On the blog I like to use the phrase “this is seriously the best thing I’ve ever made” a lot! I realize that I can’t claim that everything I make is the best thing ever, so for this recipe I brought in reinforcements!
Both my roommate and a good friend ate this dish and said it was the best thing they’ve ever eaten. There you go, verified, best thing ever 😉
I gave the traditional Italian dish, stuffed shells, a Mexican twist by stuffing them with taco seasoned ground beef, black beans and cheese. Then I kicked it up a whole other level by covering them in a homemade creamy, spicy green chili sauce, then baking all the flavors together!
As you can see by this picture, the result was cheesy perfection!
Ingredients (Mexican Stuffed Shells)
- 6 oz jumbo shell pasta (app. 24 shells)
- 1 lb ground beef
- 2 tbsp taco seasoning (click link for homemade taco seasoning recipe)
- 1 can (15 oz) black beans
- 1 ½ cups cheddar cheese (divided)
Ingredients (Creamy Green Chili Sauce)
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic (minced)
- ½ red onion (chopped)
- 1 serrano chili (seeded and chopped)
- 1 jalapeño (seeded and chopped)
- 15 oz chicken broth
- 1 cup sour cream
- 1 avocado (peeled, pitted and sliced)
- 2 limes (juiced)
- 8 oz chopped green chilies
- ¼ cup fresh cilantro
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp crushed red pepper
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
To prepare the stuffed shells, begin by cooking the ground beef. Once the beef is cooked, drain any grease, then add the taco seasoning.
Next, add the can of black beans (do not drain the beans before adding them to the beef.)
Mix together, then cover and simmer for 15 minutes.
While the beef is soaking in all of the taco seasoning, boil a large pot of water and add the shells. Cook for 10-12 minutes or just before al dente.
Remove from the water and allow to cool.
Once the taco meat is ready, combine it with 1 cup of cheddar cheese in a large mixing bowl.
Mix together then spoon into the shells.
To prepare the sauce, heat the olive oil in a small skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic, onions, jalapeño and Serrano chili.
Saute for 5-7 minutes. Add this and the rest of the ingredients to a food processor.
Blend until smooth.
Pour half the sauce into the bottom of an oven safe baking dish.
Place the shells on top with the opening of the shells facing up.
Pour the remaining sauce over the shells.
Sprinkle the additional ½ cup of cheddar cheese on top.
Bake for 25-30 minutes (or until cheese is melted and bubbly).
Mouth watering amazingness is served!
♣ Vegetarian Option: Substitute the ground beef with meatless crumbles or soy chorizo to make this recipe vegetarian.
♦ Gluten Free Option: Use gluten-free large shell pasta to make this recipe gluten-free.