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Oven Baked Beef Tacos Recipe

This enticing recipe guides you through the process of making delightful oven-baked beef tacos. The rich and hearty ground beef filling is wrapped in crunchy taco shells, then topped with creamy cheddar cheese. Once baked, the tacos get a refreshing touch of lettuce, tomato, and sour cream. It's a simple and satisfying meal that's perfect for any day of the week.

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Photos of Oven Baked Beef Tacos Recipe

The ingredients used in this recipe are commonly found in most kitchens or easily accessible in any supermarket. However, you might want to pay special attention to taco shells. They come in different sizes and varieties, including soft and hard shells. For this recipe, we are using the crunchy ones. Also, the type of cheddar cheese you use can significantly affect the end result. Opt for a good-quality aged cheddar for a more intense flavor.

Key Ingredients for Oven-Baked Beef Tacos

Ground beef: This forms the main filling of your tacos. It's high in protein and makes the meal hearty.

Taco seasoning: This is what gives the beef its Mexican flavor. It's a blend of various spices such as cumin, chili powder, and oregano.

Water: Used to mix with the taco seasoning to create a sauce for the beef.

Taco shells: These are what hold your tasty filling. The ones used in this recipe are hard and crunchy.

Cheddar cheese: This is used to top the beef in the tacos. It melts nicely, adding a creamy, rich taste.

Lettuce: Adds a fresh, crisp texture to the tacos.

Tomato: Brings a juicy, tangy flavor to the dish.

Sour cream: Creamy and tangy, it's perfect for topping your tacos and balancing the flavors.

One reader, Danielle Staples says:

star icon star icon star icon star icon star icon

This oven-baked beef tacos recipe is a game-changer! The flavors are amazing, and the crispy taco shells make it even better. It's so easy to make and a hit with my family. The melted cheese and fresh toppings take it to the next level. I highly recommend trying it out!

Danielle Staples

Techniques Required for Making Oven-Baked Beef Tacos

How to cook ground beef: Cook the ground beef in a large skillet on medium-high heat for 5 to 6 minutes, breaking it apart while cooking, until it is no longer pink.

How to make taco seasoning: Whisk together 3 tablespoons of taco seasoning with ½ cup of water, then add it to the cooked ground beef, letting the liquid cook for another 2 to 3 minutes or until mostly reduced.

How to assemble oven-baked beef tacos: Place the taco shells into a baking dish, standing them up against each other. Spoon the beef into the taco shells, then add the cheddar cheese.

How to bake beef tacos: Bake the assembled beef tacos in a preheated oven at 400 degrees F for 10 minutes.

How to top beef tacos: Remove the beef tacos from the oven and top them with lettuce, tomato, and sour cream before serving.

How To Make Oven Baked Beef Tacos

These beef tacos are made with perfectly seasoned ground beef, fresh veggies, and more for a savory meal! Bake up a delicious batch in just 30 minutes.

Preparation: 10 minutes
Cooking: 20 minutes
Total: 30 minutes

Serves:

Ingredients

  • 1lbground beef
  • 3tbsptaco seasoning,or 1 packet
  • ½cupwater
  • 10taco shells
  • 1cupcheddar cheese,shredded
  • 1cuplettuce,shredded
  • 1vine tomato,diced
  • 1cupsour cream

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

  2. Add the ground beef to a large skillet on medium high heat, then cook for 5 to 6 minutes or until no longer pink, breaking it apart while cooking.

  3. Whisk the taco seasoning and water together, then add it to the pan, letting the liquid cook for another 2 to 3 minutes or until mostly reduced.

  4. Place the taco shells into a baking dish, standing them up against each other.

  5. Spoon the beef into the taco shells, then add the cheddar cheese.

  6. Bake for 10 minutes.

  7. Remove from the oven and top with lettuce, tomato and sour cream. Serve, and enjoy!

Nutrition

  • Calories: 569.67kcal
  • Fat: 41.76g
  • Saturated Fat: 19.10g
  • Trans Fat: 1.43g
  • Monounsaturated Fat: 14.35g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat: 2.67g
  • Carbohydrates: 21.98g
  • Fiber: 2.80g
  • Sugar: 3.09g
  • Protein: 25.10g
  • Cholesterol: 115.26mg
  • Sodium: 706.05mg
  • Calcium: 277.55mg
  • Potassium: 524.32mg
  • Iron: 2.87mg
  • Vitamin A: 182.87µg
  • Vitamin C: 4.19mg

Technique Tip for Perfect Oven-Baked Beef Tacos

When cooking the ground beef, it's crucial to break it apart while it's cooking. This ensures that the beef cooks evenly and absorbs the taco seasoning better. Also, when adding the cheese to the tacos before baking, try to distribute it evenly over the beef. This will result in a nice, even melt and prevent any part of the taco from being too cheesy or not cheesy enough. Lastly, for a fresher taste, consider adding the lettuce, tomato, and sour cream after baking the tacos. This will keep these ingredients crisp and cool, providing a nice contrast to the hot, baked tacos.

Time-Saving Tips for Preparing Oven-Baked Beef Tacos

Prep ahead: Prepare the taco meat and toppings in advance to save time on the day of cooking.

Use pre-made seasoning: Utilize pre-made taco seasoning to cut down on prep time and ensure a flavorful dish.

Batch cooking: Cook a larger quantity of taco meat and freeze the extra for future use, saving time on busy days.

Organize ingredients: Arrange all ingredients and utensils in an organized manner before starting to streamline the cooking process.

Invest in quality tools: Quality kitchen tools such as sharp knives and efficient cookware can significantly reduce prep and cooking time.

Multi-task: While the taco shells are baking, use that time to prepare the toppings or clean up the kitchen to save time later.

Substitute Ingredients For Oven Baked Beef Tacos Recipe

  • ground beef - Substitute with ground turkey: Ground turkey is a leaner option compared to ground beef and can be used as a healthier alternative. It also has a similar texture and flavor when cooked.

  • taco seasoning - Substitute with homemade taco seasoning: If you don't have store-bought taco seasoning, you can easily make your own using a blend of chili powder, cumin, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano, and a pinch of cayenne pepper for heat.

  • taco shells - Substitute with flour tortillas: If you prefer a softer shell, you can use flour tortillas instead of taco shells. Simply fill and roll the tortillas, then bake until crispy.

  • cheddar cheese - Substitute with Monterey Jack cheese: Monterey Jack cheese has a mild, creamy flavor and melts beautifully, making it a great substitute for cheddar in this recipe.

  • lettuce - Substitute with shredded cabbage: Shredded cabbage can provide a similar crunch and freshness to the dish as lettuce. It also holds up well to the heat when baked.

  • vine tomato - Substitute with diced Roma tomato: Roma tomatoes are firm and have fewer seeds, making them a great choice for oven-baked tacos as they won't release as much moisture during baking.

  • sour cream - Substitute with Greek yogurt: Greek yogurt can be used as a healthier alternative to sour cream, offering a similar tangy flavor and creamy texture.

Best Way to Present These Delicious Tacos

  1. Elevate the taco shells: Gently warm the taco shells before serving to enhance their aroma and flavor. Brush them with a touch of olive oil and sprinkle a pinch of smoked paprika for an added layer of complexity.

  2. Create a vibrant taco display: Arrange the tacos on a sleek, rectangular platter, placing them in a diagonal line for an elegant and modern presentation. This will create a visually appealing display that will captivate the judges' attention.

  3. Garnish with precision: Carefully place the shredded lettuce and diced tomatoes on top of the tacos, ensuring that each element is meticulously arranged to create a visually stunning and balanced composition.

  4. Incorporate a touch of elegance with the sour cream: Instead of simply dolloping the sour cream on top, use a piping bag to create delicate swirls or intricate patterns, adding a touch of sophistication to the dish.

  5. Highlight the flavors with a cheese dusting: Grate a small amount of aged cheddar cheese and sprinkle it over the tacos just before serving. This will not only enhance the flavor but also add a touch of finesse to the presentation.

  6. Emphasize the aroma: Just before presenting the dish, sprinkle a pinch of freshly chopped cilantro over the tacos to infuse the air with a delightful fragrance, creating an immersive sensory experience for the judges.

Essential Tools for Making Oven-Baked Beef Tacos

  • Skillet: A skillet is a flat-bottomed pan used for frying, searing, and browning foods. It's a versatile tool for cooking the ground beef in this recipe.
  • Whisk: A whisk is used for blending and mixing ingredients together, such as the taco seasoning and water in this recipe.
  • Baking dish: A baking dish is a pan specifically designed for baking in the oven. It's used to hold the taco shells and beef while they bake.
  • Oven: An oven is a kitchen appliance used for heating and baking. It's essential for baking the beef tacos to perfection.

How To Store and Freeze Oven-Baked Beef Tacos

  • Let the tacos cool completely before storing or freezing.
  • To store in the refrigerator, place the cooled tacos in an airtight container or wrap them tightly in aluminum foil or plastic wrap. They will keep in the fridge for up to 3-4 days.
  • For longer storage, you can freeze the tacos. Wrap each taco individually in aluminum foil or plastic wrap, then place them in a freezer-safe container or zip-top bag. Label the container with the date and contents.
  • Frozen tacos will keep for up to 2-3 months in the freezer.
  • To reheat refrigerated tacos, place them on a baking sheet and warm in a preheated 350°F (175°C) oven for about 10 minutes, or until heated through.
  • For frozen tacos, remove the desired number from the freezer and let them thaw in the refrigerator overnight. Then, reheat in the oven as directed above.
  • Alternatively, you can reheat frozen tacos directly from the freezer. Place them on a baking sheet and bake in a preheated 350°F (175°C) oven for about 15-20 minutes, or until heated through.
  • Note that the lettuce, tomato, and sour cream toppings may not freeze well, so it's best to add fresh toppings after reheating the tacos.

How To Reheat Leftover Oven-Baked Beef Tacos

  • Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Place the leftover tacos on a baking sheet and cover them loosely with aluminum foil. This will help prevent the taco shells from drying out or becoming too crispy while reheating. Bake for about 10-15 minutes, or until the tacos are heated through and the cheese is melted.

  • If you prefer a crispier taco shell, you can skip the aluminum foil and place the tacos directly on the baking sheet. Bake for 5-7 minutes, or until the shells are crispy and the filling is heated through.

  • For a quicker option, you can use the microwave. Place the leftover tacos on a microwave-safe plate and cover them with a damp paper towel. This will help keep the taco shells from becoming too soggy. Microwave on high for 30-60 seconds, or until the tacos are heated through.

  • If you have an air fryer, you can use it to reheat your tacos for a crispy texture without the need for an oven. Preheat the air fryer to 350°F (175°C) and place the tacos in the basket. Cook for 3-5 minutes, or until the shells are crispy and the filling is heated through.

  • For a stovetop method, place the leftover tacos in a skillet over medium heat. Cover the skillet with a lid and heat for 3-5 minutes, or until the tacos are heated through and the cheese is melted. This method works well if you want to add some extra fillings or toppings to your tacos while reheating.

Random Fact About Oven-Baked Beef Tacos

Oven-baked beef tacos are a popular Tex-Mex dish that originated in the United States. Despite their name, tacos actually have a long history dating back to the indigenous people of Mexico. The first tacos were not made with the hard shells commonly used today, but rather with soft tortillas. The hard shell taco was popularized in the United States in the 1950s. Today, tacos are enjoyed worldwide and have countless variations, making them a versatile and beloved dish.

Is Making Oven-Baked Beef Tacos at Home Economical?

This oven-baked beef tacos recipe is quite cost-effective for a household. Ground beef is a budget-friendly protein, and the other ingredients are also reasonably priced. The versatility of the ingredients allows for customization based on budget and preferences. The approximate cost for a household of 4 people is around $15-$20. Overall, this recipe offers a great balance of flavor, nutrition, and affordability, earning a solid 8 out of 10 rating.

Are Oven-Baked Beef Tacos Healthy or Unhealthy?

The oven-baked beef tacos recipe, while delicious, is not particularly healthy. Here's why:

  • High in saturated fat: The recipe uses ground beef, which is typically high in saturated fat. Consuming too much saturated fat can increase the risk of heart disease and other health problems.
  • Refined carbohydrates: Taco shells are usually made from refined flour, which lacks fiber and nutrients compared to whole grain alternatives.
  • High in sodium: Taco seasoning and cheddar cheese contribute to the high sodium content of this dish. Excessive sodium intake can lead to high blood pressure and other health issues.
  • Limited vegetables: While the recipe includes lettuce and tomato, the amount is relatively small compared to the other ingredients.

To make this recipe healthier, consider the following modifications:

  • Use lean ground beef (90% or higher) or replace it with ground turkey or chicken for a lower fat option.
  • Opt for whole grain or corn taco shells to increase fiber intake.
  • Reduce the amount of taco seasoning or make your own seasoning mix with less salt.
  • Add more vegetables, such as diced onions, bell peppers, or shredded carrots, to boost the nutrient content.
  • Use reduced-fat cheddar cheese or a smaller amount of regular cheddar cheese to decrease the saturated fat content.
  • Serve the tacos with a side salad or extra vegetables to balance out the meal.

Editor's Thoughts on This Tasty Taco Recipe

This oven-baked beef tacos recipe is a delightful twist on traditional tacos. The use of the oven adds a wonderful crunch to the taco shells while keeping the filling warm and flavorful. The combination of seasoned ground beef, melted cheddar cheese, and fresh toppings creates a satisfying and delicious meal. It's a simple and convenient way to enjoy the flavors of a classic taco, and the addition of sour cream adds a creamy finish. This recipe is perfect for a quick and tasty weeknight dinner or for entertaining guests.

Enhance Your Oven Baked Beef Tacos Recipe with These Unique Side Dishes:

Guacamole: Creamy avocado mixed with zesty lime and a kick of jalapeno, perfect for adding a refreshing and flavorful element to your oven-baked beef tacos.
Cornbread: Moist and buttery cornbread, a classic side to complement the savory and spicy flavors of the beef tacos.
Fruit Salsa: A vibrant and colorful salsa made with fresh fruits like mango, pineapple, and strawberries, adding a sweet and tangy contrast to the hearty beef tacos.

Alternative Recipes Similar to Oven-Baked Beef Tacos

Spicy Beef Enchiladas: These spicy beef enchiladas are a perfect way to add some heat to your dinner. The combination of tender beef, spicy sauce, and melted cheese will have your taste buds dancing.
Mango Salsa Chicken: This mango salsa chicken recipe is a refreshing and flavorful dish that combines the sweetness of mango with the savory flavors of chicken. It's a perfect dish for a summer dinner party.
Creamy Mushroom Risotto: Indulge in the rich and creamy flavors of this mushroom risotto. The earthy mushrooms combined with the creamy rice make for a comforting and satisfying meal that's perfect for a cozy night in.

Suggested Appetizers and Desserts to Complement Oven-Baked Beef Tacos

Appetizers:
Stuffed Mushrooms: Impress your guests with these savory stuffed mushrooms, filled with a delicious mixture of cream cheese, garlic, and herbs. The perfect bite-sized appetizer to kick off any meal.
Spinach and Artichoke Dip: Indulge in this creamy and flavorful spinach and artichoke dip, served with crispy tortilla chips for the ultimate appetizer experience. A crowd-pleasing dish that will leave everyone coming back for more.
Desserts:
Chocolate Lava Cake: Indulge in a decadent, rich chocolate lava cake that oozes with warm, gooey goodness. The contrast between the moist cake and the molten center creates a truly irresistible dessert experience.
Apple Crisp: Savor the comforting flavors of tender, cinnamon-spiced apples topped with a crunchy oat and brown sugar crumble. This classic dessert is best enjoyed warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Why trust this Oven Baked Beef Tacos Recipe:

This recipe for oven-baked beef tacos is a guaranteed crowd-pleaser. The ground beef is cooked to perfection with a flavorful blend of taco seasoning and water, ensuring a delicious and savory filling. Baking the taco shells with the beef and cheddar cheese creates a crispy and gooey texture that will satisfy any craving. Topped with fresh lettuce, ripe tomato, and creamy sour cream, these tacos are a delightful combination of flavors and textures. Trust in this recipe to deliver a mouthwatering taco experience that will leave everyone coming back for more.

Share your thoughts on the Oven Baked Beef Tacos Recipe in the Recipe Sharing forum section.
FAQ:
Can I use a different type of meat instead of ground beef?
Yes, you can definitely use other types of meat such as ground turkey, chicken, or even a plant-based meat substitute for this recipe.
Can I make this recipe ahead of time and reheat it later?
Absolutely! You can prepare the beef tacos ahead of time and reheat them in the oven or microwave when you're ready to enjoy them.
Can I use soft tortillas instead of taco shells?
Of course! You can use soft tortillas instead of taco shells if you prefer. Just fill the tortillas with the beef and cheese, then bake them in the oven until the cheese is melted.
How can I make this recipe spicier?
If you like your tacos on the spicier side, you can add some chopped jalapeños or a dash of hot sauce to the beef mixture when cooking it.
Can I add other toppings to the tacos?
Absolutely! Feel free to get creative with your toppings. Salsa, guacamole, diced onions, or black olives would all be delicious additions to these oven-baked beef tacos.

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