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Easy to Make Beef Taco Salad

If there’s one thing I’ve learned about cooking for my family, it’s that weekday meals don’t have to be mundane – they can be a blast of fun and festivity right in the middle of the week!

In our household, we love turning the ordinary into the extraordinary, and our Mexican-inspired Taco Salad nights fit the bill. This salad has become one of my family’s favourite dishes for a weekday fiesta, and it’s all about adding a dash of spice and a whole lot of colour to our dinners.

I love it when I see my kids’ eyes light up as they enjoy their first bite. I usually like to have the salad all assembled and ready to serve. You can also turn it into a fun experience by preparing all the components and letting them prepare their favourite combination.  From the sizzling ground beef, seasoned to perfection, to the rainbow of toppings that includes creamy avocados, zesty tomato salsa, and a generous sprinkle of cheese – it’s a DIY masterpiece in the making.

And if you want to make it extra festive, turn on some lively music, grab our aprons, and transform our kitchen into a fiesta zone. The best part? It’s not just about the food; it’s about the laughter, the togetherness, and the joy of creating something delicious as a family.

So, if you’re looking to inject some excitement into your weekday dinners, I highly recommend giving our Mexican-inspired Taco Salad a try. It’s the perfect recipe to turn an ordinary weeknight into a festive celebration, and trust me, your family will thank you for it with smiles and satisfied tummies. Let’s make every mealtime a memorable fiesta!

Basic Ingredients for Beef Taco Salad


Ground Beef: The heart of these Baked Tacos, ground beef offers a savoury, meaty foundation. It’s seasoned with a mix of spices, providing depth and flavour to the dish.

Onion: Finely chopped onions bring a touch of natural sweetness and a gentle crunch to the filling. They harmonise with the savoury beef, creating a well-balanced flavour profile.

Spices (Salt, Chili Powder, Cornstarch, Ground Cumin, Red Pepper Flakes, Dried Garlic Powder, Dried Oregano): This ensemble of spices works in concert to elevate the ground beef. Salt enhances overall taste, while chili powder imparts mild heat. Cornstarch acts as a thickening agent, and ground cumin introduces earthy warmth. Red pepper flakes add subtle spiciness, dried garlic powder contributes aromatic depth, and dried oregano brings herbal complexity to the filling.

Lime Juice: Lime juice not only brightens the avocado mixture but also adds a zesty kick, enhancing the overall taste.

Tomatoes: Fresh tomatoes are a key component of the salsa, providing juicy, vibrant bursts of flavor. They add a tangy and slightly sweet note to the tacos.

Red Onion: Finely chopped red onion lends a mild sharpness and a lovely crunch to the salsa. It also offers a hint of sweetness.

Coriander: Fresh coriander brings a refreshing herbaceous quality to the salsa, along with a citrusy aroma.

Olive Oil: A dash of olive oil helps bind the ingredients in the salsa and contributes a subtle richness.

Chili Pepper: For those who enjoy a bit of heat, chili pepper adds a spicy kick. Adjust the amount to suit your spice preference.

Jalapeno: Sliced jalapenos provide a fiery element for those seeking an extra kick of heat in their tacos.

Labneh or Sour Cream: Creamy and cooling, labneh or sour cream is the perfect topping to balance the flavors and add a luscious texture.

Shredded Lettuce: Crisp, fresh shredded lettuce adds a refreshing crunch to the tacos, enhancing the overall texture.

Taco Shells: The taco shells themselves are crucial as they provide a sturdy vessel for holding all these flavorful ingredients together.

alternative ingredients

Meat Filling: If you prefer a different protein or want to go vegetarian, you can use ground chicken, turkey, or even plant-based meat alternatives.

Avocado Mixture: If avocados aren’t your thing, you can create a similar creamy element using Greek yogurt or a dairy-free yogurt alternative.

Tomato Salsa: Customize the salsa with ingredients like diced bell peppers, corn, or black beans for added flavor and texture.

Extra Toppings: Feel free to get creative with your toppings – add diced red bell peppers, pickled onions, or even sliced olives.

Preparation Tips for Beef Taco Salad

  • Beef Preparation:
    • Brown Evenly: Heat the skillet over medium heat to ensure the ground beef cooks evenly without burning. Stir occasionally for uniform cooking.
    • Seasoning: Add the spices to the beef as it cooks to help them meld into the meat, enhancing the flavours.
    • Cornstarch Use: A small amount of cornstarch helps thicken any juices, ensuring a richer, more cohesive beef filling.
  • Salsa Preparation:
    • Finely Chop Ingredients: For the salsa, finely chop the tomatoes, onions, and chilli pepper to ensure every bite has a balanced flavour.
    • Freshness: Prepare the salsa fresh to maintain the brightness and crispness of the ingredients.
  • Corn Preparation:
    • Grilling Corn: After boiling, dry the corn before grilling. The drier surface will help achieve a better char.
    • Heat Control: Use medium-high heat on your grill pan to char the corn without burning it.
  • Salad Assembly:
    • Layering: Start with lettuce at the bottom to create a bed for the other ingredients. This also prevents sogginess.
    • Balanced Toppings: Distribute the beef, cheese, salsa, corn, avocado, and jalapenos evenly for a balanced mix of flavours and textures in every serving.

Serving Tips for Beef Taco Salad

  • Accompaniments: Serve with a side of crispy taco shells or chips for added crunch and texture.
  • Sour Cream or Labneh: Offer these on the side, allowing guests to add as per their taste preference.
  • Customization: Set out the toppings separately and let everyone build their salad to their liking.
  • Beverage Pairing: A cold beer, iced tea, or a fresh lime margarita can complement the dish wonderfully.

storage tips

Storing Leftovers: Store any leftover beef, salsa, and other components separately in airtight containers in the refrigerator.

Shelf Life: The beef and salsa will last for up to 3 days when refrigerated properly.

Reheating Beef: Reheat the beef gently in a microwave or on the stovetop, adding a bit of water or broth if it seems dry.

Avocado: If you have leftover avocado, sprinkle lemon or lime juice on it to prevent browning, and store it in an airtight container.

Assembling Later: For the best experience, assemble the salad fresh when ready to eat. The lettuce and chips, if used, are best when fresh and crisp.

Beef Taco Salad

Servings: 6 people
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes


  • 500 g ground beef
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp chilli powder
  • ½ tsp cornstarch
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • ¼ tsp red pepper flakes
  • ½ tsp cayenne pepper
  • ½ tsp dried garlic powder
  • ½ tsp dried oregano

Tomato Salsa:

  • 1 tomato, finely chopped
  • ¼ red onion, finely chopped
  • ½ lime, juiced
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp coriander, finely chopped
  • salt
  • pepper
  • ½ chilli pepper, deseeded and finely chopped

Extra Topping:

  • cup jalapeno, sliced
  • 1 avocado, sliced
  • 1 cup labneh or sour cream
  • 1 cup shredded lettuce
  • 1 corn, cooked
  • 1 cup shredded cheese, (Mexican mix)
  • 1 pack taco shells or taco chips, (optional)


  • Heat a medium-sized skillet and brown the ground beef. Season with salt, chili powder, cornstarch, cumin, red pepper flakes, cayenne pepper, garlic powder, and oregano. Stir until well combined and cooked through.
  • In a bowl, combine the chopped tomatoes, red onion, fresh coriander, lime juice, olive oil, and a pinch each of salt and pepper. Add a dash of paprika and chili powder for extra spice. Mix well.
  • Boil the corn until cooked. Then, on a cast-iron grill pan, grill the corn to achieve a nice char. Once cooled, slice the corn off the cob and set aside.
  • In a large serving bowl, lay the shredded lettuce as the base. Top it with the spiced minced beef, shredded cheese, prepared salsa, charred corn, cubed avocado, and sliced jalapenos.
  • Serve with labneh or sour cream on the side. Accompany the salad with taco shells or chips if desired. Enjoy this hearty, flavorful meal!

Did you make this recipe?

Tag @cookingwithzahra on Instagram and hashtag it #cookingwithzahra so we can see all the deliciousness!

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