I first tried this recipe a few years ago, and it was one of the bigger successes I’d had in the kitchen in a long time! Everyone in the family LOVED these baked tacos! Not a speck of food was left in the pan, which is always a sign that it was truly a hit. This dish has so many things going for it that it’s really no wonder it went over so well!
First of all, it’s tacos for crying out loud! I don’t think I’ve ever met someone that didn’t like tacos in one form or another. Secondly, they’re super quick and easy to make. And thirdly, it’s gluten-free (always a plus for our family!) Oh yeah… and did I mention this dish is just plain delicious?
You can use store-bought hard taco shells in this recipe, but I think that using homemade taco shells really adds something special! And making your own hard taco shells is so easy, there’s no reason to spend more to buy them. I’ll show you how to make them, and then we’ll get down to business with those baked tacos!
How To Make Homemade Hard Taco Shells
Grab your stack of corn tortillas and a damp cloth or paper towel. Wrap 6 of your tortillas in the damp cloth, and put them in the microwave for about 30 seconds, or until they’re nice and pliable.
Lay the tortillas out on a sheet tray, then coat both sides of each tortilla with cooking spray.
Next, carefully drape each tortilla over two bars of your oven rack. Bake the tortillas at 375°F for about 7-10 minutes, or until crispy and golden-brown.
And that’s it! It really couldn’t be much easier. So now that you know how to make your shells, it’s time to make Baked Tacos! I have posted my version of the recipe below, but all you really need to do is just make taco meat like you usually do, fill the shells, and bake them casserole style! (I really like the addition of the refried beans in the mix though, so I do recommend giving this recipe a try!)
- 2 lbs. ground beef
- 1 can refried beans
- 15 oz tomato sauce
- 2–3 Tbsp homemade taco seasoning (or 1 packet store-bought taco seasoning)
- 1–2 cups shredded cheese
- 15-20 hard taco shells
- Salsa, sour cream, and other taco toppings (optional)
Brown the ground beef, then drain off any fat. Stir the refried beans, tomato sauce, and seasoning into the browned beef.
Spoon the beef mixture into your taco shells, and line them up in a 9×13” pan.
When the pan is full, sprinkle the top with a nice layer of shredded cheese.
Put the pan in your oven, and bake at 400°F for 10-12 minutes (or until they’re heated through the cheese is melted.) Top with your taco fixings of choice, and serve!
Wow, writing about these tacos is making me hungry for them all over again! Lucky for me, they’re so quick and easy to make! :-)