Layered Beef Taco Salad

Layered Beef Taco Salad – A classic taco salad that everyone LOVES, it’s EASY, and it’s ready in 20 minutes!! There’s ground beef, refried beans, red peppers, tortilla chips, cheese, lettuce, and tomatoes!! 

Layered Beef Taco Salad - A classic taco salad that everyone LOVES, it's EASY, and it's ready in 20 minutes!! There's ground beef, refried beans, red peppers, tortilla chips, cheese, lettuce, and tomatoes!! 

This salad reminds me of everyone potluck, picnic, church basement, and graduation party type of salad I ate growing up.

It is so dang good, so easy, ready in 20 minutes, makes a hefty batch, and I know that it’s a crowd-pleaser with kids and adults alike.

The adults can feel good knowing there’s lettuce, tomatoes, and red peppers while the kids can feel good knowing there are chips in a salad. A win-win.

How To Make The Layered Beef Taco Salad 

Simply brown ground beef with a red bell pepper, add refried beans, and taco seasoning before turning the mixture out over a base of chips.

Sprinkle the beef and bean mixture with cheese, lettuce, more cheese, crushed chips, tomatoes, and dig in.

Layered Beef Taco Salad - A classic taco salad that everyone LOVES, it's EASY, and it's ready in 20 minutes!! There's ground beef, refried beans, red peppers, tortilla chips, cheese, lettuce, and tomatoes!! 

How Does The Beef Taco Salad Taste

I adore the mixture of textures and temperatures at play.

First, the chips at the bottom of the pan are some of my favorite things in the recipe because they soften a bit underneath the warm taco-seasoned ground beef and refried beans. Hello chilaquiles.

And because the beef and beans are warm when you layer the salad, the cheese that’s placed directly on top melts a bit. So, so good.

The red peppers that cook with the beef and beans add hearty veggie texture while the beans add a comfort food element to a salad, which is so nice.

Finally, there’s the crisp cool lettuce, plus more cheese that doesn’t melt, and more chips that don’t soften and stay perfectly crispy, along with fresh and juicy tomatoes to make this a texture person’s dream salad. 

Layered Beef Taco Salad - A classic taco salad that everyone LOVES, it's EASY, and it's ready in 20 minutes!! There's ground beef, refried beans, red peppers, tortilla chips, cheese, lettuce, and tomatoes!! 

Flexible Ingredients

There are so many ways to make this salad your own and to mix-and-match the ingredients based on what you have on hand and enjoy:

Use another color of bell pepper (I used red)

Add an onion to the ground beef while it’s browning

Add salsa to the beef and bean mixture

Use black beans rather than refried

Top with avocado, guacamole, sour cream dollops, black olives, green onions, cilantro

I used white corn tortilla chips but you can also use Doritos, or experiment with Fritos or another favorite kind of corn-based chip

Favorite Mexican Beef Recipes:

  • Layered Beef Taco Dip – A FAST and EASY layered dip with taco-seasoned cream cheese, sour cream, ground beef, black beans, cheese, tomatoes, and more!! Perfect for your next FIESTA and a guaranteed WINNER with everyone!!
  • Beef Tater Tot-Chos – Crispy tater tots topped with taco-seasoned ground beef and melted cheese is a DELICIOUS and fun twist on nachos!! EASY, ready in no time, and perfect for PARTIES!!
  • Easy 30-Minute Beef Taco Chili – Don’t have all day for chili to simmer? No problem!! This EASY, hearty chili full of Mexican-inspired flavors is ready in 30 minutes! If you like TACOS, you’ll LOVE this chili!
  • One Skillet Beef Taco Pasta – An EASY recipe that’s ready in 20 minutes, made in ONE skill
  • Loaded Beef Taco Salad with Creamy Lime Cilantro Dressing – Loaded with your favorite taco fixings, minus the shells, to keep things healthier without sacrificing any FLAVOR!! The dressing is easy, creamy and IRRESISTIBLE!!

Layered Beef Taco Salad - A classic taco salad that everyone LOVES, it's EASY, and it's ready in 20 minutes!! There's ground beef, refried beans, red peppers, tortilla chips, cheese, lettuce, and tomatoes!! 

Layered Beef Taco Salad

Layered Beef Taco Salad

Layered Beef Taco Salad - A classic taco salad that everyone LOVES, it's EASY, and it's ready in 20 minutes!! There's ground beef, refried beans, red peppers, tortilla chips, cheese, lettuce, and tomatoes!! 
Yield: 6
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound lean ground beef (I used 85% lean)
  • 1 medium/large red bell pepper, seeded and diced small
  • one 16-ounce can refried beans (I used fat-free)
  • one 1.25-ounce packet taco seasoning (I used reduced sodium, medium heat)
  • 15 corn tortilla chips or Doritos, whole and intact
  • 3 cups shredded cheese, divided (I used a Mexican cheese blend)
  • 2 cups chopped romaine lettuce
  • 1 cup lightly crushed/broken tortilla chips or Doritos
  • 1 roma tomato, diced small

Instructions

  1. To a large skillet, add the olive oil, beef, red pepper, and cook over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes, or until beef is cooked through; stir and crumble beef as it cooks.
  2. Add the refried beans and stir to combine.
  3. Add the taco seasoning and stir to combine. Turn off the heat; set pan aside.
  4. To a 3-quart casserole dish or 9x13-inch pan, add approximately 15 tortilla chips to create a base layer of chips. If you need a few more or less than 15 chips to cover the base of the pan, so be it. They don't have to be perfectly arranged.
  5. Evenly add the beef and bean mixture over the top of the chips.
  6. Evenly sprinkle with 2 cups of the cheese.
  7. Evenly sprinkle with the romaine lettuce, the remaining 1 cup cheese, 1 cup lightly crushed/broken tortilla chips, and the tomatoes. Serve immediately. Salad will keep airtight in the fridge for up to 4 days, noting the chips will become softer and soggier as time passes.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

6

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 680 Total Fat: 41g Saturated Fat: 17g Trans Fat: 1g Unsaturated Fat: 19g Cholesterol: 128mg Sodium: 1606mg Carbohydrates: 35g Fiber: 6g Sugar: 4g Protein: 42g

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6 comments on “Layered Beef Taco Salad”

  1. I want this right now!

  2. Looks fantastic! I like your other suggestions of salsa and fritos too!

  3. I could eat this salad every day! So delicious!

  4. Can’t wait to taste it!

    Rating: 5

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