The recipe prices will vary based on fluctuating grocery costs. Please use what is posted as a guide.
This Dorito Taco Salad recipe is one of our favorite easy dinners. It’s a quick and easy recipe to make that doesn’t heat up the house.
Make this salad as a side dish for around $1.76 per serving for a total of approximately $21.16. It will make 12 servings as a side dish or 6 servings as a main dish.
For more taco-inspired dishes, we recommend these Nacho Fries, these Walking Tacos, our Healthy Zucchini Taco Boats, and our Easy Taco Pizza.
Come summertime, no one wants to be in the kitchen. We want quick and easy meals that do not heat up the kitchen. This Dorito Taco Salad is the perfect solution. It takes 15 minutes to make and is the perfect way to spice up a plain salad.
This salad is made using ground beef, cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, onions, Catalina dressing, and the not-so-secret-secret ingredient, Nacho Cheese Doritos! The Doritos give the salad the perfect crunch mixed in with the crisp salad.
Make this salad for an easy dinner during the week, or take it to a potluck or summer BBQ. It is a definite crowd-pleaser that kids and adults alike all love!
Ingredients & Estimated Cost:
- 1 pound lean ground beef – $3.33
- 2 Tablespoons taco seasoning – $0.87
- 1/2 cup water – $0.00
- 1 large heart romaine lettuce – $1.05
- 1-pint cherry tomatoes – $1.97
- 1 bag Doritos Nacho cheese chips – $3.48
- 1 bottle Catalina dressing – $2.52
- 11 oz can Fiesta corn – $0.85
- 15 oz can black beans – $0.72
- 1 small red onion – $1.18
- 2 cups shredded Mexican cheese – $2.22
- 6.5 oz can sliced black olives – $2.97
To find out more about how we price our recipes, check out Budget Recipes Explained.
- First, make the taco meat. Drain the grease and then add the seasonings.
- Next, make the salad in a large bowl.
- To finish, add the taco meat and other ingredients and toss until lettuce is coated.
***For complete recipe instructions and a recipe video, see the recipe card below.
Recipe Variations and Substitutions
- You can easily substitute chicken or turkey for ground beef.
- Substitute Cool Ranch Doritos for Nacho Cheese.
- If you do not have Catalina Dressing, you can use Ranch Dressing instead.
- This salad is so versatile, you can add in your favorite taco toppings and almost any variety of beans like pinto beans, garbanzo beans, red kidney beans, etc.
Serve: Serve immediately with additional toppings of your choice.Store: Store in an airtight container without the chips in the fridge for up to 24 hours.
Freeze: As with most salads, we do not recommend freezing this Dorito Taco Salad.
When you first make this salad, the meat will be warm with the cold lettuce. It is a great combo. If you eat it as leftovers the next day, you can eat it cold.
Serve chips on the side if you plan on having leftovers because the chips will get soggy in the fridge. If the chips are not in the salad, they will stay fresh for up to 5 days when stored in an airtight container.
A few ideas to serve with this Dorito Taco Salad include these Instant Pot Refried Beans, this Mexican Fruit Salad, and of course, a tall glass of refreshing Homemade Lemonade. Make this Fried Ice Cream for dessert, and you are all set!
Get Kids Involved
Ages 2-3: Let your child pour the Doritos into the salad bowl. They will be so excited to eat their dinner!
Ages 4-5: Your little one can help pour all the ingredients into the salad bowl. Please give them the tongs to toss the salad before serving.
Ages 6-8: Teach your child to use a meat masher to brown the ground beef. After you drain the grease, let them stir in the seasoning.
Ages 9-11: Supervise them while they prepare the entire recipe. Remember to have them read it twice before beginning the recipe.
Ages 12+: Let them prepare the entire recipe, unsupervised, while you do the happy dance in the corner!
We like to purchase our ground beef at Costco. At home, we cut the meat into smaller sections and freeze them in freezer-safe bags. Then we can pull out the bag of frozen meat when needed.
More $15 recipes:
- 15-Minute Skillet Tilapia
- American Goulash
- Baked Chicken Wings
- Broccoli Cheddar Soup
- Cheesy Baked Spaghetti
- Cindy’s Easy Sausage Gumbo
- Copycat Olive Garden Gnocchi Soup
- Baked Pork Chops with Apples
- Easy Beef Chili
- Taco Rice Casserole
Dorito Taco Salad
- large skillet
- salad bowl and tongs
- Wooden mixing spoon
- Measuring spoons
- Liquid measuring cup
- cutting board
- chef's knife
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- 2 Tablespoons or 1 packet taco seasoning
- ½ cup water
- 1 large heart romaine lettuce
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes cut in half
- 1 bag 9.25 oz Doritos nacho cheese chips **see notes
- 1 bottle Catalina Dressing
- 11 oz can Fiesta corn drained
- 15 oz can black beans drained and rinsed
- 1 small red onion sliced into half-moons
- 2 cups 8 ounces shredded Mexican cheese
- 6.5 oz can sliced black olives drained
- 1 large avocado diced
- Sliced green onions
- Chopped fresh cilantro
- Lime wedges
- Sour cream
MAKE TACO MEAT:
- Cook ground beef in a skillet over medium-high heat until no pink remains, drain.
- Return the ground beef to the skillet and add water and taco seasoning.
- Stir until heated through.
- Clean and cut the lettuce and tomatoes and add them to a large salad bowl.
- Add taco meat, Doritos, dressing, corn, black beans, onions, cheese, and black olives.
- Toss gently until lettuce is coated.
- Serve with any optional toppings that you’d like.
- Store in refrigerator in an airtight container
Yummy! This was terrific and yes, absolutely budget friendly. I didn’t want to buy catalina dressing just for this. We used regular ranch. But can I ask a question – is it worth it to try with catalina? If you recommend, I’ll give it a go – who knows maybe we’ll like it even better!
Lisa bellotte says
The Catalina dressing really tops it off. When I make it everyone loves the Catalina in it. A good way to get my kids to eat salad.
Jess Jankowski says
Thank you for your review Lisa!
Yes!!! The Catalina is a must!!
Jess Jankowski says
This is the best way to get my husband excited about salads for dinner! haha thanks for the recipe!
Catalina dressing is a must. I made this re ipe for a Griday night summer dinner when family was in town visiting. We all loved it!
Meant to say FRIDAY NIGHT.
Jess Jankowski says
Yay! We love that your family loved it!
I’m looking to make this salad this weekend for a get together with friends. I’ve always loved it, but never tried it myself. I do have a question however. the recipe calls for an entire bottle of catalina dressing and says to add it in before it is served. Has anyone ever felt like it was too much dressing? I’m thinking of trying less, but I don’t want to not get the right effect. Please reply and let me know if anyone has tried this!
We also thought it was too much. We’re definitely cutting back next time.
Dawnita Barton says
Here is the version everyone eats in San Antonio, Texas.
Drained Ranch Style Beans
All foods Chopped uniform in size. 1 inch by 1 inch.