Chicken Taco Pasta

Welcome to the truest love of all.

It all started one evening as I was peacefully meditating in lotus pose on the veranda as the sunset cast its warmth on my body and the breeze blew through my golden locks, so carefree and whimsical.

Ooooor not.

Truth be told, I was actually seated in the sweaty Sally pose on my couch watching Master Chef and completely falling apart by the second because I just do NOT know how they cook all that stuff under such intense pressure. Do you watch that show? It’s my jam. It’s like the NBA finals for me. I scream, jump up and down, do the pee pee dance.

Aaron thinks it’s adorable!


I could never ever ever EVAR be on that show. I’d be the girl who A) ugly cried non-stop. B) uncomfortably stared at Joe Bastianich’s sexiness in his posh suits (Um, you know he lost like, 50 pounds. I know this because I’m old and watch PBS 10 hours a day and am obsessed with his mom Lidia and her show and back in the day he used to be on it helping her and he was a chub-a-rub. And I should probably not say chub-a-rub. Ever again.)


And C) only presented chicken taco pasta at every single challenge because, oh let’s see, it’s CHICKEN TACO PASTA.


They might send me home. But my marbles noggin has a feeling you wouldn’t.

I don’t think you heard me the first time. Chicken. Taco. Pasta.

CHICKEN. TA – – okay.

It’s the only real thing we can know in this life.

Chicken Taco Pasta:

What it took for 4:

* 1 pound organic ground chicken
* 1/2 medium red onion, finely chopped
* 3 cloves garlic, minced
* 3 Tbs. favorite taco seasoning
* 1 (14.5 oz) can drained and rinsed kidney beans (or black)
* 1 (4 oz) can diced green chiles
* 1 ear fresh corn
* 1 roma tomato, diced
* 2 cups pasta shells
* 4 oz (half a block) cream cheese
* 2 Tbs. greek yogurt
* 1/2 cup freshly chopped cilantro
* coarse salt and pepper

Heat a medium skillet over medium-high. Add the chicken and cook until browned all over, about 6 minutes. Add the onion, garlic and taco seasoning. Sauté 4 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Add the beans, corn and diced green chiles. Toss to combine and continue to cook another 5 minutes. Taste it. Need a little more salt? Maybe?

Add the diced tomato and toss to combine.

In the meantime, cook your pasta shells until al dente. Reserve about 1/3 cup pasta water and drain the rest. Add the shells, cream cheese and yogurt to the skillet. Toss to combine.

Add some of the pasta water to thin out the sauce if it’s a little too thick for your taste. Taste one more time and season accordingly.

Serve with lots of fresh cilantro! Your soul is going to flip.


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58 Responses to Chicken Taco Pasta

  1. Rachel Cooks June 27, 2012 at 8:15 am #
    Oh I just love EVERYTHING about this. Pinning and making the minute I'm not pregnant and can eat chicken again. Or maybe making a veggie version for me and a chicken version for Ben. Yup. Let's do that.
    • Joanne June 29, 2012 at 3:06 pm #
      Curious...why can't you eat chicken while preggers?
  2. Krysten June 27, 2012 at 8:17 am #
    You have done it again, made me fall in love with you all over again. Bahhh I need this and its only 8:00am!
  3. Ali @ Gimme Some Oven June 27, 2012 at 8:19 am #
    Master Chef...Bev Cooks LIVE...I still vote that you need to be on camera. :) These look GOOOOOOD.
  4. Tony June 27, 2012 at 8:35 am #
    You should tryout for Master Chef! PS - Christine isn't blind. IT'S A SHAM.
  5. Danielle June 27, 2012 at 9:03 am #
    I have gotten many ideas from watching various food-related competitions. I've often wanted to recreate those from Top Chef but I always fear they're probably out of my league or that they require 2 gallons of cream and butter, neither of which I'm willing to pour into my body. Here's my chicken taco pasta for comparison:
  6. Rachel @ Baked by Rachel June 27, 2012 at 9:15 am #
    Yes please! It's lunch somewhere. :)
  7. Deanna B. June 27, 2012 at 9:38 am #
    Oooh...yummy! I love anything with cream cheese.
  8. DessertForTwo June 27, 2012 at 9:43 am #
    Ohhhh my gosh, please drive two hours west and shove this in my face.
  9. Heather June 27, 2012 at 10:04 am #
    you can ugly cry anytime, especially since you made this. HOLY. need.
  10. Erin @ Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts June 27, 2012 at 10:09 am #
    Dang! I want that for breakfast right now! I LOVE that show! The Pressure Test the other night, seriously?! I like to bake, and I couldn't have come up with that cake from scratch without a recipe, and have it be perfect!! So glad to see Ryan go home, I could not stand that guy!
    • Bev Weidner June 27, 2012 at 10:18 am #
      Oh me too, me too! I wanted to slap Ryan like every 2.5 seconds!
  11. Heather Christo June 27, 2012 at 10:57 am #
    That was a poetic and tasty post Bev. I want that pasta in my mouth NOW !
  12. Tara @ Chip Chip Hooray June 27, 2012 at 11:20 am #
    Heck. YES. Youuuuu make my heart (and tummy) happy.
  13. Tracey E. June 27, 2012 at 11:23 am #
    Think I just might make this tonight!!! :) YUM!
  14. Emilie @ Emilie's Enjoyables June 27, 2012 at 12:13 pm #
    That show is SO intense! I can't tear my eyes away.
  15. Averie @ Averie Cooks June 27, 2012 at 12:20 pm #
    You always make dinner look like it's served at 10am. Such perfect lighting, Bev!
  16. Kim June 27, 2012 at 12:21 pm #
    This looks so good! And Master Chef is crazy. I love it and I have to watch it but it would be so scary to actually be on that show!
  17. Katie @ Blonde Ambition June 27, 2012 at 12:37 pm #
    Oh. My. Gawwwwd. I don't think I've ever had taco pasta, and this is making me feel like I need to call up my momma and yell at her for it. You are an inspiration, my friend.
  18. Cookin' Canuck June 27, 2012 at 1:42 pm #
    Yeah, I could never be on that show either. Too intense! I'd much prefer to be on my couch, with a big bowl of this pasta in my hands, watching others go through cooking hell.
  19. Kathryn June 27, 2012 at 1:52 pm #
    Master Chef in the UK isn't that intense but it's one of my fave cooking programmes. I'm hoping they'll bring the US version over here!
  20. Katie June 27, 2012 at 2:22 pm #
    Taco salads for the WIN. (Also, I'm sending you our bill for our TV payment because you are pretty much forcing me to hook our TV back up. NEED to see this show...sounds like it will make my kitchen meltdowns seem less pathetic)
    • Bev Weidner June 27, 2012 at 2:26 pm #
      Oh, you're good as gold because it's not on cable! It's regulah TV - Fox I think. You gersta watch it.
  21. Chels R. June 27, 2012 at 2:46 pm #
    This looks really good and really easy! I might be attempting this once my husband lets me off of bed rest for my poor preggo self that has a fractured rib thanks to a cough that would never end! I'm done now. This looks good! Please come over and make this for me since I'm stuck in bed all day with satellite tv that keeps wiggin out on me!
  22. Kelsey June 27, 2012 at 2:59 pm #
    Oh man! Bev, you gotta stop making pasta girl, my jeans and bikini would really appreciate it... hmmm actually scratch that, let's be serious, I'd rather eat this taco pasta than fit in my clothes.
  23. Julie @ Table for Two June 27, 2012 at 4:41 pm #
    holy cruuud, this looks flippin delicious!! i'm all for it!
  24. Anna @ Crunchy Creamy Sweet June 27, 2012 at 11:05 pm #
    My soul is flipping just by looking at it! I swear, this is why we need smellavision!! Fabulous!
  25. Megan @ Country Cleaver June 28, 2012 at 10:55 am #
    MasterChef - Pass!! Gordon Ramsey would have me ugly crying with one glare - not to mention any profanity laced tirade he goes on. Puddle of Mess Megan, at your service - in a ball in the corner. This on the other hand - done and done.
  26. ally June 28, 2012 at 2:58 pm #
    fantastic flavor fusion here... so creative! xo
  27. Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious June 28, 2012 at 3:12 pm #
    I seriously love everything about this! Sometimes you just need a taco without the extra tortilla carbs!
  28. Aggie June 29, 2012 at 12:39 pm #
    So much to say. Masterchef - yes!!! Joe - yes!!! Intense pressure cooking awe - yes!!! This pasta - hells yes! Seriously, this looks incredible.
  29. Natalie @ Cooking for My Kids June 30, 2012 at 7:36 pm #
    Oh, my. I could use a big spoonful, plateful, belly full right now! And...I am pretty sure that I am going to get reported by Pinterest for pinning too many of your recipes in such a short amount of time. I was a whole week behind...again!
  30. Natural Remedies for Allergies July 1, 2012 at 6:48 am #
    I really love this idea!! Chicken, taco and pasta in one? Amazing. I'll never come up with this kind of recipe. Your the best!
  31. Natural Remedies for Allergies July 1, 2012 at 6:49 am #
    I really love this idea!! Chicken, taco and pasta in one? Amazing. I’ll never come up with this kind of recipe. Your the best!
  32. LeeAnne July 15, 2012 at 3:13 pm #
    First-time reader here. While I won't be making this (I can't stand sour cream or yogurt - strange, I know...), I got quite a kick out of your humorous writing. I love Master Chef, too. And I'll be cruising through the rest of your blog for some non-creamy recipes. Thanks! :)
  33. Margaret July 17, 2012 at 1:29 pm #
    I made this for my family for lunch today and it was a huge hit with all of us, thanks so much for sharing!
  34. Rach1276 July 23, 2012 at 9:57 pm #
    Delish! I'm always looking for new creamy pasta recipes and one with taco seasoning? Dream come true! Thanks so much.
  35. Heather August 2, 2012 at 5:21 pm #
    Would this be ok to freeze individual servings after cooking/cooling?
    • Bev Weidner August 2, 2012 at 7:06 pm #
  36. Alli August 19, 2012 at 7:47 am #
    Ok, I know this will sound really strange, but I cannot stand cream cheese. I want to make this, but obviously need to modify it. What do you think about either a refried bean/greek yogurt mixture or refried bean/ricotta cheese mixture in place of the cream cheese? Any other suggestions are most welcomed? I have this planned for tonight's dinner too.
  37. Alli August 19, 2012 at 7:51 am #
    ....or maybe leave the refried bean out completely and go with greek yogurt and/or ricotta cheese?
    • Bev Weidner August 19, 2012 at 8:00 am #
      Hi, Alli! Ya know, since there are already beans in it, I'm really diggin' on your idea of greek yogurt and/or ricotta cheese! I think the ricotta would be divine. Even a mixture. Or all yogurt. OMG. I might just show up....
      • Alli August 19, 2012 at 10:50 am #
        I think I'll do a half and half ricotta/yogurt mix. I'll let you know how it turns out :).
      • Alli August 19, 2012 at 7:37 pm #
        Half ricotta and greek yogurt was perfect. Used "little ears" pasta, added a little fresh lime juice to wake it up at the end. Topped with shredded lettuce & spinach, tomatoes, shredded cheese and a little dollop of yogurt. Served with baked tortilla chips. Will be perfect for a make ahead meal for the long school and softball days. Thanks :). BTW, I love, love, love Master Chef. I would certainly be the one doing the ugly cry non stop doubt.
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  39. Ecommerce October 17, 2012 at 1:13 am #
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  40. cost slip November 17, 2012 at 8:14 pm #
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  41. gina February 4, 2013 at 9:52 pm #
    just made this for dinner tonight and it was so delicious! my skillet wasn't large enough to mix in the pasta, so i added in the cream cheese and sour cream (due to a lack of plain yogurt) and then mixed it up with the noodles in a giant bowl. so excited to have so much left over!
  42. Elaine May 24, 2013 at 11:11 am #
    Yummy!! This dish is full of flavor! I didn't have ground chicken so I used shredded chicken breast. I threw it all together in a 9x13 pan, topped it with Monterey jack cheese & baked in just until cheese was bubbly. Just delicious!!
  43. Bliss March 30, 2015 at 9:04 pm #
    I effin love this! It's the ultimate comfort food. I've made it with chicken, turkey, and beef, have also tried varying combinations of greek yogurt and cream cheese. The winner is ground turkey with half greek yogurt/ half cream cheese. Almost 3 years later and this is still a favorite with the boys. Great job Bev!! :)
  44. Michelle July 2, 2015 at 6:54 pm #
    Made this tonight for dinner and LOVED it. Definitely will be making it again.


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