Taco Salad

Taco salad can mean so many different things or variations. This recipe is a very different variation from the typical taco salad you would expect. I grew up having this in my home, as it comes from my Grandma Jo’s (ranch grandma) kitchen. The funny thing is when I served it to my husband for the 1st time while dating, it was nothing new to him. He had a similar salad growing up too. I now make it for dinner in our house at least every other week. We also make it for very large family gatherings, because it feeds a lot of people with out slaving in the kitchen all day. Over the years, I have made quite a few changes to give it better nutritional value while still maintaining the flavor profile. My grandmother made the dressing with store bought Catalina mixed with the mayo and sour cream (Yum!), beans, and served it with tortilla chips. I made up my own Catalina dressing that tastes very similar, but with out all the sugar, removed the beans, and chips, and added more great vegetables.

Taco Salad

Tessa Ludwig
This is a fast easy meal. Great for week night dinners or for large crowds. It isn't great left over. Only toss what you are going to eat if you are making a large batch and not eating it all at that time.
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Prep Time 30 mins
Course Main Course, Salad
Servings 8 Servings
Calories 420 kcal


Large Salad Bowl
Large Saute Pan



  • 2.5 lbs lean ground beef
  • 1/4 onion diced
  • 1 15 oz can tomato sauce
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • sea salt and pepper to taste


  • 3 TBS no sugar added ketchup I use Heinz
  • 1 TBS spicy brown mustard
  • 2 TBS olive oil
  • 1 TBS +1 tsp distilled vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp stevia
  • 1/3 cup mayo
  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • sea salt and pepper to taste


  • 1 head iceberg lettuce chopped
  • 2 green onion stalks chopped
  • 15 cherry tomatoes sliced in 1/2
  • 1 15 oz can of black olives sliced
  • 1 avocado chopped
  • 1/2 bunch cilantro*optional chopped
  • 1/2 jalapeno*optional diced
  • 1 cup shredded cheese Mexican blend or cheddar



  • Place ground beef in large skillet on stove top on medium heat. Add diced up onion. Cook all the way through stirring often. When cooked all the way through drain fat off the meat.
  • Add tomato sauce, chili powder, garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Stirring until well combined.
  • Leave on low heat on simmer burner, keeping warm until adding to salad.


  • Whisk together ketchup, spicy brown mustard, olive oil, distilled vinegar, onion powder, garlic powder, and stevia in a medium sized bowl.
  • Whisk in mayo and sour cream. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Set aside and save to dress salad.


  • Cut up all salad ingredients and place in a very large salad/mixing bowl.
  • Add dressing and toss all ingredients together.
  • When well combined add in ground beef, tossing well.
  • Serve immediately


Serving: 1.5cupsSodium: 678.1mgSugar: 5gFiber: 4.1gPotassium: 698.2mgCholesterol: 99.1mgCalories: 420kcalMonounsaturated Fat: 3.4gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3.4gSaturated Fat: 9.9gFat: 26.5gProtein: 33.9gCarbohydrates: 9.8g
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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Tessa Ludwig

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