I love tacos – breakfast tacos, tacos from a trailer, tacos from a nice restaurant… whatever.
I also think that they’re easy to make, and generally turn out well.
Last night I had a few friends over for dinner and drinks. To make things easy, we served tacos and margaritas. I was able to make just about everything in advance and actually got to enjoy the party instead of spending the whole time in the kitchen.
As a side note, check out a video of Nellie from The Office learning how to eat a taco. Unfortunately it’s not the best quality, but still fun to watch.
Here it goes – some easy, healthy, make-ahead recipes that were all a hit.
Slow Cooker Chipotle Brown Sugar Chicken (from canyoustayfordinner.com)
I love this chipotle brown sugar chicken- it’s healthy, it’s a slow cooker recipe that takes about 10 minutes to prep, and requires very little prep once the chicken is done.
– 2- 3 Chicken Breasts
– 1/2 red onion
– 2-4 cloves garlic
– one can of roasted diced tomatoes
– 1- 2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce – chop a little before placing in blender
– 3 tablespoons brown sugar
– juice of 1 lime
– 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, plus some extra for serving
1/4 teaspoon liquid smoke
– a little queso fresco or cotija cheese
– corn tortillas
– 2 limes, cut into wedges
Place chicken breasts in a slow cooker. Blend onion, tomatoes, garlic, pepper, sugar, limes and cilantro in a blender. Puree until the ingredients are liquefied. Pour the liquid over the chicken. Turn the slow cooker on low for 8- 10 hours (or high for 4 – 5).
Shred the chicken using two forks and serve on warm corn tortillas topped with a little cheese and fresh cilantro. Squeeze a little lime juice on each taco.
Ground Turkey Tacos (from smells-like-home.com)
Ground turkey tacos were a huge hit and only take a few minutes to make.
– 1 tbsp cooking oil
– 1 white onion, minced
– 2 tbsp chili powder
– 4 garlic cloves, minced
– 1 tbsp dried oregano
– 2 tsp tomato paste
– 1 package ground turkey (1.25 lbs), use turkey that has some fat in it, not the extra lean kind
– 1 small can tomato sauce
– 1/4 cup water
– 1 boullion cube
– 2 tsp cider vinegar
– 1 tsp brown sugar
– salt and pepper to taste
– corn tortillas or taco shells for serving
Heat oil in a large pan over medium/high heat. Add the onions and cook until they start to look transparent.
Add the chili powder, garlic, oregano, and tomato paste. Mix in thoroughly and cook for about a minute before adding turkey. Cook turkey for about 5 minutes- stirring frequently and ensuring that the turkey is broken up as it cooks.
Once the turkey looks mostly cooked, add in the remaining ingredients and simmer for about 5 – 10 minutes (until the meat doesn’t look like it has too much liquid).
Serve in taco shells or on tortillas. I use lettuce and cheese as a topping, but you could use any standard taco toppings.
Fresh Corn, Black Bean and Pepper Salad (adapted from sugarlaws.com)
Last but not least, a side item or a taco topper – Corn, black bean and pepper salad. Fresh tasting, seasonal and healthy. You can see a picture of this salad at the top of the post.
– 3 ears of corn, cut off the cob
– 1 regular size can of black beans, drained
– 1 green bell pepper, chopped into small pieces
– 1 red bell pepper, chopped into small pieces
– juice of one lime
– 1 tbsp olive oil
– 1 tsp red wine vinegar
– fresh cilantro for garnish
– salt and pepper to taste
Combine corn kernels, black beans, and peppers in a large bowl. Pour lime juice, olive oil, vinegar over the salad. Toss with salt and pepper and fresh cilantro.
I serve this as either a side item or a topping for tacos. It works well for either.
At the end of the evening we decided to use up the leftover sparklers from my wedding – made for good iphone pics. enjoy!