Taqueria Style Tacos

Taqueria Style Tacos made with a carne molida or ground beef  filling served in soft corn tortillas are tasty and comforting.
Taqueria Style Tacos

Taqueria Style Tacos
by Sue Lau | Palatable Pastime

Bill (my better half) and I love to visit local taquerias for a quick lunch when we are out doing errands about town. We really do enjoy the taqueria style tacos with their soft fresh corn tortillas, sprinkling of cilantro and minced onion, and of course, the blazingly hot habanero sauces.

Some of our favorite tacos aren’t for everyone (That’s fine, leaves all that much more for us to enjoy! Ha ha!). We are most fond (and I do say “we” as I have been blessed to have a husband whose culinary tastes almost identically match my own) of tacos with crispy tripas de leche filling, or occasionally, lengua. For those of you that don’t know, that’s offal (No! I did not NOT say it was awful! In fact, it’s quite delicious! 😉 ) The tripe used in those, if you are interested, is not the same as honeycomb tripe but instead comes from the milk glands (hence the “de leche” part). I would make these myself, except when I have seen it at the market (which is rare even at places that tend to carry it) the packages have been a bit large for my immediate needs, so I have held off. Beyond that, there is the matter of cooking such things, which is usually done outdoors in a disco (which is a two piece set-up of a wok over a charcoal grill) and I don’t have that either. Thus I generally make more accessible tacos at home.

While the tacos in the taquerias come with a wide variety of fillings, the most easily made of any of them in the home kitchen would be carne molida (or ground beef). This recipe uses beef with simple seasonings that many Americans may be more used to as opposed to the more complex flavors of a picadillo beef filling which is also authentic.

But in terms of what constitutes a “taqueria style” taco, I would say is the double layer of corn tortilla with the simple cilantro-onion sprinkle, and fiery hot sauce. Crisp corn shells just don’t cut it if you are trying to evoke the feeling of taqueria. Neither do soft flour tortillas. Both of those are very much more Americanized shells. They can be used with the meat in this recipe of course, when you are more in the mood for that. And perhaps this will even become your go-to recipe for taco meat? You really don’t want the stuff that comes in envelopes (it is packed with salt!)

I do hope you enjoy these tacos. If you care to branch out from here with other taco recipes (I’ll post more when I get the chance or you can find some from other talented food bloggers) here is a list of the common taqueria fillings for tacos:

Al Pastor • Pork

Pollo • Chicken

Tripas de Leche • Tripe

Carne Molida • Ground Beef

Picadillo • Sweet and Savory Spiced Ground Beef

Barbacoa • Steamed Beef

Carnitas • Fried Pork

Suadero • Brisket

Chorizo • Mexican Sausage

Carne Asada • Grilled Steak

Camarones • Shrimp

Pescado • Fish

Birria • Goat

See you again soon!


Taqueria Style Tacos

Taqueria Style Tacos

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Taqueria Style Tacos

Serves: 4; two tacos per person


  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon seasoned Adobo or seasoned salt
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 16 soft corn tortillas
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/2 cup minced white onion
  • 2 limes, cut into wedges
  • green habanero sauce or salsa verde (optional)
  • cherry tomatoes, sliced hot peppers and sliced avocado (optional garnishes)


  1. Brown ground beef in a large skillet, then drain off any fat in a sieve and return to pan.
  2. Add seasonings and one cup water; bring to a boil, then reduce heat, cover and simmer for thirty minutes.
  3. Uncover and continue to cook until any remaining water has dissipated.
  4. Warm fresh corn tortillas briefly on a hot griddle just until pliable and soft, but not crisp.
  5. Prepare tacos with a double layer of corn tortillas, a sprinkling of cilantro and onion, and hot taco sauce and a lime wedge to squeeze over the top.

From the kitchen of palatablepastime.com

Taqueria Style Tacos

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You might also like:

Crispy Baja Fish Tacos (with cilantro crema)

Tacos de Carnitas (shredded pork soft tacos)

Portobello Mushroom Tacos

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6 responses

  1. I’ve had this recipe bookmarked for a few years. I live in California in a city with an almost 20% Latino population. We have countless taquerias, taco trucks and Mexican restaurants bigger than taquerias. I don’t think I have ever been to one with a ground beef taco on the menu and I try to visit them all.

    So, I sat on this recipe for awhile. I thought the taqueria claim was a stretch. But I made it tonight. It was real taqueria feel and flavor. I super liked it, as did my family. We are Mexican food snobs. This was great. I don’t know why my town doesn’t make carne molida. Thank you so much for the recipe. I’ll probably use this meat recipe for when I want an American taco with lettuce tomato, cheese and sour cream cardboard-tasting pre-made hard shells as well. The flavor was perfect. Five stars.

    • Not all places will have the ground beef. It probably has to do with how much Tex-Mex they are also serving. Most just have barbacoa. Also, I always thought California had more authentic food than what we get in the Midwest. But it is getting better here.

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