by Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom on October 22, 2009


I doubled this meal and then froze it in 2 parts: Few dinner portions without cheese.  Another few portions with cheese.

After seeing the pasta box on the counter, my oldest asked, “Are we having macaroni for dinner?”

I replied, “Yeah, but this is Taco Macaroni.”

To which he responded, “Yum. Tac-aroni!”

Clever, huh?

Not sure how to pronounce this…Listen below.

Little stinker…trying to tell you we were having spinach!

I made this Taco Mac recipe from Stolen Moments Cooking “as is”…meaning no modifications, other than no cheese for the boys!  Great meal Kate!!!

*Note: Recipe below is for a single meal.  I doubled the below recipe to have enough to freeze.

1 lb. ground beef
1/2 onion, diced
1 T. chili powder
1 T. cumin
2 t. garlic powder
1 t. salt
1/2 lb. elbow macaroni Use rice pasta for a gluten-free meal!
1 1/2 c. beef stock or broth
1 8 oz. can tomato sauce
1 14.5 oz. can crushed tomatoes
2 c. frozen corn
1 c. shredded cheese

2 cups frozen greens beans

1. Brown ground beef and onion. Drain. Stir in seasonings.
2. Add noodles, stock, tomato sauce and crushed tomatoes to the skillet. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low. Cover skillet and simmer, stirring occasionally, until noodles are tender, about 15 – 20 minutes.
3. Stir in corn until heated through. Top with cheese and serve.
4. Cook green beans as indicated by package instructions.
5. Serve Tac-aroni with Green Beans.

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{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

Kate @ Stolen Moments October 22, 2009 at 10:24 pm

Hey Erin, thanks so much! I’m glad you guys liked it.

That video is precious. I think I’m going to start calling it Tac-aroni from now on. It’s perfect. And what a little cutie. :)


Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom October 22, 2009 at 10:28 pm

@Kate @ Stolen Moments,

I was quite impressed with his creativity on that one! And we’ll be calling it that now for sure!


Christine October 23, 2009 at 5:40 am

This looks awesome!


Carrie October 23, 2009 at 8:52 am

Will try this weekend! Sounds wonderful! We like quinoa elbows over rice pasta elbows for these kinds of dishes . . . it’s closer in consistency to wheat pasta, and it’s flavor is mild enough not to compete with whatever you add to it.


Susan October 23, 2009 at 10:53 am

I have a similar recipe that I have been preparing for years.
Chili Noodle
For every 2 cups of dry noodles ( I use elbow) you use:
1 15 oz. can of diced tomatoes (plain or flavored)
1 15 oz. can of chili (vegetarian, turkey or whatever you have on hand)
Boil the noodles- drain. Place in skillet with the tomatoes and chili. Stir. Simmer 10 – 15 minutes. That’s it!
You can add cheese on top the last few minutes of cooking. I serve with sour cream and corn chips.


Shelly October 23, 2009 at 11:44 am

I’m sad you don’t have a cost breakdown on this one. I’m trying really hard to wean my family from Hamburger Helper because I just hate feeding my family it. But it’s so convenient and inexpensive, which is hard to beat right now. I love trying homemade versions like this, and will be adding this one to my list to try.


Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom October 23, 2009 at 12:53 pm


After doubling the recipe, it probably made 4 times what a HH would make. Everything was on sale…my best guess would be it was $6 for the doubled version, with the meat on sale, using coupons for the tomato sauce/diced tomatoes and getting frozen corn on sale as well!


Melanie @ Mel, A Dramatic Mommy October 23, 2009 at 7:17 pm

I have this on the stove right now! I’ll be darned if I didn’t forget to pick up a bag of fire roasted corn when I was at Trader Joe’s. I thought that might give it another little kick. Next time!


Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom October 23, 2009 at 7:24 pm

@Melanie @ Mel, A Dramatic Mommy,

That would be a great addition Mel!


Tatiana November 21, 2009 at 7:48 pm

Just made this recipe tonight, it was outstanding! I made it earlier in the day because I was going to be out for most of the afternoon. I put the dinner in a casserole dish and when we were ready to eat, put the cheese on top and baked for 30 minutes….it came out as a casserole! We were very pleased….thank you!


Jenn May 26, 2010 at 8:50 pm

Made this tonight with ground turkey (also threw in some frozen chopped spinach) and it’s a hit! It even made enough to freeze half. You are SAVING MY LIFE with dinner recipes this week!


Andrea June 17, 2010 at 6:02 pm

I used leftover taco meat and black beans to make it! Yum-o!


Erica July 10, 2010 at 8:51 am

Made this last night for dinner! Substituted egg noodles due to the fact that that was what I had on hand..also added some black beans. It was wonderful! Single recipe was enough for us to eat and freeze for later!


ashley l July 12, 2010 at 6:27 pm

I made this tonight, used homemade taco seasoning. I served it w/cheesy cornbread. It was delish!! Thank you!


ashley l July 12, 2010 at 6:28 pm

We had enough to freeze too (two big gallon ziplock bags)


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