Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Taco Salad!

Often when I ask my boys what they want for dinner, Elmer will ask for tacos.  He loves them.  I think his favorite part is dipping chips into the taco mess, but whatever.  I'll take what I can get.

Often I will just use my chili with less broth as a taco meat, but last night I changed it up a bit and used the taco seasoning recipe from my friend over at Love to Be in the Kitchen.  Now this looks a lot like her Corona Turkey Taco Mix, but I was doing this before she posted that recipe, I swear!  Tacos are a great way to sneak in some veggies. 
So here is my taco meat. 
Here is the base for the salad.  I got pretty lazy and bought the salad mix with carrots and red cabbage in it.  It was cheap, and it was good.
All mixed together...

And here are the boys, all digging in.  I think my favorite part about this was when Elmer said "Mom, this is good dinner" about two bites in.  Hooray!

They liked it so much they were eating it without the Doritos to dip into it!  (I still gave them Doritos about halfway through though).

In full disclosure, when I made the seasoning, I left out the salt because I prefer not to use much salt.  I didn't miss it.  I also left out the cayenne pepper because I didn't have any.  It was still delicious and had plenty of kick.

Taco Meat:
1/2 lb ground turkey
1 can black beans
1 green pepper
1 c frozen corn
2 carrots
taco seasoning (packet or homemade)
1 clove garlic
(Add 1 can tomatoes, it'll be great!)
(and an onion if they don't make your husband cry!)
Brown turkey in iron skillet (I got one for Christmas, I'm so excited!).  Finely chop pepper, garlic, and carrots in food processor.  Leaving skillet at medium heat, add beans, pepper, seasoning, and chopped veggies.  Stir until well blended, let veggies heat through, then reduce to low until you're ready to use it.
To make the salad:  I really hate to have the huge chunks of lettuce that are too big to be eaten in one bite.  So I took scissors to the lettuce and cut it into tiny pieces that my boys could handle eating.  Then I quartered some cherry tomatoes and shredded some cheese over the top.  Top with the taco meat, serve with Doritos!
In the future, I think I'll toss the tomatoes in with the meat, since tomatoes are one of the few veggies that are actually better for you if they're cooked.  (You could also use canned tomatoes if you go that way, which is a bit cheaper).  I would love to put some onion in as well- cook it with the meat even!  But my husbands eyes go nuts when I use onions.  He's a good sport, but sometimes I take pity on him). I would also normally serve this with sour cream, but mine was at my parents house from making them Ritz Chicken Cordon Bleu the other night. 
This dinner went over really well with my littles, even Littlest Bit!
I loved the colors- Green pepper, green lettuce, orange carrots, red tomatoes, purple for the red cabbage, yellow corn, black beans.  Hooray for eating a rainbow!
In this meal you get cold busting vitamin C, Vitamin A that's good for your eyes and skin, lycopene, antioxidants, and lots of protein!

Another way to serve this if you don't want to give your kids Doritos?  Make a quesadilla.  Or case of dee-a as Wiley calls it.  This meat is extremely versatile!

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