Usually, when we have tacos for dinner, I make my taco meat by simply blending my homemade taco seasoning with ground beef and a little water. However, in an effort to consume a little less meat overall, I decided to make tonight’s chicken taco filling ‘go a little further’ by adding some chopped beans and mushrooms. The verdict? It was a big hit! One of my boys only ate half of his, but the other two kids scarfed theirs down (and asked for seconds and thirds!). And I loved it, too! Typically, when we eat tacos, there is no meat filling left afterwards, but because of the additional ingredients, we now have leftovers! Yay for that…we love leftovers in our house! My daughter is going to take some of this chicken taco filling in her thermos tomorrow for lunch with a little cheese and a few (organic) tortilla chips. She’s very excited!
Of course, you could make this taco filling with any variation of meats and beans, as well as add a number of other ingredients to make it go even further! I choose ground chicken and garbanzo beans, because it’s what I had in my freezer and pantry, but feel free to vary the ingredients and use ground beef or sausage or any other type of beans. Of course, you could also use dried beans and cook them in large batches (something I really want to get into the habit of doing more), but to save time, I often find myself grabbing for a can of organic beans. Here’s a picture of the chopped beans, mushrooms, and the end result…so tasty! I use my Pampered Chef chopper to easily chop up each ingredient.
- 1 T olive oil
- 1 lb ground chicken (local, free-range is ideal - I buy mine from Seven Sons Farm)
- Mushrooms, diced (as many as you want to add!)
- 1 can organic garbanzo beans (also known as chickpeas), drained, rinsed, diced
- 1-2 T taco seasoning
- ¼ cup organic salsa
- Organic corn or flour tortillas/tacos
- Garnishments: diced tomatoes, shredded lettuce, cheese, sour cream, guacamole, etc.
- Heat olive oil in large skillet over medium heat.
- Add chicken and cook until no longer pink.
- Add diced mushrooms and beans; stir together and let cook for a couple minutes.
- Stir in taco seasoning and salsa.
- Add filling to tacos or tortillas, add garnishments, and enjoy!!
So simple, right?? Do you add other ingredients to your taco meat to make it ‘go further?’ This would also be great for baked nachos: place a layer of organic tortilla chips on a baking pan, spoon this taco filling on top, add some diced tomatoes, sprinkle with shredded cheese, and bake until the cheese is melted. Yum!
And don’t forget: make sure to shred your own cheese, if possible! Prepackaged shredded cheese contains cellulose to keep it from sticking together. Cellulose = wood pulp. Natural, yes…but still kind of odd to be eating. I use my shredder for everything from carrots to chocolate to cheese and more! Here is the shredder I use: