I’d thought about cooking a taco pasta bake for a while, but every single time I opted to make tacos instead. In the words of Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman “Big mistake, HUGE mistake”. This is a fantastic tasting pasta bake, it makes a huge amount, and, when you pair it with taco sides like salsa, sour cream and salad, it really does taste like you’re eating a taco. My husband likes to add some broken up corn chips to his as well so it’s a great way to use those little bits in the bottom of the bag you usually would throw out.
Since this is a Mexican style dish, if you have any kidney or black beans, you could also incorporate them to reduce the mince content and up the veg content. You could also swap some of the mince for lentils.
My family loves pasta bakes, here are links to others you may like to try.
Salmon pasta bake
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 40 minutes
Serves: 6 – 8 with salad
- 2 x 400 g tins diced tomatoes
- 1 onion, diced
- 500 g minced beef (or 250 g of mince and 1 x 400g tin or equivalent of lentils)
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed or 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 2-3 tbs tomato paste
- 1 tbs cumin
- 1 tbs paprika
- chilli powder, to taste
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 500 g dried pasta
- 3/4 cup grated cheese
- 1 tbs oil
- salad, salsa, sour cream, cheese, avocado, corn chips (optional)
- Following the packet instructions, cook the pasta. Drain and set aside.
- Preheat the oven to 180C and grease a large baking dish.
- While the pasta is cooking, heat the oil in a frying to medium heat and fry the onions and garlic until the onions have softened.
- Add the mince to the pan and cook for 5 minutes, breaking up the clumps of mince as you go.
- Add the tomatoes, tomato paste, cumin, paprika, chilli powder, salt and pepper to the pan and simmer for 5 minutes.
- Stir the sauce through the pasta and transfer the mixture to your baking dish.
- Sprinkle grated cheese over the top and bake for 20 minutes until the cheese has melted and is golden on top.