Baked Tacos
Yield: 4-6 servings
This novel approach to tacos offers a modern twist on an old favorite that’s perfect for weeknight dinners, casual entertaining, and game day.


  • Olive oil for pan (about 2 teaspoons)
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 (15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and well drained
  • 1 cup chunky salsa or 1 (10-ounce) can drained Rotel diced tomatoes with green chilies (I like original; may choose a spicier option)*
  • 1 (1-ounce) taco seasoning packet (or homemade alternative)
  • 12-14 hard taco shells
  • 1 to 1-1/2 cups shredded cheddar or Mexican blend cheese
  • Optional toppings: diced tomatoes and/or salsa, shredded lettuce, chopped avocado or guacamole, sliced black olives, sour cream, hot sauce, sliced jalapeños, etc.


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
 For easy cleanup, line a 9×13-inch baking dish with foil and set aside.

    In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium heat.  Add the onion and sauté until soft and starting to turn golden brown, about 5-6 minutes.  Add the beef and cook until it is mostly brown, breaking it up as you go.  If you’re not using lean beef, drain the excess fat.  Add the beans, salsa or drained tomatoes, and taco seasoning. (Do not add water as called for on the packet directions.)  Mix well and continue to cook for 2-3 minutes.

    Stand the taco shells up in the prepared baking dish. Divide the beef mixture evenly among the shells, packing down lightly. Top each taco with about 2 tablespoons of shredded cheese – you can eyeball this, going heavier or lighter as preferred or omitting for any dairy-free eaters. 
Bake for 7-10 minutes or until the cheese is melted and the shells are toasted.  Serve with toppings of choice.



*For added ease if using Rotel tomatoes – or if your salsa is very liquidy – pour over the beans in the strainer after rinsing and draining the beans.  (Don’t further rinse the tomatoes.)  Also, note that Rotel original has a spice level similar to a mild salsa, but some varieties are spicier.  Make sure to look at the label so you aren’t surprised by unexpected heat!

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