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A plate of crunchy beef tacos with a cheese sauce on top.

Crunchy Ground Beef and Cheesy Tacos

Teri & Jenny
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Servings 6
Calories 406 kcal


  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 ½ teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon chile powder
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper

cheese sauce

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 1 ¼ cups whole milk
  • 4 ounces grated sharp cheddar
  • 2 ounces grated white cheddar
  • ½ teaspoon ground mustard
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cayenne pepper


  • 6 (5 inch) crunchy taco shells
  • 1 ½ cups loosely packed shredded lettuce
  • 2 roma tomatoes, seeded and diced


  • Pour oil into a skillet and place over medium-high heat.
  • Add beef and sauté, while breaking up into small pieces. Cook beef for 3 to 4 minutes.
  • Stir tomato paste, garlic powder, smoked paprika, salt, onion powder, chile powder, cumin, and black pepper into the ground beef and stir until fully incorporated and beef has cooked though. Low heat to medium-low and simmer for 4 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
  • Cheese sauce: Melt butter into a small saucepan over medium heat. Add flour and whisk together. Cook for about 2 to 3 minutes. Whisk milk into the mixture and continue to whisk until no lumps remain and mixture begins to thicken. Whisk cheeses into the mixture, one at a time, allowing cheese to melt completely before adding more. Stir in the remaining sauce ingredients and stir until smooth. Remove from heat.
  • Assemble: Fill taco shells with ground beef, followed by cheese sauce, lettuce and tomatoes. Serve immediately.


Serving: 1tacoCalories: 406kcalCarbohydrates: 16gProtein: 27gFat: 26gSaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 92mgSodium: 693mgPotassium: 509mgFiber: 2gSugar: 4gVitamin A: 1117IUVitamin C: 4mgCalcium: 286mgIron: 3mg
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