Taco Salad

Total Time:
10 min
10 min

6 to 8 servings

  • 2 ripe tomatoes, diced
  • 1/2 pound sharp Cheddar, diced
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 head iceberg lettuce, washed, drained and shredded
  • 1 pound lean ground beef, browned, crumbled and drained
  • 1 cup salad dressing (recommended: Catalina)
  • 1 (7-ounce) bag taco flavored chips, crushed
  • 1 cup salsa
  • Tortilla chips, to serve

Combine the tomatoes, cheese, onion, lettuce, and ground beef in a large bowl. Add the salad dressing and mix well. Just before serving, add the taco chips, tossing to combine with other ingredients. Top each serving with salsa. Serve with tortilla chips.

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    91 Reviews
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    I made this tonight and my family loved it. I did read the reviews, so I did some changes to the recipe. I used taco seasoning, black beans, and corn. I also put the flavored chips on each individual serving.
    Close to mom?s. I do it slightly different though this would come out OK as printed.1 Brown 1.5lbs 97% lean beef with half a diced onion, drain, add taco seasoning & 2/3 cup water. Let go for about 4 mins & take of heat to cool. 2 Combine Romaine lettuce, 1 1/2 cups sharp cheddar, 1 can drained sweet corn, 1 can drained & rinsed black beans, cherry tomatoes halved (about a cup, the other half of the onion diced & the meat. Toss well. Refrigerate for a few hours covered (you need a large bowl. When it's time to serve, place the mixture in each bowl, crumble some Doritos Nacho chips and sprinkle on, then add some Catalina dressing. Toss each serving bowl and dollop with sour cream & salsa, and a touch of black olive slices. By doing it this way, this dish stays fresh for a few days. Add the dressing or chip crumble too early = soggy, an all or none prep - works at potluck but not for leftovers. We use light Catalina - don't use fat free (for whatever reason it doesn't work right.
    I am so glad I stumbled on this amazing recipe! I had ground turkey but didn't know what to do with it! I made minor adjustments though! When I was browning the turkey, I put the onions in as well. I also had taco seasoning from Penzey's spices and decided to put it on the ground turkey. It was a bold seasoning so it gave it an amazing flavor. Since I love hot sauce, I put a few dashes of Tapatio on my serving and gave it that nice kick! Other than that, I followed the same directions and it came out delicious! Thanks Paula!
    I Love this Taco Salad! Very close to the recipe my friends & I made back in the 80's. We used "Western Dressing." It has a steer on the label, if I remember correctly. It's like "Catalina, but spicier. I could buy in MI. I can't find in SC where we live now. I get friends to bring me some when they visit. I trade them "Dukes" Mayo, which they can't get up there. Lol. I also added taco seasoning to ground beef. Could add any Mexican Spices or hot sauce. This salad can take a good bit of spice or heat because of all the lettuce in it. It is delish! Oh, you can use Taco or Nacho Cheese chips. It's better to eat all that you make at a setting, because the Dressing makes the lettuce & chips too soggy, after sitting, for me. But, it's still tasty! I replaced a dollop of sour cream for the salsa. Because I must have sour cream! I am old enough to call this a Fav Retro dish! Love you, Paula! <3
    My first time trying this recipe and it turned out GREAT! I never made taco salad with salad dressing. I didnt think my husband would like it but he Loved it. Next time I will try using beans and corn thanks Paula
    Made this for book club and it was a hit! I used 75% ground turkey, 25% ground beef and I did not add salsa or tortilla chips at the end (am not sure why you would, since it was served as a salad, but then I didn't see this episode, just got the recipe off this website. Title of the episode cracks me up - I doubt they make this type of recipe in Mexico! But we enjoyed it nonetheless!
    I have made a recipe like this for years, only with a few minor changes, I use taco seasoning mix while cooking the meat, add a can of drained and rinsed red kidney beans, a can of drained sliced black olives and I use ranch dressing instead, you can either mix the dressing into the salad or leave it on the side. Everytime I make this everyone alway's asks for the recipe. I have made this since the mid 1980's. without mixing the dressing in it is the perfect salad for office luncheons, potlucks and picinics!! Give it a try! you can even use ground turkey to cut the fat of beef
    This recipe is very delicious! I've made it for my family several times now and we all love it. Thanks, Paula!
    I just found this recipe again. I made it once using all "lo-fat" ingredients and baked tortilla chips. Sooo good without too much guilt. We're going to have this again this week. Recommended. I use lofat Catalina.
    wonderfull recipe Paula cant wait to show my friends i love tacos 
    I made this for a Halloween potluck party and it was a yummy hit! I'd add taco seasoning to ground beef next time. Otherwise perfect recipe!
    My husband and I both loved this recipe. I took a few of the other suggestions and added black beans to the salad. I also added the diced onions when I browned the meat and used taco seasoning. I switched dressings for peppercorn ranch and topped the salad with black olives. It was a great dinner and soo quick and easy. I will be making this again!
    Always been a favorite of mine.I love taking a hand-full of Doritos and crumbling them into a bowl then mix it all up!. mmm! mmm! mmm!
    Big hit at the party!! I added black beans and black olives. Everyone at the party thought it was great.
    Delicious and Bold flavors.... Perfect!!!!!
    it was delicious :) i loved it!!!!!!
    Oh yes add the taco sauce to the ground beef and the dressing. But, don't forget the sour cream and black olives on top. Yum
    I added corn and black beans to the meat to make it more of a meal. But its great either way! I did add taco seasoning to the meat it seemed to boring without it and I had never heard of this without seasoned meat. It tastes just the way my mom always made it when I was a kid.
    Paula didn't invent this. This perversion of taco salad has been around in the south for a long time. The people who say the catalina is too sweet are right..it completely overwhelms everything and rationally doesn't belong. On the other hand, it is kind of one of those things that if you grew up eating it you like even though you know it doesn't make sense. I like to use half catalina and half taco sauce. It makes it a little spicier and tones down the catalina a bit. Plus, you have to use taco seasoning on the meat, that is just common sense. The result is not exactly sophisticated, but I can't stop eating it. I also think using sharp cheddar, like the recipe suggests is very important if you go the catalina route.
    Yes, I have been making this for years, but even better to add Taco Seasoning with the amount of water on the envelope and Red Kidney beans and Thousand Island dressing with some Sour Cream, YUM!!!
    I have been making this for years. It is so quick and easy and tasty. I switch it up between catalina and good seasons dressing, plain tortilla chips or nacho flavored chips, add beans, sometimes taco seasoning in the meat, garnish with sour cream and lot of cheese. Highly recommend this to anyone for a quick meal.
    I have been making this for years. However, I use corn chips instead of taco chips. Will have to try the taco chips next time I make it. This is a really good meal that doesn't take much time to make.

    Make sure you don't add the chips (whichever you use) until you are ready to serve as they will loose their crunch.
    I make this recipe quite often, my mom used to make it when I was a kid and now I make it on occasion. Everything is the same but I add kidney beans and top with (for me) sour cream and for my boyfriend, avocado slices. I highly recommend this recipe, it is simple and yummy! And left overs are awesome as well. Just add more fresh chips! I use any regular tortilla chips or (my favorite) tortilla chips with a hint of lime =D

    Oh, and on a side note, I am really tired of the people posting in the recipe comments about this or that website having better recipes. Go somewhere else to advertise. That being said, I finally decided to take a look and you know what? They didn't even have a recipe for taco salad!

    Thanks Paula for the reminded about this recipe, I am going to go home and make it tonight!
    I just made this recipe with some additions and a dressing change. I added taco seasoning to the ground turkey as well as added black beans and corn as other reviews suggested. I used light ranch dressing with a little green taco sauce for my dressing. I thought that it was very tasty. I would definitely make this really easy recipe again.
    Easy to make. The Catalina dressing gave it such a wonderful taste, better then just using those taco seasoning mixes :)
    I love taco salad....i use italian dressing...everybody has always ate it all up at gatherings....i do like the idea of maybe avocado and corn chips and maybe even the black beans....thanks for the extra ideas...
    What does 'taco flavored chips mean?? Does it sound like Toritos??? LOL Thanks!!
    so easy to make and very tasty!
    Been making similiar version of this for years that my Mom made when I was a kid. We add dark red kidney beans also- and lots of colby jack cheese. I love the dressing in it- sometimes we use Western dressing in place of Catalina- but whichever is yummy! We add crushed up nacho cheese chips but am curious to try corn chips. I think corn added too would be great. Top with lettuce, sour cream, tomatos, and some black olives- YUM!! Quick and easy! We have this dish often! Thanks Paula!
    This is an awesome summer dinner. She inspires me, so I added black beans and slices of avacado. Another great dressing is Green Goddess. Paula's just the best!
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