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This Classic Taco Salad recipe is a quick 30-minute dinner loaded with all of your favorite taco ingredients. Make it healthy with lean ground beef or turkey and load up on the veggies. Get my step by step instructions and make it tonight – It’s fresh, fast, and delicious!
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EASY Weeknight Taco Salad Recipe
I love to make a big ground beef taco salad for dinner and this easy recipe is better than the Taco Bell salad or Wendy’s taco salad! It’s one of my favorite healthy recipes that’s not only healthier but also so filling and loaded with flavor.
This is what I make when the family is craving tacos but I want to keep things lighter, easier, and fresher. They don’t miss the tacos when I make it – it’s got all the same flavors and textures but made easy.
I like to call it fiesta taco salad because it’s full of fresh ingredients and has so many colors, lots of flavor, and great textures going on – like a fiesta for your tastebuds!
It’s a really easy taco salad recipe that’s ready in 30 minutes so it’s perfect for an easy meal during the week. For me, it’s faster than picking up a Taco Bell taco salad and it’s a whole lot healthier, too!
It’s great for family gatherings, summer picnics, and potlucks too. You can easily double the recipe to serve more people.
A great thing about this simple salad is that you can serve the whole thing for a family meal or make it for meal prep. It’s easy – just prep all of the ingredients and store them in separate containers in the fridge. When you’re ready for lunch or an easy dinner, assemble the salad.
This recipe for taco salad can easily be adapted to your personal preference. Any of your favorite taco toppings will work and you swap out different kinds of meat to switch it up. Or, leave out the meat – it’s up to you. Every time I make it, I think about ways to switch it up the next time! It really is versatile.
This is such a classic recipe and it’s always a hit with the whole family! If you’re looking for taco salad recipes to lighten up taco night, give this one a try.
Taco Salad Ingredients
- Lean ground beef or lean ground turkey
- Taco seasoning – pick up a packet at the store or use homemade taco seasoning with chili powder, onion powder, cumin, and other spices.
- Chopped romaine lettuce or iceberg lettuce (or mix them up together!).
- Tomatoes – I like diced Roma tomatoes or halved grape tomatoes or cherry tomatoes
- Sliced black olives
- Pickled jalapenos
- Shredded cheddar cheese
- Salsa – use your favorite brand!
- Tortilla strips – crushed tortilla chips or fried corn tortillas work, too.
- Chopped cilantro
How to Make Taco Salad
- Brown the beef (or turkey if using) in a large skillet over medium heat to medium-high heat. Break it up as it cooks and then drain off the excess fat.
- Add the taco seasoning and amount of water called for on the package. Stir to combine and cook the seasoning and beef as directed on the packet. Take the pan off the heat so the meat mixture can cool.
- Place the chopped lettuce in a big bowl and top it with the taco meat, tomatoes, olives, and cheese.
- Top the salad with guacamole and salsa, and then toss the salad to combine. Garnish with the tortilla strips and cilantro for serving.
What goes well with taco salad?
Want to add some side dishes? Here are some good options we always like:
- We always love it with some chips and salsa.
- Make some cheese quesadillas.
- Make taco Tuesday a soup and salad night and add black bean soup or chicken tortilla soup on the side.
- Pair it with Mexican rice and beans.
- For BBQs it goes great with grilled corn on the cob or other grilled veggies.
I hope you add the ingredients for this healthy taco salad recipe to your shopping list this week! It’s such a favorite of mine, and I think you’ll really love it.
Other Recipes To Try:
Simple Taco Salad
- 1 pound lean ground turkey or beef
- 1 package taco seasoning
- 1 head romaine lettuce chopped
- 1 roma tomato diced
- ½ cup sliced olives
- ¼ cup pickled jalapenos
- ¼ cup shredded cheddar cheese
- ¼ cup guacamole see note
- ¼ cup salsa
- Tortilla strips for garnish
- Cilantro for garnish
- Place ground turkey in a medium sized skillet over medium heat. Cook, breaking up the meat to small pieces, until no longer pink. Drain any excess fat.
- Add taco seasoning and water called for on pouch (usually ¾ cup). Stir to combine and cook as directed on package. Remove from heat and set aside to cool slightly.
- Add romaine to a large salad bowl. Add cooked meat, tomato, jalapenos, olives, and cheese.
- Top with guacamole and salsa then toss to combine. Garnish with tortilla strips and cilantro. Serve immediately.
Classic Taco Salad is an easy 30 minute meal that’s healthy – make this salad recipe with ground beef or turkey – it’s better than Taco Bell taco salad! Use your favorite dressing too!