This quick and easy salad is ready in under thirty minutes and will definitely hit the spot! It’s full of all the fresh flavors of taco night packed into a simple, delicious, pasta salad. The taco pasta salad is a breeze to make gluten free and is the perfect side for any meal, potluck, or family gathering.
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Taco Pasta Salad Ingredients
To make this taco pasta salad you will need ground beef along with cumin, paprika, oregano, salt, onion powder, chili powder, and chipotle powder. You can substitute the spices for your favorite store bought seasoning or make your own with the spices you have on hand using this homemade taco seasoning recipe.
You will also need a can of black beans, half a red onion, cherry tomatoes, black olives, and cilantro. For the dressing you will need French dressing and sour cream. If you want more veggies in your life adding a can of corn and a bell pepper is a great option!
Rotini or Cavatappi pasta are my favorites for this but you can use twelve ounces of your favorite kind or even gluten free pasta. Adding crushed tortilla chips or Nacho Cheese Doritos is a fantastic crunchy addition to this salad but you’ll skip this if you’re making this gluten free.
Making the Taco Pasta Salad
To start the taco pasta salad you’ll first cook and drain the pasta and set it aside to cool for later. You’ll then brown the ground beef over medium heat with the spices or taco seasoning you chose. When it’s browned, drain the grease and set it aside to cool.
Next, in a small bowl mix the French Dressing and sour cream until it’s combined thoroughly. Halve your cherry tomatoes and dice the onion. Drain the can of beans. If you are using a bell pepper, dice that, and if you’re using a can of corn, drain that, as well.
Once the pasta and beef are cooled add them to a large mixing bowl. Then add in the cheese, beans, onion, cilantro, tomatoes, and olives. Add in the corn and the bell pepper if you opted for those as well. Mix everything together until the pasta salad is all incorporated together.
Now fold in your dressing you made earlier and get a good even coat on the rest of the salad. Just let the salad rest in the fridge for at least 30 minutes before eating. Add the chips just before you dig in and that’s it! Taco Pasta Salad is complete and delicious!
This pasta salad keeps well in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. To store, place the taco pasta salad in an airtight container or individual meal prep containers if you’re using this for easy lunch options.
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PS. If you’ve made this recipe, don’t forget to rate this recipe and let me know in the comments how you liked it!
- 1–pound lean ground beef
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/4 teaspoon chipotle powder
- 12 oz rotini or cavatappi pasta (or your favorite type), cooked and drained
- 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
- 1/2 medium red onion, finely diced
- 1 (15 oz) can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved (or quartered if preferred)
- 1 (4 oz) can black olives
- 3/4 cup French dressing
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- Cook and drain pasta and set aside to cool
- In a large skillet over medium-high heat, add the ground beef and taco seasoning spices. Incorporate the spices into the ground beef while browning. Once beef is browned and crumbled, drain the grease and set aside to cool
- In a small bowl, mix together the French dressing and sour cream
- Once cooled, add the pasta and beef to a large mixing bowl. Then add in the cheese, beans, tomatoes, olives onions and cilantro. Mix everything together, and then fold in the dressing
- Store in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes prior to serving to let the flavors combine
- If adding in crushed chips, do so just prior to eating
- You can replace the spices with 2 tablespoons pre-made or homemade taco seasoning
- You can use 1 cup French dressing and ¾ cup sour cream if you want more dressing
- You can add 1 can corn (drained) or 1 diced bell pepper for more vegetables
- Optional: crush 2 cups tortilla chips or nacho Doritos and mix in for added crunch
Keywords: pasta salad, ground beef, pasta recipes, gluten free pasta, meal prep, taco salad, 30 minutes
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