There are two kinds of tacos in my house: ”old school” and “new school.” “Old school” implies a crunchy taco shell, ground beef, and cheese. “New school” implies soft corn tortillas with any filling I like, including roasted veggies, grilled fish, or skirt steak. (Old school tacos win 9 times out of 10.)
If you’re looking to improve the health benefits of these traditional tacos, look for grass-fed ground beef which is readily available in most markets. Also, there are many healthier alternatives for hard taco shells, ranging from organic corn to cassava flour. Be warned: You might want to double this recipe. My two teenage sons eat this entire batch on their own!
Old School Tacos
For the tacos
- 1 tbsp. Olive oil
- 1⁄2 cup Diced red onion
- Kosher salt
- 1 LB Ground beef (grass-fed if possible)
- 2-3 tsp. Taco seasoning or Mexican spice blend (I like Simply Organic taco seasoning)
- 8 Hard taco shells
- 1 cup Shredded Cheddar or Jack cheese, optional
- 2 Ripe avocados, pits removed and flesh scooped out
- 1 tsp. Kosher salt
- 1 Tbsp. Lime Juice
- 2 tbsp. Minced red onion
- 2 tbsp. Chopped cilantro (optional)
- Preheat the oven to the desired temperature for heating the taco shells.
- Heat the olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add the onions and a pinch of salt.Cook until soft, stirring frequently, about 5 minutes. Add the ground beef, breaking it up with a spoon or potato masher so it crumbles into small pieces. Cook, continuing to stir until browned, 3-5 minutes. Stir in the taco seasoning, then taste, adding more seasoning or salt if necessary. Remove from the heat.
- To make the guacamole, place the avocados in a bowl. Add a generous sprinkling of kosher salt. (The salt is a great abrasive and makes it easier to mash the avocado.) Using a fork, pastry blender, or a potato masher, mash the guacamole until smooth or to your liking. Stir in a few teaspoons of the lime juice to start, then taste, adding more salt and more lime juice to your taste. Stir in the red onion and chopped cilantro if using.
- Right before serving, heat the taco shells in the oven, watching carefully as they brown quickly.
- When ready to serve, scoop a generous portion of ground beef into each taco shell and sprinkle with cheese and other toppings. Top with guacamole and repeat until they disappear!