The best beef taco filling ever

Beef tacos in white corn tortillas, served with refried black beans and
cilantro lime rice inspired by Zocalo. (For a rice tutorial, click here.)

Raise your hands if taco night at your house involves the McCormick/Schilling seasoning packet.

Until recently, I would have been right there with you but I found what I might melodramatically call the holy grail of taco meat recipes. Adapted from the America’s Test Kitchen cookbook, the recipe has a nice balance of spice and meatiness which blows away the seasoning packets of old. Yes, it really is that good!

Total time to table is approximately 30 minutes. Serve in warmed tortillas (fried, if you’re feeling feisty) with toppings like: shredded cheddar cheese, sliced jalapenos, shredded lettuce, sliced black olives, diced cucumber, cilantro, salsa, sliced radishes, avocados, and Tapatio or Cholula.

1 tablespoon canola oil
1 large onion, chopped
6-8 garlic cloves, chopped
4 tablespoons chili powder
1 tablespoon cumin
2 teaspoons coriander
1-2 teaspoons oregano
1/2-1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon salt
2 pounds lean ground beef or turkey (I tend to use 1-1.5, but I keep the sauce proportions the same)
1 can tomato sauce (the Test Kitchen says 8 oz, but I use a standard sized can)
1 cup chicken broth
4 teaspoons cider vinegar
2 teaspoons brown sugar

1. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat
2. Saute onion until softened, 5-ish minutes
3. Add garlic, spices and salt, cooking until fragrant, give or take 30 seconds
4. Incorporate the ground beef, crumbling it into small pieces and cook through
5. Stir in tomato sauce, broth, vinegar and sugar. Simmer on low 10-15 minutes until thickened.
6. Season to taste with salt and fresh cracked pepper.

This will simmer nicely for an extended period of time if you’re busy prepping other parts of the meal. Cook on low, adding a little broth if the sauce starts to stick to the bottom.



Other dinner ideas

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