Ground Beef Taco Salad with Kale, Tomatoes, and Avocado
We loved this Ground Beef Taco Salad with Kale, Tomatoes, and Avocado that also has chopped red pepper, sliced olives, and Queso Fresco. There’s also a creamy salsa verde dressing, and if you’re not sure about taco salad with kale, see the post for other options.
Back when I fell in love with baby kale I had fun experimenting with it in different salads, including a taco salad with Kale that I liked that never really became a hit on the website. And then recently I was standing in the produce department of the grocery store thinking of how that old taco salad recipe could be improved, and all the good flavors you see in this Ground Beef Taco Salad with Kale, Tomatoes, and Avocado popped into my mind.
The new version has ground beef, tomatoes, kale, avocado, chopped red pepper, sliced olives and crumbled Queso Fresco cheese! But the other thing that really kicked this new taco salad recipe immediately into wow status for Kara and me was the creamy salsa verde dressing made from lime juice, Kalyn’s Taco Seasoning, Spike Seasoning, Herdez Salsa Verde, and mayo.
I think this new taco salad recipe is a huge upgrade to the Baby Kale Taco Salad, but I know that recipe did have some fans. So if anyone wants to see the archived recipe for the original version, you can find it here.
What ingredients do you need for this recipe?
(This is only a list of ingredients; please scroll down for complete printable recipe. Or if you use the JUMP TO RECIPE link at the top of the page, it will take you directly to the complete recipe.)
- ground beef
- Olive Oil (affiliate link)
- Kalyn’s Taco Seasoning, or your favorite purchased Taco Seasoning
- baby kale leaves
- red bell pepper
- cherry tomatoes
- sliced olives
- Queso Fresco cheese
- fresh squeezed lime juice
- Spike Seasoning (affiliate link), or other all purpose seasoning blend
- Herdez Salsa Verde (affiliate link)
What other greens could you use for this Ground Beef Taco Salad?
Definitely you could use chopped Romaine lettuce or chopped Iceberg lettuce for this taco salad if you just can’t warm up to the idea of taco salad with kale. I also think people who are big spinach fans might enjoy this recipe with spinach.
What other cheese could you use for the Ground Beef Taco Salad?
We absolutely loved the crumbled Queso Fresco cheese in this Ground Beef Taco Salad with Kale, Tomatoes, and Avocado. But if you don’t have that cheese or don’t want to buy a special cheese you can use any type of grated cheese that you enjoy on taco salad.
Is this a low-carb taco salad recipe?
This is a full-meal taco salad recipe and the complete recipe makes four servings. One serving has 23 carbs but 11 grams of fiber, so 12 net carbs. Scroll down to see complete nutritional info.
Will this Taco Salad keep in the fridge?
This recipe makes four main dish salads. If that’s makes more than you’ll eat at one time I would cook the ground beef, crisp and chop the kale, prepare dressing, drain olives, chop peppers, and crumble the cheese, but only cut as much tomato and avocado as you’ll be eating right away. Store leftover ingredients separately (or you could combine the kale, peppers, and olives) then cut up the rest of the tomatoes and other avocado and combine ingredients when you eat the leftovers.
How to make Ground Beef Taco Salad with Kale, Tomatoes, and Avocado:
(This is only a summary of the steps for the recipe; please scroll down for complete printable recipe. Or if you use the JUMP TO RECIPE link at the top of the page, it will take you directly to the complete recipe.)
- I used organic ground beef from Costco that comes in a 1 1/3 lb. package; you can use a bit more or less based on the package you have. Cook ground beef in olive oil until it’s nicely browned, breaking apart with a turner as it cooks.
- Then add Kalyn’s Taco Seasoning and water and let simmer until all the liquid is evaporated. Be sure to cook until the bottom of the pan looks dry!
- Turn off heat and let the meat cool slightly while you prep other ingredients.
- Soak baby kale in ice cold water in a salad spinner if needed to crisp the kale.
- Whisk together the lime juice, Kalyn’s Taco Seasoning, Spike Seasoning, Herdez Salsa Verde, and mayo to make the lime and chile dressing.
- Drain a can of sliced olives.
- Crumble Queso Fresco cheese.
- Chop up red pepper and slice cherry tomatoes.
- Cut up the avocados into chunks and toss with 1 T lime juice.
- Spin kale until it’s VERY dry (blot dry with paper towels if needed) and then coarsely chop kale and transfer a bowl.
- Add the red pepper strips, tomatoes, sliced olives, and taco meat and toss with desired amount of dressing.
- Then add the diced avocado and crumbled cheese and gently toss to combine.
- I saved a few avocado pieces and a little cheese to garnish the top of the salad.
- Serve right away and enjoy!
More fun ideas for Taco Salad:
Weekend Food Prep:
This recipe has been added to a category called Weekend Food Prep to help you find recipes you can prep or cook on the weekend and eat during the week!
- 1 1/3 lbs. ground beef
- 1 T olive oil
- 2 T Kalyn’s Taco Seasoning (see notes)
- 1 cup water
- 5 oz. baby kale leaves
- 1 small red bell pepper, chopped
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes, cut in half
- one 6.5 oz. can sliced olives
- 2 small avocados, diced
- 1 T fresh squeezed lime juice (see notes)
- 1 cup crumbled Queso Fresco cheese
- 2 T fresh squeezed lime juice (see notes)
- 1/2 tsp. Kalyn's Taco Seasoning
- 1/2 tsp. Spike Seasoning
- 4 T Herdez Salsa Verde (or other green chile salsa)
- 6 T mayo
- Cook ground beef in a little olive oil until it's nicely browned, breaking apart with a turner as it cooks.
- Then add 2 tablespoons of Kalyn's Taco Seasoning and a cup of water and let the meat simmer until all the liquid is evaporated. Be sure to cook until the bottom of the pan looks dry, or the salad will be soggy!
- Turn off heat and let the meat cool slightly in the pan while you prep other ingredients
- Soak the baby kale in ice cold water in a salad spinner if needed to crisp the kale. (You can cut off the stems if you like; I always do that!
- Whisk together the 2 T lime juice, 1/2 tsp. Kalyn's Taco Seasoning, 1/2 tsp. Spike Seasoning, 4 T Herdez Salsa Verde, and 6 T mayo to make the lime and chile dressing.
- Drain a can of sliced olives (or use regular olives and slice them.)
- Crumble one cup of Queso Fresco cheese
- Chop up the red peppers and slice cherry tomatoes
- Cut up the avocados into chunks and toss with 1 T lime juice
- Spin kale until it's VERY dry (blot dry with paper towels if needed) and then coarsely chop the kale and transfer a bowl that's big enough to toss all the ingredients
- Add the chopped red pepper, tomatoes, sliced olives, and taco meat and toss with desired amount of dressing.
- Then add the diced avocado and crumbled Queso Fresco cheese and gently toss to combine (I save a few avocado pieces and a little cheese to garnish the top of the salad.
- Serve right away and enjoy!
I use my fresh-frozen lime juice for recipes like this.
If this makes more than you can use at one meal, prepare all the ingredients, then refrigerate the ingredients separately and toss ingredients with the dressing right when you’re ready to eat. You may want to let the dressing and taco meat come to room temperature for a few minutes if it’s been refrigerated.
There are ingredients in this salad that have some carbs, but many ingredients are high in fiber, so it's quite low in net carbs.
Recipe created by Kalyn.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 647Total Fat: 50gSaturated Fat: 14gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 32gCholesterol: 114mgSodium: 1045mgCarbohydrates: 15gFiber: 7gSugar: 4gProtein: 35g
Nutrition information is automatically calculated by the Recipe Plug-In I am using. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee 100% accuracy, since many variables affect those calculations.
Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
This Ground Beef Taco Salad with Kale, Tomatoes, and Avocado is great for traditional low-carb diets, including Keto. If you use lean ground beef and limit the avocado, this salad would make a tasty and nutritious meal for any phase of the original South Beach Diet.
Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use Salad Recipes to find more recipes like this one. Use the Diet Type Index to find recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You might also like to follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest, on Facebook, on Instagram, on TikTok, or on YouTube to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.
Historical Notes for this Recipe:
This recipe was posted in 2013. It was updated to an improved version in 2023 and the original recipe for Baby Kale Taco Salad was archived on the site.