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Taco-Filled Pasta Shells

April 14, 2003

  • 2 pounds ground beef

  • 2 envelopes (1 1/2 ounces each) taco seasoning

  • 8-ounce package cream cheese, cubed

  • 24 uncooked jumbo pasta shells

  • 1/4 cup butter or margarine, melted


Additional ingredients for each casserole:

  • 1 cup salsa

  • 1/2 cup taco sauce

  • 2 cups shredded cheese (Cheddar, Monterey Jack or combination of both)

  • 1 1/2 cups crushed tortilla chips

  • Sour cream garnish, optional


In skillet, cook beef until no longer pink; drain. Add taco seasoning; prepare according to package directions. Add cream cheese; cover and simmer for 5 to 10 minutes or until melted. Transfer to a bowl. Chill for 1 hour.

Cook pasta according to package directions; drain. Gently toss with butter. Fill each shell with 2 to 3 tablespoons meat mixture.

Place 12 shells in a greased 9-inch square baking dish. Cover and freeze up to 3 months.

To prepare remaining shells, spoon salsa into a greased 9-by-9-inch baking dish. Top with stuffed shells and taco sauce. Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Uncover; sprinkle with cheese and chips. Bake 15 minutes longer or until heated through.

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To use frozen shells: Thaw in refrigerator for 24 hours (shells will still be partially frozen). Remove from dish. Add salsa to dish; top with shells and taco sauce. Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes. Uncover; continue as above.

Note: Recipe makes two casseroles - 6 servings each

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