“Guess what I had for lunch today?”

“What should we do for dinner tonight?”

The answer to both of these questions: TACO SALAD. The anticipated response to both of these questions: “. . . again?”

Taco salad is my version of takeout. It is easy to make in a bind when the pantry is borderline empty. It takes minutes to put together. It always has me excited to eat it. Needless to say, it comprises 70% of my diet at this point.

For the sake of variety, and the fact that I live with/feed another human, my beloved taco salad can be quickly transformed with the addition of tortillas. Wrap that salad up into a cozy cocoon and the “. . . again?” response is instantly nullified because we aren’t having taco salad for the 3rd night in a row. We are having burritos. HA!

The best part about this recipe is that it isn’t a recipe. As a connoisseur of taco salads, I wanted to share my usual routine, but it is 100% customizable. Prefer meat in your mix? Add in ground beef or grilled chicken. Have some vegetables about to go bad? Roast them in the oven and throw them in! Prefer rice instead of quinoa? Swap it out!

The main objective of this dish is to have a quick, nutritious, satisfying meal with ample left overs to wrap up in a burrito the next day.

 

Taco Salad

 

Yield: 2 salads, 2 burritos

 

2 15 oz cans black beans or pinto beans, drained and rinsed

2 stalks romaine lettuce

1 red onion

1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon paprika

1 cup quinoa, cooked

¾ cup mexican blend shredded cheese

2 whole wheat tortillas

 

Topping Ideas

Plain Greek Yogurt

Avocado Slices

Salsa, prepared or homemade

Charred Corn

Diced Tomatoes

Diced Bell Pepper

Instructions

 

    1. Prep Ingredients. Wash produce, drain and rinse beans, cut lettuce into 1 in strips, and slice red onion into ½ in slices.
    2. Heat a saucepan with a drizzle of olive oil over medium heat. Add in onion slices, cumin, salt, garlic powder, and paprika. Cook until onions are soft.
    3. Add in beans to onion mixture and stir until heated through, 1-2 minutes (omit step prefer cold beans).
    4. Place ½ of the lettuce, onions, beans, quinoa, cheese and additional toppings into 2 bowls and serve immediately.

 

  • For burritos: Split remaining leftovers into two whole wheat tortillas and fold together.

 

 

Nutrition Facts:

 

1 Salad: 361 calories, 89 g carbohydrates, 16 g fat, 29 g protein

1 Burrito: 481 calories, 113 g carbohydrates, 18 g fat, 33 g protein

**nutrition will vary based on topping choices