29 July 2022

The 6 best substitutes for Tex Mex pasta for your recipes

By Killian

If you’re a fan of all things spicy, you probably are, too. Tex-Mex cuisine. It’s a mix of everything that’s great about Texan and Mexican food.

Of course, not all of the ingredients used in Tex Mex cooking belong to the authentic mexican traditionincluding the incredibly tasty Tex Mex pasta.

There’s nothing better than burritos, tacos, and nachos, but these dishes taste even better with characteristic touch of spiciness that provides this fantastic pasta.

If you don’t have it at home, don’t worry, we are here to help you. Here is a list of substitutes for Tex Mex pasta that you can use to take your dish to a whole new level of deliciousness.

The Best Tex Mex Pasta Substitutes

Tex Mex is what happens when Texan and Mexican food cultures meet. It brings out the best of both cuisines, and the end result is simply outstanding.

Not everything that goes into creating a fantastic Tex Mex dish is truly original Mexican cuisine, but rather spawned a tradition of its own.

Tex Mex cuisine eventually gained worldwide recognition thanks to the popular HelloFresh meal kit delivery service.

This company produces a Tex Mex pasta that has gone viral on the internet, and people can’t stop talking about it and praising its delicious taste.

This Tex Mex pasta goes perfectly with their Bold n’ Beefy tacos and fantastic burrito recipes. It became immensely popular and people even tried to replicate the recipe at home.

If you loved HelloFresh’s Tex Mex pasta, or if you just like Tex Mex recipes, we’ve got you.

Here’s a list of all the amazing Tex Mex pasta substitutes, including a perfect HelloFresh Tex Mex pasta substitute, that you can put into practice in your kitchen starting now.

1. Annatto paste

If you are looking for a substitute for Tex Mex pasta, achiote paste may be the ideal ingredient for your recipe.

It is a popular food in Mexican culture, specifically in the Yucatan and Oaxaca area, but it is also used in Belizean cuisine.

It has a characteristic dark red or orange paste and can be found in most supermarkets and corner stores around the world.

Annatto paste is also known as recado rojo and is a mixture of spices and dried herbs (including annatto, black pepper, salt, cumin, oregano, garlic and more) that gives your recipes a fantastic flavor.

If you can’t find it in the store, or if you just prefer to make it at home, the recipe is very simple and quick to prepare.

For a quick and easy homemade achiote paste, you’ll need paprika, cumin, garlic (either powdered or a minced fresh clove), a little oregano, and white vinegar.

Place all the ingredients in a bowl and stir well, until you have a smooth, well-mixed paste that is ready to use.

2. Marinade sauce

Adobo sauce is an amazing substitute for Tex Mex pasta for your delicious recipes. It is a spicy sauce that goes perfectly with Mexican and Tex Mex food.

Like the achiote paste, the adobo sauce also includes dried herbs, garlic, and vinegar in its mix, but the secret ingredient that changed the game is the presence of chili powder.

Adobo sauce is dark orange-brown in color and has a texture similar to barbecue sauce.

It is possible to buy adobo sauce or make your own version from the comfort of your home:

  1. All you need are powdered ingredients, dried herbs, and a couple of fresh tomatoes (if you have diced tomatoes in a can, or tomato paste will work too).
  2. Take some chili powder and put it in a blender with some hot water. At this point, you can add the vinegar and fresh tomatoes (or canned tomato paste if you decide to use these instead).
  3. Stir quickly before adding the powdered ingredients: cumin, black pepper, and cinnamon.
  4. Mix quickly again, then proceed to add a few cloves of garlic (there is no such thing as too much garlic!), brown sugar, oregano, and a little salt.
  5. Once you get a creamy and more or less thick consistency, it’s time to put it in a pan with one or two teaspoons of olive oil over medium or high heat.
  6. Bring it to a boil and then let it simmer for about 15-20 minutes.

You’ll know your adobo sauce is ready when it turns that fantastic dark orange color and the smooth, creamy consistency of barbecue sauce.

It is advisable to make a little more in case you want to save some for another time. You can pour it into a jar, secure it with a lid, and store it in the fridge.

3. Chipotle sauce

Another fantastic substitute for Tex Mex pasta could be chipotle sauce. Yes, you heard right!

You can use that slightly spicy chipotle sauce to replace your favorite Tex Mex pasta in your dishes.

It is relatively similar to the marinade sauce, but it has a little twist, especially in its texture and final flavor.

Chipotle sauce is creamier and runnier than adobo sauce. It’s made of chipotle adobo (which tends to give the sauce that smoky, spicy flavor), garlic, a little bit of lime, and to take it a step further, some plain yogurt.

Yogurt, or sometimes a Mexican cream, is also used to soften the sauce somewhat, making the chipotle sauce runnier than other sauces.

It also reduces the heat of the chipotle peppers, making the overall flavor of the sauce milder and more palatable.

Chipotle salsa is pretty easy to find in stores around the world, but it’s also super easy to make at home.

Mix together some smoked jalapenos, olive oil, a little garlic, salt, half a lime, a little honey to add a little sweetness, and finally some Greek yogurt (it gives it a more suitable and firm consistency).

Mix all these ingredients together and there you have it: your super simple and incredibly quick recipe for a delicious homemade chipotle salsa.

4. Homemade tex mex pasta

If you’re feeling a bit experimental in the kitchen, you can try making your own Tex Mex pasta substitute.

More specifically, you can try recreating a fantastic HelloFresh Tex Mex pasta substitute at home.

Making your own homemade Tex Mex pasta is not as difficult as many people might think. It’s basically a mix of dry and wet ingredients:

  1. Take a few cloves of garlic (the more the better), place them on a piece of aluminum foil and drizzle a little olive oil over them.
  2. Wrap them carefully in the aluminum foil and pop them in the oven for about 40-45 minutes, until they soften and go mushy.
  3. At this time, while the garlic is in the oven, take some dried chiles and put them in a saucepan with a little water and bring to a boil.
  4. Once it’s boiling, let it simmer for 20 minutes or so.
  5. While you wait for the chili to be ready, grab your blender and start combining the rest of the ingredients. Include a diced onion, some roasted tomatoes, and the drained and softened chiles (but don’t move the pan yet!). Mix well until the mixture is smooth and creamy.
  6. Take the empty pan that you used to boil the chiles and pour the whipped mixture into it, and put it on medium-low heat.
  7. This is when you add all the other ingredients while you continue to stir the mixture well. Include some vinegar, chili paste, the roasted garlic you made earlier, and some tomato paste.
  8. Later, also include your dehydrated ingredients: chili powder, paprika, garlic powder, cilantro, cumin, oregano, salt and a pinch of sugar to balance the acidity of the mixture.
  9. Let the mixture simmer for 15 to 20 minutes.

You already have it. Your fantastic homemade Tex Mex pasta is ready to be used.

It can also be saved, so when you put in the effort, you can make some more for the future!


If you don’t feel like messing around in the kitchen by making your own Tex Mex pasta substitute, or if you don’t want to get a store-bought one, there’s another option for you.

Sriracha is a no-fuss option for those who don’t want to waste time putting together their own homemade version of a sauce. Or it’s the ideal choice for those who already have sriracha lying around in their cupboards.

Sriracha is not a conventional hot sauce. It is much thicker than any other hot sauce, and its characteristic garlic and sweetness of the sauce is easy to savor.

Just add it to your dishes when you need it, and that’s it. There are no additional steps to modify this already perfect Tex Mex alternative.

There is only one action you can take if you want to change its consistency a bit: add a bit of mayonnaise to the sauce.

This little trick will give you a delicious sriracha mayonnaise, with that fantastic firm consistency that will give your dishes a perfectly balanced flavor.

6. Smoked paprika, tomato paste and chili

Another extremely simple and easy alternative is to mix ingredients that you may already have in your pantry.

It will give you that Tex Mex pasta-like flavor and an amazingly close consistency too!

Take some smoked paprika – it is essential that it be smoked, otherwise the flavor will not be as good as the real thing. Mix it with some tomato paste and add some chili powder.

If you’re feeling really fancy, you can add some roasted jalapenos, but if you do, you’ll need to combine the mixture in a blender.

And that’s it. In five minutes you can have a fantastic Tex Mex pasta substitute with minimal effort and keeping the wash up to a minimum.

How to Choose a Substitute for Tex Mex Pasta

As you can see, there are many options if you want to experiment with making your own homemade Tex Mex pasta substitute:

  1. homemade option: If you don’t mind a little challenge in the kitchen, you can try recreating HelloFresh’s delicious and viral Tex Mex pasta at home. Or you can mix smoked paprika, tomato paste, and chili powder together for a quick and easy additional alternative.
  2. Smooth Consistency Alternative: If you want to find a Tex Mex substitute for your recipes, you can opt for a milder alternative, such as adobo or chipotle sauce.
  3. thick consistency option: If you prefer a thicker consistency, achiote paste or sriracha may be the right alternative for you.

Consistency aside, all of these pastes and sauces will add that fantastic spiciness and flavor to your dishes, so they are all worth trying.