Cinco de Mayo Taco Salad

Cinco de Mayo Taco Salad is a festive and scrumptious recipe that you’re sure to enjoy. With Cinco de Mayo right around the corner, I thought I’d share one of my favorite Taco Salad recipes. I include two different versions of meat: the original version which includes cooking the ground beef with Lipton Onion Soup Mix. The other one is gluten free and a healthier version using my Homemade Taco Seasoning mixed with ground beef. I prefer using taco-flavored cheese which is cheddar cheese with taco seasonings added. However, I couldn’t find any when I was shopping at the store last week so I purchased Pepper Jack cheese and Colby Jack cheese and used a combination of those cheeses to increase the heat slightly. I’ve always used plain Fritos corn chips for the recipe, but you probably could use the chili-cheese Fritos if you really want to amp up the flavors.

This is actually my Mom’s Taco Salad recipe that she started making when I was in high school. She made this several times during those years after I got married. We had young children then, so we used to make the drive across the state of Florida and visit on three-day holiday weekends six to seven times per year so the kids could visit their grandparents. Mom always made our favorite foods while we were visiting, including this wonderful recipe.  When we weren’t watching kids or eating all of her delicious treats, we played cards (hearts, spades and euchre) into the middle of the night!

This was the first Taco Salad recipe I ever had and used this one exclusively until the early 80s and 90s when Tex-Mex began to become so very popular across the country. I decided to make it for a potluck fellowship our Sunday school class had a couple of weeks ago. But because several of the gals in our class are on gluten free diets, I made the original version and one with meat flavored with Homemade Taco Seasoning which has no preservatives, gluten, or MSG. My mom always served her Taco Salad with Easy French Dressing. But this time I served it with a Jalapeno Ranch dressing that Litehouse makes. I really love their cilantro dressing but it was not available at the time.

If you’re looking for a dynamite Tex-Mex salad to make for Cinco de Mayo, I highly recommend my mom’s Cinco de Mayo Taco Salad recipe. It’s big on taste and low on work! It’s a full meal by itself, or serve it with something festive like King Ranch Chicken, Mexican Cornbread and Sopapilla Cheesecake. You will be in seventh heaven! 🙂

Cinco de Mayo Taco Salad | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen | wonderful #Tex-Mex #salad with delicious southwest flavor. Great for #CincodeMayo. #cheese #groundbeef #Fritos

Cinco de Mayo Taco Salad is mouthwatering and sure to please.

Cinco de Mayo Taco Salad | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen | wonderful #Tex-Mex #salad with delicious southwest flavor. Great for #CincodeMayo. #cheese #groundbeef #Fritos

Cinco de Mayo Taco Salad is a wonderful salad to serve for lunch or as a dinner salad/main dish.

Cinco de Mayo Taco Salad | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen | wonderful #Tex-Mex #salad with delicious southwest flavor. Great for #CincodeMayo. #cheese #groundbeef #Fritos

This is a great salad to make for Cinco de Mayo parties!

 

Here’s what I did.

Cinco de Mayo Taco Salad | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen | wonderful #Tex-Mex #salad with delicious southwest flavor. Great for #CincodeMayo. #cheese #groundbeef #Fritos

I used these ingredients for the original recipe. Layer salad ingredients in a large bowl: lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes, green onions, olives and green pepper. Leave cheese, meat, Fritos and salad dressing off the salad and serve on the side to keep salad fresher.

Cinco de Mayo Taco Salad | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen | wonderful #Tex-Mex #salad with delicious southwest flavor. Great for #CincodeMayo. #cheese #groundbeef #Fritos

Brown ground beef. Add half of an envelope of Lipton Onion Soup Mix. I usually use the onions and only part of the bouillon stuff. Otherwise, it is too strong and overpowers the meat.

Cinco de Mayo Taco Salad | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen | wonderful #Tex-Mex #salad with delicious southwest flavor. Great for #CincodeMayo. #cheese #groundbeef #Fritos

To another two pounds of cooked dried beef I added these ingredients. The recipe is located in my Homemade Taco Seasoning post. (You don’t have to use this much beef, I’m just showing both versions). 

Cinco de Mayo Taco Salad | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen | wonderful #Tex-Mex #salad with delicious southwest flavor. Great for #CincodeMayo. #cheese #groundbeef #Fritos

Here I’ve layered the salad ingredients in a bowl. Unless you are going to serve ALL of the salad and immediately, leave off the cheese and add it to individual servings. Otherwise, the salad will go bad more quickly, but it will last a couple of days if the cheese is left off.

Cinco de Mayo Taco Salad | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen | wonderful #Tex-Mex #salad with delicious southwest flavor. Great for #CincodeMayo. #cheese #groundbeef #Fritos

Garnish each serving of salad with the meat of your choice, Fritos, cheese, and your favorite salad dressing.

 

Here’s the recipe.

Print Recipe
Cinco de Mayo Taco Salad BigOven - Save recipe or add to grocery list Yum
This mouthwatering Tex-Mex salad offers two kinds of beef mixture: one mixed with Lipton Onion Soup Mix and the other a gluten free version with Homemade Taco Seasoning. This salad is great for Cinco de Mayo or any time you want to serve a festive Taco Salad.
Cinco De Mayo Taco Salad | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Servings
Ingredients
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Servings
Ingredients
Cinco De Mayo Taco Salad | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen
Instructions
  1. In skillet, brown beef.
  2. Sprinkle onion soup mix over meat; stir in water (as per package—about ½ cup).
  3. Simmer, uncovered 10 minutes.
  4. In salad bowl, layer lettuce, tomatoes, onion, green pepper, olives, cucumber and cheese.
  5. (If you cannot find Taco cheese, purchase regular sharp cheese and add some taco seasoning mix-- like ¼ -1 tsp.); toss well.
  6. Spoon meat over top of salad, top with corn chips.
  7. Serve immediately.
Recipe Notes

NOTE: If you are not serving this immediately, refrigerate salad and meat separately until ready to serve. Microwave the beef a minute or so until warm. Place heated meat over individual salad plates, or on top of the salad if desired.

NOTE: If you are not eating ALL of this salad the day you make it, leave off the cheese, meat and Fritos and serve them separately so the salad will stay fresh longer.

NOTE: You can also add Homemade Taco Seasoning to the meat and eliminate the dry onion soup mix if you’re trying to maintain a gluten free diet.

 

[b]Cinco de Mayo Taco Salad[/b]
Recipe Type: Salads and Salad Dressings
Cuisine: Tex-Mex
Author: Teresa Ambra adapted from my mom, Helen Mattis, Titusville, FL
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 8
This mouthwatering Tex-Mex salad offers two kinds of beef mixture: one mixed with [url href=”http://www.makinglifebetter.com/microsite/detail/255844/lipton-recipe-secrets” target=”_blank”]Lipton Onion Soup Mix[/url] and the other a gluten free version with [url href=”http://cantstayoutofthekitchen.com/2012/09/03/homemade-taco-seasoning/” target=”_blank”]Homemade Taco Seasoning[/url]. This salad is great for Cinco de Mayo or any time you want to serve a festive Taco Salad.
Ingredients
  • 1 lb. 93% lean ground beef
  • 1 onion, diced, or 3 green onions, sliced
  • 6-oz. bag [url href=”http://www.fritolay.com/snacks/product-page/fritos/” target=”_blank”]Fritos[/url] corn chips
  • 1 or 2 large heads lettuce (depending on how many you need to serve)
  • 4-6 Roma tomatoes, sliced
  • ¾ cup sliced or whole green olives
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 1 cucumber, unpeeled and sliced
  • 2 cups Taco-seasoned cheese or use a blend of Colby Jack & Pepper Jack
  • ½ envelope [url href=”http://www.makinglifebetter.com/microsite/detail/255844/lipton-recipe-secrets” target=”_blank”]Lipton dry onion soup mix[/url] (I use mostly the onions and not as much of the bouillon)
  • Catalina, Ranch or your favorite dressing
Instructions
  1. In skillet, brown beef.
  2. Sprinkle onion soup mix over meat; stir in water (as per package—about ½ cup).
  3. Simmer, uncovered 10 minutes.
  4. In salad bowl, layer lettuce, tomatoes, onion, green pepper, olives, cucumber and cheese.
  5. (If you cannot find Taco cheese, purchase regular sharp cheese and add some taco seasoning mix– like ¼ -1 tsp.); toss well.
  6. Spoon meat over top of salad, top with corn chips.
  7. Serve immediately.
Notes
If you are not serving this immediately, refrigerate salad and meat separately until ready to serve. Microwave the beef a minute or so until warm. Place heated meat over individual salad plates, or on top of the salad if desired.[br][br]If you are not eating ALL of this salad the day you make it, leave off the cheese, meat and Fritos and serve them separately so the salad will stay fresh longer.[br][br]You can also add the following Homemade Taco Seasoning to the meat and eliminate the dry onion soup mix if you’re trying to maintain a gluten free diet.

 

Cinco de Mayo Taco Salad | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen | wonderful #Tex-Mex #salad with delicious southwest flavor. Great for #CincodeMayo. #cheese #groundbeef #Fritos

You can amp up the flavors of Cinco de Mayo Taco Salad by using chili-cheese Fritos and a Habanero cheese instead of Pepper Jack cheese.

Cinco de Mayo Taco Salad | Can't Stay Out of the Kitchen | wonderful #Tex-Mex #salad with delicious southwest flavor. Great for #CincodeMayo. #cheese #groundbeef #Fritos

Doesn’t Cinco de Mayo Taco Salad look marvelous? I’m ready to dig in right now!

Chicken Fajita Salad

Chicken Fajita Salad - IMG_9952

 

Southwestern Chopped Salad with Cilantro Dressing

Southwestern Chopped Salad with Cilantro Dressing - IMG_7782.jpg

 

Mexican Bean Taco Salad

Mexican Bean Taco Salad - IMG_5574.jpg.jpg

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