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Easy Dorito Taco Salad Recipe

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This Dorito taco salad is a meal that never fails to go over well. No matter the season or the mood, we are all happy when this is on the dinner menu. And there’s a lot to love. This taco salad recipe is quick and easy (about 30 minutes!), easily customizable (let everyone make their own!), nutritious (it’s got protein, fat, fresh vegetables, fiber, flavor), and definitely, delicious (just like this Southwest chicken salad). Who doesn’t love taco night?! It’s an amazing salad for a busy weeknight dinner.

Dorito taco salad in a bowl

Estimated reading time: 9 minutes

What You’ll Love About Dorito Taco Salad

  • Deliciously tasty
  • Satisfying and filling
  • Nutritious and balanced
  • Includes all of the components I look for in a meal
  • Easy to make, ready in 30 minutes
  • Made with simple ingredients you can get at any grocery store
  • Easy meal to customize

Taco Salad Ingredients

  • Ground beef – Buy a high-quality lean ground beef for best flavor. If you wanted to switch up the proteins, you could also use ground turkey or ground chicken.
  • Tomato paste – This helps give the taco meat a richly seasoned flavor.
  • Spices – You’ll need salt, chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, onion powder to make your own homemade taco seasoning or use your favorite packet of taco seasoning.
  • Lettuce – Use your favorite crunchy lettuce. We are partial to crispy romaine lettuce or iceberg lettuce, but you can use your favorite.
  • Cucumber – English or Persian cucumbers are our favorite, and they don’t require any peeling, but any cucumber will work. If you’re using a traditional cucumber, you’ll want to peel and remove seeds if necessary.
  • Tomatoes – The recipe calls for grape or cherry tomatoes, but if it’s tomato season, use whatever variety you enjoy most.
  • Cheese – For a salad like this, I recommend shredding your own cheese as it will have the best flavor. If you can’t swing it, use pre-shredded.
  • Black beans – The beans add flavor, texture, and fiber to this taco salad with Doritos. You could really use any variety – my mom always used kidney beans, but pinto beans would also be delicious.
  • Dressing – You have plenty of options for a salad dressing for taco salad. I grew up having a Western dressing, so that’s why I’m recommending a French/Western/Catalina dressing. If that doesn’t appeal to you, feel free to switch it up with a different dressing.
  • Doritos – We can’t make Dorito taco salad recipe without the Doritos! I always get the Nacho Cheese variety, but I bet Cool Ranch Doritos would also be delicious! If you prefer to skip the Doritos, you can use your favorite tortilla chips.
  • Toppings – Feel free to add any additional of your favorite taco toppings like sour cream, black olives, salsa, jalapenos, etc.
Taco salad ingredients

How to Make Taco Salad

This is an overview on how to make taco salad, the detailed instructions can be found below in the recipe card.

Cook meat. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and cook ground beef for a few minutes. Sprinkle meat mixture with spices and mix well. Cook until beef is cooked through.
Ground beef taco meat for taco salads in a skillet
Prep salad ingredients. Slice lettuce, cut cucumbers, cut tomatoes, shred cheddar. Arrange toppings on a serving platter if serving as a DIY meal.
Taco salad ingredients on a cutting board
Assemble salad. Layer lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes, and black beans into a large bowl or salad plate. Top with beef, drizzle with dressing, and finish with cheddar cheese, crunchy Doritos, and any other toppings. OR, place all of the toppings on a serving platter and let everyone make their own.
Taco salad with black beans and cucumbers
Dorito taco salad

FAQs

Are taco salads healthy?

This question always comes up, and I always have the same answer – it depends what you consider healthy! This taco salad recipe with Doritos has all of the components I look for in a meal – protein, produce, energy (carbs), and flavor. It’s a satisfying meal and totally delicious, so I would say yes, it’s healthy.

How many calories in a taco salad?

The estimated nutrition facts can be found below the recipe card, but will vary immensely depending on the recipe, the serving size, and the toppings. This particular Dorito taco salad has an estimated 550 calories per serving.

Taco salad with doritos

Storage Instructions

Store leftover salad components in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 2-3 days.

How to reheat

Reheat taco meat in a hot skillet or microwave until heated through.

Can you freeze taco meat?

Sure! Store in a freezer safe container for 2-3 months. Let thaw in fridge before reheating.

How to meal prep

This taco salad can easily be prepped ahead! Prep everything according to the directions and then divide into meal prep containers. You’ll want to keep the meat in a separate container from the rest of the salad ingredients so you can heat it up before serving.

Layer the salad ingredients in the following order: black beans, cucumbers, tomatoes, lettuce, and cheese. Store Doritos, dressing, and ground beef in separate containers.

Closeup taco salad

What to Serve with Easy Taco Salad

I think this recipe for taco salad is a full meal in itself, but if you want to add a an extra side dish or toppings, here are some ideas:

How to Feed Doritos Taco Salad to the Whole Family

I get it, feeding kids can be tough! But following the Division of Responsibility and knowing your job and your child’s job makes it SO much more enjoyable. You’ll be able to feed your kids any meal, which will help ensure that they are eating a variety of nutritious foods – with plenty of play food sprinkled in.

I would recommend serving the taco meat in a pinch bowl (taster bowl) if it’s a new or learning-to-like it food and let everyone build their own salads. Serve the meal with a few items you know your kids will eat, like fruit, milk, and/or bread and butter if they don’t do chips.

And remember that salads can take time to appreciate, and no two salads need to look the same (some kids start eating salads without the lettuce and that is ok!). I think it’s a great gateway salad for picky eaters!

Want More?

Follow Emily on Instagram or TikTok for family dinner recipe videos and tips for feeding kids.

Taco salad in a bowl

More Taco-Inspired Recipes

If you like this Doritos taco salad recipe, you might also like some of these other easy taco-inspired recipes:

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Dorito taco salad in a bowl

Easy Dorito Taco Salad

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Description

You’ll love this Dorito taco salad recipe! With cool, crunchy, and cheesy flavor, this salad is super satisfying and a family fave.


Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 2 lbs. ground beef
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 2 Tbsp. tomato paste
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. onion powder
  • 1 head romaine lettuce (or 2 romaine hearts)
  • 2 cups sliced cucumber
  • 8 oz. grape or cherry tomatoes
  • 4 oz. shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 15 oz. can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • zesty french dressing (Western, Catalina, etc.)
  • Nacho cheese doritos for serving

Instructions

  1. Heat large skillet over medium-high heat. Add ground beef and cook 4-5 minutes, breaking up with a spoon. Add tomato paste, sea salt, chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, and onion powder to skillet and mix everything well. (Depending on fat content, add a splash of water if it’s dry.) Cook another 3-4 minutes, until beef is cooked through.
  2. While beef is cooking, prepare other ingredients:
    Wash and thinly slice lettuce.
    Wash and cut tomatoes in half.
    Shred cheddar if necessary.
  3. In a large bowl or plate, layer lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes, and black beans. Top with beef mixture. Drizzle with dressing and top with cheddar cheese, crushed doritos and any other desired toppings.


Notes

  • I tend to go back and forth about how much beef is required by our family, and I always like to err on the side of leftovers, so that’s why the recipe calls for 2 pounds, but you could easily drop it to 1 pound if you prefer. 
  • This recipe calls for a quick, homemade taco seasoning, but you could also use your favorite taco seasoning packet if you prefer!
  • French dressing seems odd, I know, but it’s how I fell in love with it in the 80’s so we’re keeping it! Obviously switch it out for something else if you prefer. 🙂 

Keywords: dorito taco salad, taco salad, taco salad recipe

Food styling and photography by Loren Runion.

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  1. […] This Dorito taco salad is a family favorite. No matter the season or the mood, we are all happy when this is on the dinner menu. This taco salad recipe is quick and easy (about 30 minutes!), easily customizable, nutritious, and definitely, delicious. Get the recipe: Easy Dorito Taco Salad Recipe […]

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