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Southwestern Spaghetti Casserole Recipe

Southwestern Spaghetti Casserole Recipe

A close friend made this Mexican-Italian bake for me almost 20 years ago, and I've prepared it regularly ever since. It comes together in a snap because it relies largely on convenient ingredients I keep on hand. We like it with a loaf of crusty bread. —Rose Turner Minnick, Christiansburg, Virginia
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 15 min. Bake: 25 min. YIELD:8 servings


  • 12 ounces uncooked spaghetti
  • 1-1/2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 envelope taco seasoning
  • 1 jar (26 ounces) spaghetti sauce
  • 1 jar (4-1/2 ounces) sliced mushrooms, drained
  • 1 can (2-1/4 ounces) sliced ripe olives, drained
  • 2 cups (8 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese
  • Shredded lettuce, diced tomatoes, sour cream, salsa and picante sauce


  • 1. Cook spaghetti according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, cook beef and onion over medium heat until meat is no longer pink; drain.
  • 2. Stir in the taco seasoning, spaghetti sauce, mushrooms and olives. Drain spaghetti; stir into the beef mixture.
  • 3. Transfer to a greased shallow 3-qt. baking dish; sprinkle with cheese. Bake, uncovered, at 350° for 25-30 minutes or until heated through. Serve with lettuce, tomatoes, sour cream, salsa and picante sauce.
    Freeze option: Cool unbaked casserole; cover and freeze. To use, partially thaw in refrigerator overnight. Remove from refrigerator 30 minutes before baking. Bake casserole as directed, increasing time as necessary to heat through and for a thermometer inserted in center to read 165°. Serve with lettuce, tomatoes, sour cream, salsa and picante sauce. Yield: 8 servings.

Reviews for Southwestern Spaghetti Casserole

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PrplMonky5 User ID: 6612040 271611
Reviewed Aug. 10, 2017

"What a great change to plain old spaghetti! I cut the recipe in half for just my husband and I. I used lower sodium taco seasoning and it tasted just fine. The spaghetti sauce I used was fire roasted red pepper & garlic. I omitted the mushrooms too. I wound up putting it into a glass pie dish, so it was more of a southwestern spaghetti pie haha. I used mostly cheddar but threw in some mozzarella as well. Delicious! Don't skip the toppings... we loved the added crunch of the lettuce, and the salsa and sour cream really brought out the taco flavor. Will make this again!"

2124arizona User ID: 845443 269189
Reviewed Jul. 9, 2017

"This southwestern spin on baked spaghetti is yummy!!"

TNbluffbaker User ID: 46423 254466
Reviewed Sep. 22, 2016

"A south of the border version of spaghetti. I left out the olives because my family doesn't like them."

kristy7 User ID: 6569258 218413
Reviewed Jan. 20, 2015

"I really liked this recipe and took it to the school for hot lunch. The kids really enjoyed it. Use all the regular toppings: sour cream, cheddar cheese, olives, etc."

tammyloyd User ID: 7619286 91263
Reviewed Jan. 21, 2014

"Made this tonight for my family and they LOVED it. I cut the calories by using 90/10 ground beef and reduced fat cheese. Used the healthy spaghetti. Spiced it up with hot and spicy Taco mix. Left out olives and mushrooms since my family doesn't like either."

cliftonhanger User ID: 742252 54558
Reviewed Nov. 28, 2012

"I made some changes to the recipe. Not particularly liking black olives, I increased the amount of mushrooms to approx. 7 oz. Instead of sprinkling all the cheese over the top before baking, I sprinkled half over half the spaghetti mixture and the other half over the top of the full amount."

slfarnsw User ID: 1660129 54557
Reviewed Aug. 11, 2011

"I loved baked pasta, and this is a great twist on traditional spaghetti. My only negative is that it can be a little dry."

love_my_life User ID: 2481170 127580
Reviewed Nov. 23, 2010

"I made this with the Barilla PLUS Protein Spaghetti which made a very hearty meal. I only had a 24 oz jar of spag sauce so I added a good splash of HOT taco sauce to make up for the difference. LOVED it! I loved mixing the bake with the lettuce, sour cream and tomatoes- very good. You may want to try a milder sauce though if you don't like things too spicy. Even my kids liked it!"

Liz86 User ID: 4494895 85258
Reviewed Oct. 11, 2009

"I tried this for family and friends and it was a huge hit! Everyone loves it."

skymom747 User ID: 1717371 61921
Reviewed Jun. 15, 2009

"my family loves this recipe!"

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