The Ultimate Guide to Making Walking Tacos: A Crowd-Pleasing Recipe

Discover the joy of making Walking Tacos with our easy and delicious recipe. Ideal for picnics, parties, and family fun – a must-try dish that’s sure to please!

Ingredients for Walking Tacos recipe spread out on kitchen counter.

Delicious Walking Taco with all toppings in a Doritos bag

Food lovers and cooking enthusiasts, get ready for a culinary adventure with one of the most fun and easy-to-make recipes out there: Walking Tacos! Perfect for parties, picnics, or a quick family dinner, this dish is not only delicious but also incredibly versatile. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll walk you through the steps to create the perfect Walking Taco, complete with tips and variations to suit every taste.

Delicious Walking Tacos Recipe: Perfect for Family Gatherings and Outdoor Events!

Family Fun with Walking Tacos: This recipe holds a special place in our hearts. It started as a fun experiment on a family camping trip and quickly turned into our go-to meal for outdoor events. Easy to make and fun to eat, Walking Tacos have been a hit at our family gatherings, bringing smiles and delicious flavors to all our adventures.

Shopping List

  • Lean ground beef (1 pound)
  • Taco seasoning packet (1 ounce)
  • Water (2 tablespoons)
  • ROTEL, undrained (1 can)
  • Individual chip bags of Doritos or Fritos (6 bags)
  • Shredded romaine lettuce
  • Shredded Mexican cheese
  • Sour cream
  • Salsa
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Ripe avocado or guacamole

What You’ll Need

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Servings: 6


  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 ounce taco seasoning packet
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 can ROTEL, undrained
  • 6 individual chip bags (1 ounce each) of Cool Ranch Doritos, Nacho Cheese Doritos, or Fritos Corn Chips (or a combination)

Toppings (per bag):

  • 1/4 cup shredded romaine lettuce
  • 2 tablespoons shredded Mexican cheese
  • 1 tablespoon sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon salsa
  • 1-2 cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • A few small cubes of ripe avocado or 1 tablespoon guacamole

Step-by-Step Instructions

  1. Cook the Beef: In a skillet, cook the ground beef over medium heat until it’s no longer pink. Drain any excess fat.
  2. Add Flavors: Stir in the taco seasoning, water, and undrained can of ROTEL. Let it simmer for a few minutes until the mixture thickens slightly.
  3. Prepare the Bags: While the beef is cooking, gently crush the chips in their bags to break them into smaller pieces. Open the bags and roll down the sides to create a bowl-like shape.
  4. Assemble: Spoon the beef mixture into each chip bag. Top with shredded lettuce, Mexican cheese, sour cream, salsa, cherry tomatoes, and avocado or guacamole.
  5. Enjoy! Grab a fork and dig in right from the bag. It’s that easy and mess-free!

Serving Suggestions and Variations for Walking Tacos

Walking Tacos are not only delicious but also incredibly versatile, making them perfect for various occasions and catering to different tastes. Here are some serving suggestions and variations to elevate your Walking Taco experience:

Serving Suggestions

  1. Outdoor Gatherings: Whether it’s a backyard BBQ, a camping trip, or a beach day, Walking Tacos are perfect as they require minimal setup and cleanup.
  2. Kids’ Parties: Kids love the novelty of eating right out of a chip bag. Set up a ‘make-your-own’ taco station with various toppings for a fun and interactive party meal.
  3. Game Day: Serve these at your next sports event viewing party. They’re great for eating in front of the TV and can be held in one hand, leaving the other free for cheering.
  4. Movie Nights: Replace the usual popcorn with Walking Tacos for a more substantial movie snack.
  5. Potlucks and Picnics: Easy to transport and serve, they are ideal for communal dining events.


  1. Protein Swap: Instead of ground beef, try ground chicken, turkey, or pork. For a vegetarian option, consider using quinoa, black beans, or a meat substitute.
  2. Chip Variety: Experiment with different types of chips like spicy jalapeño, barbecue-flavored, or even kettle chips for a unique twist.
  3. Global Flavors: Mix it up with various cuisines – think Greek with feta and olives, or Italian with mozzarella and marinara sauce.
  4. Toppings Galore: Offer a range of toppings like black beans, corn, jalapeños, pickled onions, or bell peppers for added color and flavor.
  5. Cheese Varieties: Try different types of cheese like cheddar, pepper jack, or a blend of Mexican cheeses.
  6. Sauces and Salsas: Incorporate various salsas, from mild pico de gallo to spicy salsa verde, or even a drizzle of hot sauce for those who like it extra fiery.
  7. Diet-Friendly Options: Create low-carb or keto versions using keto-friendly chips or alternatives like cheese crisps or pork rinds, and adjust the toppings accordingly.

Assembling Walking Tacos with various toppings

The Secrets Behind the Perfect Walking Tacos Recipe

Creating the perfect Walking Tacos recipe involves more than just following the steps; it’s about understanding the little nuances that turn a good dish into a great one. Here are some secrets that can elevate your Walking Tacos to the next level:

  1. Quality Ingredients: Start with fresh, high-quality ingredients. This means selecting the best ground meat, ripe avocados, fresh lettuce, and quality cheese. The flavors of your ingredients play a significant role in the overall taste of the dish.
  2. Proper Seasoning: The key to a flavorful taco is in the seasoning. Don’t hesitate to adjust the taco seasoning to suit your taste preferences. You can even make your own seasoning blend to control the salt and spice levels.
  3. Meat Texture: When cooking the meat, aim for a balance between juiciness and crispiness. Brown the meat well to develop depth of flavor, but be careful not to overcook it, which can make it dry.
  4. Layering the Ingredients: How you layer the ingredients in the bag can make a difference. Start with a layer of crushed chips, followed by the hot meat, which slightly softens the chips, adding a pleasant texture. Then add your cold toppings like lettuce, cheese, and sour cream.
  5. Variety of Toppings: Provide a range of toppings to cater to different tastes. This includes different types of cheese, salsas, and extra additions like black beans, corn, or jalapeños. The more options, the more personalized and enjoyable the tacos become.
  6. Sauce and Moisture Balance: Ensure there’s a good balance of moisture. The meat should be moist but not dripping, and the addition of sauces like salsa or sour cream should be just enough to add flavor without making the bag soggy.
  7. Serving Temperature: Serve the tacos while the meat is still warm. This not only enhances the flavors but also gives a delightful contrast with the cold toppings.
  8. Presentation and Fun Factor: Remember, part of the appeal of Walking Tacos is in their unique presentation and the fun of eating straight from a chip bag. Encourage the fun aspect with a variety of chip types and colorful toppings.
  9. Customizable Experience: Finally, the best part of Walking Tacos is how customizable they are. Whether it’s a kid-friendly version with milder flavors or a spicy creation for those who love heat, the ability to personalize each serving makes the dish a hit with everyone.

By paying attention to these details, you can ensure that your Walking Tacos are not just tasty, but also a memorable part of any gathering or meal.

Keto-friendly version of Walking Tacos with pork rinds.

Keto Version of Walking Tacos Recipe

For those following a ketogenic diet, traditional Walking Tacos can be easily adapted to fit into a low-carb lifestyle. Here’s a keto-friendly version of the recipe that maintains all the delicious flavors without the carbs.


  • 1 pound ground beef or turkey: Opt for a higher fat content for more keto-friendly macros.
  • 1 ounce keto-friendly taco seasoning: Look for or make a seasoning mix without added sugar or starches.
  • 2 tablespoons water: To help distribute the taco seasoning.
  • 1 can diced tomatoes, drained: Ensure there’s no added sugar in the canned tomatoes.
  • Keto-friendly chip alternatives: Use pork rinds, cheese crisps, or other low-carb options instead of traditional corn chips.
  • Toppings (per bag):
    • Shredded lettuce: Provides crunch and volume.
    • Shredded cheese: Opt for full-fat cheese.
    • Sour cream: A great source of fat and flavor.
    • Guacamole or avocado: Healthy fats and fiber.
    • Sliced olives, jalapeños, or green onions (optional): For extra flavor without the carbs.


  1. Cook the Meat: Brown the ground beef or turkey in a skillet over medium heat until it’s cooked through. Drain excess fat if necessary.
  2. Add Flavor: Stir in the keto-friendly taco seasoning and water. Cook for a few more minutes until the mixture is well combined and slightly thickened.
  3. Prepare the ‘Bags’: Instead of traditional chip bags, use bowls. If you’re using pork rinds or cheese crisps, you can put a small serving at the bottom of each bowl.
  4. Assemble: Spoon the seasoned meat mixture over your keto-friendly ‘chips’. Then, add your chosen toppings – lettuce, cheese, sour cream, avocado/guacamole, and any optional extras.
  5. Serve and Enjoy: Serve immediately, allowing guests or family members to customize their Walking Tacos to their liking.

This keto version of Walking Tacos is not only satisfying and flavorful but also aligns well with the nutritional needs of a ketogenic diet. It’s a great way to enjoy a classic favorite without breaking your carb count.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) About Walking Tacos

Q1: What are Walking Tacos? A1: Walking Tacos, also known as “Taco in a Bag,” are a fun and easy-to-eat version of traditional tacos. Instead of a taco shell, the ingredients are added right into a small bag of crushed chips, making them portable and convenient for eating on the go.

Q2: Can Walking Tacos be made ahead of time? A2: The meat can be cooked ahead of time and reheated when ready to serve. However, it’s best to assemble the tacos just before eating to prevent the chips from becoming soggy.

Q3: What kind of chips work best for Walking Tacos? A3: The most popular options are Doritos (Nacho Cheese or Cool Ranch) and Fritos Corn Chips. However, you can use any small, crunchy chip that holds up well to the toppings.

Q4: Are Walking Tacos gluten-free? A4: They can be, depending on the chips and taco seasoning used. Always check the labels of your ingredients to ensure they are gluten-free.

Q5: How can I keep the tacos warm for a party or event? A5: Keep the meat mixture in a slow cooker on a low setting during the event. This will keep it warm and ready to serve without drying it out.

Q6: Can I make vegetarian Walking Tacos? A6: Absolutely! Substitute the meat with a vegetarian alternative like cooked beans, lentils, or a plant-based meat substitute. Be sure to add flavorful seasonings to mimic the taco flavor.

Q7: How can I make Walking Tacos healthier? A7: Opt for lean meat, like ground turkey or chicken. Increase the amount of vegetables in your toppings, and consider using baked chips or lower-calorie alternatives. You can also use Greek yogurt in place of sour cream for a healthier twist.

Q8: What are some creative toppings I can use for Walking Tacos? A8: Beyond the traditional toppings, consider adding corn, black beans, pickled onions, jalapeños, olives, bell peppers, or a drizzle of lime juice. Experimenting with different cheeses and salsas can also add variety.

Q9: How do you eat Walking Tacos? A9: Simply open the bag of chips, add your toppings, and eat it straight from the bag with a fork. It’s meant to be a fun, casual, and portable meal.

Q10: Can Walking Tacos be made in large batches for events? A10: Yes, they’re great for large gatherings. Prepare the meat and toppings in large quantities, and let guests assemble their tacos. This setup is perfect for parties, picnics, and outdoor events.

Walking Tacos are not just a meal; they’re an experience! This dish is perfect for any occasion and guarantees to be a hit with all age groups. Don’t forget to share your Walking Taco creations with us and stay tuned for more delicious, easy-to-make recipes.

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