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cheesy taco pasta

Another easy (and totally tasty!) dinner for you today! When I was growing up, my mom occasionally made a meal we called macaroni and cheeseburger, and I loved it! It was just basic macaroni and cheese (from a box) with a little ground turkey thrown in, but somehow the ground turkey made it extra special. When Geoff and I were first married, I used to make it for him all the time, until finally he admitted that he kind of hated it. I was shocked that my beloved meal could be met with such disdain! I’ve tried making it for Abby too, and she’s said things like, “Next time you make my noodles, can you not put hamburgers in them?” Hmph. Anyway, when I saw this recipe, I decided it would be an excellent compromise. It has the cheesy noodly hamburgery goodness that I’m always craving, but it’s a little more sophisticated, and probably healthier and more wholesome, since it doesn’t come from a box!

I used medium salsa, and it ended up being a little spicy for Abby (though Lizzy gobbled it down like nobody’s business). Geoff said he loved it and would be happy to have it any time, so I’m going to count it as a win! This is definitely a great meal for a busy weeknight!

Cheesy Taco Pasta
adapted from Lauren’s Latest

1 lb. ground turkey
1/2 taco seasoning packet
1 1/2 cups southwest salsa
1/2 cup water
1/2 lb. pasta
2 cups grated cheddar cheese
1/4 cup cream
salt & pepper, to taste

Bring water to boil to cook the pasta. Cook pasta until al dente.

While the pasta is cooking, in a large skillet, cook ground turkey, breaking apart as you go. When the turkey is cooked, add taco seasoning, salsa and water. Simmer until pasta is finished cooking.

Once pasta is cooked, drain well and pour into skillet. Top with cheese, cream, salt and pepper. Stir until cheese melts and noodles are coated in sauce. Serve immediately.

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