Full of bell peppers, onions, garlic, and topped with traditional taco toppings like sour cream, cheddar cheese, and cilantro, this Taco Pasta is a great leftover taco meat recipe!
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We don't always do Taco Tuesdays in our house, but when we do, one thing can be certain: we will have a LOT of leftover taco meat.
If you're looking for a way to use up those leftovers, this is one of my favorite leftover taco meat recipes. Try this super delicious, fast, and easy dinner recipe for Taco Pasta!
Kitchen Tools & Equipment You Need
To make this dish, you just need:
- Large stockpot - for cooking the pasta
- Large skillet - to cook the onions, garlic, and peppers, and to mix in the leftover taco meat and cooked pasta.
- Wooden spoon or silicone spatula - to stir the ingredients together
How to Make Taco Pasta
Step 1 - First, cook the pasta in a large stockpot.
Step 2 - Then, in a large skillet, sauté up some onions, garlic, and peppers.
Step 3 - Add the leftover taco meat to the skillet. You don't need to add any extra seasoning because the meat is already seasoned with your special delicious taco seasoning. Then sauté a couple of minutes more until the peppers are soft and the pasta is cooked.
Step 5 - Finally, add the cooked pasta to the skillet and mix up all of those gorgeous ingredients together.
Optional: Top with a generous dollop of sour cream, mix in some shredded cheddar cheese, and add a sprinkling of chopped cilantro.
Your New Favorite Leftover Taco Meat Recipe
What you get is a bright, vibrant, beautiful pasta dish. This recipe transforms leftover taco meat into a totally different meal that will make your tastebuds do the happy dance!
What side dishes go with taco pasta?
Opt for fresh veggies and/or a side of bread.
Yes! Without the optional mix-ins and add-ons, this recipe is dairy-free.
Chopped cilantro is an optional garnish, but it adds a nice, bright, lively note to the dish. You can substitute parsley for cilantro if you prefer.
More Pasta Dinner Recipes
- Lemon Garlic Shrimp Pasta
- The Ultimate Creamy Dairy-Free Mac and Cheese
- Instant Pot Tuscan Chicken Pasta (Dairy-Free)
- Tri-Pepper Turkey Pasta
- 30-Minute Instant Pot Sausage and Peppers Pasta
- Easy, Hearty Italian Sausage Pasta
Taco Tuesday Take Two: Taco Pasta!
- 1 cup uncooked pasta
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- ½ cup chopped bell peppers red, orange, and or yellow; I use a mix of all three!
- ¼ cup chopped onion
- 2 finely minced garlic cloves
- Leftover taco meat - however much you have! I usually have about 1 to 1-½ cups worth.
- 1 14- ounce can of diced tomatoes
- Optional: sour cream shredded cheddar cheese, and chopped cilantro or chopped parsley
- Cook pasta according to package directions in a large stockpot.
- Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat.
- Add chopped bell peppers, onions, and garlic to the pan. Sauté over medium-high heat for about 3 minutes, stirring to ensure ingredients do not stick to the pan and also ensuring the garlic does not burn.
- Once the onions look slightly translucent and soft, add the leftover taco meat and sauté for another 1-2 minutes to heat the meat.
- Add diced tomatoes to the skillet and continue stirring and sautéeing for another 2-3 minutes, until the tomatoes are heated.
- Drain the pasta, leaving approximately 3-4 tablespoons of hot pasta water in the pot, and add the pasta to the skillet.
- Stir the pasta until it is thoroughly coated with the tomato meat sauce. Add a tablespoon of the hot pasta water to the skillet as needed to help create more of a sauce.
- Once the pasta is evenly coated with the sauce, remove from heat.
- Top with sour cream, shredded cheddar cheese, cilantro, and/or parsley if you wish. Serve immediately.
Have you ever made taco pasta with your Taco Tuesday leftovers before? What's your favorite leftover taco meat meal?