Enjoy a fuss-free taco night with these simple ground turkey tacos. Ground turkey taco meat is cooked with a homemade taco seasoning, then loaded into warm tortillas with your choice of toppings.
Ground turkey tacos are the weeknight hero of the dinner table – simple, satisfying, and reliably delicious. This no-nonsense recipe brings together lean ground turkey, sautéed onions and garlic, and a homemade taco seasoning, creating a flavorful filling that's easy on effort but big on taste.
Sprinkle on the cheese and customize the toppings to suit your family’s tastebuds. For larger gatherings, double or triple the taco meat, offer a variety of toppings and let your guests assemble their own creations. Everyone loves a good taco bar!
Tips for making this recipe
- Go Lean with Turkey: Opt for lean ground turkey to lighten up the meal. It's a healthy choice without compromising on flavor, especially when paired with vibrant spices. You can use either lean (93%) or extra lean (99%) ground turkey. I usually opt for lean because extra lean tends to be a bit dry when cooked.
- Balancing Flavors: Taste the ground turkey taco meat as it simmers and adjust the seasoning if needed. Add a pinch of salt or more taco seasoning to suit your tastebuds.
- Control the Consistency: If the taco filling seems too liquidy, allow it to simmer uncovered for a bit longer to reduce excess moisture. A thicker filling ensures your tacos stay intact.
- Warm the Tortillas: Warm the tortillas in a skillet just before assembling the tacos. This prevents them from becoming brittle or soggy and helps to prevent the tacos from falling apart. I use a cast-iron skillet set over medium heat and heat the tortillas on each side until golden brown spot start to appear.
- Fresh Citrus Squeeze: Before serving, a squeeze of fresh lime juice over the assembled tacos can brighten up the flavors.
- Avoid Overstuffing: While it's tempting to load up your tacos, be mindful not to overstuff them. This should help to prevent the tacos from falling apart.
- Customize Salsas: Experiment with different salsas to change up the flavors. Try a pineapple mango salsa
▪️ GROUND TURKEY: Feel free to substitute ground turkey with ground chicken, crumbled tofu, jackfruit, a textured vegetable protein or ground beef if you prefer a different protein.
▪️ CHEESE : Mix up the cheese options based on your liking. Monterey Jack or queso fresco can be excellent alternatives.
See recipe card below for full ingredients list & recipe directions.
How to make ground turkey tacos
COOK THE GROUND TURKEY: Start by sautéing some onions, then add the ground turkey and cook while crumbling with a wooden spoon or spatula. Add in the homemade taco seasoning, garlic and tomato paste and cook for another minute.
SIMMER: Pour in the chicken broth and simmer the mixture until most of the liquid is absorbed. The goal is for the meat to be moist, but not too liquidy. Extra liquid will soak the through the tacos, causing them to fall apart. See my Ground Turkey Taco Meat recipe for more details.
HEAT THE TORTILLAS: Heat the tortillas in a skillet set over medium heat. A cast-iron skillet does the best job, but any skillet will work. Or use a grill pan. When the tortillas are warm with a few brown spots on each side, they’re ready to use.
ASSEMBLE THE TACOS: Scoop some of the seasoned ground turkey into each tortilla and pile on the toppings!
Meal Prep and Storage
Make-Ahead: Prepare the turkey filling ahead of time and store it in an airtight container (I like these glass ones) in the refrigerator. When ready to serve, simply reheat and assemble the tacos with fresh toppings.
Storage in the fridge: Store any leftover taco filling in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to three days. Store the toppings in separate airtight containers to keep them fresh. I suggest cutting fresh avocado slices before serving the leftovers.
Freeze it: The cooked turkey filling freezes well. Store it in a freezer-safe container for up to two months. Thaw it in the refrigerator before reheating.
How to serve the tacos
For a larger gathering, set up a taco bar. Place the hot ground turkey filling in a crockpot to keep it warm. Set out heated tortillas, shredded cheese and a variety of toppings.
Frequently Asked Questions
Of course! The choice of tortillas is flexible, so go with what you prefer or have on hand.
Absolutely! You can prepare the taco filling in advance. Store it in the refrigerator in an airtight container. Reheat the filling and assemble the tacos just before serving. Or set out a taco bar and let your guests assemble their own tacos.
For a vegetarian twist, substitute the ground turkey with plant-based alternatives like crumbled tofu, lentils, or black beans.
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Ground Turkey Tacos
- 8 avocado slices
- 2 cups chopped tomatoes
- 1 ½ cup chopped romaine lettuce
- 1 cup grated sharp Cheddar cheese or Monterey Jack cheese
- Minced cilantro
- Prepare one batch of Ground Turkey Taco Meat (see link in ingredients list above).
- Heat a cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Another type of skillet or a grill pan can also be used. Heat the tortillas on each side until golden brown spots start to appear.
- Scoop ⅓ cup turkey taco meat into each tortilla. Divide the toppings evenly between the tacos. Serve immediately.
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