Taco Casserole is perfect for easy weeknight dinners with family, potlucks, game days and so much more! A bottom layer of crunchy crushed tortilla chips is topped with refried beans and a flavorful beefy mixture that includes ingredients like black beans and salsa. Topping it all off is a gooey layer of melted cheddar cheese!

A serving of taco casserole is garnished with tomatoes and avocado slices.

Taco Casserole

Taco casserole is one of those dinners you just know everyone’s going to flip for. Kids (even the pickiest of eaters) love this cheesy, beefy casserole! It’s a wonderful dinner to serve when you know there are kids at the table who need a little protein on their plate that they’ll actually eat. It’s got all of the flavors you love about traditional ground beef tacos baked into one cheesy casserole!

The base layer of taco casserole is crushed tortilla chips topped with refried beans. The middle layer (which might just be the best part of the whole thing) is a ground beef mixture that features black beans, onions, bell peppers, garlic, green chilis, taco seasoning and salsa! It’s super flavorful and has a great hearty consistency that’ll make every bite super satisfying.

You can also garnish your taco casserole the same way you would a regular ground beef taco. Or, go the extra mile and set up a toppings bar so everyone can enjoy their serving however they like best! Sour cream, avocado slices, tomatoes and cojita cheese are just a few of my favorites. A couple splashes of hot sauce never hurt either, of course!

A casserole dish is filled with taco casserole.

How to Make Taco Casserole

This easy taco casserole recipe is sure to become a new weeknight favorite in your home! For more details on ingredients and the process, scroll down to the recipe card.

  1. Cook the ground beef. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the ground beef and cook for a few minutes until browned. Be sure to break it up with a wooden spoon as you go. Once cooked, use a slotted spoon to transfer the beef to a separate bowl. We want to make sure that some of the rendered fat is still in the pan!
  2. Cook the veggies. Ad the onions and bell peppers to the very same skillet. Sauté until softened. Then, stir in the garlic and cook for just one more minute.
  3. Finish the mixture. Add the black beans, green chilis, taco seasoning and salsa to the skillet. Stir to incorporate and cook for just 2-3 more minutes. Remove the skillet from heat, mix in the ground beef and set aside.
  4. Layer and bake. Layer the crushed tortilla chips in the bottom of your casserole dish and cover them with a layer of refried beans on top. Add the ground beef mixture in an even layer, then top it all off with shredded cheese. Bake at 350°F for 15-20 minutes.
A fork and knife are placed on a plate with a single serving of casserole.

Ingredient Notes

Before you head to the store, let’s take a quick look at that shopping list:

  • Olive Oil – You can swap this with avocado oil if preferred.
  • Lean Ground Beef – You can swap this with ground turkey or chicken if preferred.
  • Onion – A white or yellow onion is preferred.
  • Red Bell Pepper – If you’d prefer a different color of bell pepper, go for it! Any color will be just fine.
  • Garlic – Always smash then mince your garlic so it omits the most flavor.
  • Black Beans – They’ll need to be drained and rinsed prior to using in your casserole recipe.
  • Chopped Green Chilis – Don’t worry about spice because these are quite tame. If you would like to add some spice, you can sprinkle in some cayenne powder or crushed red pepper flakes.
  • Taco Seasoning – I love using my homemade taco seasoning mix whenever I have the chance.
  • Salsa
  • Crushed Tortilla Chips – You want there to still be big enough pieces to crunch on, so don’t turn the chips into a powder! Any store-bought bag of chips is fine. Homemade tortilla chips are the best, of course!
  • Refried Beans – I love using my homemade refried beans for the very best flavor and smooth consistency.
  • Shredded Cheddar Cheese – For the best results, grate it fresh off the block. It may take a little extra time but it’s so worth it!
Ingredients for Taco Casserole in white bowls.

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A serving of taco casserole is plated on a round white plate.
A serving of taco casserole is plated on a round white plate.

Get the Recipe: Taco Casserole Recipe

Taco Casserole is made with layers of taco beef, refried beans and tortilla chips then baked under a blanket of cheese. A weeknight family favorite dinner.
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  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 15 ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 4 ounce can chopped green chiles
  • 1 packet taco seasoning
  • 1 cup salsa
  • 2 cups crushed tortilla chips
  • 16 ounce can refried beans
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • Toppings, shredded lettuce, sliced tomatoes, olives, cilantro, cotija cheese


  • 1 13×9 baking dish


  • Preheat oven to 350˚F. Coat a 2 quart baking dish with cooking spray
  • Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.
  • Add the ground beef and cook until browned, approximately 5-6 minutes, breaking it up with a wooden spoon while cooking.
  • Transfer the meat to a bowl with a slotted spoon and drain off all but 2 tablespoons fat.
  • REturn the skillet to the heat and add the onion, bell pepper. Cook until the vegetables are softened. Stir in the garlic and cook for 1 minute.
  • Add the black beans, green chiles, taco seasoning and salsa. Cook for 2-3 minutes longer.
  • Remove from heat and stir in the ground beef. Set aside.
  • Layer the tortilla chips in the bottom of the baking dish and spread the refried beans on top.
  • Top the beans with the beef mixture and sprinkle with the cheddar cheese.
  • Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes or until the cheese is melted.
  • Top with the toppings and serve.
Calories: 422kcal, Carbohydrates: 41g, Protein: 26g, Fat: 17g, Saturated Fat: 6g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g, Monounsaturated Fat: 5g, Trans Fat: 0.2g, Cholesterol: 56mg, Sodium: 1095mg, Potassium: 595mg, Fiber: 9g, Sugar: 4g, Vitamin A: 914IU, Vitamin C: 27mg, Calcium: 244mg, Iron: 4mg