Easy Ground Beef Tacos

5 from 2163 votes

These Ground Beef Tacos are filled with juicy flavorful taco meat made with my homemade taco seasoning - it's an easy weeknight recipe for the whole family!

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Ground Beef Tacos is one of our favorite weeknight family meals, especially on Taco Tuesdays! I have a quick homemade taco seasoning that I love to use for this recipe so I can cook the taco meat in 10 minutes. Give it a try and it’ll be your new go-to for taco night too!

top down shot of beef tacos on white background
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Homemade taco seasoning

Making taco seasoning from scratch is super easy and can be cheaper than buying the prepared taco seasoning. Here are the spices I include in my recipe. Feel free to also add paprika, coriander, onion powder and crushed red pepper to give it some heat.

  • Chili powder
  • Cumin
  • Garlic powder
  • Mexican oregano
  • Salt and pepper

I provide suggested amounts in the recipe card below because usually there’s more of the chili powder and cumin compared to the other spices. However, feel free to adjust the quantities, or use your favorite prepared taco seasoning.

seasoning for making homemade tacos: chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, oregano, salt and pepper

How do you make ground beef taco meat

  1. Place the ground beef in a skillet with olive oil.
  2. Brown the beef with olive oil and then drain any fat.
  3. Add the spices along with the tomato paste and water (or tomato sauce)
  4. Bring the mixture to a simmer and then cook for a few more minutes until the sauce thickens.
Step by step shots to show how to make the beef in a skillet

And the end result is flavorful juicy homemade tacos that’s ready to be served in less than 15 minutes.

homemade taco meat in a skillet

Toppings for Tacos

I like to keep it simple with usually a few different toppings when I’m making these just for the family on weeknights. However, I love having DIY taco bars with friends and family and I usually include the following toppings for tacos:

  • Shredded lettuce or cabbage
  • Tomatoes
  • Shredded cheddar cheese or Mexican blend
  • Red onions
  • Guacamole (store bought or homemade) or avocado
  • Olives
  • Jalapeños
  • Sour Cream
  • Salsa or my Bean Tomato Salsa

Starting to assemble the tacos with lettuce

Tips for making ground beef tacos

  1. Be careful not to dry out the taco meat when you add the sauce. Once the beef is cooked, you want to cook it with the seasoning and liquid on medium low and just until the sauce starts to thicken. Keep an eye on it so it doesn’t dry out.
  2. Heat up the tortillas before adding the ground beef on top. You can heat them up in the microwave, oven or on a skillet for 1-2 minutes per side. This makes the tortillas soft, pliable and much less likely to break.
  3. Add onions to the mixture to make it more savory. You’ll want to cook the onions until they soften before adding the ground beef. It gives the taco meat a deeper flavor, but it’s totally optional. Adding onion powder is a quick easy update as well.

Frequently asked questions

What is the best ground beef for tacos?

I prefer to use 90% lean ground beef for tacos for the best flavor and consistency. If it’s any more lean, it may be too dry. If you use a less lean kind, make sure to drain off the fat after cooking the ground beef, before adding the seasoning.

How can make the tacos low carb?

The actual ground beef taco meat is low carb, so you can use low-carb tortillas or skip the tortillas all together as serve it as a taco salad or in a taco bowl.

How much taco meat do you need per person?

Using a traditional 6-inch tortilla or traditional size hard taco shell, you can use about 2-3 tablespoons of taco meat per taco. That means that depending on how much you load up the ground beef tacos with other ingredients, one pound of beef could serve between 8 and 12 people.

Ground beef tacos topped with lettuce, tomatoes, cheese and onions

For more Tex Mex recipes:

This is one of those family friendly recipes that is always in our rotation. They kids love, and I love how easy it is to prepare. I’ll often double or triple the recipe when I’m having people over, or to have leftovers for adding to a taco salad lunch bowl.

If you’ve tried this healthy-ish feel good Ground Beef Tacos recipe or any other recipe on FeelGoodFoodie, then don’t forget to rate the recipe and leave me a comment below! I would love to hear about your experience making it. And if you snapped some shots of it, share it with me on Instagram so I can repost on my stories!

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Ground Beef Tacos

These Ground Beef Tacos are filled with juicy flavorful taco meat made with my homemade taco seasoning – it's an easy weeknight recipe for the whole family!
5 from 2163 votes
Servings 8 servings
Calories 142
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
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Video

Ingredients
  

For serving the tacos

  • 8 Corn or flour tortillas
  • Lettuce finely chopped
  • Shredded Mexican cheese blend or cheddar cheese
  • Tomatoes chopped
  • Chopped red onions

Instructions

  • Heat the olive oil in skillet over medium high heat. Add the ground beef and cook until browned, about 5-7 minutes. Drain any fat.
  • Add the chili powder, cumin, dried oregano, garlic powder, salt, pepper, tomato paste and water. Stir to combine and continue cooking over medium-low heat until the sauce has thickened, about 3-5 minutes
  • Serve warm over tortillas with lettuce, tomatoes, cheese and red onions, or your other desired toppings.

Notes

Storage: Store any leftovers in an airtight container. They will last up to 4 days and can be reheated on the stovetop. To reheat, add a splash of water so the taco meat doesn’t dry out.
Freezing Instructions: Allow the taco meat to cool down completely, then place in freezer-safe storage containers or ziplock bags for up to 3 months.
Substitutes: For best results, follow the recipe as is. However here are some common substitutes that would work well in this recipe.
  • Instead of tomato paste and water, you can simply use tomato sauce.
  • Instead of chili powder, you can use paprika.

Nutrition

Calories: 142kcal, Carbohydrates: 13g, Protein: 14g, Fat: 4g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 35mg, Sodium: 236mg, Potassium: 304mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 1g, Vitamin A: 216IU, Vitamin C: 1mg, Calcium: 36mg, Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate. It will vary based on cooking method and specific ingredients used.

Cuisine Mexican
Course: Main Course

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Recipe Rating




Comments

  1. Ramed says:

    Very juicy and tasteful. Amazing. My mom loved it!

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Yay, so happy you and your mom enjoyed these!! Thanks, Ramed!

  2. Zanab says:

    Very good

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Thanks, Zanab!

  3. Anj says:

    I would maybe have seasoned the beef before cooking it, just so that it absorbs the flavours better and saute some finely minced garlic too for a little extra flavour.
    The gravy/mixture didn’t thicken up for me unfortunately and kind of just turned the beef into a less bouncy, slightly mushy consistency because it just soaked up the juice, which in terms of texture just isn’t really for me

    I think next time I’ll try it this way:
    -Pre-season the beef / work in spices you like before cooking, salt liberally.
    -Pan fry with a bit of oil, drain excess oil like the recipe says.
    -Make a hole in the middle for the garlic and once its a bit fried/sauteed, mix it in.
    Open to more suggestions!

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Thanks for the feedback, Anj! It’s possible your stovetop needed a higher temperature to get the right consistency. Next time, try turning up the heat slightly while cooking the beef. Your other adjustments sound great!

  4. PATRICIA says:

    Looking forward to trying this recipe!

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Yay! I hope you enjoy!!

  5. Brian says:

    Used ground pork instead of beef, turned out delicious.

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Happy to hear it worked out, thank you for sharing!!

  6. Jdsmythe says:

    You do not give specific portions of spices. Why?

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Hi, I actually have provided suggested amounts! Scroll down to the recipe card at the bottom of the page or click on the Jump to Recipe button at the top of the page. Hope that helps!

  7. MOnke says:

    I love this

    1. Yumna J. says:

      I’m so glad!!

  8. Shan says:

    I enjoyed this recipe! I will say, I am not a fan of cumin and know from experience that more than just a little bit will taste overpowering to me. So, even with just a sprinkling of cumin instead of 2 teaspoons, I still found this very flavorful.

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Yay! Love that you tweaked the recipe and liked how it turned out!!

  9. Karen says:

    I made this recipe for the first time for family taco night. The results are in; this is the most flavorful and delicious taco meat I have ever made. And it was so easy! Now I just need to figure out what to do with the extra tomato paste….maybe I should make more tacos! 🙂

    1. Yumna says:

      Love this, thanks for sharing!

      1. Peggy says:

        FYI tomato paste can be purchased at the grocery store in a tube, instead of a can. You can squeeze out just as much as you need for a recipe and recap it. No waste! A game changer when I found this. Mutti is my brand of choice.

      2. Christa says:

        I take tomato paste and measure into teaspoon amounts and freezer in ice cube tray. Then when frozen you can put them all in a baggie in the freezer for future use. I have also found it in a squeeze tube.

        1. Yumna J. says:

          That’s a smart way to portion them out—what a great idea!! Thanks for sharing!

    2. kasia says:

      Scoop out tablespoonfuls of the tomato paste onto a cookie sheet, freeze and then put the cubes into a zip lock bag and freeze!

      1. Ina says:

        I just scrape the remaining tomato paste into a ziploc bag, seal it removing the air, spread out the paste inside so that it’s as flat as possible, and freeze it flat. This way, if I need to use less next time I can just break it off.

  10. Bryan says:

    Thanks for the great recipe, I always use it when I need some quick Tacos!

    1. Yumna says:

      Of course! So glad you enjoyed this one.

  11. Diana says:

    Making these tonight for the second time. I use ground sirloin (96% lean) for tastier meat and less mess, cleanup, etc. Super delicious! The combination of seasonings is the best I’ve had. Making your own taco seasoning is easy and probably healthier without the anti-caking ingredients.

    1. Yumna says:

      Thanks, Diana!

  12. Maria says:

    Very easy and fast to make. Followed w/ all ingredients and instruction and came out soo delicious.

    1. Yumna says:

      Thanks, Maria!

  13. Petey Boy says:

    Made these tonight to rave reviews. I stuck to the seasoning ratio, only substitution was crushed tomatoes (what we had around) in lieu of tomato paste / water. I used a half cup or so, simmered it down and then added more to repeat. Tasted almost like stewed beef, the tacos were juicy and hit the spot with the standard fixings and a generous handful of cilantro.

    Awesome recipe, definitely my go-to method for ground beef tacos from now on!

    1. Yumna says:

      So happy you loved these!

  14. Katie says:

    OMG! Best tacos I have had homemade…taste just like my favorite taco place here in TX. I highly recommend this to everyone! I can’t have onions, and all of the bagged taco seasonings at the store include onion powder. So I was thrilled to find this recipe & am sending it to everyone I know! Delicious!

    1. Yumna says:

      So happy you enjoyed these!

  15. Joyce Francis says:

    It was good. My son loved it.

    1. Yumna says:

      So glad to hear!

  16. Vicki Frederick says:

    The seasonings are spot on! I only had 85% ground beef, so I left out the olive oil. Otherwise, followed the recipe exactly, with great results.

    1. Yumna says:

      Glad to hear!

  17. Tanya says:

    Came out great!!!

    1. Yumna says:

      So glad to hear!

  18. Terry Passanante says:

    These were delicious! Delicious heated up the second and third times too! Never again will I buy packaged taco seasoning. Excellent and Easy!

    1. Yumna says:

      So happy to hear you enjoyed these!

  19. patricia says:

    just made this tonight with 2 pounds ground turkey, very good, but would not put as much cumin as they call for.

    1. Yumna says:

      Happy you enjoyed it, feel free to always season to taste with my recipes!

  20. Jasmine Simone Wilson says:

    This is my second time making this recipe and it’s so delicious!

    1. Yumna says:

      Thank you so much!

  21. Tricia says:

    Easy and delicious! I will never buy packaged taco seasoning again!

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Thank you so much, Tricia! So happy to hear that you liked the seasoning!

  22. Christina says:

    We loved this recipe! So flavorful and delicious. This is a rotation meal, for sure.
    Thanks for a great recipe 😊

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Thank you so much!

  23. Frank says:

    I’m sorry but yes it’s yummy but one pound does not feed 8-12 people.

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Hi Frank, the recipe card says it makes 8 servings, meaning 8 tacos in total – so depending on how many tacos each person eats is how many people the recipe feeds. But, you can get 8 tacos out of a pound of ground beef.

  24. Monica says:

    This is a great recipe! I added onion and red & green bell pepper to the meat as I was browning it. I’ll definitely be making this again.
    Thanks!

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Thank you so much. You’re so welcome!

  25. Chris says:

    This is a fantastic seasoning recipe, thanks for having it up to share! I caramelized some of my chopped onions and added them in with meat after browning and then added the spices. Am making this again for sure!

    1. Yumna J. says:

      You’re so welcome. Thank you for making it!

  26. Rebecca Gelman says:

    Made this last night & it was delicious! I didn’t have chili powder & was so happy that the recipe included a swap out with paprika. Also the tomato paste & water gave the beef a lovely deep flavor.

    1. Yumna J. says:

      So glad you liked it, Rebecca!

  27. Laura says:

    Thinking of having a taco night with a large group of friends and this seems perfect! Do you know if the beef can be subbed with chicken?

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Hi Laura, great question! Absolutely you can substitute chicken. I’d do a quick shredded chicken and then season as instructed above. You’ll have to come back and let me know what you and your guests thought of it!

      1. Anna says:

        Hello! I’m going to try this for a big group soon! I was just wondering what brand of taco shell do you use?
        Thanks!

        1. Yumna J. says:

          I like Garden of Eatin’ or Whole Foods 365 taco shells because I like the minimal ingredients used in both without many unnecessary additives. But any taco shells will work!

    2. Janet says:

      Very tasty! Didn’t have tomato paste or sauce, so I used ketchup:).

  28. Toni says:

    Looks yummy! Can’t wait to try with my Youth Ministry group! 🙂

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      Thank you! Hope you all enjoy!

  29. Linda says:

    Loved this. So easy to make as well

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      Thank you so much!

  30. Carole says:

    Perfect as stated in the recipe. My family loved them. Easy to make too.

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      Thank you! That’s amazing!

  31. Olivia says:

    Perfect! Easy! Delicious!

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      Thank you so much!

  32. Stefany says:

    I made these for dinner tonight and was very impressed with the flavor and moisture of the beef tacos. My previous tacos have been pretty dry with my homemade taco mixture, but this was easy and delicious. I used 1/2 cup Rao’s tomato sauce instead of the water and tomato paste which worked nicely. Definitely a keeper, thank you!!

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      That’s amazing! So glad you enjoyed this recipe!!

  33. Jessica says:

    If I used premade store bought taco seasoning how much should I add?

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      I’d say roughly 5-6 teaspoons.

  34. Ailene Moore says:

    This is the best blend I have ever had. Quantities are perfect, no adjustments are
    needed. This will be my go-to taco blend. Thank you

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      Wow, thank you so much! You’re so welcome!!

  35. Susan says:

    Yum! We’ve had these tacos at least once a week for about a month. The taco spice is so delicious. We top the tacos with black beans,cheese, black olives, tomato, avocado. I’m going to make Mexican street corn next time and add to the tacos or have as a side. I’m loving the recipes on this site! 😋♥️

    1. Yumna J. says:

      That sounds like such a great way to enjoy it, and the Mexican street corn is a delicious idea! Thank you so much!

  36. Güney says:

    That’s amazing.I wanna make everday.

    1. Güney says:

      That’s amazing.I wanna make everday.

    2. Yumna J. says:

      Thank you! Sometimes I wish I could too!

  37. Cihan says:

    I can’t believe in the result. That’s amazing and yummy. I think everyone should try this recipe. I don’t know how to make a meal as soon as I saw this recipe
    Thank you so much

    1. Yumna J. says:

      I really hope they do! Thank you so much!

  38. Amy says:

    Adding some cooked onions enhanced the flavor and made the tacos delicious.

  39. Patricia says:

    OH MAN, Yumna!! ANOTHER winner!!! I put mine and my son’s on Romain lettuce, my fiancé will get his on corn tortillas! A LOT of flavor!

    1. Susan says:

      Great idea on the romaine lettuce, I’ll try that next time. My husband will stick with the corn tortillas I’m sure.

  40. Wassim Jawad says:

    Some of the best tacos I’ve had. So much flavor!

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      So glad you liked them!!

  41. Emily Kemp says:

    These look so delicious, i love beef tacos!