Savory Seasoned Taco Meat With Onions: A Quick And Flavorful Filling

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Taco night is a beloved tradition in homes across the globe. It’s a chance to gather with loved ones, unleash your creativity with toppings, and indulge in a symphony of flavors. But the heart and soul of any great taco lies in the taco meat. Fear not, taco enthusiasts, because this guide will transform you into a taco meat maestro! We’ll delve into a simple yet satisfying recipe featuring the humble onion, explore variations to suit every palate, and uncover the secrets to taco meat perfection.

Ingredients:

Taco Meat Recipe
Taco Meat Recipe

(Serves 4-6)

1 tablespoon olive oil

  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 1 pound ground beef (or ground turkey, chicken, or a blend)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained (fire-roasted for extra smokiness)
  • 1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional, for a kick)
  • 1/2 cup beef broth (or vegetable broth for a vegetarian option)
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro (optional, for garnish)

  • Directions:

    1. Heat the oil: In a large skillet or Dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium heat.

    2. Sauté the onion: Add the diced onion and cook until softened and translucent, about 5 minutes. Don’t rush this step! Caramelized onions add a touch of sweetness and depth of flavor to the taco meat.

    3. Brown the meat: Increase the heat to medium-high and add the ground meat. Break it up with a spoon as it cooks, ensuring even browning.

    4. Spice it up: Once the meat is browned, add the minced garlic and cook for another minute, allowing the fragrant garlic aroma to fill your kitchen. Now’s the time to unleash your inner spice master! Add the chili powder, cumin, smoked paprika, and cayenne pepper (if using). Stir to coat the meat evenly.

    5. Simmering symphony: Pour in the diced tomatoes with their juices, crushed tomatoes, and beef broth. Season with brown sugar, salt, and black pepper. Bring to a simmer, then reduce heat and let the flavors meld for 15-20 minutes. The longer you simmer, the richer the flavor becomes.

    6. Taste and adjust: After simmering, give the taco meat a taste. Feel free to adjust seasonings to your preference. Need more smokiness? Add a chipotle pepper in adobo sauce (minced). Craving a tangier flavor? A squeeze of fresh lime juice can do wonders.

    7. Serve and savor: Turn off the heat and stir in chopped fresh cilantro (optional) for a touch of brightness. Now comes the most exciting part – assemble your tacos! Pile the flavorful taco meat onto warmed tortillas, add your favorite toppings, and prepare to be transported to taco paradise.

    Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

    (Based on using ground beef)

    Calories: 450

  • Fat: 25g
  • Saturated Fat: 10g
  • Cholesterol: 70mg
  • Sodium: 750mg (adjust based on your chosen broth)
  • Carbohydrates: 25g
  • Fiber: 3g
  • Sugar: 10g
  • Protein: 35g

  • Keep in mind: These are approximate values and can vary depending on the specific ingredients you use.

    Beyond the Basics: Variations for Every Taco Lover

    This recipe is a fantastic foundation, but the beauty of taco meat lies in its versatility. Here are some ideas to tailor it to your taste:

    Ground meat alternatives: Swap out ground beef for ground turkey, chicken, chorizo, or a plant-based ground “meat” for a vegetarian option.

  • Spice it up (or down): For a fiery kick, increase the cayenne pepper or add a chopped jalapeno pepper. If you prefer a milder flavor, omit the cayenne pepper and reduce the chili powder.
  • Bean power: Add a can of drained and rinsed black beans or kidney beans for extra protein and fiber.
  • Veggie fiesta: Throw in chopped bell peppers, zucchini, or corn during the onion-sautéing step for added color and texture.