This Meal Prep Skinny Taco Bake is a delicious, healthier take on a taco dinner. A taco casserole filled with ground turkey, sweet potatoes and bell peppers. A nutritious lunch or dinner idea!
How to make this skinny taco bake
- Preheat the oven to 400 F.
- Toss sweet potato with 1 tbsp olive oil then season with salt & pepper. Bake for 15-20 minutes.
- Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a large skillet. Then add ground turkey, onions and garlic. After breaking up the ground turkey, add chili powder, cumin, paprika and salt.
- Remove sweet potatoes from the oven and aad in the turkey mixture along with the bell peppers.
- Top with cheddar cheese then bake until cheese is melted.
- Top with tomatoes, green onion and cilantro.
- Serve and enjoy!
Ingredients and substitutions
- Olive oil – any neutral oil will work in place of olive oil. Neutral oils can be grapeseed oil, canola oil, avocado oil, etc.
- Sweet potato – yams or butternut squash can be used in place of the sweet potato. Feel free to use red potatoes or another variation of potato if you’d like.
- Ground turkey – ground chicken, ground pork or extra lean ground beef can also be used in this recipe.
- Yellow onion – red onion, sweet onion or shallots can substitute yellow onion.
- Garlic – use fresh or jarred minced garlic in this recipe. In a pinch, garlic powder may work.
- Chili powder – cayenne pepper or crushed chili flakes are great alternatives to chili powder.
- Cumin – ground coriander, curry powder or caraway seeds can substitute cumin.
- Paprika – cayenne pepper is a great alternative to paprika. Chili powder or taco seasoning can also be used as a substitution.
- Green, red and yellow bell peppers – use any or all colours of your choice or that you have accessible to you. Poblano peppers can add a touch of spice.
- Cheddar cheese – use any shredded cheese blend of your choice. Tex mex, habanero cheese blend or a sharp cheddar cheese are all great options.
- Tomatoes – beefsteak tomatoes are great but any tomato of choice can be used.
- Green onions (to garnish)
- Cilantro (to garnish)
- Tortilla chips – any tortilla chip brand you like can be used.
What is a taco bake?
If your family loves tacos, this taco bake recipe may become your new favourite for taco night! Taco bakes are a casserole that are similar to a low carb taco salad, without the lettuce but has all the taco flavours you love. There are several different versions of a taco bake recipe floating around the Internet but they all were made with Doritos, mac and cheese or tortilla layers. I wanted to make a taco bake that was meal prep friendly, lower in carb and could be served any way you prefer!
What should I serve with a taco bake?
The great thing about this taco bake recipe is that it makes a pretty complete meal all by itself. It already has meat, cheddar cheese, onions, bell peppers, and diced tomatoes.
If you do want to serve a healthy side dish, black beans are a good choice. You can also serve this taco bake with cauliflower rice or your favourite tortilla chips. If you can find them in your grocery store, there are quinoa tortilla chips and lower carb flour tortillas available. Any leftover taco bake can be used as an easy pre-made nacho topping or as a filling for a tasty burrito.
Oh, and don’t forget, you can customize the toppings! I like to serve the taco casserole with sour cream, some green chilis, pickled jalapeno slices, and slices of avocado/guacamole.
Storing and reheating
Store the leftovers in the fridge for up to four days. When storing, I recommend transferring the taco make into individual servings so that they're the perfect grab-and-go lunch or dinner for the week.
When ready to reheat, pop the individual servings in the microwave for 1-2 minutes or until fully warmed. Another option is to place the leftovers in the oven at 350 degrees until heated throughout.
Freezing this taco bake casserole
Just like most of my meal prep dinners, this meal prep taco casserole is very freezer-friendly. It’s a versatile meal prep idea, too. You can divide the mixture out into meal prep containers, or freeze the casserole whole if you want to.
Regardless of how you want to freeze it, be sure that the taco casserole is cool before placing it in the freezer. If the casserole is too warm when you freeze it, condensation will form into ice on the top. That's how freezer burn begins, and you don't want that to happen.
As long as it's covered well, taco bake will keep well in the freezer for two to three months. If you won't be freezing it, it will stay good in a refrigerator for about 4 or 5 days.
More Tex Mex meal prep recipes
- Low Carb Mexican Chicken Lettuce Wraps
- Meal Prep Individual Taco Pizza
- Instant Pot Barbacoa Beef (Chipotle Copycat)
Meal prep tools for this recipe
- Grab some glass meal prep bowls if you plan on using the taco casserole in your weekly lunches.
- I get all my free-range chicken from Butcher Box, conveniently delivered to me frozen.
Meal Prep Taco Skillet
- 2 tbsp olive oil, divided
- 1 large sweet potato, diced
- 1 lb ground turkey or chicken (can also use ground beef)
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tbsp chili powder
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 each red, green and yellow pepper, diced
- 1 cup cheddar cheese, grated
- 2 beefsteak tomatoes, diced
- 2 green onions, sliced
- 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
- Tortilla chips for serving (optional)
- Preheat oven to 400 F. Toss sweet potato with 1 tbsp olive oil in an 8x11 or 9x13 baking dish then season with salt & pepper. Bake for 15-20 minutes until sweet potato is fork tender.
- Meanwhile, heat remaining tbsp olive oil over med-high heat in a large skillet. Add ground turkey, onions and garlic, breaking up meat with a slotted spoon, then add chili powder, cumin, paprika and salt. Mix to combine well and cook for 5-6 minutes until meat starts to brown.
- Remove sweet potatoes from oven and add in turkey mixture along with bell peppers. Top with cheddar cheese then bake for 10 minutes until cheese is fully melted.
- Top with tomatoes, green onion and cilantro then serve and enjoy!