These Taco Stuffed Shells are the perfect blend of my two favorite cuisines: Mexican and Italian! Everyone loves tacos and pasta and marrying them is sure to be a hit! We love the flavors in this pasta dish and it’s pretty simple with about 20 minutes of prep time.
My daughter and I love Mexican food. My son and my husband love pasta.
What better way to bring us together than a taco pasta?!
Finally…no more arguing over what’s for dinner. 😉
These taco stuffed shells are absolutely loaded with taco filling, so you get tasty taco flavor in every bite of pasta!
A few of our other favorite Mexican-inspired pasta recipes are our Taco Spaghetti and Taco Mac and Cheese! Both are major favorites around here.
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Pasta Shells – You’ll need some jumbo pasta shells for this recipe, the bigger the better so they have plenty of room for stuffing with taco ingredients!
Taco Meat – Some ground beef and taco seasoning is what I used, but this could also work with other ground meats like pork, chicken, or turkey. Check out this simple homemade taco seasoning recipe if you want to skip the packet!
Cheese – These taco stuffed shells are loaded with cheesy goodness! That means plenty of cream cheese, shredded Cheddar, and Monterey Jack!
Salsa – You’ll need some salsa to spice this up. I’d definitely recommend trying out my homemade salsa recipe!
Corn – Some canned corn works really well for this recipe and it mixes well with the cheese and taco flavors.
What Readers are Saying!
“Made these. Very good. Made so much I filled a 9×13 and two little dishes.” – Jennifer R.
My Favorite Skillet!
Cast iron skillets are my favorite! They heat so evenly, get piping hot for searing, and nothing is better than bacon fried in a cast iron skillet.
How To Make Taco Stuffed Shells:
Pasta & Taco Meat: Begin by adding the jumbo pasta shells to some boiling salted water and start cooking the pasta. While that boils you can start preparing the taco meat. I’m using ground beef in this recipe!
Brown the beef in a skillet and drain the fat before stirring in the taco seasoning and water. Let those simmer for a couple minutes.
Finally, we’re also adding in some cream cheese for creaminess, chiles for their mild flavor, and corn for a sweet crunch! Stir those in until the cream cheese has melted.
- When cooking the pasta, be sure to cook it for one minute less than the package states. We’ll be finishing it off in the oven and no one wants overcooked, mushy pasta.
- When you’re cooking your ground beef, feel free to add in extras like onions or even refried beans to the mix. These are YOUR tacos and let’s be honest…it’d be hard to mess them up. 😉
Stuffed Pasta: To start preparing the casserole for baking go ahead and pour your favorite salsa into a 9×13 baking dish and spread evenly. I highly recommend my restaurant style salsa. It’s the best!
Once your taco filling is done and your pasta has cooked, drain the water from the pasta and place the shells in the baking dish over the salsa. Spoon the taco meat mixture into each shell and then top it by piling on the shredded cheeses!
Bake & Serve: Once you’ve finished stuffing the pasta and assembling the casserole you can go ahead and cover it tightly with some foil and pop it on the oven for about twenty minutes!
We love to serve this up with a sprinkle of fresh cilantro, but there are so many ways to make this dish really stand out! Top it off with some fresh Pico de Gallo, a dollop of sour cream, or a pile of homemade guacamole.
I haven’t tried this yet, but the next time I make these taco stuffed shells, I’m drizzling some of my homemade queso over the top before serving. More cheese can’t hurt anything, right?!
This is a Mexican & Italian fusion recipe, so you’re getting the best of both!
This is a great recipe to modify! Everything from the meat, cheese, salsa, and spices can be altered to your taste. Instead of beef you could use pork, chicken, or turkey. Try using some different cheeses, or spice things up with some hot peppers!
This will last in the fridge for 4-5 days. We reheat this in the microwave.
MORE CASSEROLE FAVORITES!
- Tater Tot Casserole
- Dorito Chicken Casserole
- Keto Cheeseburger Casserole
- Broccoli Cheese Casserole
- Baked Spaghetti
MORE TACO RECIPES!
For more easy recipes loaded with flavor, be sure to follow my Facebook page! I post all kinds of tasty food videos!
Taco Stuffed Shells
- 1 pound jumbo shells
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 packet taco seasoning
- 1/4 cup water
- 4 oz cream cheese
- 15 oz canned corn
- 4 oz diced green chiles
- 1/2 cup shredded cheddar
- 1/2 cup shredded monterey jack
- 1 1/2 cups salsa
- cilantro for garnish
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Bring a large pot of water to boil and add the pasta shells. Cook one minute less than pacakge directions state. Drain and set aside.
- While the pasta is cooking, brown the ground beef in a large skillet over medium heat. Drain fat.
- Return the ground beef to the skillet and turn the heat to low. Stir in the taco seasoning and water. Simmer for 2 minutes.
- Stir in the cream cheese until completely melted.
- Stir in the corn and green chiles and remove the pan from the heat.
- Pour the salsa into a 9×13 baking dish and spread to cover the pan evenly.
- Fill each pasta shell with the ground beef mixture and place in the baking dish.
- Top each pasta shell with a mixture of the shredded cheddar and monterey jack cheese.
- Cover the pan with foil and bake for 20 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and sprinkle with the chopped cilantro before serving.
Tips & Notes:
This post was originally published in April 2012. Original photo below.
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