My taco salad with Catalina dressing and crunchy Doritos has all of my favorite classic taco flavors, finished with a tangy dressing, and a satisfying crunch.
This easy meal will get rave reviews from picky eaters when served as the main dish and is always a big hit at family gatherings. Best of all, it is ready in only 15 minutes!
Ingredients and Substitutions
- Lean ground beef - I recommend using 90/10 beef so it doesn't get too greasy. If you use 80/20, make sure to drain out the excess fat from the skillet. You could even use ground turkey or ground chicken instead in this simple salad.
- Taco Seasoning - Use the equivalent seasoning needed for 2 pounds of meat.
- Iceberg Lettuce - Romain lettuce is a good substitute, or buy shredded lettuce at the grocery store to save time.
- Shredded Cheddar Cheese
- Canned Sliced Black Olives - You can use whole black olives but then you have to slice them yourself, which is a pain.
- White Onion - You can use a yellow onion or a sweet onion, but white onions have the best crunch. The flavor of red onion would overpower this salad in my opinion.
- Fresh Tomatoes - Pico de Gallo is a great substitute.
- Catalina Salad Dressing - Western dressing, Ranch dressing, or even French dressing will work as a great substitute.
- Nacho Cheese Doritos - Feel free to substitute your favorite Doritos flavor. I have enjoyed this recipe with Cool Ranch Doritos too. You could use tortilla chips as well for a crunch, but they bring much less flavor to the party.
If you wish to customize this easy recipe, sour cream would be a great addition. You can also add your fresh veggies like green onions, sweet corn, black beans, or green peppers as well!
How to make it
This is a really easy taco salad recipe to make. Begin by browning the ground beef in a large skillet. Once browned, stir in the taco seasoning.
Tip: It is often easier to add a little water when adding the taco seasoning to help it disperse more evenly. Then cook the water out.
The vegetables can all be prepped and chopped while the ground beef cooks. Place the prepared vegetables in a large bowl. Once the ground beef is cooked, remove it from the heat and let the meat mixture cool.
Once the beef is room temperature, (so it won't wilt the lettuce), add it to the large bowl with the Doritos and plenty of tangy Catalina dressing, to taste. Mix well with a wooden spoon and serve.
How to store it
This delicious taco salad recipe with Catalina dressing is great to make in advance, actually, it is best to make in advance because it tastes fantastic cold the next day! Just store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator and add the dressing and crushed Doritos when you are ready to eat. The Doritos will get soft and mushy if you keep them in the fridge with the salad.
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Doritos Taco Salad with Catalina dressing
- 2 pounds lean ground beef
- 2 packets Taco Seasoning (or equivalent for 2lbs meat)
- 1 head Iceburg Lettuce (chopped)
- 8 ounces Shredded Cheddar Cheese
- 6.5 ounce canned Sliced Black Olives
- 1 medium White onion (chopped)
- 2 large Tomatoes (chopped)
- Catalina Dressing
- Nacho Cheese Doritos
- Brown ground beef in a large skillet over medium heat and add the taco seasoning. Set aside and let cool.
- Chop all vegetables and place in a large bowl with cheese.
- Once taco meat is no longer hot, add to the bowl and toss to combine.
- Add catalina dressing to taste and top generously with Doritos.
This recipe was originally published on FoxValleyFoodie.com on May 26, 2015.