I’m not what anyone would even casually or sarcastically refer to as a ‘cook’. Every year I swear I’m going to learn to cook some signature dishes, but I’ve never evolved beyond Greek-style chicken wraps and the occasional crockpot creation.
I’ve twice failed (badly) at making pasta. Something about the sauce-to-noodles ratio throws me off. I’m not math-y. I like to joke that I have shiny hair and don’t need to be. It’s not one of my best jokes.
I’m a huge fan of Mexican food, so when I came across a recipe for taco pasta I thought I’d give it a whirl. I ended up changing the recipe so much that I’m just taking credit for it as my own now. That’s how I roll.
Here’s how it went down.
1 pound(ish) of lean ground beef or turkey
4 cups of small pasta shells
1/2 of a white onion, finely chopped
1 tablespoon of minced garlic (I buy it in the jar to save time)
1 can of diced tomatoes, drained
1 packet of taco seasoning (or 1 and 1/2 if you’re really into taco seasoning, as I am)
3/4 of a brick thingy (yes, thingy) of cream cheese (I used light)
3/4 of a cup of sour cream (again, I used light – gotta cut back somewhere AMIRIGHT??)
A pinch of salt to taste
Bring a large pot of water to boil and cook pasta according to instructions. Drain and set aside 1/2 cup of pasta water (weird I know, but trust me). Set aside.
Cook the ground beef or turkey in a large frying pan over medium-high heat until it stops being pink.
Add the chopped onion.
Once the meat is fully cooked add the garlic and stir for about 3o more seconds.
Add the drained diced tomatoes and taco seasoning and let simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Now add the cooked and drained pasta to your pan o’ meat and stuff. Mix in the cream cheese and sour cream and add in that 1/2 cup of pasta water you set aside earlier.
Stir the heck out of it until well blended and add that pinch of salt.
Let this fragrant concoction simmer on low-medium heat for another 5 minutes.
Boom. You’re done.
Makes about 4 large servings. All of them tasty.