Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Tasty Turkey Tacos

As promised, today I have a guest blogger posting. (My first!!) Her name is Karen and she is one of my favorite people in the world. Although she is a grown-up lady, I have known her since she was a darling teenager. I tend to think of her as just that age. She has a new food blog she calls Let There Be Food. You should check it out and see what kind of yummies she has over there. But first! Check out the tasty recipe she wants to share with you here. Take it away, Karen!

Greetings viewers of Julie’s blog! Mexican inspired food makes an appearance in my kitchen at least once a week. Because it’s a frequent kitchen flier, it’s important that I give it a healthy twist so I can eat without any of the guilt and all the enjoyment. So today I bring you Tasty Turkey Taco Topping. (Don’t you just love a good alliteration? I know I do.) It’s got all the flavors of Mexican food that I love and I can feel good eating it because it’s made with lean ground turkey and beans. It’s incredibly versatile, in my opinion. The first time I had it was in a taco salad. It’s also delicious as a taco filling, nacho topping, on its own with a side of corn tortillas, or on tostadas. I made turkey tostadas for a friend recently and she gave it two thumbs up, a “mmmm…good!” and a trip back for seconds. I’m certain you could use this as burrito or enchilada filling as well. However you eat it, I hope it’s as tasty for you as it is for me.

Tasty Turkey Taco Topping


1 lb lean ground turkey (I used 93% lean)

1 can ranch style beans

1 can Rotel – diced tomatoes and green chilies (I used medium)

1 cup crushed tomatoes

1 tsp adobo seasoning

1 tsp garlic powder

1 medium jalapeño – diced

Optional: chopped cilantro to taste


1. Brown ground turkey in a large, deep skillet or wide sauce pan. It won’t look at all like ground beef – don’t let this freak you out.

2. Dice the jalapeño and add to the pan. Let cook for a few minutes.

3. When it is nearly all done, add seasonings to meat and pepper and stir to coat.

4. Drain a bit of liquid off the beans and the Rotel and add both to the pan.

5. Add 1 cup of crushed tomatoes. Keep the rest of the can nearby in case you want to add more tomatoes.

6. Stir it all to combine and bring to a boil.

7. Once it’s come to a boil, reduce the heat and let it simmer for 5-10 minutes. It will reduce a bit and get a little thicker.

8. At the very end, toss in your cilantro and stir. Then serve and enjoy!!

Additional good news about this dish is that it’s super fast and super easy, so anyone can make it. It’s also adaptable for your personal flavor choices. My friend said she would like it even spicier than I’d made it. Sometimes I get nervous about heat and take out too much of the seeds and ribs of peppers. You can always find ways to add heat in, but it’s soooo hard to take it out or balance it out. I think adding a variety of peppers would be a fine addition and if you put in any from the bell pepper family, it wouldn’t really impact the heat level too much. If you wanted more heat, you could leave in more seeds or add a second jalapeño or a Serrano. Anaheim peppers are also good for flavor without a huge heat impact. I think they have more of the warm, toasty heat and less of the pass-the-milk-my-mouth-is-on-fire heat. Of course, you could also substitute ground beef or ground chicken as the protein. I think it’s important to stick to a leaner meat, so that you don’t have to drain the fat out between step 2 and 3. Because you are adding other liquids to the mix, it will keep it from being too dry.

For me, there is something about this mixture that I think tastes just great with spinach, so spinach and cheese are my layers of choice whether I'm making soft tacos at work for lunch or tostadas for dinner with friends. It always turns out being a healthy and comforting meal to eat. Let me know how you serve your tasty turkey taco topping! Happy eating!

Nutritional Info – ½ cup of mixture

Calories: 132

Fat: 4 g

Carbs: 10.5 g

Fiber: 3.3 g

Protein: 12.7 g

Vitamin C: 7.4%

Iron: 10%


YD, sometimes with ♥Samantha and ♥June said...

Hi Karen, nice to "meet" you!
This recipe sounds so delicious! I may just try it(less the beans) and hope that hubby will like it. It's almost lunch time and I'm looking at the pictures and my stomach just started growling. :)

Theres just life said...

This sounds delicious. I will defiantly have to try it.