Taco Stuffed Shells made with jumbo pasta shells, salsa, cheese and taco meat are the perfect EASY meal that you can prepare ahead of time!
This recipe takes a classic Mexican Food recipe and reimagines it as a pasta favorite. This is the XL take on this super popular Cheesy Taco Pasta! If you want something a bit different you can also make Mexican Stuffed Peppers with all the taco flavors but none of the pasta!
Taco Stuffed Shells are an easy dinner of stuffed jumbo pasta shells with ground beef. With just the addition of taco seasoning, salsa and cheese your family will be asking for this dish to go in your regular rotation.
I love using either Guapo’s Famous Fresh Pico de Gallo in this recipe or incredibly easy, store bought jarred salsa. You can also swap out the salsa in this recipe in a 1 to 1 ratio with my favorite Homemade QUICK Enchilada Sauce to make them taco stuffed shells with enchilada sauce.
If you’re looking for an alternate to the shredded cheese or to mix things up a little you can absolutely make the taco stuffed shells with velveeta or nacho cheese as well. Even better, you could just double the shredded cheddar cheese and have the ultimate cheesy taco stuffed shells.
Serve Cheesy Taco Stuffed Shells with your favorite taco toppings like sour cream, olives, and chopped green onions. Add a fresh Avocado Tomato Corn Salad and a delicious Mexican Caramel Flan for dessert and you’ll think you went to a fancy fusion restaurant for dinner.
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More Great Cheesy Pasta Dinners
- Cheesy Taco Pasta
- Bacon Cheeseburger Hamburger Helper
- Pepperoni Pizza Hamburger Helper
- Philly Cheesesteak Hamburger Helper
- Chicken Bacon Ranch Pasta Bake
- Chicken Bacon Ranch Lasagna Roll Ups
Frequently Asked Questions
Pepperoni Pizza stuffed shells can be made with a similar recipe, just swap out the salsa for marinara sauce, and add pepperoni and mozzarella.
Make Chicken Bacon Ranch Stuffed Shells with the Cheddar Bacon Ranch Pinwheels filling and baked with alfredo sauce.
Make Philly Cheesesteak stuffed shells with the Philly Cheese Steak Sloppy Joes filling but with double the cheese!
Make Chicken Parmesan Stuffed Shells with chicken nuggets, marinara sauce, mozzarella cheese and Parmesan cheese.
Tools Used in the Making of Taco Stuffed Shells
- Jumbo Pasta Shells: Make sure you buy these and not the large ones.
- Jarred Salsa: Cuts the prep time down to just a couple of minutes and the flavors are still outstanding.
- Taco Seasoning: You can use Homemade Taco Seasoning if you’d prefer not to use a packet. This is the packet I’d recommend if not using homemade.
How to Store Cheesy Taco Stuffed Shells
- Serve: Do not leave stuffed shells at room temperature longer than 2 hours.
- Store: In an airtight container, store Taco Stuffed Shells in the refrigerator up to 4 days.
- Freeze: Sealed tightly, Cheesy Taco Stuffed Shells will keep in the freezer for 2-3 months. Reheat in the oven covered with foil at 350 until hot and bubbly, adding more salsa and cheese if needed.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Cook the pasta shells in a pot according to the directions on the box and drain.
- Add the ground beef to the pot and brown well.
- Drain the fat.
- Add the taco seasoning and water, stir and cook until water is gone.
- Stir in 1 cup salsa and ¾ cup cheese.
- Scoop into the jumbo pasta shells and top with the remaining salsa and cheese.
- Bake in a covered pan for 15 minutes.
Photos used in a previous version of this post.