Pizza is always a fun meal. And it’s pretty utilitarian as well, working as a weeknight dinner or a casual party meal.
And happily, pizza doesn’t ever have to get boring. Even served regularly there are a wide variety of flavor options like today’s taco pizza. And see the list below for lots of ideas from some of my blogging friends!
What is a Taco Pizza
I don’t think there is a standard definition of what a taco pizza is but my version is basically a pizza crust layered with toppings you might find in a taco. This includes ingredients like refried beans, spicy ground beef, salsa and cheese.
In some ways it’s easier to say what it isn’t. It isn’t a taco bell Mexican pizza copycat. This would have similar ingredients but be built on tortillas. And it’s not the 80’s/90’s era appetizer of mostly raw taco toppings on a rolled out crescent roll crust–as fun as that always was!
What Makes This a Winner
- Makes Dinner Fun – I’m not sure why… but pizza is always a fun, welcome dinner. You can even have kids help top it to start the fun early!
- Make it Your Way – We like to eat organic grass-fed beef. Try finding that on a commercial pizza!
- Crowd Pleaser – this pizza is would be equally at home feeding hungry kids, topping off a study binge in the college dorm or filling up sports fans on Game Day.
Step by Step Directions
Bake & Enjoy
Pizza Crust Options
For the very easiest crust option, I go with a pre-baked. I’ve had a hard time reliably finding these in stores, so sometimes I pre-bake my own. In about 20 minutes I have 3 crusts and I freeze two for later (or maybe make a different pizza, like this White Seafood Pizza, later in the week).
The next easiest option is pre-made dough. A local Italian bakery and Trader Joe’s are my two favorite sources. Usually these are about 1 lb which can make two 12-14 inch crusts if you like them thin like I do. You can always freeze half of the raw dough for later in that case. Pillsbury has packaged crust in two sizes—the smaller, 11 ounce size would work well for this.
But even if you need to make your own crust on the fly, the dough doesn’t need to rise like regular bread dough, so it’s just a quick mix and bake. You can use my pre-baked crust recipe if you’d like and save the extra dough for later
I typically go with a traditional round pizza. But making a rectangular pizza is a perfectly fine option as well.
Tips & FAQs
If your pizza dough has attitude and “fights” you as you roll it out, cover it and set aside for 10-15 minutes to let it relax.
You can use a flat cookie sheet as a peel to slide the pizza in and out of the oven (you’ll need to grab it with a fork too, to get it out). The thin edge really slides under well and it’s very economical!
The use of a half pound of ground beef is awkward but a pound felt like way too much for a 12-14 inch pizza. If you make up the full pound, however, you can always serve tacos (or another taco pizza) later. In fact my daughter was eyeing up my leftover taco meat and got sad when I told her I needed more pictures so she couldn’t use it for tacos.
What to Serve With
Pizza can be a complete meal in itself, so additions are optional. That said, a salad is always welcome, both for variety and added nutrition. And since this is a Taco pizza, some salsa and chips would be a great starter or side!
This recipe is an inspiration for beverages. Mexican beer (I like a Dos Equis Amber) or a pitcher of Margaritas would be great complimentary adult beverages, From a non-alcoholic perspective, I like fizzy water to help break up a heavier meal or a nice Mexican orange crush would be fun.
More Perfect Pizza Recipes:
- Apple Prosciutto Pizza from Jen Around the World
- Autumn Pizza from Our Good Life
- Broccoli Pizza with Provolone, Mozzarella, and Pecorino Romano from Karen’s Kitchen Stories
- Chicago-Style Deep Dish Pizza Recipe from The Fresh Cooky
- Crab Rangoon Pizza from Palatable Pastime
- Filet French Bread Pizza from A Kitchen Hoor’s Adventures
- French Bread Mummy Pizzas from Cheese Curd In Paradise
- Hatch Chile Pizza with Bacon and Mozzarella from Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks
- Hatch Chili and Ricotta Sauce Pineapple Pizza from Magical Ingredients
- Pizza Gyoza from That Recipe
- Skillet Pizza Dip from Family Around the Table
- Taco Pizza from Art of Natural Living
- Tortilla Pizza from Fresh April Flours
- 8-12 ounces of pizza dough or a 12-14 inch pre-baked crust.
- ½ pound ground beef (see note)
- ½ package taco seasoning (see note)
- 1 cup refried beans
- 1 cup salsa
- 2-3 cups shredded cheddar, Monterey Jack or combination
- ¼ cup sliced olives
- Topping options: diced tomato, sliced green onion, chopped cilantro, chopped avocado
Preheat oven to 400F
If not using a pre-baked crust, roll out dough to a 12-14 inch circle on a floured surface or floured parchment paper.. Bake directly on oven rack (or on parchment) for 5-8 minutes until starting to turn golden. Remove from oven and set aside.
While crust is baking, drain the salsa in a strainer. Discard the liquid that is drained off.
Brown beef in a skillet, until cooked through. Add the taco seasoning and about 1 Tablespoon of water (use less than package directions so meat is not too wet).
When crust and beef are done assemble the pizza. Spread the refried beans as the first layer. Top with the drained salsa, then the seasoned beef. Sprinkle the olives over this and then the cheese.
Bake until cheese is melted. Remove from oven and top with your choice of fresh toppings.
I recommend preparing the full pound of ground beef with the full package of seasoning. Then save half of the seasoned meat for tacos or a second pizza. Freeze if not using within a couple days.
- Butternut Beer Cheese Soup
- Classic Betty Crocker Blueberry Muffins