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This one pan taco skillet recipe has tender seasoned ground beef, black beans, salsa, and an irresistible cheesy top layer! It’s ready in about 30 minutes.

You may also like these Super Easy Ground Beef Tacos next for another hassle-free meal.

cheesy taco skillet topped with sour cream, scallions, and cilantro

Why you’ll love it

Taco skillets are just so simple to throw together. There’s soft tortillas, perfectly seasoned ground beef, loads of salsa, and then they’re topped with cheese and baked to perfection. So good, right? It’s tacos but easier.

This family-friendly taco skillet dinner is great for busy weeknights since it’s fast and has minimal cleanup! I love anything Tex-Mex, and chances are your picky eaters will enjoy this one too for taco night. A creative and fun dinner that doesn’t take a lot of effort is always a good idea.

What you’ll need

  • Ground beef – I like to use 90% lean
  • Onion – use any variety, but we like sweet (Vidalia) onion best
  • Homemade taco seasoning – the tasty blend we’re using has garlic powder, onion powder, smoked paprika, ground cumin, and chili powder. I prefer using a homemade mix for freshness, taste, and to control salt content.
  • Black beans – a classic in Tex-Mex recipes for added protein and flavor. Pinto beans are good too.
  • Salsa – I used Newman’s Own brand salsa (Jalapeno Lime). Use your go-to brand!
  • Tortillas – I like it with tortillas best, but you could try making this with tortilla chips or Doritos instead of the flour tortillas if that’s all you have
  • Cheese – we’re using a Tex-Mex blend. Just cheddar works or whatever mix you prefer

Suggested toppings

  • I set out small bowls of toppings on the table so that everyone can choose their own individually.
  • Chopped cilantro, scallions, sliced avocado or guacamole, sour cream, sliced black olives, red onions, and chopped tomatoes are some of our favorites! Top it all off with a squeeze of fresh lime.

How to make a taco skillet

This is an overview with step-by-step photos. Full ingredients & instructions are in the recipe card below.

frying ground beef in a skillet and adding salsa and tortillas

Brown the ground beef and onions with the taco spices in a skillet, and then drain the fat. Add in the salsa, cut-up tortillas, and black beans.

adding cheese to a taco skillet

Stir it all up, and let it heat through. Top the skillet with cheese, and then broil for a few minutes until golden and bubbly. Serve hot with your favorite toppings and enjoy!

Pro tip

  • The tortillas do soften up as they soak up some liquid, so if you’re not a fan of that, you can either just leave them out entirely or serve them on the side. You can also add them as a layer between the meat and the cheese without stirring them in just before popping the skillet in the oven.

Substitutions and variations

  • Swap the ground beef for ground turkey if you prefer, but you will need to add some olive oil (a tablespoon or so) to the skillet in step 1 since it’s leaner.
  • Want to make this spicy? Add in a pinch of cayenne pepper, some hot sauce, a chopped jalapeno pepper, or use a spicy salsa.
  • You could swap the individual spices for a couple tablespoons of ready-made taco seasoning if you prefer.

What to serve with it

  • It’s a meal it itself, but we really can’t resist making a big green salad with this Chipotle Cilantro Lime Ranch Dressing. It’s seriously addictive.
  • You could also make some Spanish rice.
cheesy beef taco skillet close-up with a spoonful being lifted out of the pan

Leftovers and storage

  • It’s best served fresh, especially since the tortillas will soften up more, but leftovers will keep in the fridge for 3-4 days.
  • Pop leftovers in the microwave until warmed through or in the oven if it’s still in the oven-proof skillet.
  • I don’t recommend freezing leftovers of this taco skillet.
close-up of beef taco skillet

Questions about this easy taco skillet, or did you make it? Let me know in the comments below!

cheesy taco skillet topped with sour cream, scallions, and cilantro
5 from 10 votes

Beef Taco Skillet

This one pan taco skillet recipe has tender seasoned ground beef, black beans, salsa, and an irresistible cheesy top layer! It's ready in about 30 minutes.
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Total: 30 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients 

  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1/2 medium onion chopped
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 (14 fluid ounce) can black beans drained & rinsed
  • 1 (14.5 fluid ounce) jar salsa use your favorite kind
  • 4 medium flour tortillas cut into quarters
  • 1 cup Tex-Mex cheese blend shredded
  • Toppings: sour cream, chopped scallions, cilantro, avocado, etc. optional, to taste

Instructions 

  • Add the beef and onions to a skillet over medium-high heat. Once you've broken the meat up a bit with your spoon, add in the spices. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 8-10 minutes or until the beef has cooked through. Spoon out excess fat if there's a lot of it.
  • Preheat your oven broiler (high heat setting) and move the rack to the top third of the oven.
  • Reduce the stove heat to medium and add in the black beans, salsa, and tortillas. Toss gently until the tortillas are folded in (I find it easiest to do this with two spoons), and ensure they're spread out around the skillet fairly evenly (so everyone gets some when you dish it up). See note below on another method you can try if you don't want the tortillas to be very soft/soak up liquid.
  • Let the skillet heat through for a few minutes.
  • Top the skillet with the cheese, and transfer it to your oven. Leave it in there for a few minutes so the cheese gets nice and bubbly and browned (watch it carefully).
  • Serve immediately with desired toppings. Season with salt & pepper if needed.

Notes

  • The tortillas will soften up/soak up some liquid, so if you’re not a fan of that, you can either just leave them out entirely (serve them on the side as you would with normal tacos) or add them as a layer between the meat and the cheese (without stirring them in) just before popping the skillet in the oven.
  • Nutritional information is provided as a courtesy only and should be construed as an estimate rather than a guarantee. Ingredients can vary and Salt & Lavender makes no guarantees to the accuracy of this information.

Nutrition

Calories: 508kcal, Carbohydrates: 50g, Protein: 44g, Fat: 15g, Saturated Fat: 7g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 92mg, Sodium: 1217mg, Potassium: 1193mg, Fiber: 12g, Sugar: 6g, Vitamin A: 1531IU, Vitamin C: 3mg, Calcium: 257mg, Iron: 7mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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Hi! Iā€™m Natasha.

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26 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Followed recipe pretty much as is and it was delicious ! I used your suggestion to use chips instead of tortillas. (we used fritos) My family loves all your recipes, I make at least one meal a week from this site!
    my question for this one is about doubling it, would it still fit in one skillet? What would you suggest?

    1. Hi Hope! I’m so glad you enjoyed it and other recipes on my site – I’m happy you keep coming back!! šŸ˜€ Let’s see… it really depends on the size of the skillet. The one in the photos is 10.25″ and it’s been a while since I’ve made this one, but I have a feeling that doubling it might be a bit too much in that skillet. If you have a fairly deep 12″ one then that could work. Or worst case, do 2 skillets (not ideal but at least you’d have predictable results).