25 Delicious Ways to Make Every Day Taco Tuesday

From Steak to Salmon

chicken tinga tacos on platter

The Spruce / Maxwell Cozzi

Tacos are fun to make and eat and often call for relatively affordable ingredients, perfect for feeding a crowd. They're also endlessly customizable—dress them up with lettuce, salsa, sour cream, guacamole, shredded cabbage, or try sliced radishes and pickled onions for a street taco feel.

Tacos are adaptable to any dietary need. Many can be made with either hard or soft corn tortillas, which are naturally gluten free. And for plant-based diners, try fillings such as oyster mushrooms, Soyrizo and guacamole, or even just pan-fried potatoes and vegan cheese. You can't go wrong with pan-fried tofu, either.

For a fun do-it-yourself meal, have diners assemble their own tacos. Just put out everything the recipe calls for (and more toppings if you'd like) and let everyone create their own edible masterpiece.


  • Remember to heat the taco shell before serving, for both hard- and soft-shell tacos. Warming it up makes the taco shell more tender and easier to eat, plus it blends better with the fillings. For hard shells, set them on a baking sheet. Wrap soft shells in foil, then heat either or both in a 350 F oven for 10 to 12 minutes or until warm. 
  • 01 of 22

    Sweet and Spicy Tacos al Pastor

    Tacos al Pastor

     The Spruce / Leah Maroney

    These savory and spicy tacos use an Instant Pot or a slow cooker to give the signature adobo, chile, and vinegar pork its tender, low-and-slow flavor and texture without the rotating spit you'd traditionally need. Pineapple adds a tropical sweetness and the tacos taste great topped with crumbled cotija cheese, chopped onions, salsa, and diced avocado.

  • 02 of 22

    Carne Asada

    Carne Asada

    The Spruce Eats / Maxwell Cozzi

    Carne asada can be served as-is with sides like refried beans and rice, but it's a perfect taco filling. Make this dish with skirt steak or flank steak and cook it over a screaming hot grill for the best charred flavor.

  • 03 of 22

    Birria Tacos

    Mexican Birria

     The Spruce

    This typical Jalisco street food takes some time and effort, but the result is worth it. The recipe includes several different types of chiles, but feel free to use whichever dried ones you can find. Goat meat is the traditional protein, but you can also use pork, beef, or a mixture, too. You will also need a Dutch oven with a rack inside to cook the meat.

  • 04 of 22

    Vegetarian Tofu Tacos

    tofu tacos

     Laurel Randolph

    Break up firm tofu into chunks and sauté with spices such as cumin, chili powder, and paprika for a delicious vegetarian taco. Make a light and easy slaw to top off, and serve with tangy salsa verde. To make it vegan, leave out the cheese or swap it out with a nondairy option.

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  • 05 of 22

    Christmas Tacos

    Christmas Tacos

    The Spruce Eats / Pete Scherer 

    This taco recipe is perfect for winter and a festive alternative during the holiday season. Christmas tacos feature slow-cooked short ribs seasoned with pomegranate juice, chiles, and cinnamon. While the meat cooks, make the fresh pomegranate pico, then build the tacos in corn tortillas with cilantro, lime, cotija cheese, and crema.

  • 06 of 22

    Instant Pot Carne Asada Tacos

    Instant Pot carne asada street tacos.
    Diana Rattray

    Although carne asada is traditionally grilled—the name translates to "grilled meat"—you can achieve a satisfying smoky flavor with the use of smoky and woody spices like cumin and oregano, which are included in this recipe. It comes together in less than 30 minutes, making it perfect for a weeknight dinner. (Note: You don't need an Instant Pot or pressure cooker to make this dish, but it cuts down on cooking time if you use it.)

  • 07 of 22

    Instant Pot Carnitas

    Instant Pot carnitas in flour tortillas.
    Diana Rattray

    The homemade pickled onions add a nice twist to these pork carnitas tacos, and the Instant Pot makes for a quick cooking time. Pork shoulder is browned and then cooked along with seasonings, onion, jalapeño, orange and lime juice, and chicken broth. Then the meat is shredded, broiled, and then spooned into soft tacos along with the pickled onions and your favorite toppings.

  • 08 of 22

    Chorizo and Avocado Breakfast Tacos

    Chorizo and Avocado Breakfast Tacos

    The Spruce / Leah Maroney

    Yes, you should be eating tacos for breakfast. These savory tacos use tater tots, eggs, and chorizo sausage for a delicious start to your day. Try them for Cinco de Mayo or anytime you want a little South-of-the-border flare.

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  • 09 of 22

    Beef Tacos

    Ground Beef Tacos Recipe

     The Spruce

    Believe it or not, these ground beef tacos were actually invented by a Scandinavian woman. They're easy to make and a smart budget stretcher since it calls for affordable ground beef. This recipe comes out very mild, so if you prefer tacos hot enough to sear your tongue, add some minced chile peppers.

  • 10 of 22

    Instant Pot Barbacoa

    Barbacoa tacos with fixings.
    Diana Rattray

    Beef barbacoa is a braised meat dish that's tender, flavorful, and an ideal filling for tacos and burritos. Cooking it in the pressure cooker makes it much quicker and easier while still producing delicious results. Try it on nachos, too.

  • 11 of 22

    Grilled Shrimp Tacos

    Grilled Shrimp Tacos

    Leah Maroney

    Try these zesty shrimp tacos for an easy meal that uses just the grill. A spicy aioli slaw gives it both crunch and extra flavor and topping it with crumbly cotija cheese would add authentic flare. A spritz of lime juice over the whole thing enhances the taste, so serve with lime wedges on the side.

  • 12 of 22

    Cauliflower Tacos With Crispy Chickpeas

    cauliflower tacos served on a plate

    The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney 

    Crispy cauliflower stands in for meat in these vegetarian tacos with a zippy vegan chipotle lime crema and a crunchy slaw. Use either flour or corn tortillas or use the fillings to top rice for taco bowls.

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  • 13 of 22

    Carne Asada Tacos

    Carne Asada Tacos

     The Spruce

    Skirt steak marinated in cumin, lime juice, and garlic, then grilled, turns into a tender and lightly spiced filling for these easy tacos. Serve it on corn tortillas with sliced jalapeño, diced onion, salsa, and anything else of choice. Cook the steak just until medium-rare for the best texture.

  • 14 of 22

    Seitan Carne Asada Tacos

    seitan tacos

    The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney

    Marinate seitan in a tasty citrus mojo sauce, then grill it up and top with pico de gallo, vegan queso fresco, and maybe a squirt of lime for delicious seitan carne asada vegan tacos. Those who avoid gluten can swap in soy curls, but remember to rehydrate them before using.

  • 15 of 22

    Vegan Chipotle Chickpea Tacos

    chickpea tacos

    The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney

    Using canned chickpeas gets these smoky, spicy, crunchy vegan tacos on the table in less than half an hour. This recipe also uses no dairy, but go ahead and add a little cotija cheese or sour cream if you don't follow a vegan diet.

  • 16 of 22

    Easy Canned Tuna Fish Tacos

    Easy Canned Tuna Fish Tacos

    The Spruce

    Liberate canned tuna from the traditional sandwich preparation with these easy canned tuna tacos. Serve in either hard or soft taco shells with whatever toppings strike your fancy for a speedy weeknight meal even the kids can make.

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  • 17 of 22

    Vegan Mushroom Tacos

    Vegetarian Mushroom Tacos

    The Spruce / Kristina Vanni

    Mushrooms have a hearty. meaty texture without animal protein, and they make a delicious taco filling. Try oyster, shiitake, portobello, cremini, or your other favorite mushroom types. Bell peppers add some crunch. Set out toppings and let diners fix their own tacos if you like.

  • 18 of 22

    Tri-Tip Steak Tacos

    Tri-Tip Steak Tacos. Sabrina S. Baksh

    Plan ahead to marinate the steak for four to eight hours before taco night. We like tri-tip for steak tacos, a flavorful bottom sirloin cut that has the best texture when cooked to medium-rare or medium. Use a meat thermometer to cook it to perfection so this cut, which is lower in fat, doesn't dry out.

  • 19 of 22

    Seitan Tacos With Roasted Vegetables

    Vegan Seitan Tacos with Roasted Vegetables

    The Spruce / Ali Redmond

    Roasted zucchini, bell peppers, and mushrooms add even more smoky flavor to seitan tacos. Use store-bought seitan or make your own, then pile it into corn or flour tortillas or spoon over rice and beans for a taco platter. For a total vegan experience add vegan cheese.

  • 20 of 22

    Slow Cooker Chicken Tinga Tacos

    chicken tinga tacos on platter

    The Spruce / Maxwell Cozzi

    Chicken tinga consists of stewed chicken, tomatoes, onion, and chipotle peppers, and works wonderfully as a taco filling or as burritos, enchiladas, or even over nachos. Using a slow cooker means you can set it and forget it, but you can also make the stew on the stovetop.

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  • 21 of 22

    Rolled and Baked Taquitos

    Rolled and baked tacos recipe

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

    Baked, rolled tacos or taquitos work great as a party main, fun appetizer, or hearty snack. Instead of sprinkling the toppings over the tacos, dip them in guacamole, sour cream, salsa, or any other sauce of your choice. Use chicken, ground beef, or a mixture of the two.

  • 22 of 22

    Flat Iron Steak Tacos Recipe

    Tacos may be the perfect food, and adding steak brings them to a whole other layer of comfort food. Marinate the steak ahead of time and it's ready for a quick grilling. Lean on prepared salsa to speed up the process.