Taco Salad

This Taco Salad recipe is my go-to when I want a quick and easy meal. Plus it’s a hit to take along to dinners and potlucks.

A bowl of food on a table, with Salad and Taco

Once again I have a recipe feature that is brought to you from a pot luck function. Maybe 12 years ago, at a staff pot luck and a co-worker brought her famous Taco Salad with french dressing.

I, along with many others, left that afternoon with this recipe in hand. It was that good.

This taco salad with french dressing recipe is a popular potluck recipe that is sometimes called ‘doritos taco salad‘, because the crunch of the chips just might be the best part of this salad.

Even years later, we still talk about this potluck taco salad recipe when together, and claim how much we all still make it today.

This Best Taco Salad recipe is my go-to when I have ground beef on hand and want a quick and easy meal.

This Taco Salad recipe is my go-to when I want a quick and easy meal. I love the spices and crunch! Plus, it's a hit for dinners and a potluck salad!

The Best Potluck Taco Salad Recipe

Plus, as evidence proved, this potluck taco salad is a hit to take along to dinners and functions. I’ve also made it out camping, it’s such a tasty fun meal to have anywhere!

Please note: The recipe you’ll find below is party-sized, so please half the amount if making for your whole family. That is, unless you have a very large family.

When halved, it’s the perfect amount for our family of 5, even with at least one person having seconds.

Why You’ll Love Taco Salad

You cook the seasoned ground beef mixture in advance, and then warm it up right before. Then you can literally make this in no time!

What I really love, is that this cold salad recipe also has so many veggies, it’s very colourful and so tasty.

The bold Mexican taste that brings it all together is thanks to the taco seasoning and French dressing.

A dish is filled with food, with Salad and Taco

How to Make Taco Salad

This easy taco salad recipe has the following simple ingredients. the full recipe and printable recipe card are below.

  • lean ground beef
  • iceberg lettuce
  • sweet peppers
  • green onions
  • cherry tomatoes or grape tomatoes
  • cheddar cheese, or mexican cheese blend
  • nacho flavoured tortilla chips
  • taco seasoning
  • french dressing

To Make: This easy taco salad recipe with french dressing really is the easiest taco salad to make.

Mix all the ingredients in a large bowl using a wooden spoon. You may not use all the french dressing in the bottle. Add 3/4 of the bottle, test, and add more if preferred.

Add a dollop of sour cream and some fresh salsa at serving and it’s complete!

To Make Ahead: leave out the chips, seasoning and french dressing until just before serving.

Classic Taco Salad

Tips for Making Taco Salad

When taking this Classic Taco Salad recipe to functions such as a fun potluck.

I suggest waiting until just before serving to add the nacho chips and dressing. Or else can get soggy depending on how long it sits before enjoying.

You could add the taco seasoning to the meat when cooking (taco meat), yet I find that sprinkling it on at the end is best.

This is so that everyone can add as little or as much as they prefer. Plus, the taco taste is more pronounced that way.

Taco Salad Substitutions

  • You can use ground turkey or ground chicken instead of making a ground beef taco salad.
  • While this is a taco salad with french dressing, you can also use Catalina dressing if you prefer.
  • Sometimes I use a crisp lettuce blend of iceberg and romaine lettuce for this recipe.
  • I like to use nacho cheese doritos as the chips, yet Cool Ranch Doritos taste great too if that is your personal preference. Another option is crunchy tortilla strips or crushed corn tortillas.


Sometimes I like to offer an array of favorite toppings for those that are a little extra. My suggestions are: red onion, black beans, cheddar jack cheese, and black olives.

Classic Taco Salad

I’d call Taco Salad a heathy meal or side, with the exception of the chips of course. You want the crunch yet you can always try and substitute as desired and see how it turns out.

Also note that serving ‘chips for dinner’ makes you absolutely the best parent in the world. Just ‘sayin!

While the dressing is a little more intricate, I would very much compare this to the ever-popular ‘Taco in a Bag’ idea.

Yet this dorito taco salad recipe is party-sized. I sometimes CRAVE this salad, and it’s been a favourite of mine for years, and I hope it becomes one of yours as well.

It’s my party go-to, and it seems everyone enjoys the flavors of a taco as an appetizer.

More Salad Recipes:

For home or for a potluck, try this southwest grilled chicken salad, garden-fresh pasta salad, this broccoli salad or this amazing BLT Pasta Salad – they are all to die for!

Yet if taco tuesday is where your heart is, try my Chicken Taco Soup recipe!

Don’t forget to try my BBQ Chicken Salad, it’s also a hit with the masses!

If this salad has your heart and you need one that is easier and won’t get soggy, try this taco pasta salad.


A dish is filled with food, with Taco Salad
A dish is filled with food, with Salad and Taco

Taco Salad

Yield: 12
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes

This Taco Salad recipe is my go-to when I want a quick and easy meal. Plus, as evidence proved, it’s a hit to take along to dinners and functions.


  • 1.5 - 2 lbs Ground Beef, cooked and well drained
  • 1 head Iceberg Lettuce, shredded
  • 1 Green Pepper, diced
  • 1 Red Pepper, diced
  • 5 Green Onions, chopped
  • 2 Tomatoes, diced
  • 1.5 cups Cheddar Cheese, grated
  • 1 bag Cheese Nacho Chips, crush in bag before opening
  • 1 envelope Taco Seasoning
  • 1 bottle French Dressing
  • Salsa and Sour Cream, as desired


  1. Mix all the ingredients in a large bowl {if not serving right away, leave out the chips, seasoning and french dressing until just before serving}. You may not use all the french dressing in the bottle, add 3/4 of the bottle, test, and add more if preferred.
  2. Serve with salsa and sour cream
  3. Enjoy!
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 12 Serving Size: 12 Servings
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 200Saturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 14mgSodium: 211mgCarbohydrates: 20gFiber: 2gSugar: 2gProtein: 6g

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest


  1. I love making taco salad for potlucks! It tastes great, and I sometimes omit the beef to make it veggie friendly.

  2. We have a lot of parties throughout the year and they consist of about 8 adults, 7 toddlers and a teenager that would love to be considered an adult. This is a “fun” salad and so much more interesting than a fruit salad!

  3. Yum! We really like taco salad. Instead of using bottled salad dressing, I use salsa. It gives it extra veggies.

  4. Looks/sounds delicious! I think I’d sub romaine lettuce to get some more nutrients! Need to try soon! 🙂

  5. Taco salad is a perfect hot day supper. I’ve been trying to come up with a bunch of summer recipes and this is definitely going on my list!

  6. I love taco salad and your version sounds particularly wonderful! I’ll have to give it a try! Thanks for sharing!

  7. Honestly I think I’ ve made almost everything but I am excited to try this taco salad because this is entirely new to me and it looks so delicious.I love anything Mexican flavored and so does my family

  8. Oh yummy looks so delish , thanks so much for sharing i will be trying your recipe soon , we love taco Salad :0

  9. I am making this for dinner tonight. Already cooked beef, but how do you recommend heating it before serving? I have never made this before, but the recipe looked so good…Thanks for posting it.

  10. This taco salad was delicious!! Loved it! Now I’m looking for more great salad ideas!

  11. I love taco salad and make a homemade catalina dressing to drizzle over it. so good. I’ve only had it with catalina dressing. but there are so many good dressing that would be good that I could think of jalapeno ranch, salsa, etc.

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