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Easy Beef Taco Pasta Skillet is a simple 30 minute dinner recipe with ground beef that cooks in one pot with only 6 ingredients. No chopping needed!

Easy Taco Pasta Skillet


One pot skillet dinner recipes like this easy beef taco pasta skillet are my favorite recipes. So simple to make and everything cooks on the stove top in one pan!

The best part is that it’s so easy to make with no chopping! Just dump everything into the skillet pan and let it cook. 

Ground beef, pasta, taco seasoning, salsa, and beef broth cooks in one skillet pan and then it’s topped with cheese. Serve with all your favorite taco toppings for an easy & cheesy kid-approved dinner. 

I prefer to put out toppings on the table and then each person can top their beef taco pasta with whatever they want. We like sliced avocado, chopped tomatoes, chopped cilantro, more cheese, and sour cream. It’s also really good with crushed up tortilla chips or pico de gallo. Add some chopped jalapenos or Pepper Jack cheese if you want some spice. 

Easy Taco Pasta Skillet


Ground Beef – I always use lean ground beef (like 93/7) but you will end up draining the beef once it’s cooked so it really does not matter what you use. 

Water & Taco Seasoning – I use a packet of mild taco seasoning but feel free to use a spicy taco seasoning or regular. 

Beef Broth – I like to use a can of regular beef broth (meaning not the reduced-sodium broth) plus a packet of mild taco seasoning. I feel like if you are using regular taco seasoning then you may want to use with low-sodium beef broth. 

Salsa – Any kind will work. Jarred salsa or even the freshly made cold salsa that you can find in the produce area of the grocery store. 

Dried Pasta – You want to use a medium-shaped pasta like large shells, penne, or ziti pasta.

Shredded Cheese – Use as much or as little as you want! I love Colby Jack cheese but you could also use Pepper Jack for some heat.

Taco Toppings – Sour cream, avocado, guacamole, olives, chopped tomatoes, cilantro, jalapenos, etc. The options are endless. 

Easy Taco Pasta Skillet


– If you want it spicier then use a spicy taco seasoning, add some cayenne pepper or chili powder to the ground meat, or you can also add a can of diced green chilies into the skillet pan. 

– This skillet dinner is very easy to customize. Add a can of drained corn. A can of drained and rinsed beans. We love it as is because it’s very kid-friendly with no onion and no beans. But as always you can make it whatever you want by adding chopped onion and garlic in with the ground beef. The purpose of the recipe is an easy dinner recipe that requires no chopping. It’s a dump & go and let it cook style of recipe. 

– Be sure you are using a medium sized tube shaped pasta. I always use penne pasta because I know it works.

– If wanted add some additional seasoning in with the packet of taco seasoning. A good place to start is 1/2 teaspoon of each onion powder, garlic powder, and cumin. We feel that this recipe does not need more spice or seasoning to it, but again, it’s very customizable to whatever you prefer. 

Taco Pasta Skillet


Taco Pasta Skillet
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Easy Beef Taco Pasta Skillet

Author Jessica
Course Main Course
Cuisine Mexican
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Super easy Beef Taco Pasta Skillet is a simple 30 minute dinner recipe that cooks in one pot with only 6 ingredients. No chopping needed!


  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 1 packet mild taco seasoning
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 can (14.5 oz) beef broth
  • 1 cup salsa
  • 2 cups dried small pasta
  • 2 cups shredded cheese any variety


  • In a skillet pan with a lid and sides, brown ground beef over medium high heat until no longer pink. Drain.
  • Add the taco seasoning and water. Stir together and let it cook for about 2 minutes. Add the beef broth, salsa, and dried pasta. Stir it together making sure the pasta is submerged (as best you can) in the liquid.
  • Bring to a boil. Once boiling, cover with a lid and reduce heat to medium-low. Let cook for 18-20 minutes. 
    * Water should be absorbed and pasta should be tender/soft. If it's not leave it cooking for a few more minutes with the lid on.
  • Add half of the cheese and stir it into the pasta and beef. Sprinkle the remaining cheese on top and cover with the lid so that the cheese melts. 
  • Serve with all your favorite taco toppings. 


Taco Seasoning : I always use mild taco seasoning because the regular seems to spicy for my kids. You can also just use your own spices to make a homemade taco seasoning. One packet is equal to about 2-3 tablespoons. 
Beef Broth : Because I always use the mild taco seasoning I find that this recipe tastes better with the regular, full salt beef broth. If you are using regular taco seasoning then try using the reduced-sodium beef broth. Everyone has different salt preferences and tastes so use what you prefer when it comes to the beef broth. I have successfully used reduced-sodium and regular full salt beef broth in this recipe. 
Pasta : You want to use a medium-sized tube shaped pasta for this recipe. I always use penne because it works so I stick with what works. 
Cheese : Use as much or as little cheese as wanted. No matter how much you use, mix in half of it to the cooked pasta and then sprinkle the remaining half on top and let it melt. Use any cheese you want. We love Colby-Jack so that is what I always use. Use Pepper Jack for some spice. Monterey Jack and Cheddar are also good choices. 


Calories: 359kcal | Carbohydrates: 29g | Protein: 31g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 76mg | Sodium: 823mg | Potassium: 630mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 578IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 215mg | Iron: 3mg

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    Great flavor and I had all the ingredients on hand. The kids asked for seconds, so that makes it a keeper!

    1. Together As Family says:

      I love it when the kids ask for seconds! So happy to hear it was a hit and I appreciate you taking the time to leave a comment and rate the recipe.

  2. Christine @ says:

    5 stars
    Super easy and quick. Kids and I enjoyed this dish, and what few leftovers we had heated up quite nicely the next day for lunch. Such easy clean-up too! Wonderful recipe for weeknights or any busy night where you need dinner on the table quick (and you’re too tired). Thank you for this recipe!

  3. Can you make it without the beef broth?

    1. Together as Family says:

      Yes! The taste may very ever so slightly but not enough to effect the outcome of the dish.