Cheesy Taco Pasta Skillet: A Flavorful and Family-Friendly Meal

This Cheesy Taco Pasta Skillet is a delicious one-pan meal that combines the flavors of cheesy tacos with hearty pasta for a comforting and satisfying dinner option. Made with ground beef, taco seasoning, pasta, salsa, and plenty of melted cheese, this skillet dish is sure to become a hit with both kids and adults alike.

Preparation Time:

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cooking Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb (450g) ground beef
  • 1 packet (1 oz) taco seasoning mix
  • 2 cups uncooked pasta (such as rotini or elbow macaroni)
  • 1 cup salsa
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
  • Optional toppings: diced tomatoes, sliced green onions, chopped cilantro, sour cream

Instructions:

  1. Brown Ground Beef:
    • In a large skillet or frying pan, cook the ground beef over medium-high heat until browned and crumbled, breaking it up with a spoon as it cooks.
    • Drain any excess fat from the skillet.
  2. Add Taco Seasoning:
    • Sprinkle the taco seasoning mix over the cooked ground beef and stir well to combine, ensuring the beef is evenly coated with the seasoning.
  3. Cook Pasta:
    • Add the uncooked pasta, salsa, and beef broth to the skillet with the seasoned ground beef.
    • Stir to combine, making sure the pasta is submerged in the liquid.
  4. Simmer:
    • Bring the mixture to a simmer, then reduce the heat to medium-low.
    • Cover the skillet and let it simmer for about 15 minutes, or until the pasta is cooked through and most of the liquid has been absorbed, stirring occasionally.
  5. Add Cheese:
    • Once the pasta is cooked, remove the skillet from the heat.
    • Sprinkle the shredded cheddar and Monterey Jack cheeses over the top of the pasta mixture.
  6. Melt Cheese:
    • Cover the skillet again and let it sit for a few minutes to allow the residual heat to melt the cheese.
    • Alternatively, you can place the skillet under the broiler for a minute or two to melt and lightly brown the cheese.
  7. Serve:
    • Once the cheese is melted and bubbly, garnish the Cheesy Taco Pasta Skillet with your favorite toppings such as diced tomatoes, sliced green onions, chopped cilantro, and sour cream.
    • Serve hot and enjoy!

Serving Suggestions:

  • Family Dinner: Serve as a hearty and satisfying main course for a family dinner.
  • Meal Prep: This dish can be made ahead of time and reheated for quick and easy meals throughout the week.
  • Potluck Favorite: Bring to potlucks, picnics, or parties as a crowd-pleasing dish that everyone will love.

Cooking Tips:

  • Customize Toppings: Feel free to customize the toppings to suit your taste preferences. Other options include sliced black olives, diced avocado, or jalapeño slices.
  • Make It Spicy: Add a pinch of red pepper flakes or a dash of hot sauce to the skillet for extra heat.
  • Vegetarian Option: Substitute the ground beef with cooked lentils or black beans for a vegetarian version of this dish.

Nutritional Benefits:

  • Protein: Provides protein from the ground beef and cheese.
  • Carbohydrates: Offers carbohydrates from the pasta and salsa.
  • Calcium: Rich in calcium from the shredded cheese.

Dietary Information:

  • Kid-Friendly: Kids will love the cheesy goodness and familiar taco flavors of this dish.
  • Gluten-Free Option: Use gluten-free pasta and taco seasoning to make the dish gluten-free.
  • Low-Carb Variation: Replace the pasta with zucchini noodles or cauliflower rice for a low-carb alternative.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe:

  • Quick and Easy: Ready in just 30 minutes with minimal prep and cleanup.
  • One-Pan Meal: Everything cooks in one skillet, making it a convenient option for busy weeknights.
  • Comforting and Flavorful: Packed with cheesy, taco-inspired goodness that the whole family will enjoy.

Conclusion:

This Cheesy Taco Pasta Skillet is a simple yet satisfying meal that brings together the flavors of cheesy tacos and hearty pasta in one delicious dish. With its easy preparation and family-friendly appeal, it’s sure to become a regular favorite on your dinner rotation. Enjoy the cheesy goodness and comforting flavors of this skillet meal, and savor every bite!

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