The BEST Ground Beef Tacos recipe includes crispy fried corn tortilla shells filled with seasoned ground beef and your favorite toppings. The epitome of a “tastes better from scratch” recipe!

Looking for more Mexican recipes? Try these Pupusas, Chicken Tinga, or Chilaquiles!

Three ground beef tacos with crispy shells and toppings on a plate with Mexican rice.

Why I love this recipe:

  • The corn tortilla shells are made from fresh corn tortillas, and the taste is incomparable to the bland ones from the store.
  • Make Ahead: The taco shells can be fried ahead of time and the ground beef filling can be made ahead and reheated, making this is the perfect meal for a busy weeknight.
  • Crowd Pleaser – We serve them as a taco bar so everyone can choose their own toppings! Taco Tuesdays are the best!

How to make Ground Beef Tacos:

Make Taco Seasoning: In a small bowl, mix together the seasoning spices. Set aside.

A small glass bowl with seasonings in it to make homemade taco seasoning for ground beef.

Cook Meat: Add ground beef to a large skillet or cast-iron pan. Cook, crumbling into small pieces with a wooden spoon, until browned. Add spices and stir well to combine. Stir in black beans. Keep on low heat while you fry the tortillas.

A pan filled with taco meat and black beans, ready for crispy Ground Beef Tacos.

Fry Taco Shells: Fill a medium pot or skillet with enough oil to fill about 1-inch up the sides. Heat oil to 325 °F. Once hot, use tongs to dip one half of the tortilla into the oil, laying it flat, while folding the other end over (but out of the oil, to create a “U” or “taco shell” shape. Cook for about 1 minute, until golden and crisp, then flip and repeat with the other side of the tortilla, until crisp. Remove to a paper towel lined plate, and repeat with remaining tortillas.

A four image collage showing the process of frying corn tortillas for crispy Ground Beef Tacos.

Serve: Add a big spoonful of ground beef mixture into each taco shell. Top with lettuce, tomato, cheese, sour cream, salsa or other desired toppings. Serve with a side of Mexican Rice.

A close-up picture of three of the best Ground Beef Tacos with toppings on a plate with Mexican rice.

Make Ahead and Freezing Instructions:

To Make Ahead: Make the taco filling up to a few days ahead of time and rewarm on the stove. Taco shells could be made 1-2 days ahead of time, stored in a brown paper bag.

To Freeze: Place taco meat in a freezer safe bag or container in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Recipe Variations:

  • Meat: Could use ground turkey or ground chicken.
  • Toppings: include any number of favorite toppings, like pico de gallo, homemade guacamole, pickled onions and sautéed mushrooms.
  • Slow Cooker: Place beef, seasoning, and 1-2 cups of your favorite salsa in the crock pot. Cook on high for 2-3 hours, or low for 4-5 hours. Break up the meat and discard any liquid. Make tortillas as instructed in the recipe and serve.

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Recipe

Three of the BEST Ground Beef Tacos with crispy shells and toppings on a plate with Mexican Rice.
Prep 10 mins
Cook 20 mins
Total 30 mins
Save Recipe

Ingredients
 
 

  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 1 Tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 ½ teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon onion powder
  • ¼ teaspoon dried oregano
  • pinch cayenne pepper
  • 1 15 oz can black beans , rinsed and drained

For Tacos:

  • 12 corn tortillas
  • vegetable oil , for frying
  • 2 cups Romaine lettuce , finely shredded
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 1-2 roma tomatoes , chopped
  • More topping ideas: olives, guacamole, pico de gallo, cotija cheese, jalapeños, pickled onion

Instructions
 

  • Combine taco seasoning spices in a small bowl, and set aside.
  • Make the taco meat: Add ground beef to a large skillet or cast-iron pan. Cook, crumbling into small pieces with a wooden spoon, until browned. Add spices and stir well to combine. Stir in black beans. Keep on low heat while you fry the tortillas.
  • Make the crunchy tortilla shells: Fill a medium pot or skillet with enough oil to fill about 1-inch up the sides. Heat oil to 325 degrees F. Once hot, use tongs to dip one half of the tortilla into the oil, laying it flat, while folding the other end over (but out of the oil, to create a “U” or “taco shell” shape. Cook for about 1 minute, until golden and crisp, then flip and repeat with the other side of the tortilla, until crisp. Remove to a paper towel lined plate, and repeat with remaining tortillas.
  • Serve: Add a big spoonful of ground beef mixture into each taco shell. Top with lettuce, tomato, cheese, sour cream, salsa or other desired toppings. Serve with a side of Mexican rice.

Notes

Serving size is for 2 tacos.
Meat: Could use ground turkey or ground chicken.
Toppings: include any number of favorite toppings, like pico de gallo, homemade guacamole, pickled onions and sautéed mushrooms.
Slow Cooker: Place beef, seasoning, and 1-2 cups of your favorite salsa in the crock pot. Cook on high for 2-3 hours, or low for 4-5 hours. Break up the meat and discard any liquid. Make tortillas as instructed in the recipe and serve.
Make Ahead Instructions: Make the taco filling up to a few days ahead of time and rewarm on the stove. Taco shells could be made 1-2 days ahead of time, stored in a brown paper bag.
Freezing Instructions: Place taco meat in a freezer safe bag or container in the freezer for up to 3 months.
 

Nutrition

Calories: 317kcalCarbohydrates: 27gProtein: 26gFat: 12gSaturated Fat: 6gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0.3gCholesterol: 67mgSodium: 615mgPotassium: 504mgFiber: 4gSugar: 2gVitamin A: 2127IUVitamin C: 2mgCalcium: 219mgIron: 3mg

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Lauren Allen

Welcome! I’m Lauren, a mom of four and lover of good food. Here you’ll find easy recipes and weeknight meal ideas made with real ingredients, with step-by-step photos and videos.

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