It wasn’t until I moved to the midwest that I realized how prominent a role “The Casserole” (aka hotdish) enjoys around here. I now have many favorites, ranging from breakfast bakes and brunch bakes to dinner bakes.
Here’s a sassy twist on casseroles. We’re kickin’ it up tonight with a Mexican Pasta Bake. This is such a fun change of scenery in the realm of pasta bakes!
My family loves taco nights, when we have a tempting spread of various goodies to fill our tacos with.
This Mexican pasta bake is almost like a taco in casserole form. All the lively spices are seamlessly paired with pasta and baked to aromatic perfection!
So, I totally realize we’re not talking authentic Mexican fare at this moment. Hubby and I spent most of our lives in LA, and this really wouldn’t be found on any Mexican menu. We know it. 🙂
BUT this yummy dish is an awesome and super tasty way to change up your usual pasta bake routine.
Ground beef or turkey, taco seasoning, salsa, and cheese…you just can’t go wrong. I made mine with whole grain penne, but feel free to use any pasta you like. Rotini, Corkscrew, or Mafalda… have fun with it. Enjoy!
Mexican Pasta Bake
- 2 TB olive oil
- 1 lb ground beef or turkey
- 1 1.25 oz envelope taco seasoning
- 1 jar, about 15-20 oz mild chunky salsa
- 1 small chopped and seeded green pepper
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 12 oz uncooked pasta of choice
- 2 cups shredded Mexican blend cheese, divided
- ½ cup light sour cream
- chopped cilantro for garnish
- Cook pasta in well-salted water to al dente only. Drain (don't rinse) and set aside.
- In large heavy skillet, brown ground meat over medium heat. Drain if needed. Stir in taco seasoning, salsa, green pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and oregano. Bring to boil, stirring. Immediately remove from heat.
- Meanwhile, combine cooked pasta with 1 cup of the cheese and sour cream and mix well. Spoon into a greased 2-qt baking dish. Top with the meat mixture and remaining cheese.
- Bake uncovered 350F for 30 minutes. Garnish with freshly chopped cilantro.
Did you make this?
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