Stuffed Taco Shells

If you love easy, delicious dinner ideas, these Stuffed Taco Shells are for you! Prep these Mexican flavored pasta shells in advance and freeze for a later meal. Great for new moms too!

If you love easy, delicious dinner ideas, these Stuffed Taco Shells are for you! Plus, prep them in advance and freeze the shells for a later meal. Great for new moms too!

Why Make Stuffed Shells

Stuffed Taco Shells are so easy, and one of my favorites.

When you think of stuffed pastas, your mind probably jumps right to the usual suspects: cheese, marinara sauce, Italian flavors. Our classic stuffed shells recipe fits that bill.

I love a good traditional Italian pasta, but these stuffed shells are packed with all my favorite taco fillings and Mexican spices.

  • Freezer Friendly
  • Make ahead meal
  • Perfect for taco Tuesday

Taco Pasta Ingredients

I used ground beef as the central protein for my stuffed taco shells. Ground turkey would be delicious too! Along with taco seasoning, this taco filling gets its spicy flavor from a can of diced green chiles and some black bean salsa.

Don’t forget about the handfuls of shredded Mexican cheese! So good.

If you love easy, delicious dinner ideas, these Stuffed Taco Shells are for you! Plus, prep them in advance and freeze the shells for a later meal. Great for new moms too!

Freezer Meals

I’ve actually got a few more stuffed shell recipes coming to the blog, so stock up on shells you guys! When I’m meal prepping for expectant moms or getting ready to fill my freezer for a hectic season, I always think of stuffed shells recipes first.

Why do these make great freezer meals?

Easy. Stuff the shells with the ingredients listed and you can freeze these in ziploc bags.

When you are ready for dinner, remove only the number of shells you need for that meal, place them in the baking dish (from frozen), add some sauce, and bake. Seriously, it’s that easy.

Set aside a few hours one day to stuff a bunch of shells so you’ll always be ready for a tasty and nutritious homemade dinner when life gets busy.

Or, you can always stuff and then bake the shells immediately! Each recipe makes about 40 shells so even if you eat some immediately you’re likely to have some leftover to freeze for later. Win-win!

These are perfect for new parents or families in need of a meal! Pop a few bags of frozen shells into a cooler and drop them off to someone who could use a nutritious and kid friendly dinner without having to cook.

What shells to use

I recommend the JUMBO or large stuffed shells for making stuffed taco shells–and all my stuffed shell recipes. They hold the most filling and you won’t have the pain of trying to fit ground meat into all those teensy little pasta shells.


Know what I love most about tacos? All the toppings!

Stuffed shells with taco ingredients are no different! Anything you love to add to your tacos will be delicious with this pasta. I serve a variety of topping choices whenever I make this on a Taco Tuesday:

. . . or even just some diced red onion, lettuce and tomato are all delicious served on top of these stuffed shells.

If you love easy, delicious dinner ideas, these Stuffed Taco Shells are for you! Plus, prep them in advance and freeze the shells for a later meal. Great for new moms too!
Yield: 40-45 shells

Stuffed Taco Shells

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes

If you love easy, delicious dinner ideas, these Stuffed Taco Shells are for you! Plus, prep them in advance and freeze the shells for a later meal. Great for new moms too!


  • 1 package (16 ounce) large pasta shells
  • 2 pounds ground beef (or ground turkey)
  • 1 can (4 ounce) diced green chilies
  • 2 cup corn and black bean salsa (or any of your favorite variety salsa)
  • 4 cups mexican blend shredded cheese
  • 6 Tablespoons taco seasoning (homemade or 2 packages)
  • toppings: tomato, lettuce, avocado, sour cream (optional)


  1. Cook large shells pasta according to package directions. Once cooked, separate and place on parchment paper on counter. Set aside.
  2. While pasta is cooking, brown ground beef (or ground turkey) in a large skillet. Once browned, drain grease and return meat to skillet. Add in green chilies, 1 cup corn and black bean salsa, and taco seasoning. Fold in shredded cheese. Set aside.
  3. Using a large spoon, stuff each shell with taco meat mixture, until all shells are stuffed. Place shells in ziploc bag and freeze until ready to use. When ready to cook, follow step 4 below.
  4. OR, if baking immediately, pour 1 cup of salsa in bottom of baking dish. Choose a dish size that will fit the number of shells you are going to be cooking. For my family, we each eat about 2-3 shells per meal. On top of salsa, add shells. Cover dish with foil and bake for 45 minutes in a 350F oven. Remove foil and bake an additional 5-15 minutes, until salsa on bottom is bubbly and mixture inside shells is fully heated.
  5. Serve with additional toppings if desired. ENJOY.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:

2 shells

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 232Total Fat: 15gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 57mgSodium: 383mgCarbohydrates: 6gFiber: 1gSugar: 1gProtein: 17g

*Nutrition facts are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate. Please see a registered dietitian for special diet advice.

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Instagram

Avatar photo

About Aimee

Aimee is a dessert lover (specifically rice krispie treats), workout enthusiast, self-taught foodie, and recipe creator.

Learn more about Aimee.

Affiliate Disclosure:**There may be affiliate links in this post! By clicking on them, or purchasing recommended items I may receive a small compensation. However, I only recommend products I love! Thank you for supporting Shugary Sweets! See my disclosure policy for more info**

Learn How To Become a Better Home Baker
Sign up for the Shugary Sweets FREE Email Course Today—soon you’ll say, "I made it from scratch!"


Posted on August 31, 2015

Comments & Reviews

  1. Love that you can take just the number of stuffed shells that you need out of the freezer – why didn’t I thinknif that? Awesome! Thanks!

    1. You’re welcome, it makes it a great, versatile meal for big or small families!

  2. can I reheat these in the microwave? I’m looking for easy dishes I can send to college with my kids to reheat.

  3. On running…well I swim and both are simular.  I do this… tell myself to swim to the end of the pool, tell myself to do that new flip turn then tell myself to swim to the next wall. After that I get my rhythm and then kick it up a notch. I was a competitive swimmer and once your mind is set you will be a runner too and you will find yourself with other runners who share in the spirit of competition. Love the recipe! Don’t give up!

  4. The secret to starting running is couch to 5k. Seriously I thought I just wasn’t meant to be a runner and then I tried this and now I love running. It gets you there slowly enough that it’s never too hard. Anyway hope that helps. The recipe looks delicious btw 🙂

    1. I’m so pathetic. I tried it. When it got about halfway through, I stopped. I’m such a quitter, LOL, maybe I’m not meant to run 🙂 Thanks for the help though!!

  5. We LOVE stuffed taco shells! But you know what? I’ve never frozen them! That is such a great idea and I’m totally going to try it! These look delicious Aimee!

    1. OH MY GOSH. Girl, get on it now. The best part? You just put them in the baking dish, with a sauce, and bake from frozen. EASY.

  6. I’m about to get out of bed and go to my kitchen to make these!!

    And I’m so the same about running. I find if I just increase the distance by a super tiny amount each day, it gets magically easier 🙂

  7. Oh talk about delish! This looks sooooo good! I will have to try! As for running, I can’t run either. In fact, I don’t know how people to it. I can literally only run for a minute on a time on the treadmill, I think I’m missing the running gene!

  8. in terms of running, just push yourself. i normally run for 10 minutes, then walk for 5 minutes. And so the pattern continues. 
    BTW, this recipe looks amazing!!! very creative!!!
                                                                        ————-Ann Lu—————

  9. YUMMMMMMMM!! I’m hardcore craving some Mexican food right now!  This is a PERFECT Monday night meal for me! I’m always looking for easy weeknight meals and this one looks scrumptious!  Great recipe!

    1. Thanks Heather, I love having these in the freezer. And just pulling out exactly how many I need. So easy.

  10. Oh gosh! When I read the title I thought you were talking about taco shells that would be stuffed, haha.. so funny how words can be interpreted differently! This stuffed pasta surprised me and looks so good! 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *