Thursday, April 21, 2011

Recipe: Paleo beef tacos, adapted from Cooks llustrated

Even though there are tons of great paleo-specific recipes out there, you don't need a paleo recipe to pull off an excellent paleo meal. I've found that some of my most successful paleo kitchen creations initially came from a regular recipe. One of our favorites is the beef taco recipe from Cooks Illustrated. Their recipe (which is very tasty, by the way -- I made it several times in my pre-paleo days) involves vegetable oil, onions, garlic, brown sugar, corn tortillas, cheese and sour cream. The vegetable oil, brown sugar, corn tortillas, cheese and sour cream are not included in my version for obvious reasons, but I also leave out the onion and garlic (nothing wrong with onion and garlic, of course -- this is just my personal preference).

Paleo beef tacos
Serve about eight, so you'll probably have plenty of leftovers

4 tablespoons chili powder
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons coriander
1 teaspoon dried oregano
2 pounds grass-fed ground beef (preferably 10% fat)
1 cup organic tomato sauce (preferably Muir Glen brand)
1 cup chicken broth (homemade if possible)
4 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
salt and pepper to taste

Heat a large skillet over medium heat (no extra oil is needed -- you'll get plenty from the beef itself). Season the ground beef with salt and pepper and add to the hot pan. Cook until it is no longer pink (scrape the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon while cooking to prevent scorching). The next step is optional -- drain the fat (I prefer to drain it because it is too greasy for me otherwise). Add the spices, tomato sauce, chicken broth and apple cider. Bring to a simmer, then reduce heat to medium-low until you have a thick, saucy reduction (probably about 10 minutes).

Serve with iceberg or butter lettuce leaves and toppings of your choice (avocado, cilantro, salsa, fresh tomato, onions, etc). Yum!


  1. Found this recipe via a google search - I'm new to Paleo. Going to make this tonight. :)

  2. I tried this today! I added onions, garlic, and a green pepper and it turned out yummy, and I served it with avocado! The kiddos loved it!

  3. Good to hear, Marni! Teri, hope you liked it. Cooks Illustrated actually has a lot of paleo recipes -- and good ones at that. Sometimes you need to tweak them, of course ...


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