Mexican Stuffed Shells
When you hear the word, “pasta,” do you immediately think Italian cuisine? I know I do. Spaghetti, linguini, penne, macaroni…
And then there are Jumbo Pasta Shells. For some reason, the word “Jumbo” doesn’t ring Italian with me. So I figured, instead of making something Italian with the Jumbo shells, I would try Mexican!
So glad I did.
Doesn’t that look delicious?! It’s some of your favorite taco ingredients served in a pretty little shell. Because hard taco shells are messy. Mine always fall apart and get all over my hands. But these, these are easy to eat…with a fork and knife. I suppose you could use your hands, but that would be…messy. And not pretty.
The whole family loved these Mexican Stuffed Shells.
- 1 lb. extra lean ground beef
- 2 Tbsp homemade taco seasoning (see notes)
- 4 triangles Laughing Cow Light cheese
- 1 box jumbo pasta shells
- 1 cup salsa
- 1/2 cup taco sauce
- 3/4 cup light Tex-Mex cheese
- chopped green onions
- sliced black olives
- fat-free plain Greek yogurt
Preheat oven to 350F.
In a skillet, cook ground beef until no longer pink. Add in taco seasoning and 1/2 cup water. Add Laughing Cow cheese and simmer until cheese is melted. Stir together. Set aside and let cool.
While beef is cooking, cook pasta shells according to package directions. Drain and set aside (set shells out individually on a non-stick baking sheet so that the shells don't stick together.)
Pour salsa in the bottom of a 9 x 13-inch baking dish. Stuff each shell with the meat mixture. Place shells in baking dish open side up.
Drizzle shells with taco sauce, cover, and bake for 30 minutes.
After 30 minutes, add shredded cheese and bake, uncovered for an additional 10 - 15 minutes.
Serve with green onions, black olives, and Greek yogurt if desired.
To make your own taco seasoning: In a jar, combine 4 Tbsp chili powder, 3 Tbsp paprika, 3 Tbsp cumin, 1 Tbsp onion powder, 1 tsp garlic powder, 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper. Store in pantry.
Alternatively, you could buy a package of low-sodium taco seasoning and prepare according to package directions.
Some of the ways I’ve managed to make this recipe healthy:
- Used extra lean ground beef
- Made my own taco seasoning to cut down on sodium
- Used Laughing Cow Light cheese instead of cream cheese
- Use “light” shredded cheese
- Substituted non-fat plain Greek yogurt for sour cream
So the next time you feel like infusing some Mexican with a little bit of Italian, I highly recommend you make these.