Classic American Tacos

For many of us, this classic combination of ground beef, shredded lettuce, and cheese were the tacos we grew up with. It wasn’t until later in life that we learned that other than being called tacos, this version had little to do with real Mexican cuisine.

This taco recipe is still one of my favorite comfort foods. We regularly make up a batch of taco meat and keep it in the fridge for quick lunches and dinners.

Classic American Tacos Featured

Classic American Tacos

5 from 1 vote
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Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 4 servings


  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 cup white onion, minced
  • 1 4 oz can roasted green chilis, diced

Spice Mixture

  • 1/3 cup taco sauce
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 3/4 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper

Taco Fixins

  • 1/2 head iceberg lettuce, shredded
  • 2 cups shredded cheese
  • 8 to 10 tortillas, hard or soft
  • Taco sauce
  • Sour cream


  • Sauté the onion and roasted green chilis in a little oil, add in the ground beef to brown. Make sure to stir the ground beef regularly to break it into small bits.
  • While the meat is browning, mix the taco sauce, water, garlic powder, chili powder, cumin, salt, and pepper together.
  • Once the ground beef has finished browning, drain any extra liquid, and turn the heat down to a low simmer.
  • Add in the seasonings and cook covered for 10 minutes or so, stirring occasionally, to incorporate all the flavors.
  • To make the tacos, warm the tortillas and top with a couple of ounces of ground beef, shredded cheese, and lettuce.
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