Taco-Stuffed Pasta Shells
16 jumbo pasta shells, prepared according to package directions, rinsed and drained (try whole-wheat!)
1 pound lean ground beef
1 pkg. taco seasoning mix
1 cup water
1 16-ounce can refried beans
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1½ cups of your favorite salsa
¼ cup sliced green onions
sour cream and other taco "fixings' to serve (optional)
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Cook beef in large skillet until brown; drain.
Add seasoning and water; cook over low heat for 5 minutes, until thick. Add beans and 3/4 cup cheese; stir to mix.
Spread ¼ cup salsa over bottom of 8X11 inch baking dish.
Fill shells with beef mixture and arrange in baking dish, filled side up. Spoon remaining salsa over shells.
Cover tightly with foil and bake (now or later) for 40 to 45 minutes or until heated through. Sprinkle with onions, (sliced olives?) and remaining cheese. Serve with sour cream, lettuce, tomato
Freezes well! Make a double batch and save ½ for another day.
Notes: Make this your own, according to your family's likes.
I like more cheese, use Monterey Jack or Taco seasoned cheese, use "black bean and corn' salsa, use low fat products, stir a 4 ounce package of low-fat cream cheese into the meat mix for a creamier version, sprinkle with crushed tortilla chips just before serving.