Tacos: Go-To Recipe #5

November 9, 2010

This isn’t really a recipe. And I feel silly even including it, because around here what I just typed would read like: I have this great new recipe for these fancy new things called “Sandwiches!” Because there’s no recipe for a taco, which is really just something, anything, put inside a tortilla. Crispy corn. Soft flour. Whatever. Tacos are what you make when you can’t think of anything to make and you just put random things in your refrigerator into a bread-like item. The key is the mix. And there are a few things I always have on-hand to make really good “on-purpose looking” tacos.




Peppers (green, red, and jalapeno)

Spinach or Iceberg Lettuce


New potatoes


Celery or carrots

Beans of any kind. Even Edamame. Whatever.

Squash or Pumpkin

Really, any vegetable on the Earth

Cilantro (some of you are opposed to this, some of you are wrong)

I’m terrible about buying produce, so I now grow 12 of these items in my yard. Honestly, it’s easier than buying them at the store. You really only need about two of these items at any time, although the more you have, the better you are as a human being. That’s the law of salad.


You can also go vegetarian, although I rarely do.


Beef of any kind


Fish of any kind


Pork of any kind

Eggs of any kind




Basically, any kind of protein is good.

My favorite is Venison. This is probably because we have a ridiculous amount of it in our freezer. Because half of the members of my immediate family kill lots of deer with bows and arrows. For real. And before you start to feel bad for the deer, you should really just feel bad for me because I had to spend most of my Thanksgiving Weekends at a hunting ranch, with a broken heart, after a variety of boyfriends broke up with me because I wasn’t a good enough Christian. True story. So don’t worry about the deer. The deer have it easy.

But back to the tacos.

I think the key is the seasoning. And here’s what I do.

Taco Seasoning

3 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons ground cumin

3 tablespoons granulated garlic

2 tablespoons salt

1 tablespoon ground black pepper

This is super simple. And I used to do it in a more complicated way, but I found this simple mixture in Matt Martinez’s Mex-Tex book (which is my very favorite Tex-Mex cookbook, and you’re into that, you should get it.) It makes anything taste Tex-Mex. I just quadruple the recipe and keep a bunch of it in my spice cabinet.

Also, you can add any kind if cheese (goat cheese is awesome on a taco) and/or sour cream.

And lime. Lime is always good.

The last step is the tortillas. Or the crispy corn taco shells. I can’t really speak to this, because they make them everyday at my local grocery grocery store, and I just buy them fresh. Although I’d love to know how to make them. Maybe I’ll put that on my life list. Until then, I’ll just buy them hot and fresh for 97 cents. I’m sure you can find some lovely store-bought options as well.

Remember, the key to the taco is to keep it easy. The taco is simple and the taco is sacred.

In fact, a taco is basically a metaphor for life:

Make it like you like it. Use what you have. Be creative.

And enjoy.

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  • Reply Ashley November 9, 2010 at 9:00 am

    God bless Texas. Oh, how I miss it so.

  • Reply Karen/Chookooloonks November 9, 2010 at 10:30 am

    Dude! You forgot THE QUESO!

  • Laura Harrison Mayes
    Reply Laura November 9, 2010 at 5:14 pm

    The Queso goes without saying.

  • Reply jenijen November 12, 2010 at 1:41 pm

    We *always* have Mexican cokes and Jarritos with our tacos, too! 🙂

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