This Taco Meat Recipe has a secret ingredient that makes it healthier and more delicious than any other recipe you'll find, and picky eaters won't know!
SECRET INGREDIENT TACO MEAT
Growing up and well into my adult life, I've always made taco meat by combining ground beef with store bought taco seasoning. The results were acceptable, but in no way amazing.
Now that my cooking skills are better than ever and my taste buds demand only the best, I only make my homemade taco meat with my own taco seasoning along with ground mushrooms and onions. This method is so good, it will blow your mind.
Ingredients in this taco meat recipe:
If you're looking to make an authentic taco meat recipe that tastes really good, but is also filled with vegetables that you really can't taste or pick out, then you've found the right recipe!
- Ground beef - I always try to buy grassfed ground beef. It is super lean and you never have to drain off any excess fat. You can also use ground turkey if you prefer, but that's not my preference.
- Mushrooms - I use just standard button mushrooms or baby bellas. I know it sounds weird to put mushrooms in taco meat, but read on and you'll see why.
- Red onion - I find the flavor of red onion is perfect for this recipe. You can use a yellow onion if that's all that's available, but red offers the best flavor.
- Taco seasoning - you can use store bought or make your own.
What is taco meat typically made of?
Until I started using this method, I always just combined ground beef and taco seasoning to make my taco meat. If you're wondering how to make tender taco meat, the ground beef plus seasoning isn't the best option. It often turns out very dry, even when adding water.
Some people put tomato paste in taco meat, but I've never done that.
The addition of ground mushrooms and onion will give you the most tender taco meat you've ever had, and you seriously can't tell that mushrooms and onions have been added. This is fantastic for super picky eaters who swear they hate mushrooms.
If you want to know how to make taco meat like Mexican restaurants, I think this recipe is better (and less greasy) than any taco meat I've had at a restaurant.
How to make the best taco meat:
This recipe is so incredibly simple and turns out perfect every single time.
- The first step is to run the mushrooms and onion through the food processor until the mixture resembles ground beef. The food processor is highly recommended for this step as hand chopping won't work as well.
- The next step is to cook the ground beef, mushroom and onion mixture, and taco seasoning all together in a large skillet. Just continue to stir and break up any chunks of meat so that it's evenly cooked. Cook until the meat starts to brown and crumble.
- Once the meat is fully cooked, be sure to taste it and add additional taco meat seasoning, if needed.
You know what my taco meat is really good in? My yummy warm 7-layer dip!
Can you add taco seasoning to cooked ground beef?
A lot of people wonder how to cook taco meat with taco seasoning.
As far as when to add the taco seasoning, I've tried all sorts of methods and the outcome is always the same. Some people like to mix their taco seasoning with the meat long before cooking it, some people add it at the very end after the ground beef is cooked.
In my opinion, it really doesn't matter when you add the taco seasoning as long as it's fully mixed in by the time it's served.
How much taco meat do I need per person?
This answer completely depends on how many tacos you and yours can put away.
I will tell you this - adding ground mushrooms to your ground beef definitely increases the amount of taco meat you get (in addition to making super tender and flavorful taco meat).
This recipe is perfect for our family of four which includes one husband to eats A LOT of tacos, myself (who can easily put away three herself), and two hungry growing kids. If we were to make taco meat with just one pound of ground beef and no mushroom onion blend, there certainly wouldn't be enough for all of us.
Taco Meat Recipe
- 1 pound ground beef (grassfed recommended)
- 1 small red onion (quartered)
- 8 ounces mushrooms (dirt brushed off and ends trimmed)
- 2 tablespoons taco seasoning (see recipe notes for link to make your own)
- Process onion and mushrooms through food processor until they resemble ground beef.
- Heat large skillet over medium high heat. Add ground beef, onions, mushrooms, and taco seasoning. Break up meat and stir occasionally. Cook until moisture is gone and ground beef begins to brown, about 10-15 minutes.
- Serve taco meat in hard or soft shells, in a burrito, on scrambled eggs, or on your taco salad.
Love easy ground beef recipes?
Then you'll definitely want to make these:
- Granny's Classic Meatloaf Recipe
- Meatloaf Meatballs
- Bacon Wrapped Meatloaf (mini meatloaf)
- Mushroom Blend Meatball Sliders
- Easy Salisbury Steak
- Easy Bolognese Sauce
- Cheeseburger Casserole
- Stuffed Bacon Jalapeno Cheddar Burgers
- Classic Stuffed Peppers Recipe
- Baked Italian Meatballs
- Perfect Swedish Meatballs
- Easy Teriyaki Meatballs
- Meatball Parmesan
- Double Cheesy Stuffed Meatball Sliders
- Green Chile Meatballs with Cheese Sauce