This Taco Potato Casserole recipe with Ground Beef is a hearty and flavorful dish that combines the best of Tex-Mex and comfort food. Featuring layers of seasoned ground beef, diced potatoes, and shredded cheese, this easy-to-make casserole is perfect for a family dinner or potluck.
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This cheesy potato taco casserole is an easy dinner recipe with ground beef. Other ground beef faves include this Beefy Tex Mex Casserole and this Taco Beef Rice Bowl Recipe. Check out all of our Dinner Recipes for inspiration.
Why YOU will love this recipe
- Combining the savory and spicy flavors of tacos or chili with the comforting qualities of a potato casserole is delicious and cozy.
- Its versatility and the way you can customize the casserole with various toppings make it a popular choice for families and/or picky eaters.
- Taco casserole makes great leftovers! The flavors often meld together and become even more delicious after reheating, making it a delicious choice for meal-prepping or packed lunches.
- It is made with wholesome ingredients with no canned soups or empty calories.
- This recipe is also naturally gluten-free. Bonus!
- olive oil + butter – This will be warmed in the pan to saute the onions and garlic. We like to use both as they won’t burn when heated together. You could also just use all butter or all oil.
- chopped white onions – White onions have a milder and sweeter flavor that adds a subtle flavor without overpowering other ingredients.
- garlic – We love the way the pungent, savory garlic enhances the sauce.
- ground meat – Use ground beef or for a leaner protein you can substitute ground turkey or chicken instead.
- fine sea salt + black pepper – Seasoning to taste with salt and pepper is essential.
- taco seasoning – After putting it to the test, our homemade taco seasoning is the way to go! No additives or unknown ingredients.
- plain tomato sauce – Just plain tomatoes without any added spices like oregano that might taste off in this dish.
- fire-roasted tomatoes – We love the smoky taste of the fire-roasted tomatoes but any diced tomatoes – or even a chunky salsa – will work great.
- potatoes – Use either diced or potato slices. Both work well. We recommend russet potatoes for this recipe as they keep their shape well while baking and won’t be mushy.
- shredded cheese – We use shredded marble cheddar cheese. It melts great and adds a nice color.
- cutting board and knife – for chopping the onions and garlic.
- large saucepan – You can also use a large, deep skillet.
- wooden spoon – Our favorite and most used kitchen tool.
- casserole dish – We use a 9×13 or 8×11 ceramic casserole dish.
Scroll down to the recipe card at the bottom for the FULL recipe details.
First, preheat the oven and grease the casserole dish. Set the dish aside.
Next, add the butter and oil to the large skillet or saucepan over medium heat. Once the pan is warm, add the chopped onion, season lightly with salt and pepper, and stir.
Saute, stirring every so often, until the onions are soft, about 5 minutes.
Stir in the minced garlic with the onion and stir for one more minute.
Then, add the ground beef to the pot and break it up with a wooden spoon.
Season again lightly with salt and pepper and stir occasionally until the beef is browned and cooked through with no traces of pink.
Next, add the taco seasonings and 3 tablespoons of water to the beef mixture and stir well.
Then, stir in the tomato sauce and fire-roasted tomatoes.
Bring the mixture to a quick boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer for five more minutes.
Meanwhile, add the diced potatoes to the prepared casserole dish, season lightly with salt and pepper, and stir.
Spread the potatoes out evenly along the bottom of the casserole dish.
Next, top the potatoes evenly with the beef mixture and top with shredded cheese.
Finally, cover the dish with foil and bake for 30 minutes.
Remove the foil and bake for 10-15 more minutes to brown the gooey cheese on top.
Let the casserole rest for 5 minutes before serving.
Covering the taco potato casserole with foil during the initial baking ensures the potatoes cook through without the top layer becoming too crispy or worse, burned.
Remove the foil for the last part of baking to brown the cheese.
- Replace the ground beef with plant-based ground meat or crumbled tofu for a vegetarian or vegan twist.
- Add some heat by incorporating diced jalapeños or green chilies and sprinkle hot sauce for an extra kick.
- Substitute potatoes with cauliflower florets or turnips for a lower-carb version. Use a keto-friendly cheese and ensure your taco seasoning mix is free from added sugars.
- Add ingredients like black beans, or corn for extra Tex-Mex flavor and variety.
- Serve with a huge variety of toppings! Some popular ideas include sour cream, plain Greek yogurt, guacamole, salsa, and added shredded cheese.
- Offer a basket of tortilla chips on the side for some extra crunch.
- Pair with a fresh and crisp lettuce salad with tomatoes, cucumbers, and a tangy Avocado Cilantro Dressing to balance the richness of the casserole.
While this recipe is tested baked in the oven, you could adapt it for a crock pot by layering the ingredients and cooking on low for several hours until the potatoes are tender and the flavors meld together.
Absolutely! You can adjust the level of spiciness by adding jalapeños, incorporating hot sauce or adding crushed red pepper flakes into the meat mixture.
Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. Reheat individual servings in the microwave or in the oven.
More wholesome casserole recipes
If you’ve tried our Potato Taco Casserole, please rate the recipe and let us know how it turned out by leaving me a comment below. We’re always interested in feedback!
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Taco Potato Casserole
- ½ tbsp olive oil
- ½ tbsp butter
- ½ cup chopped white onions
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- ½ tsp fine sea salt
- ½ tsp black pepper
- 6 tbsp taco seasoning
- 8 oz. can of plain tomato sauce
- 14.5 oz. can of fire-roasted tomatoes
- 2 cups diced potatoes *approximately 2 medium russet potatoes
- 2 cups shredded cheese
- Preheat the oven to 375° and grease an 8×11 or 9×13 casserole dish. Set the dish aside.
- Add the butter and oil to a large skillet or saucepan over medium heat. Once the pan is warm, add the chopped onion, season lightly with salt and pepper, and stir. Saute, stirring occasionally, until the onions are soft, about 5 minutes.
- Stir in the minced garlic with the onion and stir for one more minute.
- Add the ground beef to the pot and break it up with a wooden spoon. Season again lightly with salt and pepper and stir occasionally until the beef is browned and cooked through with no traces of pink. About 5 minutes.
- Add the taco seasonings and 3 tablespoons of water to the beef mixture and stir well. Then, stir in the tomato sauce and fire roasted tomatoes.
- Bring the mixture to a quick boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer for five more minutes.
- Meanwhile, add the diced to the prepared casserole dish, season lightly with salt and pepper, and stir. Spread the potatoes out evenly along the bottom of the casserole dish.
- Top the potatoes evenly with the beef mixture and top with shredded cheese.
- Cover the dish with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for 10-15 more minutes.
- Let the casserole rest for 5 minutes before serving.
- Top with your favorite toppings like sour cream, guacamole, cheese, green onions, etc.