Taco Bake Casserole


This taco bake is quick and easy and will satisfy even the most picky eaters! You can modify this simple casserole to add things you love. It's yummy! Top with tomatoes, lettuce, salsa, or whatever you like on your Mexican food.

Prep Time:
15 mins
Cook Time:
35 mins
Total Time:
50 mins
1 9x13-inch casserole

Tired of the same old recipes on Taco Tuesday? Then mix it up with this irresistible (and incredibly easy) taco bake. This taco bake casserole is ready in less than an hour and it's packed with all your favorite taco flavors that everyone at the table will gobble up.

Pour yourself a refreshing margarita and enjoy this top-rated recipe.

high angle looking at a plate of taco bake casserole
Dotdash Meredith Food Studios

How to Make Taco Bake

You'll be shocked at how easy it is to make this taco bake. The full, step-by-step recipe is below — but here's a brief description of how to make this casserole:

Brown the Beef

Cook the ground beef and onions until beef is browned. Drain the grease and add water and taco seasoning. Cook until the water and seasoning mixture has thickened.

Cook the Taco Mixture

Add refried beans, olives, green chiles, and salsa to the ground beef mixture. Cook until all the ingredients are warmed through.

Assemble the Casserole

Sprinkle broken taco shells over the bottom of a casserole dish. Top with a layer of ground beef mixture, then a layer of cheese. Repeat all three layers.


Bake the casserole until the cheese is melted and bubbly.

How Long to Cook Taco Bake?

We like to follow this recipe, which calls for a 20 to 25 minute bake time. You'll know the taco bake is done when the casserole is warmed through and the cheese is melted and bubbly.

What to Serve With Taco Bake

You can top this taco bake just like you would top traditional tacos. Try adding shredded lettuce, tomatoes, sour cream, salsa, guacamole, or taco sauce.

How to Store Taco Bake

Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to five days. Reheat in the microwave or in the oven until warmed through.

How to Freeze Taco Bake

Assemble the casserole in a baking dish (use a disposable baking dish for easy freezing). Wrap the entire thing (pan and all) in a layer of storage wrap then a layer of aluminum foil. Freeze the casserole for up to three months.

Thaw in the fridge overnight, then bake as directed. You may need to add a few minutes to the bake time to account for the cold temperature.

Allrecipes Community Tips and Praise

"The kids loved it. I love the versatility of the recipe. This time I used Doritos instead of taco shells and fire roasted tomatoes. Next time, I think I'll try lime tortilla chips and add guacamole, shredded lettuces, and sour cream to really dress it up," says FlyingTony.

"This is my kind of recipe....easy and tasty!! Also quick to throw together. It was a big hit with our guests," according to Gotrecipe.

Editorial contributions by Bailey Fink


  • cooking spray (such as Pam®)

  • 1 ½ pounds ground beef

  • 1 cup chopped onion

  • ½ cup water

  • 1 (1 ounce) package taco seasoning mix

  • 1 (10 ounce) can refried beans (Optional)

  • 1 (6 ounce) can sliced black olives (Optional)

  • 1 (4 ounce) can diced green chiles

  • ½ cup salsa

  • 15 taco shells, broken up, or more to taste

  • 2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Spray a 9x13-inch baking pan with cooking spray.

  2. Cook ground beef and onions in a skillet over medium heat until beef is browned, 7 to 10 minutes; drain grease. Stir in water and taco seasoning; cook, stirring often, until thickened, about 2 minutes.

  3. Reduce heat to low and add refried beans, olives, green chiles, and salsa. Cook and stir until ingredients are warmed through, 3 to 4 minutes.

  4. Place 1/2 of the broken taco shells in the bottom of the prepared baking dish. Pour in 1/2 of the ground beef mixture, then sprinkle 1/2 of the Cheddar cheese over top. Repeat layers once more.

  5. Bake in the preheated oven until cheese is melted and bubbly, 20 to 25 minutes.

    high angle looking at a plate of taco bake casserole
    Dotdash Meredith Food Studios

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

360 Calories
21g Fat
21g Carbs
21g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 12
Calories 360
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 21g 27%
Saturated Fat 9g 46%
Cholesterol 65mg 22%
Sodium 791mg 34%
Total Carbohydrate 21g 7%
Dietary Fiber 3g 11%
Total Sugars 2g
Protein 21g
Vitamin C 9mg 46%
Calcium 216mg 17%
Iron 3mg 14%
Potassium 348mg 7%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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