Easy Ground Beef Tacos from Scratch

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Ground Beef Tacos – The best ground beef tacos ever, made with crispy fried corn tortilla shells, seasoned hamburger, and all the delicious toppings. Easy dinner recipe that’s perfect for Taco Tuesday!

ground beef tacos with all the toppings on a wooden cutting board

Have I mentioned how much I love tacos? Besides chicken tacos, ground beef tacos are my favorite, especially when we make them with corn tortilla taco shells.

Tacos are an easy meal too, making them a win win when it comes to dinner. Really, all it takes is cooking the meat and prepping a few of your favorite toppings.

For toppings, I recommend lettuce, tomatoes, cheese, sour cream, and maybe even some green onions. You can also add avocado if you so choose.

You can use regular taco shells you buy in the store; we love these… Or you can make your own, using corn tortillas, and fry them up in a dab of bacon grease or oil.

You can even swap out taco shells for bell peppers, making the most delicious taco stuffed peppers.

beef tacos in corn tortilla taco shells set in a muffin pan for filling with all the toppings

Want a variation on ground beef tacos? Try Taco Sloppy Joes or taco tater tot hotdish.

How to make taco shells for ground beef tacos:

To make your own crispy taco shells (they remind me of a Taco Bell Chalupa shell)…

frying a corn tortilla into a taco shell in a cast iron skillet with tongs
  • Heat about a tablespoon of bacon grease in a skillet; let it melt and heat up.
  • Add a corn tortilla to the skillet, letting it cook on one side.
  • Use tongs to turn the tortilla and let the other side cook.
  • Finally, remove the tortilla from the skillet and let drain on a paper towel or paper bag for maybe 30 seconds or so.
  • Fold into a taco shape and place in either a taco holder or the bottom side of a muffin pan.

And that’s it, you’ve made your own taco shells. They’re so good!

Tips for how to make this beef taco recipe:

You’ll need to gather your ingredients, including ground beef, garlic, lemon juice, chili powder, salt, black pepper, peppers, onion, Roma tomatoes, lettuce, cheddar cheese, Monterey Jack cheese, green onions, corn tortillas, and sour cream. You may also want extra ingredients like avocado, black olives, queso, and salsa.

Add the ground beef, garlic, lemon juice, chili powder, salt, and black pepper to a large skillet. Brown the meat well.

cooking ground beef and seasoning for tacos in cast iron skillet

Add the chopped onion, peppers, and 2 to 3 Roma tomatoes to the ground beef mixture. Cook thoroughly until the meat is fully cooked and the veggies have softened.

cooking ground beef with onion, peppers, and tomatoes in a cast iron skillet for a delicious taco recipe

Meanwhile, prep all your fresh ingredients. Wash and chop the lettuce, tomatoes, and green onions. Also, shred the cheese.

Fry up a batch of corn tortillas to form taco shells. You can use bacon grease or oil.

Once the ground beef is fully cooked, taco shells are done, and fresh ingredients are prepped, you’re ready to start the process of layering. You can layer ingredients in any order you want, but I prefer to add the beef into the taco shell first, then the cheese (it gets all melty on the warm meat), and go from there.

layer toppings in a fried corn tortilla shell for homemade tacos

Add a layer of lettuce, a layer of tomatoes, green onions, and whatever else your heart desires. Don’t forget a dollop of sour cream (though I love adding a good layer of sour cream before I even add the meat; that way I have sour cream in every single bite).

And that’s it. Tacos are the easiest thing to make on a busy weeknight!

beef tacos in a muffin pan with all sorts of toppings ideas

More Tex Mex recipes you may enjoy:

Easy Fish Tacos with a Tzatziki Fish Taco Sauce

Chicken and Hummus Loaded Nachos in a Sheet Pan

Easy Chicken Fajitas

Creamy Chicken Enchiladas

Cheesy Chicken Quesadillas

Kitchen tools you may need to make beef tacos:

Iron Skillet – We’re avid users of cast iron cookware. We even take our favorite iron skillet camping with us.

Tongs – They’ll be needed for flipping the corn tortillas in the skillet.

Ground Meat Chopper – This makes it easy to chop up the meat while cooking.

Taco Holder – Ok, so you don’t technically NEED this, but it sure does come in handy. I just use the bottom side of my muffin pan.

Cutting Board and Knife – You’ll use this for way more than just one recipe. We use ours just about every time we step foot in the kitchen.

best ground beef tacos ever on a wooden cutting board with colorful toppings like cheese, tomatoes, and green onions

Love cooking shows and want to make these tacos along with us? Watch our recipe video!

Easy Ground Beef Tacos from Scratch

The best ground beef tacos ever, made with crispy fried corn tortilla shells, seasoned hamburger, and all the delicious toppings. Easy dinner recipe that’s perfect for Taco Tuesday!

Course Main
Cuisine Mexican
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 5 people
Author Mel Lockcuff

Ingredients

  • 1/2 large onion
  • 1 large bell pepper
  • 1 tablespoon salted butter or bacon grease
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 to 3 whole Roma tomatoes chopped
  • 1/2 head lettuce
  • 6 whole Roma tomatoes chopped
  • 6 whole green onions chopped
  • 4 ounces cheddar cheese
  • 4 ounces Monterey Jack cheese
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 16 whole corn tortillas
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons bacon grease or oil of choice

Instructions

  1. Add the ground beef, garlic, lemon juice, chili powder, salt, and black pepper to a large skillet. Brown the meat well.

  2. Add the chopped onion, peppers, and 2 to 3 Roma tomatoes to the ground beef mixture. Cook thoroughly until the meat is fully cooked and the veggies have softened.

  3. Meanwhile, prep all your fresh ingredients. Wash and chop the lettuce, tomatoes, and green onions. Also, shred the cheese.

  4. Fry up a batch of corn tortillas to form taco shells. You can use bacon grease or oil.

  5. Once the ground beef is fully cooked, taco shells are done, and fresh ingredients are prepped, you’re ready to start the process of layering. You can layer ingredients in any order you want.

  6. Add a layer of lettuce, a layer of tomatoes, green onions, and whatever else your heart desires. Don’t forget a dollop of sour cream.

Easy ground beef tacos from scratch
beef tacos from scratch
beef taco recipe that's easy to make

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