Need a super fast dinner option that incorporates veggies? Try this Easy Nacho Salad. It’s a layered recipe with tortilla chips on the bottom, covered with meat and cheese, then lettuce and tomatoes on top. Finish it off with some slices of avocado and a sour cream and salsa dressing. It’s good, gluten free food for families in a pinch.
I hesitate to call this a recipe, but it’s so quick and easy (and delicious) that it was worth sharing. Plus who doesn’t want a way to make nachos healthier?
All the cooking this recipe involves is browning some ground beef (or turkey if you want an alternative), and popping a plate in a microwave. Everything else is just chopping, tearing, or mixing.
How to Make an Easy Nacho Salad
Start by browning the ground beef, making sure to add the seasoning. I like to keep the seasoning simple instead of using taco seasoning as then if there are any leftovers the ground beef is more versatile for other recipes. If you prefer taco seasoning, you can certainly use that instead.
While the beef is cooking, make the “dressing”. Just combine the sour cream and salsa in a 2 to 1 ratio. For this recipe I recommend 6 tablespoons sour cream to 3 tablespoons salsa, but if you want more of the mixture you can increase that. Set the dressing aside for later.
Once the meat is browned, spread the desired amount of tortilla chips on a plate. This recipe is written for a medium-sized plate, but if you want a large plate or even a whole platter, it can easily be adapted.
Next place the ground beef and the shredded cheese over the chips. Pop it in the microwave for 30 seconds, afterward checking if the cheese is melted. If it’s not, keep cooking it in 10 second increments until the cheese is melted to your liking.
Once that’s done, in come the veggies. Wash and dry the lettuce and tomatoes, then tear the lettuce into pieces and place in a layer on the chips. Cut the tomatoes in half then place them on the lettuce.
Next up is the avocado. There are two ways to cut it – in the skin, or by removing the skin and doing it on a cutting board. I find it easier to leave the avocado in the skin.
Cut the avocado in half, then take the half that doesn’t have the pit make long cuts into it (resulting in slices from a quarter of of the avocado). Scoop out the sliced pieces with a spoon and place it on your nachos. Alternatively, you can peel the avocado half, then slice up the quarter of the avocado on a cutting board. Whichever way is easiest for you.
Now all that’s left to do is drizzle the dressing on your nachos and you’re done! Below is a process shot picture to show the steps visually.
All in all this should take about 15 minutes to do one plate and maybe 30 minutes if you’re doing a full 8 servings (which is what this recipe is for).
If you’re in need of more easy weeknight dinner ideas (aren’t we all), check these recipes out:
– Weeknight Paleo Ground Beef Stroganoff
– Swimming Rama Loaded Sweet Potato
– Easy Sheet Pan Dinner with Sausage & Veggies
– Lemon Thyme Chicken Sheet Pan Dinner
If you try this Easy Nacho Salad recipe (or any other recipe) then don’t forget to rate the recipe and let me know how it went in the comments below. It totally makes my day to hear how a recipe worked out for you.
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Recipe for Easy Nacho Salad
Easy Nacho Salad
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 6 tablespoons sour cream
- 3 tablespoons salsa
- 1 large bag of tortilla chips (about 16 ounces - some may be left over)
- 12 ounces shredded cheese (some may be left over)
- 1 head of green leaf lettuce (some may be left over)
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes
- A large non-stick pan
- A wooden spoon
- Measuring spoons
- A medium-sized bowl
- A spoon
- 8 medium-sized plates (one for each serving)
- A kitchen towel
- A cutting board
- A small sharp knife
- Place the ground beef in a large non-stick pan over medium heat. Measure out the kosher salt, black pepper, and garlic powder with measuring spoons then add them into the pan. Break the meat up and stir everything together with a wooden spoon, cooking the meat for 5 to 7 minutes until it is not longer pink. Take pan off heat and set aside.
- While the meat is cooking, measure out the sour cream and salsa and combine them in a medium-sized bowl with a spoon. This will be the “dressing” for your nachos. Set the bowl aside once combined.
- Take a medium-sized plate out and put a single layer of tortilla chips on it. Measure out 1/3 cup of the cooked ground beef and pour it in an even layer over the tortilla chips. Do the same with the shredded cheese, sprinkling the cheese in a single layer over the chips and ground beef.
- Place the plate in the microwave and heat on high for 30 seconds. Check the cheese and if it’s not melted all the way, keep microwaving in 10 second intervals until the cheese melted. Remove the plate from the microwave and set aside.
- Take out the lettuce and remove two large leaves from the head. Wash then dry the leaves with a towel. Tear them into small pieces with your hands and place them in a layer over the nachos.
- Measure out 1/3 cup of cherry tomatoes then wash and dry them using a towel. With a cutting board and small sharp knife, cut them in half and evenly disperse them on top of the lettuce.
- Using the knife, cut the avocado in half then on the side without the pit make long cuts into half of the avocado piece (resulting in slices from a quarter of of the avocado). Scoop out the sliced pieces with a spoon and place it on your nacho plate. Alternatively, you can peel the avocado half, then slice up the quarter of the avocado on a cutting board.
- Drizzle the salsa/sour cream mixture on top of the nachos with the spoon. Repeat for however many people you are feeding or save the remaining ingredients for leftovers.
- This recipe serves up to 8 people with medium-sized plates of nachos. If you use larger plates or like more meat, cheese, or other topping on your nachos, it will serve less.
- You can swap out the ground beef for ground turkey if you're cutting back on red meat.