All the flavors of TACOS in a delicious, hearty bowl! These Taco Bowls are easy to make and so delicious you’ll never even miss the shell!
When it comes to entertaining, there are certain foods you just know everyone will LOVE. Namely… anything related to tacos! Whether hard shell, soft shell, taco dip, or even taco soup… there’s no denying that tacos are one of the most universally loved food groups!
And this Taco Bowl is no exception.
Layered with rice, beans, taco meat, cheese, and all your favorite toppings, they have all the delicious flavor you’re looking for… minus the shell! Which means they’re super easy to assemble and naturally gluten free!
These bowls are the perfect meal to serve at your next party or gathering, and the recipe is easy to adjust for a group of any size. They can either be pre-assembled and served to guests as is… OR you can let everyone add their own toppings according to their individual tastes!
What you’ll need for this recipe
Rice – I used 1 cup of uncooked long grain white rice, which is the equivalent of 3 1/2 cups cooked. To take this recipe to the next level, substitute Cilantro Lime Rice!
Beans – When it comes to Mexican inspired dishes, black beans are always my favorite. I used 1 (15 ounce) can, drained, which is the equivalent of 1 cup of beans. You can feel free to substitute pinto beans, refried beans, or any type of beans you prefer.
Meat – To keep this recipe light, I used 1 pound of lean ground turkey. You can substitute ground beef, ground chicken, shredded chicken, or even omit the meat altogether for a vegetarian dish.
Taco seasoning – In order to avoid a bland, flavorless bowl, taco seasoning is a must! You can make homemade taco seasoning (always the best!) or 1 package of your favorite taco seasoning.
Cheese – If you ask me, no taco is complete without the cheese! I used 1 cup of shredded cheddar jack cheese in this recipe, but you can substitute cheddar, colby jack, queso fresco, or a Mexican blend.
Toppings – Finally, the toppings! I kept it simple with tomatoes, avocado, fresh jalapeños, and a dollop of my Cilantro Lime Sauce. Feel free to add any of your favorites, and also see below for additional ideas!
How to make Taco Bowls
Cook the rice – The first step, of course, is to cook the rice according to package (or recipe) instructions. While the rice is cooking, it’s the perfect time to brown the meat.
Brown the meat – Heat 1 Tablespoon of oil in a medium skillet. Add the meat and brown, crumbling as you go, until meat is no longer pink. Add the taco seasoning and simmer according to package (or recipe) instructions. Remove from heat and set aside.
Prepare the toppings – Prepare the toppings by chopping the veggies, shredding the cheese, and making the cilantro lime sauce.
Layer the bowls – Now you’re ready to layer the bowl! Divide the ingredients evenly among 4 bowls, starting with the rice, meat, beans, and cheese and finishing with any of your favorite toppings.
- Substitute brown rice or cilantro lime rice for long grain white rice
- Use any type of meat, including ground turkey, ground beef, ground chicken, rotisserie chicken, or chicken breast
- Leave the meat out to make it vegetarian
- Substitute pinto beans, charro beans, or refried beans for black beans
- Use any type of cheese you prefer
- Add any of your favorite taco toppings, including corn, black olives, lettuce, salsa, sour cream, or guacamole
- Serve it with tortilla chips to get that taco shell crunch
- Serve it over lettuce for a taco salad
Time saving tips
- Use Minute Rice in place of long grain rice
- Use pre-shredded cheese
- Substitute sour cream for cilantro lime sauce
- Use jarred jalapeños instead of fresh
- Make the rice ahead and simply reheat
What to pair with this Taco Bowl
- Jalapeño Margarita
- Pineapple Margarita
- Orange Margarita
- Frozen Mango Margarita
- Grapefruit Margarita
- 1 pound lean ground turkey
- 4 Tablespoons taco seasoning
- 1 can black beans, drained
- 3 1/2 cups white rice
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1 cup shredded cheddar jack cheese
- 1 avocado, sliced
- 1 jalapeño, sliced
- Prepare the rice according to package (or recipe) instructions. *While the rice is cooking, brown the meat.
- Brown the meat by heating 1 Tablespoon of oil in a medium skillet. Add the meat and brown, crumbling as you go, until meat is no longer pink. Add the taco seasoning and simmer according to package (or recipe) instructions. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Prepare the toppings by chopping the veggies, shredding the cheese, and making the cilantro lime sauce.
- Layer the Taco Bowls by dividing the ingredients evenly among 4 bowls, starting with the rice, meat, beans, and cheese and finishing with any of your favorite toppings.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 776Total Fat: 33gSaturated Fat: 11gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 18gCholesterol: 153mgSodium: 1363mgCarbohydrates: 69gFiber: 13gSugar: 3gProtein: 51g