This delicious Ground Turkey Taco Meat is a quick, easy and healthy option for building tacos, taco salads and rice bowls. This recipe uses a quick homemade taco seasoning eliminating the processed ingredients in the packaged stuff.
Tacos are one of the most common family dinners in America, hence the ever-popular Taco Tuesday! With this Ground Turkey Taco Meat recipe, you can swap out the classic ground beef tacos with ground turkey which is generally a leaner and cheaper protein choice. This Turkey Taco Meat is gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free, keto, low-carb, low-fat and paleo and Whole30 compliant as is, so it works for a variety of dietary restrictions. Just ensure you serve the meat in a manner that is consistent with the requirements of your guests. I like to set up a big bar and let everyone build their own taco or taco salad so everyone can pick and choose what works for them.
Serve this Ground Turkey Taco Meat with shells or tortillas to make Ground Turkey Tacos, over greens for a Turkey Taco Salad or with rice or cauliflower rice to make a Ground Turkey Taco Bowl. However you serve your Turkey Taco Meat, pair it with Spicy Guacamole or Jalapeno Salsa and Chips and a Cointreau Margarita for a delicious and balanced meal the whole family will love.
Here's what you need to make Ground Turkey Taco Meat:
- lean ground turkey
- tomato sauce
- olive oil
- apple cider vinegar
- chili powder
- smoked paprika
- garlic powder
- black pepper
See recipe card for quantities.
Here's how to make Ground Turkey Taco Meat:
Add the olive oil and ground turkey meat to a large skillet over medium heat.
Cook the turkey, breaking it up with a wooden spoon, until the meat is cooked through, about 10 minutes. Drain off the extra fat.
Add the tomato sauce, apple cider vinegar, smoked paprika, chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, salt and pepper to the pan.
Give everything a good stir and simmer for an additional 5-10 minutes to let the flavors combine. Serve this seasoned ground turkey on tacos, a salad or a rice bowl with your favorite toppings.
Hint: Serve these Ground Turkey Tacos in hard or soft taco shells, on a salad or even in a bowl with rice or cauliflower rice. Don't forget your favorite taco toppings such as Mexican Pickled Onions, Guacamole, Jalapeno Salsa, chopped onion, sliced jalapenos, chopped cilantro, sour cream or shredded cheddar cheese.
Want to substitute an ingredient in Ground Turkey Taco Meat? Here's how:
- Ground turkey - use an equal amount of ground beef, ground chicken or ground pork in place of the ground turkey.
- Tomato sauce - use an equal amount of crushed tomatoes instead of the tomato sauce.
- Olive oil - use an equal amount of a different neutral oil such as canola oil or avocado oil.
- Apple cider vinegar - use an equal amount of a different vinegar such as white distilled vinegar or red wine vinegar.
- The spices - use a package of taco seasoning in place of the smoked paprika, chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, salt and black pepper.
Try one of these variations of Ground Turkey Taco Meat:
- Spicy - add ¼-1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper for spicy turkey taco meat.
- Deluxe - add 1 diced onion when browning taco meat and/or 2 cloves of minced garlic just before adding the spices to the cooked meat.
This equipment comes in handy when making Ground Turkey Taco Meat:
Store leftover cooked and cooled Ground Turkey Taco Meat in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days or in the freezer for up to 6 months. (Check out this article for more details on how to properly freeze and thaw cooked meat.)
This Turkey Taco Meat is great for meal prep when separated into individual containers with rice, black beans, corn, salsa and some shredded cheddar cheese.
Yes, you can substitute ground turkey for ground beef. You can use these two proteins interchangeably in any recipe. Ground turkey tends to be leaner than ground beef (depending on what percentage fat meat you purchase for each) so ground turkey is usually the healthier option.
Both ground turkey and ground beef provide protein, fat and vitamins essential for good health. Ground turkey tends to be leaner and contains less saturated fat than ground beef, although each ground meat can be purchased with varying amounts of fat. For a diet lower in calories and/or fat, stick to ground meats that have 10% or less fat such as 90% lean ground beef or 93% lean ground turkey.
Looking for other quick and easy recipes like this? Try these:
Serve this Ground Turkey Taco Meat with one of these Mexican recipes:
Ground Turkey Taco Meat
- Add the olive oil and ground turkey meat to a large skillet over medium heat. Cook the turkey, breaking it up with a wooden spoon, until the meat is cooked through, about 10 minutes. Drain off the extra fat.
- Add the tomato sauce, apple cider vinegar, smoked paprika, chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, salt and pepper to the pan. Give everything a good stir and simmer for an additional 5-10 minutes to let the flavors combine.
- Serve this seasoned ground turkey on tacos, a salad or a rice bowl with your favorite toppings.
- Cook to a minimum temperature of 165 °F (74 °C)
- Do not use the same utensils on cooked food, that previously touched raw meat
- Wash hands after touching raw meat
- Don't leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods
- Never leave cooking food unattended