Leftover taco meat you're not sure what to do with? We've got you covered! These delicious leftover taco meat recipes will have you singing mariachi tunes over and over again, all week long!

Taco salad in a tortilla shell from Shelf Cooking.

Stop letting leftover taco meat go to waste sitting in the back of your fridge. Seriously… stop! Grab those leftovers and whip up one of these leftover taco meat recipes tonight!

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Not only will using that leftover taco meat save you money, but it will also save you time, too! One less thing to cook, are we right? Trust us, these leftover taco meat recipes will blow your mind and make you forget you're eating leftovers in the first place!


Shepherd's pie in a dish on the counter from Shelf Cooking.

You can't go wrong with a good ol' casserole, right?! Tossing your leftover taco meat into a casserole means you can stretch it much further. Shelf cooking win!

These casseroles are so good, nobody will even know you made them with leftovers. 😉


Making a soup or a salad with your leftover taco meat is another great way to make it stretch! Here are some of our tastiest ideas.

  • Taco Salad – Use what you have and make it your own! Top it with black olives, cheese, sour cream, homemade salsa, and tortilla chips. Better yet, make your own tortilla bowl and make it fancy!
  • Taco Soup – You don't even need a recipe for this one (but you can use this taco soup recipe if you need to)! Toss in your leftover taco meat, beans, corn, broth of any kind, then season to taste with ranch mix and homemade taco seasoning. Make it creamy with sour cream and top with cheese, onions, jalapeños, or whatever else floats your boat!
  • Chili – Taco seasoning mixes super well with homemade chili, so add in extra beans and season that baby up!
  • Hamburger Soup – This hamburger soup from Spend With Pennies is tasty and a great way to use up your leftover taco meat!

It doesn't have to be cold for these yummy-licious soups, but they sure do hit the spot on a chilly, fall night!


Taquitos with lettuce, sour cream, and salsa on top from Shelf Cooking.

Looking for even more super easy leftover taco meat recipes? Well, look no further because we've got everything you need right here. These meals are so easy, you can have dinner ready in a flash!

  • Taquitos – This taquito recipe is perfect for using up leftover taco meat! Simply swap out the chicken in the recipe for taco meat.
  • Quesadillas – Use this delicious steak quesadilla recipe but sub in leftover ground beef instead!
  • Nachos – No baking required! Make single plates and pop those suckers in the microwave for the easiest meal you'll ever make.
  • Enchiladas – Add some beans and veggies to your leftover taco meat to make it stretch and use it in your favorite enchilada recipe!
  • Taco Mac and Cheese – Make your favorite macaroni and cheese recipe and toss in that leftover taco meat for a hearty, delicious meal!
  • Taco Baked Potatoes – Taco meat is sooooooo good on a baked potato. Throw some butter, cheese, and sour cream on top and you won't regret it!
  • Rice Bowls – Make your bowl however you want and use up what you've got on hand! This post has tons of great rice bowl ideas to get you started!
  • More Tacos – Add some beans, corn, and other veggies to make your leftover taco meat stretch for another taco night. Taco Thursday anyone?! Try these oven-baked tacos to switch things up a bit.

No matter which you choose, any of these leftover taco meat recipes are sure to hit the spot and leave your family begging for seconds!

What is your favorite way to use up leftover taco meat? Share it with us in the comments below!

Leftover taco meat in several recipes including mac and cheese, shepherd's pie, taquitos, and taco salad from Shelf Cooking.

Want more shelf cooking tips and tricks? Check out these posts! 

Taco to you later!