The Walking Taco Casserole is an easy and delicious dinner recipe that is easy to prepare. According to The Wicked Noodle, a walking taco is prepared by simply adding all the favorite taco ingredients to a bag of either Doritos or Fritos. You can eat it even when walking around, which is why it’s known as walking tacos.
The taco meat is full of protein and rich flavor, the Fritos add a perfect salty crunch, and the fresh toppings complement perfectly. Here is a guide on how to make the best walking taco casserole. This walking taco casserole is simple, delicious, and cheesy.
Why You Will Love This Casserole Recipe
- Loved By All
- All of us love tacos and taco-inspired dishes. Families love the taste of walking tacos, and the cook will not struggle to prepare this easy recipe.
- Substitutions Are Easy
- You probably already have all the ingredients for this taco casserole at home. Whether you prefer Doritos to Fritos for your walking taco, you just substitute it. You can substitute the ground protein to make it vegetarian or lower fat.
- Convenient To Serve
- The walking taco casserole is contained in a single dish, making it easier to serve a family dinner and transport to a gathering.
- The ingredients are cheap and simple but provide a robust flavor.
Taco Casserole Ingredients
Now that you know you need this taco casserole in your life let’s look at the main ingredients you will need.
- Ground beef- it’s best to use 90% lean ground beef because it features a lot of flavors and isn’t overly greasy. For a healthier option, you should consider using ground turkey.
- Shredded cheese- you can use Monterey Jack, Cheddar, or Mexican blend. You can also put pepper jack to add a spicy flavor.
- Taco Seasoning Mix- this ingredient is what gives the irresistible Mexican flavor. You can use a store-bought taco season or make a homemade taco seasoning.
- Frito chips- Frito chips provide each bite with a perfect crunchy feel. Depending on your preference, you may also use regular tortilla chips or nacho cheese chips.
- Lettuce- a taco salad can’t be complete without lettuce. Plus, it’s also pretty healthy.
- Tomatoes- the taco casserole recipe involves topping it with tomatoes and lettuce. Sweet cherry tomatoes combine with the savory taco flavors perfectly, but you can use any tomato style.
- Jalapenos- you can add a bit of jalapeno to spice up your walking taco casserole, but it’s optional. You can leave it out if you want to get a milder flavor.
Homemade Taco Seasoning
We recommend you make your taco seasoning as it’s more flavorful. This recipe will use cumin, chili powder, garlic, onion, pepper, salt, oregano, red pepper flakes, and paprika. According to Insanely Good, if you prefer premade taco seasoning, the amount can be swapped for a 1:1 ratio for the store-bought taco seasoning.
How To Make Walking Taco Casserole
The following recipe prepares eight servings and is ideal for an intimate dinner with friends and family. If you feed more people, you should double the recipe to prepare more.
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit
- Using a big skillet, cook the ground beef over medium heat until it stops being pink. Drain the liquid.
- Stir in taco seasoning mix and add some water. Cook according to the package directions.
- Transfer the mixture into a greased 11 by 7 inches baking dish. Top the mixture with cheese and cheese and Frito chips. Cover.
- Bake the mixture for thirty minutes until the cheese is completely melted and the meat is heated. Uncover your baking dish for the last ten minutes of cooking. Top the casserole with lettuce and tomatoes.
- You can serve the walking taco casserole as a complete meal, for dessert, or as a Potluck along with other sharable such as Tater Tot Casserole and Ambrosia Salad.
This walking taco casserole is very delicious. However, there are a few adaptations you can consider trying out. Some of the adaptations include:
- Use tortilla chips or Doritos in place of Fritos
- Use shredded chicken as a substitute for ground beef.
- Use Mexican cheese blend or Monterey jack cheese instead of cheddar cheese.
- Add black or refried beans to the meat.
- Add some chopped black olives.
- Use ground turkey taco meat instead of ground beef.
- If you have time, fresh pico de gallo or restaurant-style salsa instead of buying from the store.
- If you cannot find ROTEL, substitute it with 10 ounces of diced tomatoes plus a teaspoon of canned diced chiles.
How To Prepare and Store Taco Casserole Ahead of Time
One of the best things about walking taco casserole is that you can make it some days ahead of time. This means you can cook a lot of the taco casserole and store and reheat it for dinner. To prepare walking taco casserole ahead of time, start by browning, draining, and seasoning your meat. Put the ground beef in a greased baking dish and leave it to cool. Cover it with plastic wrap or foil and refrigerate. When it’s time to serve your casserole, remove from the fridge and top it with cheese and chips. Set the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and bake it for twenty-five minutes. Open the cover and bake it for an extra five minutes until the cheese melts. Add lettuce, tomatoes, and voila, and the walking taco casserole will be ready to serve. You can also store the leftover taco casserole in an airtight container in the refrigerator. The food will likely last up to four days when stored properly.
Reheating The Walking Taco Casserole
According to Little Sunny Kitchen, to reheat the taco casserole, consider removing the lettuce first so it doesn’t get soggy. You can reheat the taco casserole using a microwave or an oven. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and bake the casserole for five to ten minutes. On the other hand, if you microwave it, you should do so in thirty seconds increments until it gets warm.
Hopefully, you now know how to make the walking taco casserole with layers of Frito chips, shredded cheese, and ground beef topped with tomatoes, lettuce, and olives. It features all the deliciousness of a taco salad as a casserole. It will feed all your family and leave plenty of leftovers soon turning into your family favorite. You will surely enjoy making the walking taco casserole yourself.