Cheesy Taco Pasta Recipe 2023




  • 1 lb ground meat (beef, turkey, or chicken)
  • 1 box Rotini noodles (16 oz)
  • 1/2 block Velveeta cheese (or any preferred cheese)
  • 1 packet taco seasoning
  • 1 can diced tomatoes (optional)
  • Garlic toast (for serving)


  1. Cook Rotini Noodles:
    • Bring a large pot of salted water to boil.
    • Cook the Rotini noodles according to the package instructions until al dente.
    • Drain the noodles and set them aside.
  2. Brown Ground Meat:
    • In a large skillet over medium heat, brown the ground meat until fully cooked, breaking it apart with a spoon as it cooks.
    • Drain any excess fat from the meat.
  3. Add Taco Seasoning:
    • Sprinkle the taco seasoning over the cooked ground meat.
    • Add a little water (according to the seasoning packet instructions) and stir well to combine.
    • Simmer for a few minutes until the seasoning is well incorporated and the mixture has thickened.
  4. Add Velveeta Cheese:
    • Cut the Velveeta cheese into small cubes and add it to the skillet with the seasoned meat.
    • Stir continuously until the cheese is melted and creates a creamy sauce.
  5. Optional: Add Diced Tomatoes:
    • If using diced tomatoes, add them to the skillet and stir until heated through.
    • Adjust the seasoning if necessary.
  6. Combine with Rotini Noodles:
    • Add the cooked Rotini noodles to the skillet, tossing them with the cheesy taco meat mixture until well coated.
  7. Serve with Garlic Toast:
    • Toast slices of bread and rub them with garlic cloves or spread garlic butter for a flavorful side.
  8. Serve and Enjoy:
    • Dish out the cheesy taco pasta onto plates or into a large serving dish.
    • Serve with garlic toast on the side.

This Cheesy Taco Pasta is not only delicious but also a budget-friendly and easy-to-make dinner option for big families. Feel free to customize it with your favorite toppings like sour cream, chopped green onions, or shredded lettuce for added freshness. Enjoy your family meal! 😊🌮

Here are some helpful tips to enhance the deliciousness of your Cheesy Taco Pasta:

  1. Customize the Cheese:
    • Experiment with different cheeses or a blend of cheeses to add variety. Sharp cheddar, Monterey Jack, or a Mexican cheese blend can complement the dish.
  2. Add Fresh Ingredients:
    • Incorporate fresh ingredients like diced bell peppers, onions, or cilantro for added flavor and texture. These can be sautéed along with the ground meat.
  3. Spice it Up:
    • Adjust the level of spiciness by adding sliced jalapeños, crushed red pepper flakes, or hot sauce to the taco seasoning for those who enjoy a bit of heat.
  4. Layered Toppings:
    • Serve with a variety of toppings at the table, such as chopped tomatoes, shredded lettuce, sliced olives, sour cream, and guacamole. This way, each family member can customize their plate.
  5. Incorporate Corn:
    • Add a can of drained corn kernels to the pasta for a sweet and crunchy element. This complements the savory taco flavors well.
  6. Bake for a Crispy Top:
    • If you’re looking for a different texture, transfer the cheesy taco pasta to a baking dish, sprinkle some shredded cheese on top, and bake until the cheese is bubbly and golden for a crispy layer.
  7. Experiment with Meat:
    • Try using a mix of meats like ground beef and chorizo or ground turkey for a different flavor profile.
  8. Make it a One-Pot Meal:
    • Cook the entire dish in one pot by boiling the pasta in the same skillet with the meat and sauce. This minimizes cleanup and allows the flavors to meld even more.
  9. Double the Recipe:
    • Make a double batch and freeze the leftovers for a quick and convenient meal on busy days. Just reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop.
  10. Serve with a Side Salad:
    • Balance the richness of the pasta with a crisp side salad. A simple green salad with a tangy vinaigrette can be a refreshing addition.
  11. Adjust Seasoning to Taste:
    • Taste and adjust the seasoning as needed. If you like it spicier, add more taco seasoning or your preferred spices.

Remember, recipes are versatile, so don’t hesitate to make it your own by incorporating flavors your family loves. Enjoy your Cheesy Taco Pasta!

Here are some frequently asked questions and their answers related to the Cheesy Taco Pasta Recipe:

  1. Can I use a different type of pasta?
    • Yes, you can use any pasta of your choice. While Rotini adds a nice texture, other shapes like penne, fusilli, or macaroni will work well too.
  2. What other cheese can I use besides Velveeta?
    • Feel free to use any melty cheese of your preference. Cheddar, Monterey Jack, or a Mexican cheese blend are great alternatives.
  3. Can I make this recipe ahead of time?
    • Yes, you can prepare the Cheesy Taco Pasta in advance. Reheat it on the stovetop or in the microwave before serving, and consider adding a splash of water or milk to maintain creaminess.
  4. How spicy is the dish with the taco seasoning?
    • The spice level depends on the taco seasoning you use. If you prefer a milder dish, start with half of the seasoning packet and adjust according to your taste.
  5. Can I make it vegetarian?
    • Absolutely! Substitute the ground meat with plant-based alternatives like crumbled tofu or meatless grounds. Ensure the taco seasoning is vegetarian-friendly.
  6. How do I store leftovers?
    • Store leftover Cheesy Taco Pasta in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. Reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop.
  7. Can I freeze the Cheesy Taco Pasta?
    • Yes, you can freeze the pasta in a freezer-safe container for up to 2-3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight before reheating.
  8. What side dishes pair well with this recipe?
    • Garlic toast is a great accompaniment, but you can also serve it with a side salad, tortilla chips, or even a dollop of sour cream and guacamole.
  9. Can I add more vegetables to the recipe?
    • Certainly! Bell peppers, onions, corn, or black beans can be sautéed along with the ground meat for added flavor and nutrition.
  10. How do I make the dish spicier?
    • Add sliced jalapeños, crushed red pepper flakes, or a dash of hot sauce to the taco seasoning. Adjust the spice level to your liking.
  11. What can I substitute for taco seasoning?
    • You can make your own seasoning blend using a mix of chili powder, cumin, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, and oregano if you don’t have a taco seasoning packet.

Feel free to customize the recipe to suit your preferences and dietary needs!

Achieving the perfect Cheesy Taco Pasta involves a combination of techniques and thoughtful additions. Here are some secrets to elevate your recipe:

  1. Season and Taste as You Go:
    • Seasoning is key. Taste the dish at different stages and adjust the taco seasoning, salt, and pepper to ensure a perfectly balanced flavor.
  2. Use Fresh Ingredients:
    • Whenever possible, use fresh ingredients like high-quality ground meat, fresh vegetables, and recently purchased cheese. Fresh ingredients contribute to better flavors.
  3. Properly Cook the Meat:
    • Brown the ground meat thoroughly to enhance its flavor. Make sure to drain any excess fat to avoid a greasy dish.
  4. Melt Cheese Gradually:
    • When adding the cheese, melt it gradually over low to medium heat. This prevents the cheese from becoming stringy and ensures a smooth, creamy texture.
  5. Add Cheese Off Heat:
    • Remove the skillet from the heat before adding the cheese. The residual heat in the skillet will melt the cheese without overheating it, preventing it from becoming gritty.
  6. Balance Creaminess:
    • Achieve the right balance of creaminess by adjusting the amount of cheese and adding a splash of milk or cream if needed. This ensures a luscious texture.
  7. Don’t Overcook Pasta:
    • Cook the pasta al dente to avoid mushiness. The pasta will continue to cook slightly when combined with the sauce, so slightly undercooking it initially is a good idea.
  8. Customize Toppings:
    • Customize the toppings according to individual preferences. Offering a variety of toppings at the table allows everyone to tailor their dish to their liking.
  9. Experiment with Spice Levels:
    • Adjust the spice level to your liking by controlling the amount of taco seasoning. If you enjoy heat, consider adding additional spices like cayenne or chili powder.
  10. Let Flavors Meld:
    • Allow the pasta and sauce to simmer together briefly before serving. This allows the flavors to meld and ensures that the pasta absorbs the delicious sauce.
  11. Consider a Baked Variation:
    • If you enjoy a slightly crispy top, transfer the pasta mixture to a baking dish, sprinkle with extra cheese, and bake until golden and bubbly.
  12. Fresh Herbs for Garnish:
    • Garnish with fresh herbs like chopped cilantro or parsley just before serving. This adds a burst of freshness and elevates the overall flavor.

Remember, cooking is an art, and these “secrets” are meant to guide you. Feel free to experiment and make adjustments based on your personal taste preferences. Enjoy your perfect Cheesy Taco Pasta! 🌮😊