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A healthy taco salad bowl you’ll make again and again

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Looking for a better alternative to a taco salad, without that fattening shell? Try this healthy taco salad bowl!

taco salad in a bowl

My favorite way to make taco salad more healthy

Lately, salads have probably been my most common lunch when I’m home alone. I have either a chopped salad, or a taco salad, but I want it to be healthy so I have to skip the shell taco bowl. Instead, I just toss together all of the stuff that I would normally put into a taco, add some delicious dressing, and then crumble in some tortilla chips for a crunch that reminds me of the shell. This barely needs a recipe, but I’m giving you one anyway!

This delicious and healthy taco salad barely needs a recipe, but here's one anyway to make your life easier! Click to Tweet

I kept this salad vegetarian because I am one, but a great addition for meat eaters (and what I add for my husband) is grilled chicken, cut into bite-sized chunks.

I use whatever lettuce I have around, usually green leaf or red oak leaf. This is also a great make-ahead salad. Just leave out the tortilla chips and dressing until you’re ready to eat!

How to slice an avocado safely

I used to feel like I was risking an ER trip every time I removed an avocado pit with a knife, and using a spoon is messy and takes too long. This 3-in-1 avocado slicer is AMAZING. After cutting an avocado in half, you push the round part into the pit and twist, and the pit comes right out! No palm-impaling knife required.

an avocado slicer on a small cutting board with two halves of an avocado

Then, if you want slices, you can use it for that too. If you eat avocados, you need this thing.

slices of avocado on a small cutting board with an avocado slicer

How to assemble the taco salad bowl

You can just make this taco salad in a bowl, or you could do the mason jar thing. As much as I’d like to make fun of it for being trendy, packing your taco salad in a mason jar makes a ton of sense. You stack everything tightly so that the dressing and anything moist stays separate from the lettuce. Start with the dressing in the bottom of the jar, add the tomato and onion, then the beans and corn, then the avocado, then the cheese, and finally the lettuce on top. Pack the tortilla chips in a baggie. A nutritious salad ready to go!

When you’re ready to eat, dump the whole thing into a bowl, add the tortilla chips, and give it a good stir. You could also pack it in a plastic container. Just remember that packing the layers tightly is key, so that the ingredients don’t mix.

Healthy Taco Salad Bowl

Ready? Here’s my healthy recipe for taco salad! I just had it for lunch today, the second time this week.

And don’t forget to make my 3-Minute Ranch Dressing! It goes great with this salad.

Yield: 1 large salad

Healthy Taco Salad Bowl Recipe

Healthy Taco Salad Bowl Recipe

This is one of my absolute favorite salads. It's basically everything that I would put into a taco, with some crunched up tortilla chips for crunch instead of a greasy taco shell bowl. This recipe makes a large, meal-sized salad, or two side salads.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes


  • 4 cups lettuce, torn into bite-sized pieces
  • 8 grape tomatoes, cut in half (or half of a regular tomato, chopped)
  • 1 medium slice of onion, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup canned corn, drained
  • 1/4 cup canned black beans, drained
  • 1/4 cup sharp or extra-sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1/2 avocado, roughly chopped
  • 4 or 5 tortilla chips, broken up into pieces
  • 3 tbsp ranch dressing


  1. Toss all ingredients together until dressing is incorporated
  2. Serve immediately


Hate getting the pits out of avocados? The The 3-in-1 Avocado Slicer is one of my favorite kitchen tools!

Missing the meat? When I make this for my husband, I add grilled chicken, well-seasoned and cut into chunks.

Want to make this salad ahead of time? Leave out the dressing and tortilla chips until you're ready to eat.

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Did you make this recipe? I'd love to see it!

Please leave a comment, a great star rating, or share what you made on Instagram, tagging @amyoztan. It really helps me out!

Looking for a better alternative to a taco salad, without that fattening shell? Try this healthy taco salad recipe! It's quick, easy, delicious, and vegetarian. #tacosalad

Tushar Hossain

Thursday 30th of June 2016

Mexican foods are delicious..I love them..but never tried this salad..

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