Chicken/ Mexican and Latin Recipes/ Pasta/Noodles/ Vegetables

Mexican Spaghetti

So I may complain about my inability to cook small dishes.  Tonight, that inability paid off!My dad and Mom2 along with my sister Jennifer, her husband Brian, their five kids, my sister Emily and her boyfriend Sean, and Jonathan, my youngest brother have all descended upon me this weekend for the holiday.  The only one missing from the group is my brother Joseph, his wife Lindsay and their two kids.

The original plan was they were all going to get dinner along the way from wherever they were coming from.  First Jonathan showed up early, needing to have dinner.  Then Jennifer and her crew did the same.  I had to cook anyway, so FINALLY, my food fed an army.  I was just going to quickly make a piece of chicken for me with some veggies and call it good.When Jonathan showed up I had to go to plan B.  We ran to the market and picked up a few items.  I have been wanting to make my Mexican spaghetti, a dish I developed while living in Houston many lifetimes ago.  Now was my opportunity.

This dish was created out of desperation one night.  I was on my Mormon mission and for some reason the members of the local congregation weren’t feeding the lady or sister missionaries.  I later learned they felt women knew how to cook, so they didn’t need to feed us.  I fixed that quickly, as it was a time issue and moreover an opportunity for us to get to know those local members we were serving among.  But this one night, we had very few things in the apartment and fast food wasn’t an option in the tiny town we were living in.  I knew I could make something for us to eat and succeed.  I found dry spaghetti, canned corn, black beans, salsa, chicken, and cheese.  Viola! Dinner was created.  Over the years I have played with the recipe and tweaked it.  But it is still as delicious as it was that very first time, all those many years ago in Magnolia, Texas.  (Look it up, it’s a teeny tiny town.)

The pan is now empty, many second-helpings were served, so my family loved it as much as I do.


Vegetables Salsa Added Mixed and ready to go

Mexican Spaghetti

Author: Michelle


  • 6 oz dried spaghtetti
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 rotisserie chicken; shredded (about a pound)
  • 1/2 onion; diced
  • 1 bell pepper; diced
  • 1 zucchini , quartered & diced
  • 1 cup corn
  • 1-24 oz jar salsa
  • 1 can black beans; drained and rinsed
  • 6 oz cheddar cheese; grated plus a bit more
  • 2 cloves garlic; grated/minced
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 2-3 tbsp fresh cilantro
  • 1/2 cup pasta water; +/- to desired thinness
  • Salt/pepper to taste
  • Cook pasta according to package directions.


  1. In a large sauté pan, heat the olive oil.
  2. Add the onions and the bell peppers.
  3. Cook for two minutes then add the chili powder, salt, and pepper, mix well.
  4. Add the garlic, zucchini, and corn.
  5. Cook an additional minute then add the salsa.  Mix well.
  6. Bring to a low simmer and add the chicken and black beans, stirring gently.
  7. Return to a low simmer.
  8. Slowly stir in the cheese, only a bit at time a time to prevent clumping.
  9. Add a portion of the cilantro, reserving the rest for garnish.
  10. Once the pasta is cooked, add it to the sauté pan and incorporate it completely into the sauce.
  11. Add the pasta water, to thin the sauce a bit.
  12. Add as much as needed to obtain desired sauce consistency.
  13. Garnish with the remaining cilantro and more cheese if desired.

Thank you for sharing!

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  • Reply
    Debi W
    October 8, 2014 at 4:49 pm

    Anything Mexican is king in my book. And, a one dish meal, even better. Then, you made it spaghetti? Well, I simply Must Try! I mean, it’s practically written for me! And, if it makes a lot of food that means I don’t have to cook every night! Super thanks on this one!

    • Reply
      October 18, 2014 at 11:04 am

      I love Mexican anything too! This has been a favorite for years and is super easy to make.

  • Reply
    Arman @ thebigmansworld
    February 24, 2015 at 3:35 am

    What a delicious twist on spaghetti- This is screaming for a tonne of red pepper flakes, post plating 😉

    • Reply
      February 24, 2015 at 11:15 am

      You go for that red pepper, it’s how my brother’s eat it, but I wouldn’t live through it. 😉

  • Reply
    Kim (Feed Me, Seymour)
    February 24, 2015 at 6:24 am

    Loving this variation on spaghetti!

  • Reply
    Kristen @ A Mind Full Mom
    February 24, 2015 at 9:09 am

    I love this spaghetti as I adore Mexican Cuisine. And girl, cooking large meals is never a bad thing. We always have unexpected people show up or another neighborhood kid. Or leftovers are always a great thing!

    • Reply
      February 24, 2015 at 11:16 am

      But cooking large meals when it’s just me and a 4 year is bad! But then again, we always seem to eat them up.

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