Taco salad is a perfect, quick meal for using up leftover taco meat.
It can be ready in minutes and can be made dairy-free!
The first time I had taco salad with Catalina dressing was at my boyfriend’s house in high school.
And lucky me, I married that good looking boy.
From the very start, we brought this yummy dish into our own home.
But when kiddo was diagnosed with severe food allergies as a baby,
I wasn’t sure if we’d ever be able to find safe dressing OR taco seasoning to keep the taco salad tradition going.
As you can imagine, though, I eventually stopped to put on my food allergy mom thinking cap.
And now kiddo enjoys taco salad as much as we do!
To start off, I made my own taco seasoning and dressing from scratch.
That’s always a good way to skirt around food allergies.
Later, we got brave enough to try some store-bought dressing and seasoning.
I’ll share it all so you can decide what’s best for you.
The good news is…
if you prefer homemade without the extra ingredients,
the dressing and taco seasoning are so easy to make!
I’d prefer homemade any day.
See if these brands will work for your taco salad.
If you prefer homemade, minimal ingredient recipes…you can’t get any easier than these!
TACO SALAD AS A QUICK DINNER
Inside Milk Allergy Mom Membership, we talk about freezer dinners that save time and energy.
And taco meat always comes up as a great option for freezing ahead.
When you take the time to cook taco meat and freeze it for later,
you can easily pull it out and thaw it for busy nights.
With reheated taco meat we can make a variety of quick dinners:
- taco bars
- hard tacos
- soft tacos
- taco salad
All it takes is a little prep work with cleaning and cutting lettuce and tomato,
having a little salsa and dairy-free cheese on hand,
and pulling out taco shells, tortillas, or tortilla chips.
Dinner is served in less than 30 minutes and you’re good to go.
If you have family members in all directions some night,
reheated taco meat sits in a crockpot on the warm setting nicely and is there when the next person can eat.
The next time you make tacos, double the meat and freeze some for a second dinner in a jiffy.
HOW TO MAKE DAIRY-FREE TACO SALAD
1 pound ground burger
dairy-free corn chips
dairy-free cheese shreds (optional)
Here are the dairy-free cheese shreds we use.
I do love that this taco salad is perfectly fine with no cheese at all.
No need to buy expensive dairy-free cheese to make this salad.
TACO SALAD DIRECTIONS
Cook one pound ground burger in a skillet on the stove.
Drain the grease.
Sprinkle taco seasoning over all the cooked burger in the skillet.
Add just a little water to the pan, about 1-2 tablespoons.
Incorporate the seasoning into the meat by stirring and simmering on low heat for another 10-15 minutes.
IS TACO SALAD HOT OR COLD?
Use the meat hot in your otherwise cold taco salad.
Fill bowls with cold lettuce and diced tomatoes.
Layer with warm taco meat hot from the skillet.
Top with dressing, tortilla chips broken into bite-size pieces, and dairy-free cheese shreds (optional).
Hope you love this taco salad as much as we do!