All the things you love about a good Philly cheesesteak sandwich make for an over-the-top easy pasta skillet recipe the whole family will love. Imagine gooey cheesy pasta with thinly sliced beef, tender peppers, and onions combined into one tasty bite. It is comforting, salty, hearty, & creamy. It's the perfect marriage of mac & cheese with a classic Philadelphia cheesesteak sandwich.
So grab your cast iron skillet and make this easy one-pan complete meal in just 30 minutes. Rotini pasta is cooked in the skillet with caramelized onions & sweet bell peppers until al dente. Then imagine the magic of a cheesesteak with thin slices of seasoned beef and gooey melty cheeses added for that real Philly flavor.
If you order your cheesesteak "wit" onions & peppers, this pasta recipe is for you. It also has what I call that classic Cheez Whiz or Easy Cheese gooeyness that I feel all cheesesteaks must-have. Even the official visit Philadelphia site agrees, order it "whiz wit!"
This was inspired by my easy Classic Homemade Philly Cheesesteak Recipe on this site. With a pasta version, it is a complete meal and all you need for dinner. But if you want more, it pairs well with Air Fryer Broccolini with Lemon & Parmesan or an Italian Chopped Salad.
This recipe calls for all the classic ingredients that you need for a good cheesesteak sandwich, minus the hoagie roll. To finish off the Philly vibe, you need some sliced onion, sweet bell peppers, &, of course, the cheese! This cheesy recipe has 3 kinds of cheese in it. A good cheesesteak needs a processed cheese food product like Easy Cheese or Cheese Whiz. The pasta sauce is creamy thanks to cream cheese. Plus added slices of provolone for a cheesy topper. Then you add rotini pasta, broth, and seasonings, and the whole thing comes together.
Best Meat for Cheesesteaks
I highly recommend getting the all-natural shaved beef steak from Trader Joe's for this cheesesteak pasta recipe. It is thinly sliced and is perfect for this recipe. If you do not have a Trader Joe's near you, ask your butcher to thinly slice ribeye or sirloin steaks.
- Olive Oil
- Shaved Beef Steak
- Worcestershire Sauce
- Black Pepper
- Garlic Powder
- Salted Butter
- Bell Pepper
- Beef Broth
- Rotini Pasta
- Cream Cheese
- Cheez Whiz/Easy Cheese
- Provolone Cheese
See the recipe card for quantities.
Instructions for Philly Cheesesteak Pasta
Begin by prepping your ingredients into sliced or chopped pieces. Begin by slicing the onion into slices and then quarter rounds as shown below. You will also need to remove the stem, seeds, and membranes from the bell pepper. Then thinly slice that. Once they are all ready, the cooking time and effort for this recipe are minimal. That helps make this recipe fairly quick and easy.
The shaved beef steak will come in large thin slices. This is great for a cheesesteak sandwich that you will take meaty bites of. However, I found that smaller bite-sized pieces work better in other recipes like this pasta dish. If you want smaller pieces of meat in your skillet dinner, dice up the shaved steak. Set aside.
Season & Cook the Thin-Sliced Beef
Heat oil in a large cast-iron pan, or another oven-safe skillet. Make sure you are using a skillet that will be large enough to fit all the meat, pasta, and other ingredients. I love a cast-iron pan for this recipe on my flat cooktop or try one of the best pans for a gas stove.
Over medium heat, add the shaved beef, and season with black pepper & garlic powder. Cook for 3-4 minutes, until the beef, is cooked through.
Add the Worcestershire sauce and stir to coat. Remove beef from the pan and set it aside. Do not clean the pan, leave the meat juices.
Cook the Vegetables
Add butter to the skillet. Scrape up the bits from cooking the meat. Once melted add the peppers and onions. Cook over medium heat for 3 minutes, just until they are starting to soften.
Add broth and water to the pan. Turn up the heat to bring it to a boil.
Cook the Pasta in the Skillet
Once boiling, add the rotini pasta and stir to combine. Turn the heat down to medium. You want the vegetables and pasta to simmer in the liquid.
** NOTE** If you use a different type of pasta shape such as egg noodles, farfalle, etc the amount of liquid and cooking time may vary. Egg noodles for example cook fast and will need less water & farfalle will need more! In the substitution section below I shared ideas for gluten-free & keto or low-carb friendly pasta alternatives.
After about 12-15 minutes the pasta should be al dente and most of the liquid will be absorbed. It should look like this with some broth left and the veggie will be soft and tender. None of the ingredients will be overcooked or mushy.
Turn the heat to low. Add the shaved beef back into the skillet and stir. Now it is time to add the 3 kinds of cheese to make this the cheesiest steak pasta ever.
Next, add the softened cream cheese. The cream cheese and the bit of cooking broth will come together and make a creamy sauce. Coat all the ingredients as you stir.
Next, spray about ½ a can of Easy Cheese over the pasta skillet. My kids love to help with this part! Stir to combine. Or use about 4 ounces of Cheez Whiz and stir it in.
Top with a layer of the sliced provolone and turn off the stove.
Set the oven for a low broil. Using oven mitts, place the pan in the oven to broil and melt the cheese until bubbly.
Carefully remove the skillet from the broiler, the pan will be very hot! Let the pan sit for a few minutes on the counter before serving. Caution - CHEESE WILL BE HOT! Dig in with a big spoon and serve.
Hint: DO NOT step away as the cheese will melt quickly. You can add as much provolone cheese to the top as you like. 4 to 8 slices depending on how big your skillet is ought to cover it.
If you have dietary needs that you want to make substitutions for, go for it. This is an easy recipe that is versatile and forgiving. Here are a few ways you can make changes and use alternate ingredients for a delicious recipe that fits your diet or food allergies.
- Shaved Steak - instead of beef, used thinly sliced chicken or ground turkey
- Pasta- use gluten-free pasta or spaghetti squash for a keto version instead (liquid amounts will need to be adjusted for this)
- Cheese - if you cannot find Cheese Whiz (which I did) or Easy Cheese, you can use American cheese or Velvetta - all will melt easily.
- Vegetarian - do not use beef or any protein for a vegetarian take - add in the optional mushrooms to make it more hearty.
- Worcestershire Sauce - pick an alternate ingredient that is also salty with umami flavors.
So if you enjoy a low-carb, gluten-free, or vegetarian diet you can also enjoy this delicious homemade Philly cheesesteak pasta skillet. With the above substitutions, this recipe can easily be altered to fit the dietary needs of your household. No matter how you make it, enjoy every yummy bite.
This recipe hits so many tasting notes. It is salty, creamy, rich, savory, & a little bit sweet. If you crave a bit more or like things spicy, try one of this fun and equally yummy variations. All these Philly cheesesteak variations are home runs!
- Spicy - add jalapeno or other spicy peppers along with the bell peppers
- Vegetable packed - add sliced mushrooms and/or squash too
- Low-Sodium - use low-sodium beef broth and leave out the easy cheese
- Italian - make it a pizza steak by adding diced tomatoes & dried basil with the vegetables or stir in a bit of pizza sauce instead of the Easy Cheese
This is an easy one-pan recipe so you will need a big skillet. It will need to also be oven-safe so you can broil the final cheese layer. I used a large 12" cast iron skillet and that is what I recommend for this recipe. If you do not have one, you are missing out. They are inexpensive, easy to wipe down, & they can last for decades if not generations.
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This recipe stores very well in the refrigerator. Place any leftovers in an air-tight container to enjoy later. Cheesesteak pasta will be good for 3 days in the refrigerator.
These ingredients don't stand up well to freezing. Due to the 3 kinds of cheese and pasta, I don't recommend freezing this recipe.
What to Serve with this Pasta Skillet
This Philadelphia cheesesteak pasta recipe is a complete meal on its own. It has pasta, steak, vegetables, and more for a hearty supper. If you wish to have something to serve alongside this amazing dish, here are some favorites of mine that all go well with this one-pan skillet pasta dinner.
Philly Cheesesteak Pasta Skillet
- 12" deep cast-iron skillet or large dutch oven
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 pound Trader Joe's Shaved Beef Steak or thinly-sliced ribeye steak
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 tablespoons salted butter
- 1 cup bell pepper seeded, quartered & thinly sliced
- 1 small onion quartered & thinly sliced
- 2 cups beef broth
- 2 cups water
- ½ pound rotini pasta ** see the substitution section above for gluten-free & low-carb options
- 4 ounces cream cheese softened @ room temperature
- 4 ounces Cheez Whiz or ½ can Easy Cheese Optional BUT YUM!
- 4-8 slices provolone cheese
- If you want smaller pieces of meat in your skillet dinner, dice up the shaved steak. Set aside.
- Heat oil in a large cast-iron pan, or another oven-safe skillet. Over medium heat, add the shaved beef, and season with black pepper & garlic powder. Cook for 3-4 minutes, until the beef, is cooked through.
- Add the Worcestershire sauce and stir to coat. Remove beef from the pan and set it aside. Do not clean the pan, leave the meat juices.
- Add butter to the skillet. Scrape up the bits from cooking the meat. Once melted add the peppers and onions. Cook over medium heat for 3 minutes, just until they are starting to soften.
- Add broth and water to the pan. Turn up the heat to bring it to a boil. Once boiling, add the pasta and stir to combine. Turn the heat down to medium. You want the vegetables and pasta to simmer in the liquid. After about 12-15 minutes the pasta should be al dente and most of the liquid will be absorbed.
- Turn the heat to low. Add the shaved beef back into the skillet and stir. Next, add the softened cream cheese & easy cheese/cheez whiz. Stir to combine.
- Top with a layer of the sliced provolone and turn off the stove. Set the oven for a low broil. Using oven mitts, place the pan in the oven to broil and melt the cheese until bubbly - about 1 minute. This will melt fast so stay and watch it.Carefully remove the skillet from the broiler, the pan will be very hot!
- Let the skillet sit for a few minutes to set and the cheese cools so it doesn't burn your mouth. Serve and enjoy!
|Amount per serving|
|% Daily Value*|
|Total Fat 27.6g||35%|
|Saturated Fat 14.7g||73%|
|Total Carbohydrate 33.4g||12%|
|Dietary Fiber 2.1g||8%|
|Total Sugars 4g|
|Vitamin D 3mcg||13%|
|*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calorie a day is used for general nutrition advice.|