I’m always looking for new and inventive ways to use leftovers, and for some reason, taco meat is something we always have leftover in our fridge. In this post today, I’m going to share with you some exciting recipes that will put your taco meat leftovers to good use, while creating a wide variety of delicious, filling dinners.
20Leftover taco meat recipes perfect for using up an entire pound
1. Easy Ground Beef Enchiladas
These delicious Easy Ground Beef Enchiladas from I Wash You Dry are incredibly simple to make and are filled with seasoned ground beef and topped with heaps of cheese. You can then add additional toppings of your choice to the meal, like pico de gallo and sour cream. Personally, I think this dish would be tasty covered in fresh avocado and tomato salsa.
2. Easy Homemade Hamburger Helper
The Recipe Rebel shares this easy recipe that requires just five minutes of prep time. Made in just one pot, this dish creates a healthier version of the classic hamburger helper meal. The recipe uses red pepper, spinach, and high fiber whole wheat pasta to make a dish that will impress kids and adults alike.
3. Nacho Bar
My favorite part of Mexican cuisine is without a doubt nachos! Incorporate your leftover taco meat into this yummy party spread from What’s Gaby Cooking. This is such a fun idea for an alternative holiday party this year. Featuring tortilla chips, black beans, guacamole, pico de gallo, and much more, there’ll be something for even the pickiest of eaters on this delicious nacho bar.
4. Cheesy Taco Pasta
In my opinion, you can never go wrong with a pasta dish, and this is another great recipe to help you avoid waste and use up your leftover taco meat. Dinner then Dessert shares this recipe that tastes even better than Hamburger Helper and is incredibly easy to make. You can even freeze this pasta to enjoy at a later date, and it’s the ideal meal to keep on standby for those hectic weekday nights.
5. Black Bean and Beef Enchilada Casserole
This beef enchilada casserole is a gluten-free recipe and is one of the best recipes to use up your leftovers. It mixes together pinto beans, black beans, green chili peppers, green onions, and cheese for a hearty and delicious dish. Julia’s Album shares this recipe, which can feed up to eight people, so it’s perfect for a large family dinner. In about an hour, you’ll have a filling meal ready to serve, bursting with incredible Mexican and Tex-Mex flavors.
6. Taco Pasta Salad
Gonna Want Seconds shares this crowd-pleasing recipe that is surprisingly refreshing. Using your leftover taco meat in this pasta salad, you’ll create a dish that’s full of rich, savory flavors and has a cool and creamy base. Since choosing the shape of the pasta is part of the fun in making this dish, you could opt for penne or farfalle if you don’t want to stick with the spiral pasta. It’s a unique recipe that serves 12-15 people, so it’s perfect for large gatherings or a potluck dinner, or it can just be served as a main course.
7. Kale Taco Salad
I love using leftovers to create fresh and healthy salads, and this kale taco salad is one of my favorite dishes to make using leftover taco meat. The Almond Eater shows you how to make this gluten-free salad that you can easily add leftover taco meat to. In just under ten minutes, you can create a nutritious and filling salad that’s perfect for lunch. Containing kale, tomatoes, black beans, avocado, cheese, and salsa, you’ll enjoy a salad bursting with Mexican flavors.
8. Taco Lasagna
Lasagna has been one of my all-time favorite dishes since childhood. I can never get enough of this hearty pasta dish, and The Girl Who Ate Everything shows us how to use our leftover taco meat to create a taco lasagna you’ll want to make over and over again. Combining Mexican and Italian flavors, which are my two favorite cuisines, this recipe uses only seven ingredients and is perfect topped with homemade guacamole and pico de gallo.
9. One Pan Taco Macaroni Cheese
What’s better than macaroni cheese? Adding taco meat to it! One-pan or one pot recipes are my absolute favorite, and they save so much time and hassle in the kitchen. This recipe blends together beef, pasta, and cheese with the best taco toppings to create a delicious dish in under thirty minutes. Yellow Bliss Road offers you this recipe that will be a hit with the kids and teens in your family any night of the week!
10. Creamy Mexican Dip with Taco Meat
I would have never thought to use my leftover taco meat in a dip, but this recipe from The Weary Chef inspired me to give it a try. The results were fantastic! This dip combines taco meat, cream cheese, salsa, and Mexican cheese for a creamy, cheesy spread that is perfect for any party. Serve with tortilla chips for the ideal pairing, and your guests will be delighted with this appetizer.
11. Slow Cooker Taco Soup
Soup is the perfect way to use up that leftover taco meat and vegetables. My Baking Addiction shows us how to cook this delicious taco soup, which you can leave to cook during the day in your slow cooker and have a cozy and hearty lunch or dinner when it’s done. The recipe uses a lot of garlic and tomato sauce to make the broth and will create an inviting aroma in your home while cooking.
12. Taco Scramble
Your taco dinner leftovers can make a quick and protein-packed breakfast, thanks to this idea from Tablespoon. In total, the recipe uses just four ingredients and takes ten minutes to cook, and you can customize the dish with salsa, sour cream, or whichever taco fixing you prefer.
13. Mexican Scrambled Eggs
Your leftover taco meat will pair perfectly with eggs to create this Mexican scrambled eggs dish from Mama Bear’s Cookbook. The taco seasonings really complement the other ingredients in this dish. You can simply add anything you have left from your dinner to this recipe, including onion, peppers, tomato, avocado, black beans, or corn.
Instead of just freezing your leftover taco meat to use again, repurpose it for this Taco-dilla recipe from $5 Dinners. These are delicious, cheesy quesadillas which can be dipped in sour cream. Alternatively, roll the taco meat up burrito-style to create a taco roll-up that kids and teens will love.
15. Beef Burrito
Burritos are always a hit with the whole family, and this simple beef burrito recipe is stuffed with your leftover meat, rice, and any other fillings you would like to add. You can even put them into the freezer and defrost them when you need a quick dinner. Check out this recipe from Recipe Tin Eats which takes just fifteen minutes to prep and twenty minutes to cook. Burritos are one of my favorite Mexican recipes, and kids and teens will especially love this filling meal after a busy day at school.
16. Crock Pot Mexican Taco Casserole Recipe
If you are looking for an inventive way to use up your taco meat leftovers, this delicious casserole is easy to prepare. You won’t even have to cut on your over! Using a slow cooker, Eating on a Dime shows us how to create this dish, which requires just ten minutes of prep time. The crockpot is a great way to reuse your leftover taco meat and still keep all of the original juicy flavors.
17. Keto Taco Stuffed Avocado Boats
With only seven grams of net carbs, this is a great low carb meal. It’s the perfect twist on Mexican tacos and would make a fantastic appetizer for the whole family. The freshness of the avocado perfectly complements the taco meat in this recipe from Drive Me Hungry. It’s a great, healthy recipe to use up your leftover meat and is ideal for anyone following a Keto diet.
18. Easy Zucchini Taco Boats
I love using vegetables as the base of any meal, and these Zucchini Taco Boats are a great dinner idea to use up your leftover taco meat. Perfect for the summer, these boats are topped with cheese and packed with flavor. The Typical Mom shares her recipe for this dish, which takes only fifteen minutes to cook. If you don’t have zucchinis at home, consider switching out the base for peppers or another vegetable you have in the kitchen.
19. Tex-Mex Doritos Taco Salad
This is the ideal dish for a summer BBQ or potluck dinner and is a refreshing way to use up your leftover taco meat. Combining the meat with kidney beans, avocado, tomatoes, cheese, green onions, and nacho cheese Doritos, this recipe from House of Nash Eats will be a hit with the whole family. It’s a delightful dish that is a lighter twist on a heavy Mexican dinner.
20. Taco Grilled Cheese Sandwich
For a twist on a classic grilled cheese sandwich, this recipe will use all of your favorite taco toppings and leftover meat. You can customize this sandwich from Simply Stacie to suit your preferences, by adding tomatoes, lettuce, and lots of cheese. The buttery outside of the bread perfectly complements the fillings inside the sandwich.
There are so many different ways you can use up those leftovers, and as you can see, it’s fun to get creative with your leftover taco meat the next day. These recipes are incredibly versatile and are perfect for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. I never like to see anything go to waste in the kitchen, and with this extensive recipe collection, you’ll never be stuck for ideas of what to make with your leftover taco meat again.