Easy Beef Taco Bowl with Salsa Ranch

Don’t let perfect be the enemy of the good when it comes to weeknight meals. Not every meal needs to be fancy! This Easy Beef Taco Bowl is a simple, nourishing, and delicious way to get a meal on the table when time isn’t on your side, and because it’s so easy to customize, you can use what you’ve got on hand. We’ve included tips for prepping ahead of time and a recipe for the Salsa Ranch that you’ll want to put on more than just taco bowls.

This post was created in partnership with the Minnesota Beef Council.

Cook

The secret to easy weeknight meals

Our friends at the Minnesota Beef Council know that ground beef is a great start for weeknight meals. It’s widely available, budget-friendly, and can be used in so many ways. We always keep a few pounds on hand ourselves to make some our favorite weeknight dinners like Sheet Pan Mini Meatloaf and Vegetables, Slow Cooker Healthy Hamburger Soup, Healthy Taco Hot Dish, and Easy Skillet Lasagna

We all know that beef tastes great but did you also know that it’s also a powerhouse when it comes to nutrition? A 3-ounce serving of beef—about the size of an iPhone—provides more than 10 essential nutrients including protein, iron, zinc, and vitamins B12 and B6 and it’s a great source of protein. 

easy

Nutrition Matters: Protein for the win

You already know that protein is a key nutrient when it comes to supporting strength by providing the building blocks, in the form of amino acids, that are necessary for fueling for and recovering from physical activity. But did you also know that protein plays an integral role in maintaining a healthy body weight by helping you feel full long after your meal is over? It sure does. High-quality protein, like that found in beef, not only tastes great, it’s good for you when enjoyed as part of a varied diet.

iPhone

Ingredients for Easy Beef Taco Bowl

  • Lean ground beef – look for 90-93% lean ground beef or ground sirloin
  • Taco seasoning of choice – We love the Siete taco seasonings and when we don’t have time to make a batch of our Homemade Taco Seasoning
  • Tomato paste –  Look for no-salt-added to low-sodium so you can choose how much salt you add
  • Salsa of choice – Make it mild or make it spicy! The choice is yours. 
  • Sour cream – May substitute plain Greek yogurt for the sour cream. For a dairy-free option, use your favorite dairy-free sour cream or dairy-free plain yogurt.  
  • Ranch dressing – Use your favorite bottled ranch dressing or try our Paleo Ranch Dressing or Healthy Homemade Ranch Dressing
  • All the toppings – See below for a list of suggested toppings.

Jasmine Rice

How to Make an Easy Beef Taco Bowl 

When we say ‘easy’ we really do mean ‘easy’. Get dinner on the table in under 30 minutes with just a few steps. 

  1. Place a large skillet over medium-high heat. Once hot, add the ground beef. Break up the meat using a large wooden spoon or a spatula. Cook for 7-9 minutes or until beef is cooked through and no longer pink, stirring occasionally. Drain, if needed. 
  2. Return the skillet to the stove and reduce the heat to medium. Add the taco seasoning, tomato paste, and water. Stir until well combined. Cook, stirring occasionally, for another 2-3 minutes or until hot. Season with salt and pepper to taste. 
  3. Prepare the Salsa Ranch: In a small bowl, stir together the salsa, sour cream, and ranch dressing. Stir until smooth and well combined. 
  4. Assemble the bowls with optional serving suggestions. 
  5. Leftovers may be stored in separate airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Minnesota Beef Council

Tip!

Make it Fast!

Cut down on prep time by using pre-cut lettuce, shredded cheese, prepared guacamole, and sliced canned olives, and/or jarred pickled jalapeños.

Allllll the taco bowl toppings, please!

The best part, aside from that perfectly seasoned and oh-so-satisfying ground beef, is that you call the shots when it comes to how you’ll serve your taco bowl. The sky’s the limit really, but here are a few suggestions to get you started:

  • For the Base: Rice, cauliflower rice, and/or greens – Try our fool-proof Instant Pot Jasmine Rice recipe for perfectly fluffy rice every time. 
  • For the Top: 
    • Shredded green lettuce
    • Crushed tortilla chips (we love Siete tortilla chips for a grain-free option)
    • Diced tomatoes or halved grape tomatoes
    • Sliced black olives
    • Shredded cheddar or Monterey jack cheese or crumbled cotija cheese
    • Diced red onion or Quick-Pickled Onions
    • Diced avocado or guacamole
    • Salsa ranch dressing (see recipe below)
    • Fresh cilantro
    • Sliced jalapeno (fresh or pickled) 
    • Fresh lime wedges 

Siete tortilla chips

Can these Easy Beef Taco Bowls be prepped ahead?

You bet they can! For a make-ahead option, we recommend preparing the beef taco meat as directed then storing in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. 

The Salsa Ranch, your base of choice (rice or cauliflower rice) and toppings can be prepared up to 3 days in advance. 

When it’s time to eat, reheat the rice and beef taco meat and serve with your toppings of choice.

tortilla chips

Recipe

Easy Beef Taco Bowl with Salsa Ranch

Weeknight dinners hardly get any easier than this! With just 20 minutes you can put a meal on the table for a crowd or have enough for leftovers later in the week.

Prep: 10 minsCook: 10 minsTotal: 20 mins

Servings: Serves 8 1x

Ingredients

For the Taco Meat

  • 2 pounds lean ground beef 
  • ¼ cup Homemade Taco Seasoning (or taco seasoning of choice), more to taste
  • 3 tablespoons no-salt-added tomato paste
  • ⅔ cup water
  • Fine salt and black pepper to taste

For the Salsa Ranch

  • ½ cup salsa of choice
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • ¼ cup ranch of choice (Homemade or bottled)

 

Optional for serving:

Serve over cooked rice or cauliflower rice topped with your choice of:

  • Shredded lettuce
  • Tortilla chips
  • Diced tomatoes or halved grape tomatoes
  • Sliced black olives
  • Shredded cheddar or Monterey jack cheese, or crumbled cotija cheese
  • Diced or quick-pickled red onions, 
  • Diced avocado or Homemade Guacamole
  • Salsa Ranch Dressing
  • Fresh, chopped cilantro, thin-sliced jalapeño, and/or lime wedges, etc.

Instructions

  1. Place a large skillet over medium-high heat. Once hot, add the ground beef. Break up the meat using a large wooden spoon or a spatula. Cook for 7-9 minutes or until beef is cooked through and no longer pink, stirring occasionally. Drain, if needed. 
  2. Return the skillet to the stove and reduce the heat to medium. Add the taco seasoning, tomato paste, and water. Stir until well combined. Cook, stirring occasionally, for another 2-3 minutes or until hot. Season with salt and pepper to taste. 
  3. Prepare the Salsa Ranch: In a small bowl, stir together the salsa, sour cream, and ranch dressing. Stir until smooth and well combined. 
  4. Assemble the bowls with optional serving suggestions. 
  5. Leftovers may be stored in separate airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Last Step! Please leave a review and rating letting us know how you liked this recipe! This helps our business thrive so we can continue providing free recipes and high-quality content for you.

Nutrition Information

  • Serving Size: 3 ounces cooked meat + 2 tablespoons Salsa Ranch (toppings not included)
  • Calories: 190
  • Sugar: 2 g
  • Sodium: 528 mg
  • Fat: 7 g
  • Saturated Fat: 3 g
  • Carbohydrates: 3 g
  • Fiber: 1 g
  • Protein: 26 g
  • Cholesterol: 72 mg

Dietary

© The Real Food Dietitians

/*h3{flex:0 0 100%}.tasty-recipes-equipment .tasty-link-card{flex:0 0 50%;padding:1.5rem 1rem;text-align:center}@media screen and (min-width:500px){.tasty-recipes-equipment .tasty-link-card{flex:0 0 33%}}.tasty-recipes-equipment .tasty-link-card p{font-size:1em;font-weight:700;margin-bottom:0}.tasty-recipes-equipment .tasty-link-card p a{color:initial}.tasty-recipes-equipment .tasty-link-card span{font-size:.9em}.tasty-recipes-nutrition ul{list-style-type:none;margin:0;padding:0}.tasty-recipes-nutrition ul:after{clear:both;content:” “;display:block}.tasty-recipes-nutrition li{float:left;margin-right:1em}.tasty-recipes-plug{align-items:center;display:flex;flex-wrap:wrap;justify-content:center;margin-bottom:1em;text-align:center}.tasty-recipes-plug a{box-shadow:none;text-decoration:none}.tasty-recipes-plug a img{display:inline-block;height:auto;margin:5px 0 0 8px;width:150px}.tasty-recipes-footer-content{padding:1.5em;text-align:center}.tasty-recipes-footer-content .tasty-recipes-footer-copy{margin-left:0}.tasty-recipes-footer-content img,.tasty-recipes-footer-content svg{width:60px}.tasty-recipes-entry-content .tasty-recipes-entry-footer h3{font-size:1.25em;margin:0 0 .25em;padding:0}.tasty-recipes-entry-footer p{font-size:.75em;margin:0}.tasty-recipes-entry-footer p a{border-bottom:none;box-shadow:none;text-decoration:underline}.tasty-recipes-flash-message{background-color:#fff;border-radius:4px;box-shadow:0 .3px .4px 0 rgba(0,0,0,.024),0 .9px 1.5px 0 rgba(0,0,0,.05),0 3.5px 6px 0 rgba(0,0,0,.1);color:#313135;display:inline-block;font-size:13px;letter-spacing:0;line-height:1.2em;margin-left:10px;padding:4px 10px}@media screen and (min-width:500px){.tasty-recipes-flash-message{padding:4px 10px}}.tasty-recipes-flash-message p{margin:0;padding:0;text-transform:none}@media screen and (min-width:500px){.tasty-recipes-footer-content{align-items:center;display:flex;justify-content:center;padding:1.5em 0;text-align:left}.tasty-recipes-footer-content .tasty-recipes-footer-copy{margin-left:.8em}}@media print{.tasty-recipes-no-print,.tasty-recipes-no-print *{display:none!important}}
/*]]>*/

Pin it now & make it later

Cook


This post was made possible by our friends at the Minnesota Beef Council. Although we received compensation for this post, the opinions expressed here are – as always – 100% our own. Thank you for supporting the great companies we work with thereby allowing us to continue creating great recipes and content for you.

Photo Credit: The photos in this blog post were taken by Rachel of Half Acre House.

i

You May Also Like