Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Cheesy Taco Pasta

Hamburger Helper was a dinner staple growing up.  We ate it at home.  We ate it while camping.  With 8 mouths to feed, homeschooling, after-school activities once we hit high school...it was something easy to make and we'd all eat it (something I really appreciate now that I am trying to get my 3 year old to eat something every meal...).  But then I got married and Matt informed me he didn't like Hamburger Helper so I never made it again.  Actually, maybe a few times while he was still on second shift and I ate supper alone most weeknights but even then it would take me a full week to get through a box and most things lose their appeal after 5 nights in a row.  Thankfully those days are long over, for many reasons. 

This Cheesy Taco Pasta has replaced Hamburger Helper around here as an easy dinner staple that we will all actually eat.  And that is no small feat with a kid who loves pizza one night but then can hate it the next time we serve it (what is wrong with him?!?!).  When I was getting out our popcorn bowl to put the pasta in, solely for this picture, Matt asked if I was going to be photographing it.  Well, yes.  Supper is going to be put off another 5 minutes so I can take a picture of it.  Thank you Target bowl on clearance and golden hour sunlight for making it easy...those food bloggers that spend hours getting their shots?  Yeah...never going to be me.

Cheesy Taco Pasta
serves: 4-6
12 oz pasta
1 lb ground beef, as lean as you can (we do 98%)
2 TB or 1 packet taco seasoning
14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes (or fresh!)
1½ cup shredded cheese, pick your kind

1) Cook the pasta per package instruction, removing from heat when it is al dente.  Reserve 1 cup of the water and drain away the rest.
2) Meanwhile, in a large skillet over medium heat, brown the beef until no longer pink.  Drain, if needed.  Add the taco seasoning, diced tomatoes, and about ¼ cup of the reserved pasta water (add more if needed). 
3) In a large bowl stir together the cooked pasta with the cooked beef then top with cheese and let sit for about a minute to let it melt.  Stir all together.  Serve and enjoy!

Source: Slightly modified from Delish

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