One Pan Mexican Pasta loaded with black beans, corn, cilantro, and salsa. This quick and easy one-pan dinner is a perfect healthy comfort food meal, loaded with vegetables and protein! This healthy family-friendly recipe is great for busy weeknights. Ready in just 30 minutes with minimal cleanup, kids will love it too!
This One-Pan Mexican Pasta recipe is absolutely bursting with your favorite Mexican flavors as well as being hearty and filling. This is the ultimate comforting pasta dish!
This easy Mexican-Italian fusion recipe is made with pantry staples you’ll already have on hand, and it comes together in just 30 minutes! Everything gets cooked in one pan, which means less clean up later!
You can also easily make this Mexican pasta recipe gluten-free by using a gluten-free pasta, or vegetarian by skipping the beef and adding an extra can of beans!
Ingredients for One Pan Mexican Pasta
The full ingredient list and measurements are listed in the printable recipe below.
Pasta & Sauce
- Elbow Pasta: I love using elbow pasta when I’m making something with a lot of sauce. The tube shape is great because the sauce can surround the pasta both inside and out. I used the jumbo macaroni shells from Trader Joe’s. They are our family’s favorite!
- Tomato Sauce: Pasta sauce adds a hint of Italian flavor to our dish!
- Jared Salsa: Salsa adds a little heat, plus the flavors from the cumin and oregano really add to the Mexican flavors. You can use fresh salsa if you have that on hand!
- Beef broth: Gives the dish extra flavor and helps to thin out the sauce a bit.
Meat & Veggies
- Ground Beef: Our protein! Protein helps your body feel fuller for longer, and is also a common ingredient in Mexican recipes like tacos, nachos and burritos.
- Onion & Garlic: Both Italian and Mexican dishes use onion and garlic all the time!
- Vegetables & Beans: Corn, black beans, and bell pepper. Black beans add a little more protein to the dish, and I used and orange bell pepper for a pop of color and crunch.
How to make this One Pan Mexican Pasta
- Sauté the beef: Add 1 tbsp of oil to the pan, along with the beef. Cook on medium-high heat until the beef is brown. This will take approximately 5 minutes. When the beef is no longer pink, drain off the excess fat and set the beef and onions aside.
- Prep & sauté the vegetables: Prep the onion, garlic, and orange bell pepper, then sauté them in 1 tbsp of oil for about 3-4 minutes, or until they are tender.
- Combine all ingredients: Add the beef back into the pan of sautéd vegetables, along with the black beans, corn, pasta sauce, salsa, pasta, and beef broth. Bring it to a boil, cover and then reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook until the pasta is tender. This will take about 10-15 minutes, depending on how al dente you prefer the pasta to be!
- Serve! Serve immediately, garnished with cilantro, avocado, chopped tomatoes, sour cream, and cheese!
Can I use other kinds of pasta?
Yes! I prefer elbow pasta because it’s able to hold onto the sauce really well. However farfalle, rotini, fusilli, rigatoni, shell, and rotelle would also be great in this! You can also use gluten-free pasta! Just double-check the cooking instructions on the back of the packet and reduce or increase the simmering time as needed.
What kinds of pasta sauce and salsa should I use?
There are plenty of options to customize this one pan Mexican pasta!
Pasta sauce: I used a 24 oz jar of pasta sauce and it’s quick and easy, but I also like to make my own pasta sauce in bulk, freeze it and add it to recipes like this one!
Salsa: I used a medium spiced salsa, but of course you can also use hot or mild! Fire-roasted salsa would taste great in this Mexican pasta dish! You can also substitute the salsa for taco sauce if you have a jar on hand. You can also make your own! Recipe Tin Eats’ recipe is great!
Can I use other kinds of protein?
Absolutely! I used ground beef because I always have some on hand in my freezer and it’s very easy to cook, but feel free to substitute it for ground turkey or diced chicken breast. Mexican chicken pasta is also delicious!
To make this recipe vegan, replace the meat with an extra can of beans. You can use back beans again, or add a different kind like chickpeas or kidney beans.
Storage and Reheating
- Store: Leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
- Reheat: To heat up the leftovers, simply add everything to a saucepan on the stove until warmed through.
- Freezing: Freeze the beef, veggies, and sauce (without the pasta) for up to 4 months in the freezer. When you’re ready to eat it, thaw it completely before heating it up on the stove. Add pasta, cook, and enjoy! You may need to add a little water – check the pasta after 10 minutes and adjust if necessary.
Here are more Easy Pasta Recipes to try!
- Mexican Pasta Salad
- Penne alla Vodka with Sundried Tomatoes
- 20 Minute Pasta Carbonara
- Cajun Chicken Pasta Bake
- BLT Pasta Salad
One Pan Mexican Pasta
- 2 tablespoon olive oil divided
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- 1 medium bell pepper diced
- 1 small onion diced
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 15.5 ounce can black beans
- 1 cup corn
- 1 24 ounce jar tomato sauce
- 2 cups salsa I used medium
- 1 cup beef broth
- 2 cups elbow macaroni uncooked
- 1/2 cup cilantro chopped for serving
- Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet or Dutch oven. Add in ground beef and cook until beef is not longer pink and is browned. Drain excess fat and set aside.
- Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil to the same pan. Add in the bell pepper and onion and saute for 3-4 minutes, or until tender. Add in garlic and cook for an additional minute.
- Add beef back to the pan and stir in black beans, corn, pasta sauce, salsa, pasta and beef broth. Bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat and simmer until pasta is cooked through, about 10-15 minutes.
- Serve immediately with fresh chopped cilantro on top if desired.