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Taco Bar

Taco Bar



  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups onion, finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 3 tablespoons ground cumin
  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 teaspoon ground chipotle pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 12 to 16 taco shells or warmed soft tortillas, as desired
  • Grated Monterey Jack or Cheddar, for garnish
  • Diced tomatoes, for garnish
  • Minced jalapenos, for garnish
  • Sour cream, for garnish
  • Shredded iceburg lettuce, for garnish
  • Guacamole, recipe follows, for garnish
  • Salsa, recipe follows, for garnish
  • Chopped red onion, for garnish


Set a 12-inch saute pan over medium heat and add the olive oil. Once hot, place the onions in the pan and saute until translucent, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cumin to the pan and continue to saute until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the beef to the pan and cook, breaking the pieces up as they cook, until the meat is browned, about 8 to 10 minutes. Season with the chipotle pepper and the salt. Add the beef broth and tomato paste to the pan and bring to a simmer. Cook the meat, stirring occasionally until most of the liquid has evaporated, about 20 minutes. Remove from the heat and serve with the garnishes for guests to assemble their tacos to their liking.

For the Guacamole:

  • 3 ripe avocados, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped yellow onion
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon freshly minced cilantro leaves
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

In a small mixing bowl, combine the avocado with the onion, garlic, cilantro, lime juice, and salt and mash with the back of a fork until mostly smooth.


Serve immediately, or cover with plastic wrap (pressed directly onto the surface of the guacamole) and refrigerate for up to 4 hours.


Yield: about 2 1/2 cups

For the Salsa:

  • 4 large tomatoes, about 21/2 pounds, seeded and roughly chopped
  • 1 cup chopped white onions
  • 5 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 4 serrano peppers, stems and seeds removed, minced
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Combine all the ingredients and stir well to combine. Let salsa sit for 30 minutes for the flavors to blend.


Serve as an accompaniment to fish tacos, or other dishes, as desired.


Yield: about 3 cups

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