Who doesn’t love tacos? Tacos are definitely a favorite dish for many people, and taco meat is a great way to get some extra protein in your diet. Not only that, but taco meat is one of the most versatile, delicious, and easy-to-make dishes around. 

If you’re anything like me, then you probably always enjoy having some leftovers after making a big batch of taco meat. However, sometimes we’re left wondering what to do with all this extra meat.

Whether you’re using ground beef, chicken, or pork, there are endless possibilities for turning your taco meat into tasty meals. And no – I’m not just talking about yet another Taco Tuesday. From salads to soups, pasta to potatoes, there are so many different ways to reuse those leftovers so you don’t have to toss them in the trash. 

All in all, leftover taco meat can be transformed into a variety of dishes, saving you both time and money in the kitchen. 

In this post, we’ll share some of the best leftover taco meat recipes for busy weeknight dinners.

1. Creamy Taco Pasta

This recipe is perfect for those who love pasta and Mexican food. With only a few ingredients including ground beef or turkey, salsa, cheese, and pasta, you can have a filling meal in under 30 minutes. 

The best part? The creamy sauce is a combination of the salsa and cheese, making this dish a flavorful and comforting option. 

2. Taco Casserole

This recipe is a crowd-pleaser and a perfect meal for families with picky eaters. The dish is assembled with a layer of Doritos, corn, cheese, and taco meat, making it super easy and quick to put together. 

The combination of the crunchy Doritos and slightly spicy taco meat makes this dish a crunchy and flavorful option – and may win over your kids at the dinner table, too.

3. Taco Lasagna

This recipe is a twist on the classic Italian dish, but with a delectable Mexican flair. The lasagna is layered with tortillas, taco meat, salsa, and cheese, making it a delicious and filling meal. 

The tortillas are substituted for the traditional lasagna noodle, adding a unique texture and flair to the dish.

4. Taco Soup

Taco soup is a warm and comforting meal that can be made on the stovetop or in a crockpot. It’s a versatile dish that allows you to use up any leftover taco meat, beans, and veggies that you have on hand. 

It’s also great for the freezer, so you can make a big batch and save it for later.

5. Taco Pie

This is a truly delicious twist on traditional pie. Taco pie can be made using leftover taco meat, avocado, corn, and any other veggies you have on hand. It’s a hearty and filling meal that can be frozen for later use. It’s the perfect option when you don’t feel like spending hours in the kitchen.

6. Tex Mex Breakfast Tacos

Who says tacos are only for dinner? You can whip up a quick and delicious breakfast using your leftover taco meat, too. 

Tex Mex breakfast tacos are a great way to start your day. You can follow the recipe or use your creativity to mix and match ingredients. Plus, it’s a great way to use up any leftover tortillas you have on hand.

7. Taco Ranch Bites

These are perfect for entertaining, and you can make them ahead and can even freeze them unbaked if you have a lot of extras.

These bite-sized snacks have a phyllo tart shell filled with leftover taco meat, ranch dressing, and shredded cheese. They are then baked until the cheese is melted and the phyllo shells are crispy. These are perfect bite-sized appetizers for any game day or party!

8. Taco Sliders

These mini burgers are easy to make and are perfect for feeding a crowd – a fun twist on the classic sandwich option.

All you need to do is combine your leftover taco meat with barbecue sauce and top a simple roll with meat and coleslaw. These sliders are sure to please everyone at your next tailgate!

9. Taco Empanadas

Flaky pastry dough is filled with leftover taco meat, refried beans and cheese for a scrumptious and simple handheld meal. You can use some leftover dough to fold the edges of your empanadas and then bake them until they are golden brown and crispy. 

They are perfect for those on-the-go and are easy to make when you’re short on time.

10. Taco Meat Party Pinwheels

These pinwheels are a great party food or quick snack/lunch. Simply roll out crescent dough, spread cream cheese, add taco meat and cheese, roll up, and slice into pinwheels. They are so easy to make and customize with your favorite toppings. 

Plus, they’re perfect for meal prep – a real win win.

11. Fried Tacos

These fried tacos are a crispy twist on the classic dish and are sure to satisfy any craving. The best part is that they are kid-friendly, making a large batch, freezer-friendly, and easy to defrost. 

So, you can make a big batch ahead of time and have delicious tacos ready to go whenever you need them. Want to make them healthier? Just use your air fryer.

12. Taco Mac and Cheese

If you’re a mac and cheese-lover looking to switch things up a bit, give this recipe a try. This taco mac and cheese dish is a perfect way to combine two comfort foods into one delicious meal. 

The combination of taco seasoning, Rotel, taco meat, and shells and cheese make for a mouthwatering and cheesy twist on classic tacos.

13. Taco Tater Tot Casserole

This recipe is a crowd favorite for a reason. With just a few simple ingredients like taco meat, diced tomatoes and green chiles, cheese, cheese soup, sour cream, and tater tots, this casserole is perfect for busy weeknights. 

Plus, it can be made ahead of time and simply popped in the oven when you’re ready to eat. The best part? It’s incredibly tasty and sure to be a hit with everyone at the dinner table.

14. Frito Pie

This recipe takes taco night to a whole new level! With layers of Fritos and taco meat topped with cheese and baked in the oven until crispy and golden brown, this hearty and filling meal will quickly become a family favorite. It’s perfect for those nights when you need something quick and comforting.

15. Copycat Meximelts

For those craving something a little more unique, I recommend the Copycat Meximelts. This recipe is a copycat version of the popular Taco Bell menu item and is sure to satisfy your cravings. 

With ingredients like ground beef, cilantro, lime juice, Roma tomatoes, white onion, taco seasoning, flour tortillas, sharp cheddar cheese, water, and jalapenos, this recipe is full of flavor and easy to make. 

The best part? It’s a budget-friendly option that can feed a crowd.

16. Taco Spaghetti

Looking for a quick and easy weeknight dinner that’s packed with flavor? Taco spaghetti is the perfect recipe for you. All you need is some leftover ground beef, cilantro, onions, Ro*tel tomatoes, cream of chicken soup, and spaghetti. 

In just 30 minutes, you’ll have a delicious meal that’s sure to please the whole family. The combination of the spaghetti noodles with the taco-seasoned beef and the creamy chicken soup creates a comforting mix of flavors that will leave you wanting more.

17. Taco Corn Casserole

Another great recipe that you can make with your leftover taco meat is taco corn casserole. With just a few ingredients such as taco-seasoned ground beef, corn, green chilies, creamed corn, Jiffy corn muffin mix, and pico de gallo, you can create a delicious and hearty meal. 

This casserole is perfect for a family dinner or potluck and is quick and easy to put together. With its cheesy cornbread topping and the mixture of taco seasoning, corn, and chilies, this dish is a surefire crowd-pleaser.

18. Taco Goulash

If you’re looking for a one-pan meal that’s easy to make and packed with flavor, taco goulash is the perfect choice for you. This recipe is made with ground beef, taco seasoning, noodles, canned tomatoes, and cheese. 

The combination of Goulash-style noodles with taco seasoning and melted cheese creates a satisfying and comforting meal that your family will love. With busy schedules, this recipe is perfect as it’s easy to prepare and you can vary the spice level to suit your tastes.

19. Sour Cream Taco Rice Bake

This recipe is perfect for those busy weeknights when you need a quick and easy meal. The combination of rice, sour cream, cottage cheese, and taco meat gives this dish a creamy and savory flavor that everyone will love. 

Top it with some cheddar cheese, and you’ve got a delicious meal in under 30 minutes!

20. Mexican Stuffed Peppers

These stuffed peppers are not only delicious, but they are also gluten-free, low-carb, and keto-friendly. They are filled with a mixture of ground beef, salsa, sour cream, and melted cheese, creating a flavor explosion that your taste buds will thank you for. 

The best part? You can make them ahead of time and reheat them for a quick and easy weeknight meal.

21. Taco Stuffed Potatoes

This recipe is so good, it even has a special name – Potacos! 

It’s just a baked russet or sweet potato with leftover taco meat and your favorite fillings like tomatoes, corn, olives, or black beans. You’ll top everything off with cilantro, melted cheddar and more for a well-rounded and delicious meal. 

This dish is perfect for those who love potatoes and tacos and don’t want to have to choose between them. 

22. Taco Stuffed Shells

These crispy, cheesy taco stuffed pasta shells are the appetizer or meal you didn’t know you wanted! All you need is leftover taco meat, pasta shells, cheese, and some spices to make this dish. 

The result is a delicious and unique take on a traditional Italian dish. Plus, it’s a great way to use up any extra taco meat you may have.

23. Dorito Taco Salad

Do you love a good taco salad? This Dorito taco salad takes it to the next level (that’s right – Doritos strike again)! It’s got leftover taco meat, vegetables cheese, and plenty of crunchy chips as the star ingredients. The creamy Catalina dressing ties everything together perfectly. 

This recipe is not only delicious but also a great way to use up leftover taco meat before it goes bad.

24. Taco Pizza Appetizer

If you’re a fan of pizza and tacos, this recipe is for you! It’s a creative twist on the veggie pizza appetizer. Taco Pizza has flaky crescent rolls for the crust and leftover taco meat as the topping. 

The result is a delicious and crowd-pleasing appetizer that’s perfect for game night or any other gathering.

25. Air Fryer Quesadilla

This recipe is a game-changer for quesadillas! The air fryer creates a perfectly crispy and melty quesadilla in just a few minutes. All you need is leftover taco meat, Monterey jack cheese, and tortillas. It’s a quick and easy meal that’s sure to satisfy your cravings.

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The Best Leftover Taco Meat Recipes for Busy Weeknight Dinners

taco salad in a white bowl
Looking for ways to use up the leftovers in your fridge? Take a look at these delicious leftover taco meat recipes and get to cooking!

Instructions 

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  • Click the link of your favorite recipe.
  • Follow the instructions of the linked recipe.
  • Enjoy!
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Kate founded DrizzleMeSkinny in 2014. Since then she has shared nearly 1000 weight watchers friendly recipes with DrizzleMeSkinny's over 500,000 social media followers.

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