Best Crock-Pot Taco Meat Recipe

Easy Taco Recipe for Your Crock-Pot

Tacos don't take too long to make, but they can be messy – and 30 minutes is a long time when you have hungry kids pulling at your leg asking for snacks before dinner. Save on taco-Tuesday cooking time and cleanup by popping all the taco meat ingredients in your Crock-Pot before you leave for work in the morning. Then, all you'll have to do when you get home is set the table and put your taco toppings together.

This is a one-pot Crock-Pot recipe that's spicy and delicious.

Total Time: 8 to 9 hours | Prep Time: 15 minutes | Serves: 10


  • Cooking spray
  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1 16-ounce jar chunky-style salsa
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 dashes hot sauce


  1. In a 6-quart Crock-Pot, spray the bottom and sides with cooking oil.
  2. Add the meat to the Crock-Pot. Break up the ground beef and spread it on the bottom and sides of the Crock-Pot.
  3. Add the onions, salsa chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, paprika, salt, black pepper and hot sauce, placing them in the center of the Crock-Pot on top of the meat.
  4. Cover the Crock-Pot, and cook on low for 8 hours.

Serve your taco meat stuffed in hard corn taco shells or soft flour tortillas. Top with Monterey jack cheese, shredded lettuce and diced tomatoes.

  • If you don't have all the spices, add your favorite taco seasoning mix, either homemade or packaged. One serving or one packet of your taco seasoning can be used to replace the chili powder, cumin, garlic powder and paprika. 
  • Any ground meat works with this recipe. If you're trying to cut back on fat, use 93 percent lean ground beef or ground white meat chicken or turkey. You can even try ground soy "meat" for vegetarian eaters. 
  • One-pot Crock-Pot recipes are always preferred when you're trying to get dinner going before you walk out the door. But, if you have time, brown the meat in a medium-high skillet with 2 teaspoons of oil before you add it to the Crock-Pot. Browning the meat creates a more flavorful taco.
  • This recipe makes 10 servings. If it's too much, pack the extra taco meat in airtight containers and put it in your freezer for a quick dinner. Frozen taco meat lasts up to three months in the freezer. Take it out the night before you need it, and allow it to thaw in the refrigerator; reheat in the microwave for 2 to 3 minutes. 

the nest