Thanks to everyone that entered the giveaway! There are a few hours left, and I will be contacting the winner this afternoon.
Today, I have a gem to share with you for a delicious and easy meal. A few days ago I asked the boys if they had any dinner requests. Kellen said spaghetti and Rowan said tacos. Neither was willing to budge…. of course. So I decided to blend the two and create a taco spaghetti. I have a feeling this is going to be my go-to back to school meal in just over a month (how are we so close?).
I used lean ground beef seasoned with traditional tacos seasonings and layered in diced bell peppers, onions, and green chilies. I also added diced tomatoes and tomato sauce to create a traditional spaghetti meat sauce consistency. In our house, my boys and husband are crispy crunchy shell lovers. I could go either way, but effort is made to please the majority in that case. I used crunchy corn chips on top so when they baked they were warm and crisp. Topped with fresh tomatoes, fresh cilantro, and cool creamy sour cream we created a winner blending our household favorites! I kept the spice level pretty mild, but adding chopped jalapenos with the onions and bell pepper would bring extra heat if you are looking for a little more kick.
My boys and husband went nuts for this. My husband had 3 helpings and the boys cleaned their plates. I appreciated the ease of the recipe- and the quick clean-up! This recipe is perfect for a school night because the pasta and meat portion can be made in advance and later topped with cheese and chips to bake. If you make in advance make sure to allow it to take a bit of the chill from to fridge off before popping into the oven, and you may need to increase you cooking time. This recipe can also be frozen, sans cheese, chips, and topping, and thawed to bake at a later date. This recipe reminds me of the Baked Crunchy Taco recipe that I posted awhile back, but even better. A few other weeknight taco favorites my family loves are: Crockpot Cheddar Beer Chicken Tacos, Simple Taco Soup, and One-Pot Cheesy Taco Orzo. All family favorites on a busy night, and kid friendly!
Tonight we are heading to dinner with the kiddos and friends for a fish fry, and I am so excited for fish and a cold draft beer. This weekend we have a birthday party, but are looking forward to good amounts of unscheduled time. I feel like this is becoming less and less common, but I am hoping Ron and I can squeeze in a a movie night, or a few shows (we are currently addicted to Criminal Minds). Happy Friday folks!
Baked Crispy Crunchy Taco Spaghetti
- 1 lb lean ground beef or ground turkey
- 1 orange or red bell pepper, diced
- 1 small white onion, diced
- 1 8 oz can tomato sauce
- 1 14.5 oz can petite diced tomatoes
- 1 4 oz can diced green chilies
- 1 1.25 oz packet of taco seasoning
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- 1 lb spaghetti or other comparable shaped pasta
- 1 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- 1 1/2 cup corn chip curls, like Frito's
- cilantro, tomatoes, and sour cream
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
Cook pasta according to package instructions.
While pasta is cooking brown beef with onion and bell pepper in a large dutch over or oven safe pot (make sure its large enough to fit meat and pasta) until the beef is no longer pink. Add tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, chilies, taco seasoning, salt, pepper, cumin, and garlic powder. Stir well to combine and allow the sauce to lightly simmer over medium-low heat for about 5 minutes.
Drain pasta and toss with meat sauce. Arrange pasta into an even layer, and top with cheese and then top with the corn chips.
Bake uncovered for 15 minutes to allow the cheese to melt and chips to warm and crisp.
Serve immediately and top with sour cream, fresh tomatoes, and fresh cilantro.
The pasta and meat portion of this dish can be made in advance, frozen, or baked at a later time. Perfect for a school night!