Monday, September 6, 2021


Below you will find two Taco recipes.  The first one is from the Old El Paso site, which is the one we used.  The second recipe, from Taste of Home, the tacos were baked in the oven, which we didn't do, but there was a very nice refried beans recipe which was excellent.  I included the original two recipes for you to choose which one you would like to make.  You can look at the links above if you would also like to take a look at the original recipes.

Classic Beef Tacos - 10 servings

25 Minutes Prep

25 Minutes Total

Calories: 1 Taco is approximately 260

1 lb ground beef (at least 80% lean)

2/3 cup water

1 package (1 oz)  taco seasoning mix

1 can (10 ounces) diced tomatoes and green chiles, divided (this was our own addition after we saw the recipe below this one)

1 package (4.7 oz) Old El Paso™ Stand ‘N Stuff™ taco shells (10 shells), heated as directed on package

1-1/4 cups shredded cheddar cheese (5 oz)

1-1/4 cups shredded lettuce

3/4 cup diced tomato

1 cup sour cream

In 10-inch nonstick skillet, cook beef over medium-high heat 5 to 7 minutes, stirring frequently, until thoroughly cooked; drain. 

Stir in water and taco seasoning mix; heat to boiling. Reduce heat; simmer uncovered 3 to 4 minutes, stirring frequently, until thickened.

Divide beef among heated shells; top with cheese, lettuce, tomato and sour cream.

Tips given were:

Choose crunchy lettuce for this recipe, such as iceberg or romaine.

Suggested toppings: sliced green onion, sliced jalapeño, or drizzle with your favorite hot sauce.

(The recipe above is the one we followed for the tacos, plus the addition of the canned tomatoes and chilis which we thought a good idea from the recipe below. I have highlighted in red anything to do with the refried beans that we thought were excellent.)

Taste of Home Baked Beef Tacos – makes 12 servings

"This taco recipe takes classic taco ingredients and gives them a fresh approach by baking the shells upright in refried beans and tomatoes. The bottom gets soft, and the top stays crisp and crunchy. 

Author: Patricia Stagich, Elizabeth, New Jersey"

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Baking time: 20 minutes

Calories: approximately 277

1-1/2 pounds ground beef

1 envelope taco seasoning

2 cans (10 ounces each) diced tomatoes and green chiles, divided (you use one can in beef and one can in the refried beans)

1 can (16 ounces) refried beans

2 cups shredded Mexican cheese blend, divided

1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce, optional

12 taco shells

Chopped green onions

Preheat oven to 425°. In a large skillet, cook beef over medium heat, 6-8 minutes or until no longer pink, crumble meat; drain. Stir in taco seasoning and 1 can of undrained tomatoes; heat through.

Mix beans, 1/2 cup cheese, cilantro, remaining can of undrained tomatoes and, if desired, pepper sauce. Spread onto bottom of a greased 13x9-in. baking dish. (If you are making this separate to the recipe like I did, you can put the ingredients for the refried beans, after mixing,  into an oven proof dish, and put it in a 350 deg. oven for about 20 minutes, or until heated through.)

Stand taco shells upright on bean mixture. Fill each with 1 tablespoon cheese and about 1/3 cup beef mixture. Bake, covered, 15 minutes.

Uncover; sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake, uncovered, 5-7 minutes or until cheese is melted and shells are lightly browned. Sprinkle with green onions.

We got to talking about memories of the great Mexican restaurants we have visited in years passed, either locally or on road trips.  Not just for their wonderful dishes, but for the special people who made our meals even more of an enjoyable experience. Talking about all these memories, we thought it would be fun to make tacos, which is a particular favorite of my Sweet Other Half.  We were not disappointed in our choices.

I went on line and found two possibles. Gregg chose the original tacos in the first recipe, and I chose the refried beans.  Together they made a wonderful meal.  I'm sure the baked tacos would have been delicious too and will cook that some other time.

There were lots of leftovers.  We made a brunch with the refried beans the next day and had a 'huevos rancheros' thing going on by putting a fried egg on top (hubby's idea and it was a good one).  The next night we had a repeat dinner.  There are still leftovers and a couple of taco shells.  I thought I would make some kind of taco soup, and break the shells with a rolling pin to sprinkle on top of the soup.

If you don’t want the extra heat from the chilies, you can use a can of plain diced tomatoes. 

Since putting this post together I am adding a few things.  I had forgotten about making the soup but Anni from "Hootin' Anni's Day Trippin'' put this idea into my head.  She mentioned having a Mexican meal in her post here, and I thought to myself, I have most of that on hand.  This was our meal a few days later, and it was excellent.  Thanks Anni!  Ours was a real throw-together meal.  I had the tortillas in the freezer, we made another batch of refried beans as I also had a can left in the pantry, and we used the same recipe as above.  We had enough deli London broil in the fridge, which was already sliced real thin, so we heated that up in a frying pan and Gregg added two heaping tablespoons of chili crisp (mentioned in other food posts and a little fusion going on there again). There was also a little left of a rotisserie chicken from the day before, that went in too.  Some chopped up tomatoes, cilantro and green onions for a garnish, along with a tablespoon or two of sour cream, and we had another great meal going.  

These were not only tasty meals but, as I mentioned before, fun ones.  We always gets a bit messy so have plenty of napkins handy just in case.

Bon Appétit!


  1. Looking good and tasty Denise. We do have tacos once in a while..

    1. Thank you Margaret :) I think we will be having them more often now.

  2. Not for me, but I am glad you enjoyed them. Hooray for leftovers too.

    1. Hi Sue, no not for everyone I know :) Yes, hooray for leftovers!

  3. Oh yes!!! Got leftovers?!!!? I love everything Mexican. And yours, Denise, sounds to be pure perfection. Yum.

    1. Thanks Anni, it turned out real tasty and thanks again for the inspiration :)

  4. Replies
    1. Muito obrigado. Um abraço e continuou boa semana :)

  5. Both pictures look absolutely delicious. I'm hungry now.

  6. Bob loves tacos, he would love either or both of these

  7. The fact that you had leftovers and could make other meals from them was a great thing about this original recipe, Denise.

  8. I like tacos so much. That crunch, and stuff falling out!
    We don't seem to have authentic Mexican restaurants here. Jut chains. I'd love to try a real one! OK, maybe not the time to travel...

    1. No not the time to travel Jenn but we'll get there. And tacos? Such a fun food :)

  9. Tortillas and tacos look delicious, taco shell in soup sounds good.

  10. I like the first recipe and will try that one. I have not made tacos in years. Thank you for inspiring me. I'll add the ingredients to my grocery list today.

    1. Thanks Gigi, I hope you and David enjoy them :)

  11. I think Mexican food is my comfort food. Your taco fillings look delicious.

    1. Thank you Ellen, it's definitely a comfort food :)

  12. This food seems delicious. Thank you for the recipes. :)

  13. Yumm.... those other meals were what I call 'planned-overs' -- whole new meals with the same ingredients. Just as good as the first one! I can't quite imagine the recipe you didn't try, with the upright baked shells. Seems like they'd fall apart (but mine always do anyway, like you say I have to have a tone of napkins handy.) Yours, with the addition sound wonderful as does everything else.

    1. Thank you Sallie :) 'Planned-overs' is a good term for them. I like that :) That's what we thought about the second recipe, and was not drawn to a soft corn taco.

  14. Your tacos sound wonderful, Denise. We love Mexican food. Over the last few cool days I made Taco Soup--lots of leftovers for quick meals. I always enjoy hearing how your husband contributes---my husband has many talents, but cooking is not one of them! He's a good sous chef, though!

    1. Thank you Martha Ellen, happy you enjoy. Your soup sounds delicious, and yay for the sous chef :)

  15. Pleased you enjoyed them ...

    All the best Jan

  16. Tacos always sound good to me, but Roger doesn't care much for them any more.

    1. Truthfully, I wasn't a big fan of tacos at one time so was right there with Roger, but lately I have been enjoying them :)


Thank you so for taking the time to leave a comment. I enjoy reading them very much and always try to return a visit. As I do monitor comments it may take a while for them to appear, even quite late depending on what is going on and how much time I am able to spend on the computer.

I appreciate all who look at my blog, but I won't be publishing any businesses. If you are only able to publish anonymously, would you sign your name please, and leave an addy so I can return your visit where possible? Thank you!