusilli would all be great.
  • Taco seasoning – taco seasoning is, of course, what really brings the taco flavors to this recipe. We bought a pouch, but you can absolutely make your own taco seasoning if you’d like.
  • Toppings – as far as toppings go, this recipe calls for fresh tomato, onion, cilantro, and jalapeno. Feel free to swap any of these toppings with any of your favorite taco toppings. Pickled red onions would be delicious too!

A full ingredient list with exact amounts can be found in the recipe card below.

Recipe Variations and Modifications

  • Make it gluten free – to make this pasta recipe gluten free, simply use gluten free shells (we used these Ancient Harvest gluten free shells) and gluten free all-purpose flour (we used King Arthur’s Measure for Measure flour).
  • Use a different protein – feel free to use ground chicken, turkey, or pork in place of the ground beef. The recipe will be equally as delicious with a protein swap!

How to Make Taco Pasta

This recipe is big on flavor and so, so easy to make – if it feels too good to be true, know that it’s not! Follow along below for the full how-to.

Ground beef is shown being browned in the bottom of a pot. A black spatula is shown stirring it to prevent burning.
Cream, shredded cheddar cheese, and sour cream have been added to the pot with the ground beef.

Step 1: Add the olive oil to a large pot on the stovetop over medium/high heat. Once hot, add the ground beef. Cook and crumble the ground beef, and then, once cooked through, stir in the taco seasoning. While the ground beef is cooking, boil the pasta according to package instructions, then drain and set aside.

Step 2: Add the shredded cheese, sour cream, and milk to the pot, and stir until smooth and melted. Whisk in the flour until evenly combined, and then let simmer on low heat until the sauce thickens, about 5 minutes, stirring and scraping the bottom of the pot occasionally.

All has been combined.
Sliced jalapeños, diced tomatoes, and chopped cilantro have been added to the top of the pasta mixture still in the pot.

Step 3: Add the rinsed black beans and pasta to the pot, and stir to combine.

Step 4: Top as you’d like, then scoop, serve, and enjoy!

Recipe Tip

If you want to make this a one-pot meal, add uncooked noodles to the pot after whisking the flour in. Then, let the dish simmer for about 10 minutes (rather than 5), until the pasta is cooked. Know that while you will save a step and an extra dish with this method, the pasta will absorb more of the sauce, resulting in a thicker end product. If this bothers you, simply add in another 1/2-1 cup of milk.

How to Serve

Serve this taco pasta recipe all on its own for a completely delicious and satisfying meal! If you’re looking for an accompaniment, a simple arugula salad would pair nicely also.

How to Store and Reheat

Store any leftover taco pasta in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. If you’re looking for a longer storage option, you can also freeze this recipe in an airtight freezer-safe container for up to 3 months.

To reheat from the fridge or freezer, simply pop a serving in a microwave safe dish for 1-2 minutes or reheat multiple portions in a pot on the stovetop for 12-15 minutes, until warmed through.

Cheese taco pasta, still in the pot, sits on a light teal countertop. A purple dish cloth and bowls of toppings sit to the side.

Frequently Asked Questions

How many calories are in taco pasta?

This recipe makes about 5 good-sized adult servings in all. One serving comes in at about 685 calories, 58 grams of carbohydrates, 39 grams of protein, and 32 grams of fat, which is pretty average for a substantial dinner meal. Keep in mind that your exact nutrition count will depend on the brands of ingredients you use.

If you tried this Cheesy Taco Pasta or any other recipe on my website, please leave a 🌟 star rating and let me know how it went in the 📝 comments below!

Cheesy Taco Pasta Recipe

5 — Votes 3 votes
Cook: 22 minutes
Total: 25 minutes
Servings: 5 Servings
This Taco Pasta is creamy, cheesy, done from start to finish in just 30 minutes, and cooks in one pot! Picture seasoned taco meat, noodles, the yummiest creamy cheese sauce, and black beans, all topped with fresh taco-style toppings.

Ingredients  

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 2 tablespoons taco seasoning, store-bought or homemade taco seasoning
  • 12-16 ounces shell pasta
  • 2 cups milk
  • 6 ounces shredded cheddar cheese, plus more for topping
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
  • 1, 15-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • Fresh tomatoes, chopped, for topping, optional
  • Fresh cilantro, chopped, for topping, optional
  • Red onion, chopped, for topping, optional
  • Jalapeno, sliced, for topping, optional

Instructions 

  • Add the olive oil to a large pot on the stovetop over medium/high heat. Once hot, add the ground beef. Cook and crumble the ground beef, and then, once cooked through, stir in the taco seasoning.
  • While the ground beef is cooking, boil the pasta according to package instructions, then drain and set aside.
  • Add the shredded cheese, sour cream, and milk to the pot, and stir until smooth and melted. Whisk in the flour until evenly combined, and then let simmer on low heat until the sauce thickens, about 5 minutes, stirring and scraping the bottom of the pot occasionally.
  • Add the rinsed black beans and pasta to the pot, and stir to combine.
  • Top as you'd like, then scoop, serve, and enjoy!

Nutrition

Calories: 685kcal | Carbohydrates: 58g | Protein: 39g | Fat: 32g | Saturated Fat: 15g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 10g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 118mg | Sodium: 411mg | Potassium: 646mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 736IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 409mg | Iron: 3mg

Additional Info

Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American, Tex Mex
Servings: 5 Servings
Calories: 685
Keyword: taco pasta

Like this recipe?

Leave a comment


About the Author

Brandi Schilhab


More Like This

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating