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Real Tacos

Updated on February 2, 2011

Taco Bell has been in the news of late concerning their meat or the fact that it is not really beef and mostly additives. I’m a bit surprised it took this long before someone noticed.

Several years a go I realized that what they were selling was more filler than cow but no one else seemed to mind and the commercials kept playing and the crowds kept buying so I figured either most are suckers to advertising or they found something tasty within the crust that I did not.

Between the three popular places, and I’m basing this on what we have available here in Oklahoma, Taco Bell, Taco Mayo and Taco Bueno there isn’t a whole lot of difference. Frankly, I think they just singled out Taco Bell; they are all just as guilty. Taco Bell is the top dog and most expensive so that could be why.

Taco Mayo is the one I frequent the most if I am out and don’t have time to make my own, but even they aren’t all real hamburger meat. I live in beef country, you can’t throw a stick without hitting a cow around these parts. We know what real beef tastes like and you can’t fool us very easily.

Not only are most drive through tacos full of extra God knows what, they also don’t drain the meat after they cook it and you end up with a puddle of grease. You also get less meat by product these days and more shredded ice burg lettuce, which has no nutritional value what so ever and is hard to digest. All in all saving a few minutes is not worth it.

Don’t you love the advertisements and commercials where they show the taco shell heaped up with meat. The pictures always have more beef than lettuce but when you go there you have to dig through the pale greenery and fat to find any trace of meat. I feel like the little old lady in the vintage Wendy’s commercials, “Where’s the beef?”

Here’s a better alternative:

You will need, a package of flour tortillas, precooked hamburger meat(check out my link above), taco seasoning, baby spinach and grated cheese.

All you have to do is put a little hamburger meat on a flour tortilla. The beauty of this is you can put the amount of meat you want and the grease has been drained so you know it’s better for you. Sprinkle a little taco seasoning on the meat, it doesn’t take much but if you like spicy food you can add more.

Cover and zap the tortilla and meat in the microwave for thirty seconds (more or less, all microwaves are different so take this into consideration). You can make as many as you want and cook them all at the same time.

If you have grated your cheese before hand or buy the kind that is already prepared this will be quick too. Also you can use whatever kind you want. White cheese has less fat than yellow. I like Colby Jack, which is a combination of Colby (yellow cheese) and Monterey Jack (white cheese). It’s an interracial bundle of dairy. ;o)

If you are lactose intolerant or don’t like cheese you don’t even have to put it on. The dairy producers aren’t standing by with pitchforks.

Instead of ice burg lettuce, which shouldn’t even be considered food in my opinion, buy baby spinach. It actually has vitamins, more taste and is easier on your digestive system. Leaf lettuce works too but spinach is healthier and you don’t have to shred it.

You can put whatever you want in your taco. If you have time you can cut up tomato or onion and add to your meal. Some like jalapeno or black olives. Beans can be put in place of meat if you are a vegetarian or in addition if you want a heartier taco. It’s your recipe and you can do whatever you desire.

I’ve also opened a can of chicken breast, drained the water and used instead of beef.

Now you have a quick meal that is much better for you and at least you know exactly what is in it, unless you want to get in a debate with a vegetarian about the beef but we won’t go there.


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    • Pamela N Red profile image

      Pamela N Red 7 years ago from Oklahoma

      Thanks for reading, chunkiebar.

    • chunkiebar profile image

      chunkiebar 7 years ago

      I actually use Turkey meat instead of the Beef. It really has a great flavor and healthier.I really like the idea of Spinach, instead of lettuce. Thanks for the idea....

    • Pamela N Red profile image

      Pamela N Red 7 years ago from Oklahoma

      Patdmania, you are not alone. They are the leading taco chain.

    • patdmania profile image

      patdmania 7 years ago from waterford, mi

      I love taco bell even though i heard about those additives. I prefer making my own tacos, however in a pinch, taco bell hits the spot. Good hub!

    • Pamela N Red profile image

      Pamela N Red 7 years ago from Oklahoma

      I will try tofu. It's supposed to be good for women.

    • RTalloni profile image

      RTalloni 7 years ago from the short journey

      So true! Unable to eat regular cheeses? This is one of those foods that tofu works well with, as well as true feta (be careful, some companies are sneaking cow milk into feta these days). Thanks for the reminder about home made tacos. I needed to plan something different after so many winter soups! :)

    • Pamela N Red profile image

      Pamela N Red 7 years ago from Oklahoma

      I tried Qdoba once and wasn't impressed. It seemed overpriced for what I ordered.

      If you ever come through Oklahoma try Big Truck Tacos. It's a local place. They aren't cheap but the food is excellent.

    • Pamela N Red profile image

      Pamela N Red 7 years ago from Oklahoma

      That's good to know, Tommy because like I said when I grab a taco on the go Taco Mayo is the one I choose. I don't have a problem with their meat as it stands other than the grease. I'm glad they are opting for a leaner product.

    • CarolineChicago profile image

      Caroline Paulison Andrew 7 years ago from Chicago, IL

      We have Taco Bell here--but then also Qdoba (which I haven't been too) and Chipotle, which is more expensive but uses real meat, fresh vegetables, and they put your burritos, tacos or burrito bowls together in front of you. Really yummy--but expensive.

    • profile image

      oktommyboy 7 years ago

      I can't legally speak for the other two, but as an insider, I know Mayo does not use oats, but after all of these years of using 80% lean beef, they are making the move to 90% lean within the next month or so. Even though they were using 80, they were draining excess fat at the stores, so the beef going out was leaner than the start. They are also in that transition, using a formula with less sodium. Like I said, I can't speak for the other guys, but I have heard one of them buys their steak outside of the US to get cheaper price, and you should hear what the other puts in their beans, lard, meat grease, and bacon fat. Tastes good, don't even think about looking at the nutritional values.

    • Pamela N Red profile image

      Pamela N Red 7 years ago from Oklahoma


      Katie, you and my oldest son have a lot in common. I have to prepare special dishes for him when he visits.

    • katiem2 profile image

      katiem2 7 years ago from I'm outta here

      I'm a vegetarian and laughed when I heard this, thinking good less meat is better for people. Well done, great article. :) Katie

    • Pamela N Red profile image

      Pamela N Red 7 years ago from Oklahoma

      pan1974, thanks for adding that one. I totally forgot about ground turkey. That is another good option.

    • Pamela N Red profile image

      Pamela N Red 7 years ago from Oklahoma

      I'm not sure what the other two put in their meat but it still doesn't quite look or taste like beef to me. It's a finer grainier consistency.

      Thanks for the input oktommyboy. Of the three, Taco Mayo is my choice.

    • pan1974 profile image

      April 7 years ago from Columbus,Ga

      I was shocked when I saw that about Taco Bell on the news. I actually thought it was real ground beef. I did eat there some times, but when at home I make my own using ground turkey, because I'm trying to stay away from beef.

    • profile image

      oktommyboy 7 years ago

      I know for a fact they aren't the same. Mayo does not put oats in the meat and does not get the cheaper meat with beef "trimmings"

    • Pamela N Red profile image

      Pamela N Red 7 years ago from Oklahoma

      Thanks for reading, Prasetio.

    • prasetio30 profile image

      prasetio30 7 years ago from malang-indonesia

      I really entertained with this information. Thanks for writing this. Good work, Pamela. Love and peace,


    • Pamela N Red profile image

      Pamela N Red 7 years ago from Oklahoma

      Immartin, you are so right on that one. We can make them at home for less and better ingredients.

      tnderhrt23, thanks for reading.

      Mentalist, beans are cheaper so maybe it's real beans.

    • Mentalist acer profile image

      Mentalist acer 7 years ago from A Voice in your Mind!

      My nephew took me to a Taco-Bell and used to go there in college,I quickly learned to get the bean burrito,lol.;)

    • tnderhrt23 profile image

      tnderhrt23 7 years ago

      Thumbs up on this hub! Couldn't have said it better!

    • lmmartin profile image

      lmmartin 7 years ago from Alberta and Florida

      WHen a meal costs less than a dollar, one's expectations should be equally low. Lynda


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