One-Skillet Beef Taco Pasta — An EASY recipe that’s ready in 20 minutes, made in ONE skillet, and loaded with Mexican-inspired flavors!! A family favorite that’s great for busy weeknights!!
One-Pot Taco Pasta
The beauty of this cheesy taco pasta recipe is that it’s ready in 20 minutes and it’s made in one skillet. ONE.
No waiting for water to boil and cooking pasta separately before adding it. Just brown the ground beef and then add everything else. One pan to wash, I love it.
This taco skillet is full of all your favorite Mexican-inspired taco flavors, including juicy taco-seasoned ground beef, fire-roasted tomatoes, corn, beans, cheese, sour cream, green onions, and avocado. A fiesta in your mouth.
And the pasta comes out perfectly al dente.
This one-pot taco pasta is a great recipe to make when I want to have planned leftovers because it makes a big batch. I put the extras in plastic containers and we heat them up in the micro for easy grab-and-serve lunches or hectic weeknight dinners on the fly.
What’s in One-Pot Taco Pasta?
To make this cheesy taco skillet, you’ll need:
- Ground beef
- Taco seasoning
- Uncooked pasta
- Fire-roasted diced tomatoes
- Red kidney beans
- Frozen corn
- Shredded Mexican cheese
- Sour cream
- Green onions
How to Make Taco Pasta
Brown the ground beef in a large skillet, then drain off excess fat if necessary. Sprinkle the taco seasoning over top, then add the water, pasta, tomatoes, kidney beans, and frozen corn.
Let the mixture simmer until the pasta is cooked through. Remove from the heat and stir in the sour cream. Sprinkle with cheese, green onions, and avocado before serving.
Can I Use Ground Turkey Instead?
Yes, you’re welcome to make this one-pot taco pasta with ground turkey or chicken instead of ground beef.
Can I Add Extra Veggies to This Taco Pasta?
Yes, but keep in mind that veggies release water as they cook, which means you may not need to add as much water to the taco skillet to cook the pasta.
Tips for Making Taco Pasta
I like to control the amount of salt that goes into my food, so I prefer using reduced sodium versions of taco seasoning, canned beans, and so forth. It’s easy to add more salt to a dish, but it’s impossible to make something less salty!
You can use any type of short, sturdy pasta in this taco skillet. I used rotini pasta, but bowtie, small shells, and elbow macaroni will also work.
To scale back the spiciness in this dish, use a mild taco seasoning and regular diced tomatoes instead of fire-roasted.
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One-Skillet Beef Taco Pasta
An EASY recipe that's ready in 20 minutes, made in ONE skillet, and loaded with Mexican-inspired flavors!! A family favorite that's great for busy weeknights!!
- 1 pound lean or extra-lean ground beef
- one 1-ounce package taco seasoning (I used medium heat reduced-sodium)
- 2 cups water
- 1 1/2 cups uncooked pasta (I used rotini; bowtie, small shells, elbow macaroni, etc. may be substituted)
- one 15-ounce can fire-roasted diced tomatoes (use regular diced tomatoes if you prefer less spiciness)
- one 15-ounce can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed (black beans may be substituted)
- 1 1/2 cups frozen corn
- 2 cups shredded Mexican cheese blend
- 1/2 cup sour cream (I used light)
- 1/3 cup green onions, sliced into thin rounds for garnishing (cilantro may be substituted)
- 1 Hass avocado, peeled and cubed for garnishing, optional
- To a large skillet, add the ground beef and cook over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes, or until beef is cooked though. Crumble and toss intermittently as it cooks to ensure even cooking. Drain liquid if desired or necessary (it wasn’t necessary for me).
- Evenly sprinkle the taco seasoning over the beef and add the water, pasta, tomatoes (do not drain), kidney beans, and frozen corn.
- Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium, cover, and allow mixture to simmer for 12 to 15 minutes, or until pasta has absorbed most of the liquid and is done.
- Turn off the heat, add the sour cream, and stir to combine.
- Add the cheese and cover momentarily to allow cheese to melt.
- Evenly sprinkle with green onions and optional avocado before serving.
- Recipe is best warm and fresh but extra will keep in the fridge for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 583Total Fat: 24gSaturated Fat: 11gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 114mgSodium: 790mgCarbohydrates: 51gFiber: 9gSugar: 8gProtein: 43g
More Mexican Dinner Recipes:
Loaded Beef Taco Salad with Creamy Lime Cilantro Dressing – Loaded with your favorite taco fixings, minus the shells, to keep things healthier without sacrificing any flavor! The dressing is easy, creamy and irresistible!
Loaded Chicken Taco Salad with Creamy Lime-Cilantro Dressing – Fast, easy, fresh and healthy! All your favorite taco flavors in one big kickin’ salad that everyone will love!
Loaded Smothered Beef Burritos Recipe – Mexican comfort food that’s loaded with seasoned ground beef, refried beans, rice, and smothered with sauce and CHEESE!
Lime Cilantro Chicken with Mixed Rice and Black Beans – Easy, one skillet, 15-minute meal! Tons of textures and bold flavors in every bite! The lime makes this dish just pop!
Healthy Beefy Tacos (vegan) – Just like the real thing but a million times healthier! So good, hearty and taste JUST like the real deal!
Buffalo Chicken Burrito Bowls — Juicy chicken along with your favorite burrito ingredients served in a bowl!! Pile the toppings sky high and not worry about a wrap breaking, plus it’s a little healthier!! Easy and ready in 15 minutes!
Mexican Meatballs with Tomato Avocado Salad — These FAST and EASY ground beef meatballs are coated are loaded with Mexican-inspired flavors the whole family will LOVE!!
Instant Pot or Slow Cooker Barbacoa Beef — Learn how to make authentic-tasting barbacoa beef in your Instant Pot or slow cooker!! EASY, tastes BETTER than a restaurant, and is a dinnertime WINNER!!
I am teaching my son how to cook. This will be the second recipe I use. Your recipes are ideal for a beginner or busy person! Would you mind sharing the nutritional info for this one, please? I was unable to locate it on my computer.
Glad the recipes will be helpful for your son who’s learning to cook.
I am in the process of updating all my recipes to include nutr info but it’s a big task and I haven’t gotten it to this one as of yet.
Thanks Averie! I really appreciate your site and recipes.
My son and I made this recipe last night. After reading some of the comments, I reserved some of the liquid. We kept an eye on the pot while it simmered. We ended up using the reserved liquid. This was a great lesson I was able to share with my son, testing noodles and adding liquid when needed.
I took a page out of your play book and added some onions, peppers and celery.
Thanks again for making cooking easier and fun!
Glad you’re able to cook together with your son and enjoy food together!
We loved it. It was quick and easy. Once again, Thank you.
Thanks for the 5 star review and glad you loved it!
I made this tonight, and was quite impressed, I used my own taco seasoning and omitted the beans, it was rather soupy and I had to thicken it, I will b making this again, but will only use 1 cup of water, Also, because I live in Canada qnd our measurements are metric, I did have to do a little conversion
All pasta varies in its absorbency and that could be part of it; also store bought taco seasoning tends to have some sort of binding/thickening agent in it so I’m sure with homemade yours did not. Glad you will make it again!
Averie, I absolutely LOVED this dish! It is so easy to make and tasted delicious! I actually had my kids make it, and it was so great to watch them cook for themselves and enjoy what they made! It is the perfect meal to make on a weeknight, as it does not require much prep work. Thank you for this easy and tasty dish!
Thanks for trying the recipe and glad you loved it and that your kids made it! That’s the best!
I made this tonight and the taste was great, but quite a bit of the water was left in the pot after 15 minutes, so it was almost soup-y. It didn’t really look like the picture. Do you know why this might have happened? I omitted the beef and doubled the beans to make it vegetarian. I suspect this would also be great baked.
A few things…I didn’t try this as a vegetarian recipe and I have a feeling that the beans actually released juices whereas ground beef would have been more absorbent so had you used beef (or ground chicken or turkey) I don’t think this would happen.
Also all pasta absorbs a different amount of water and at different rates. You may just have needed to cook for 25 minutes rather than 15. Or use slightly less water than I did based on the brand of pasta you used. Lots of little tweaks that can effect outcomes. In your case, I would start with a 1/4 cup or so less water next time, cook longer, and possibly add in an animal protein if that’s an option for you.
Thanks for trying the recipe and glad you enjoyed the taste!
Tried this earlier this week–tasty and QUICK! Bonus for us busy moms! I didn’t have fire roasted tomatoes on hand so I used Rotel tomatoes and it worked out just fine.
I love Rotel, glad it worked here and that you loved this QUICK easy recipe!
This looks amazing! Trying it for dinner next week :) How much is 1 serving? A cup?
That all depends on how hungry you are :)
Ha, ha :) I track my macros, so it would be helpful to know. I’m assuming 1 serving = 1 cup, per your nutrition information…
hey girl- this looks so yummy!
This looks yummy. I need to try this.
Thanks for all you hard work. I made your chocolate chunk chip cookies again a while back. I scoop them into balls and freeze on a cookie sheet. Then bake as needed. A big hit!
You’re welcome and thanks for the comment! I appreciate it! Glad that the cookies are a handy freezer stash for you!
Brilliant! More recipes like this, please!
Glad it looks good to you!
One skillet, easy, delish, and leftovers…….my kind of dinner! I am looking forward to trying this over the weekend!
It makes a nice big batch so you will have lunches for the week! LMK how it goes!
You have some great Mexican inspired recipes and this was fantastic, quick and easy!! Great flavor–we love everything in it and switching up the pasta would be fun next time I make it.
I used what I had on hand but anything from bowties to small shells would be great! Thanks for the compliments on my Mexican inspired recipes and glad you enjoyed this one!