This Taco Mac And Cheese recipe blends two favorite dinner ideas into one cheesy and delish entree!

Tacos have always been a quick and easy menu item, while mac & cheese remains a comforting family favorite. Merge these two recipes, and a new and delicious meal idea is born! Taco Mac And Cheese combines seasoned ground beef with uber-creamy mac and cheese for a delicious kid-friendly dish with grown-up appeal.  

bowl of Taco Mac and Cheese with pan full in the back

Easy Cheesy Macaroni Casserole

  • Easy prep and quick cook time means this skillet dish can go from the stovetop to the table in less than 30 minutes
  • Homemade mac and cheese is always welcome at a party or potluck, but this taco twist is next-level delish! Double up the batch and watch it disappear!
  • Use up leftover veggies or spice it up with jalapenos or hot sauce! The possibilities for this recipe are endless!

macaroni , beef , broth , salsa , cheese, milk and seasoning to make Taco Mac and Cheese

Ingredients & Variations

BEEF: Ground beef is affordable, filling, and always easy to cook with. Make it a vegetarian dish by using drained black beans mixed with taco seasoning.

MACARONI: Elbow noodles are tubular so the cheesy sauce can get inside! Choose similar pasta shapes the sauce can cling to like rotini, bowtie, or penne.

SAUCE: Use evaporated milk or cream in place of regular milk for an extra rich and velvety sauce! Broth is preferred over water for the best flavor. The sharper the cheese the better the flavor, so try a sharp cheddar with a Mexican blend or Monterey Jack.

How to Make Taco Mac and Cheese

This is a simple take with a Mexican twist on a classic recipe!

  1. Prepare seasoned ground beef (as per the recipe below)
  2. Add remaining ingredients except for cheddar cheese and cook until the pasta is tender.
  3. Stir in cheese and top with corn chips. Serve hot.

process of adding ingredients together to make Taco Mac and Cheese

We Love it With

Keep the prep and cleanup at a minimum and serve taco mac and cheese with a quick tomato salad, a cucumber radish salad, or a tangy lime Jello salad.

Tips for Success

Store bought, pre-shredded cheese does not melt as well as freshly shredded cheese does, so shred it ahead of time for quick assembly.

Make sure there’s a little liquid in the bottom of the skillet before adding the cheese. The steam from the water will help the cheese melt properly. Add water as needed.

Stir the mac and cheese gently to avoid breaking up the noodles. If the sauce gets too runny, simmer until it thickens up while stirring. A dash of white pepper will bring the flavors together even more.

How to Store Leftovers

Leftovers are even better the next day after the flavors have had a chance to blend! And these leftovers make a hearty school or workday lunch! Store covered in the refrigerator for up to 4 days and reheat on the stovetop or in the microwave!

close up of Taco Mac and Cheese in a pan

More Mac & Cheese Love!

bowl of Taco Mac and Cheese with pan full in the back
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Taco Mac And Cheese

This quick and easy Taco Mac And Cheese recipe blends two favorites into one zesty, cheesy and delicious entree!
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Author Holly

Equipment

Ingredients  

  • 1 pound ground beef cooked and crumbled
  • 1 packet taco seasoning mix
  • ¼ cup water more if needed
  • 1 ½ cups uncooked elbow macaroni
  • 1 ½ cups chicken broth more if needed
  • 1 cup milk
  • ½ cup salsa
  • 1 cup shredded cheese
  • toppings as desired

Instructions 

  • Brown ground beef in a large 12-inch skillet until no pink remains.
  • Drain fat and add the taco seasoning and ¼ cup water. Simmer 2 minutes.
  • Add macaroni, broth, milk, and salsa. Simmer uncovered for 10-12 minutes or until the pasta is tender, adding more water or broth as needed
  • Stir in the shredded cheddar cheese.
  • Top with desired toppings and serve.

Notes

  • Onion or garlic can be added to the beef before browning if desired.
  • Use freshly shredded cheese so that it melts easily into the dish.
  • Stir gently to avoid breaking up the noodles.  
  • Refrigerate leftovers in a covered container for up to 4 days.
  • Reheat on the stovetop or in the microwave
5 from 10 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
Or to leave a comment, click here!

Nutrition Information

Calories: 533kcal | Carbohydrates: 50g | Protein: 41g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 0.4g | Cholesterol: 108mg | Sodium: 1533mg | Potassium: 722mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 1360IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 309mg | Iron: 4mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.

Course Main Course
Cuisine American

 

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