Taco Stuffed Shells: Cheesy Mexican-Italian-inspired goodness

I have had my eye on this recipe — from one of my favorite food bloggers, Closet Cooking — for quite some time. Yet, I purposely held off on us making it until after a long hard hike because it is just so fattening. Even our skinnied down version, with smaller portions, comes in at 16 Weight Watchers PointsPlus Values!

But, it was worth the wait and the splurge! The filling is out of this world. So much flavorful heart-warming lick-the-spoon goodness.

Next time, we’ll make this for the kids, and perhaps I’ll go fo an easier process by converting it into a Mexican lasagna instead of stuffing shells.

Taco Stuffed Shells

Don’t let the number of ingredients fool you. This recipe is quite easy.

Taco Stuffed Shells

Heat the oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add the onions and saute until tender, about 5-7 minutes. Add the garlic and saute until fragrant, about a minute.

Taco Stuffed Shells

Add the ground beef and cook until browned, breaking it up, about 10 minutes.

Taco Stuffed Shells

Add the taco seasoning, tomato puree, corn, black beans and cream cheese and cook until the goat cheese has melted in, about 2-3 minutes.

Taco Stuffed Shells

Season with hot sauce, salt and pepper to taste.

Taco Stuffed Shells

Spread the salsa into a large baking dish.

Taco Stuffed Shells

Stuff the cooked shells with the beef mixture.

Taco Stuffed Shells

Place them in the salsa, and dump any leftover filling on top.

Taco Stuffed Shells

Mix the butter or margarine into the bread crumbs.

Taco Stuffed Shells

Sprinkle the panko mixture on to the shells.

Taco Stuffed Shells

Top with cheese.

Taco Stuffed Shells

Bake in a preheated 350F oven until the cheese has melted and the bread crumbs turn golden brown, about 20-25 minutes.

Taco Stuffed Shells

Serve warm. Top with salsa, if desired. Enjoy!

Taco Stuffed Shells
 
Weight Watchers Info: 16 PointsPlus per serving
Author:
Recipe type: Main Dish
Serves: 6
Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 90% lean pound ground beef
  • 1-2 tablespoons taco seasoning
  • 1 cup tomato puree
  • 1 cup corn
  • 1 cup low sodium black beans
  • 4 low fat neufchatel cream cheese
  • hot sauce to taste
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup salsa
  • 1 pound large pasta shells, cooked
  • 1 tablespoon reduced fat butter or margarine, melted
  • ½ cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1 cup reduced fat cheese, shredded (we used a Mexican blend)
Instructions
  1. Heat the oil in a large pan over medium heat.
  2. Add the onions and saute until tender, about 5-7 minutes.
  3. Add the garlic and saute until fragrant, about a minute.
  4. Add the ground beef and cook until browned, breaking it up, about 10 minutes.
  5. Add the taco seasoning, tomato puree, corn, black beans and goat cheese and cook until the cream cheese has melted in, about 2-3 minutes.
  6. Season with hot sauce, salt and pepper to taste.
  7. Spread the salsa into a large baking dish, stuff the shells with the beef mixture and place them in the salsa.
  8. Mix the butter or margarine into the bread crumbs and sprinkle onto the stuffed shells followed by the cheese.
  9. Bake in a preheated 350F oven until the cheese has melted and the bread crumbs turn golden brown, about 20-25 minutes.

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