Easy Ground Beef Tacos

Ground Beef Tacos Recipe

 The Spruce

Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 10 mins
Total: 25 mins
Servings: 4 to 6 servings

This is the taco recipe was invented in the 1970s by a Scandanavian mother. It's quick, easy, inexpensive, and delicious. Make a note: these tacos are very mild. If you like your tacos spicy, add a jalapeno or two and use hot salsa.

These tacos are made from a beef mixture with salsa and refried beans and chili powder. Fill crisp taco shells with cheese, lettuce, and sour cream. You could, of course, add other ingredients to this recipe. Try some guacamole or chopped avocado and homemade taco sauce. Some pickled jalapeno peppers are a nice addition if you like a spicy kick in your tacos.

Serve these tacos with some cold pop and beer, and perhaps some fresh fruit.


  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 onion (chopped)
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1 (15-ounce) can refried beans
  • 1 (16-ounce) jar chunky salsa
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 8 to 10 taco shells
  • 1 1/2 cups Cheddar cheese (shredded)
  • 1 cup lettuce (shredded)
  • 1/2 cup sour cream

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ground Beef Tacos Recipe Ingredients
     The Spruce
  2. Preheat the oven to 400 F.

  3. In a large skillet over medium heat, cook the ground beef with the onion and garlic until the beef is browned, stirring to break up meat. Drain well.

    Ground Beef Tacos Recipe
     The Spruce
  4. Add the refried beans, half of the salsa and the chili powder, to taste, to the beef mixture. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Meanwhile, prepare the remaining ingredients.

    Ground Beef Tacos Recipe
     The Spruce
  5. When the beef mixture is hot, put the taco shells on a baking sheet and bake them for 5 to 6 minutes, or according to package directions, until they are crisp.

    Ground Beef Tacos Recipe
     The Spruce
  6. To assemble the tacos, place ground beef mixture in the bottom, then top with cheese, lettuce, more salsa, and sour cream.

    Ground Beef Tacos Recipe
     The Spruce
  7. Serve immediately and enjoy!

Recipe Variations

So now that you have the standard basic taco recipe under your belt, why not try and jazz up your tacos with some fun toppings? Below are some delicious suggestions:

  • Swap out traditional salsa for pineapple salsa, pico de gallo, or a refreshing peach salsa.
  • Add on a scoop of our simple guacamole for some delicious and nutritious flavor.
  • If you're looking for an added zing to your tacos, try topping them off with some hot sauce. Frank's Red Hot, Cholula, and Tapatío are some great ready-made options for tacos. But, if you're looking for something that is more homemade, try this Mexican hot sauce recipe. Yum!
  • For a slightly heartier meal with an earthier flavor, try adding sautéed, diced portobellos. If you're serving vegetarians, you can substitute the ground beef for the portobellos and have a great vegetarian option ready for your guests as well.