Authentic Rio Rancho Taco Meat Recipe

5 / 5 (1 review) No Comments

Rio Rancho Taco Meat recipe

How to Make Taco Meat Like Mexican Restaurants

Are you getting tired of using the same old pre-made taco seasoning packets from the stores? Maybe it’s time to start spicing it up by making your own authentic taco meat, from scratch! I’m going to show you exactly how to do that.

This is one of my favorite taco meat recipes. It’s also great for burritos, taco salads, and nachos. I love to make this recipe for three main reasons:

  • First of all, it has so much more flavor than the store-bought seasoning
  • Second, it’s cheaper; and
  • Third, it’s easy and quick to make!

I can whip up a big batch of this taco meat all in one day, divide it into meal-sized portions, and then throw it in the freezer. Then, whenever I need some for a meal, I just pull out a bag from the freezer.


The long list of ingredients for this recipe may look a bit overwhelming, but don’t worry, it’s really not too bad. All of the ingredients are pretty common and you probably have some of them on hand already.

If you have some extra time and you want to add some really nice fresh flavor to your taco meat, try using a homemade salsa.

Freezer taco meat

Freezing & Serving Tips

Freezing this taco meat is pretty straightforward. Once you’ve cooked and seasoned it, simply let it cool, and then portion it into freezer bags. Try to make it lay flat so that it’s easy to fit in your freezer.

Once you’re ready to cook the meat, just remove it from the freezer, thaw/defrost it, and then just heat it up in a skillet. Serve it in a warm tortilla and top it off with your favorite taco toppings!

Learn more about Freezer Meal Cooking:

Authentic Rio Rancho Taco Meat Recipe

5 / 5 (1 review)
Prep Time: 5 mins | Cook Time: 35-55 mins
Yield: 2 lbs | Serves: 4-6 servings


  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 lbs. ground beef
  • 1 cup mild or medium salsa
  • 2 Tbs. taco seasoning
  • 1 4 oz. packet ranch dressing and seasoning mix (I like Hidden Valley)
  • 1 1/2 tsp. brown sugar
  • 1 (4 oz.) can diced green chiles
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder or 2 cloves fresh minced garlic
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. red pepper, ground or flakes (sometimes I just use hot sauce)
  • 3/4 cup water


  1. Cooking Day Instructions:

  2. Brown the onion and ground beef in a skillet.
  3. Drain any excess grease.
  4. Add salsa, taco seasoning, ranch seasoning, brown sugar, green chiles, garlic, salt, pepper, and red pepper.
  5. Stir to mix well.
  6. Add the water and simmer on low for about 30-45 minutes until mixture has thickened.
  7. If the meat mixture is too thick, you can always add more water and adjust the seasonings.
  8. Let cool.
  9. Freeze in meal-size portions.
  10. I like to use my Food Saver or just put the mixture in a gallon bag and shape it flat so it's easier to store in my freezer.
  11. Serving Day Instructions:

  12. Remove meat mixture from the freezer and thaw or defrost in the microwave.
  13. Heat through and serve in taco shells or warm tortillas.
  14. Top with cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, sour cream or any of your favorite toppings.
Ingredients: Beef, Brown Sugar, Crushed Red Pepper Flakes, Green Chilies, Onion, Pepper, Ranch Dressing, Salsa, Salt, Taco Seasoning, Water
Meal Type: Main Dish
Categories: Meat and Poultry, Mexican, Make Ahead/Freezer Meal

Leave a Review/Reply

Want to see your picture by your comment? Get your custom avatar by registering for free at Gravatar.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Rate this recipe: