Incredible Ground Beef Taco Quinoa Bowl

Jump to Recipe
Taco Quinoa Bowl with Ground Beef, corn, cotija cheese, tomatoes, fresh cilantro, and cilantro lime crema drizzled on top. Ground beef bowl, avocado half with pit, bowl of crema, tomatoes and cilantro on the table.

Making a Ground Beef Taco Quinoa Bowl is so darn tasty and perfect for busy weeknights!  Everything can me prepped and cooked ahead, so you only need to reheat and enjoy.  The base of these bowls is the Quinoa, which is lightly seasoned and is a perfect fluffy backdrop.  It’s topped with saucy ground beef that’s loaded with savory and smoky Mexican flavors from the chili powder, cumin, garlic, and scallions.  Corn that is slightly seared brings a pop of sweetness.  The Cotija cheese brings tang and creaminess and the tomato a burst of freshness.  The avocado adds rich creaminess and the cool cilantro lime crema brings that final bright finishing touch.

Overall, this is one harmonious dinner filled with bright, creamy, savory, smokey, and delectable flavors and textures!  

DINNER BOWLS = EASY FAMILY DINNERS

Dinner bowls are essentially like an at-home buffet bar where you pick a theme, make the main ingredients, then put out a bunch of toppings and let everyone build their own.  I love that you can create your own mix of ingredients so that everyone can take exactly what they want.  For kids, it’s a great way to give them some independence in creating their own meal and often it encourages them to try new ingredients and flavors.

If you have picky eaters or if you have family members that eat at different times throughout the night, then make-your-own bowls are perfect for you. Here is what you do…

  1. Pick a theme – Asian, Mexican, Italian, etc.
  2. Prepare the ingredients for cooking over the weekend – or just on a less hectic day/night
  3. Cook the hot/cold ingredients and place in glass storage containers
  4. Let everyone make their own bowl at dinnertime
  5. If you or your partner are working late or a child has an afterschool activity and needs to eat earlier or later, then put storage containers in the fridge all together in one spot to pull out

Here are some of my favorite bowl recipes:

Quick note!  This post contains affiliate links, which means I earn a commission (at no extra cost to you) if you purchase from them.  This commission is what helps me keep this blog afloat :).  I also share these links because I have used the products, genuinely love them, and want you to know exactly what I used. 

EQUIPMENT NEEDED

For this recipe, you will need a small-medium pot with lid for the quinoa.

You also need a large skillet/frying pan for cooking the ground beef. I use my absolute favorite 12″ Ceramic Pan, which is great because food really does slide right off with minimal oil and I don’t have to worry about food sticking and burning. 

PREP-AHEAD STEPS FOR TACO QUINOA BOWL

We are all extremely busy and making dinner during the week can be overwhelming. Here are steps you can prepare ahead to save time on busy nights! (See the full recipe below) 

Chop the cilantro for the Crema and toppings. Slice the 4 scallions and divide for the ground beef and the toppings.

Cut the tomatoes in half. Quarter the lime.

Measure the seasonings for the ground beef.  I used (going clockwise) Smoked Paprika, Cumin, Chili Powder, Garlic Powder, and Salt.

Make the Cilantro Lime Crema by mixing the sour cream, the juice from 1/2 the lime, 1 teaspoon of the cilantro finely chopped, and the 1/2 teaspoon of salt.

Sour cream, cilantro, and lime in bowl for Slow Cooker Pork Tacos with with Pickled Onions, Shredded Cheese, and Cilantro Lime Crema drizzled on top!  It's such an easy dinner since the pork cooks in the slow cooker to be perfectly seasoned and fall apart tender. #tacos #easydinner #glutenfree #dinner #mexican #pork

Can I replace the Cilantro?

If you are really not a fan of cilantro or just don’t have any on hand, you can swap with scallions.  You want something with flavor.  You can also use parsley for color and then add a 1/2 teaspoon of dried or ground coriander or even cumin in a pinch.  If none of these options work for you, just use the lime and the sour cream and maybe a touch of garlic.

COOKING STEPS FOR YOUR TACO QUINOA BOWL

Start by rinsing the quinoa thoroughly in a strainer, then adding it to 2 3/4 cups water in a pot with a fitting lid. Mix in the Chili powder, ground cumin, and salt. Bring to a boil, then turn it down to the lowest setting and cover. Cook covered for 20 minutes. You can also do this step ahead 3-4 days.

Fork fluffing cooked quinoa in pot for Taco Quinoa Bowl with Ground Beef, corn, cotija cheese, tomatoes, fresh cilantro, and cilantro lime crema

Preheat a large frying pan on high heat.  Add the olive oil and the corn kernels. You are just looking to brown them quickly for 1-2 minutes. Transfer the corn to a plate or small serving bowl.

Corn in pan getting seared for Taco Quinoa Bowl with Ground Beef, corn, cotija cheese, tomatoes, fresh cilantro, and cilantro lime crema

To the same hot pan, add the ground beef and break up the beef with a spatula. Add the chili powder, ground cumin, garlic powder, paprika, salt, and scallion. Stir to combine and let cook for 4-5 minutes until the beef is cooked through.

Ground beef and seasonings cooking in pan for Taco Quinoa Bowl with Ground Beef, corn, cotija cheese, tomatoes, fresh cilantro, and cilantro lime crema

Cooked ground beef in pan for Taco Quinoa Bowl with Ground Beef, corn, cotija cheese, tomatoes, fresh cilantro, and cilantro lime crema

Can I substitute ground chicken or turkey?

Yes, though you will need to add a bit of olive oil to the pan before adding the chicken or turkey, as they have less fat than the beef.  Simply swap with 1 pound of your protein of choice.  Taste as you go to see if you need more seasoning.

ASSEMBLE!

Right before serving, prep the avocado. Using a large sharp knife, cut around the middle of the length. Whack the pit with the sharp side of the knife and then pull out the pit. Gentle peel the outer skin off the avocado flesh. Then lay each half down and slice thin. Gently press to the slices fan out on a plate.

Knife pulling pit from avocado half for Taco Quinoa Bowls with Ground Beef, corn, cotija, tomatoes, and cilantro lime crema.

Hand peeling the skin from avocado half for Taco Quinoa Bowls with Ground Beef, corn, cotija, tomatoes, and cilantro lime crema.

Peeled and sliced avocado fanned out on a plate for Taco Quinoa Bowls with Ground Beef, corn, cotija, tomatoes, and cilantro lime crema.

Fill bowls with the various toppings: crumbled cotija cheese, tomatoes, cilantro, scallions, corn, avocado, and cilantro lime crema. Fill individual bowls with a heaping spoonful of quinoa, then the ground beef mixture. Let everyone pick their toppings. 

ENJOY!  😍 Carrie

Have you tried this recipe? If so, please leave a ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ star rating in the recipe below! I love to hear your feedback and your rating helps others to find this recipe. Thanks so much!

Taco Quinoa Bowl with Ground Beef, corn, cotija cheese, tomatoes, fresh cilantro, and cilantro lime crema drizzled on top. Bowl of crema, bowl of cotija cheese, tomatoes and cilantro on the table.
5 from 1 vote
Print

Incredible Ground Beef Taco Quinoa Bowl

These incredible Ground Beef Taco Quinoa Bowls are so darn tasty and perfect for busy weeknights!  Everything can me prepped and cooked ahead, so you only need to reheat and enjoy.  The base of these bowls is the Quinoa, which is lightly seasoned and is a perfect fluffy backdrop.  It's topped with saucy ground beef that's loaded with savory and smoky Mexican flavors from the chili powder, cumin, garlic, and scallions.  Corn that is slightly seared brings a pop of sweetness.  The Cotija cheese brings tang and creaminess and the tomato a burst of freshness.  The avocado adds rich creaminess and the cool cilantro lime crema brings that final bright finishing touch.

Course Main Course
Cuisine Mexican
Keyword ground beef, healthy dinner, quinoa, taco bowl, tacos
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Author Carrie Tyler

Ingredients

Corn and Ground Beef

  • 1 teaspoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil or spray
  • 1 cup Corn kernels (frozen or fresh)
  • 1 pound Ground Beef, 90% lean
  • 2 Scallions
  • 1 teaspoon Chili Powder
  • 1 teaspoon Ground Cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon Smoked Paprika
  • 1 teaspoon Garlic Powder
  • 1 teaspoon Salt

Quinoa

  • 1.5 cups Uncooked Quinoa
  • 1 tablespoon Chili Powder
  • 2 teaspoons Ground Cumin
  • 2 teaspoons salt

Toppings

  • 1 cup Cotija Cheese (or shredded cheddar)
  • 2 Ripe Avocados
  • 2 Tomatoes, medium
  • 2 Scallions
  • 2 Tablespoons Fresh Cilantro, Chopped
  • 1 Lime
  • 1/2 cup Sour Cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt

Instructions

Prep-Ahead Steps

  1. Chop the cilantro for the Crema and toppings. Slice the 4 scallions and divide for the ground beef and the toppings.

  2. Cut the tomatoes in half (do this step right before you are going to eat). Quarter the lime.

  3. Measure the seasonings for the ground beef – Paprika, Cumin, Chili Powder, Garlic Powder, and Salt.

  4. Make the Cilantro Lime Crema by mixing the sour cream, the juice from 1/2 the lime, 1 teaspoon of the cilantro finely chopped, and the 1/2 teaspoon of salt.

Cooking Steps

  1. Start by rinsing the quinoa thoroughly in a strainer, then adding it to 2 3/4 cups water in a pot with a fitting lid. Mix in the Chili powder, ground cumin, and salt. Bring to a boil, then turn it down to the lowest setting and cover. Cook covered for 20 minutes. You can also do this step ahead 3-4 days.

  2. Preheat a large frying pan on high heat. Add the olive oil and the corn kernels. You are just looking to brown them quickly for 1-2 minutes. Transfer the corn to a plate or small serving bowl.

  3. To the same hot pan, add the olive oil and the ground beef and break up the beef with a spatula. Add the chili powder, ground cumin, garlic powder, paprika, salt, and scallion. Stir to combine and let cook for 4-5 minutes until the beef is cooked through.

Assemble

  1. Right before serving, prep the avocado. Using a large sharp knife, cut around the middle of the length. Whack the pit with the sharp side of the knife and then pull out the pit. Gentle peel the outer skin off the avocado flesh. Then lay each half down and slice thin. Gently press to the slices fan out on a plate.

  2. Fill bowls with the various toppings: crumbled cotija cheese, tomatoes, cilantro, scallions, corn, avocado, and cilantro lime crema. Fill individual bowls with a heaping spoonful of quinoa, then the ground beef mixture. Let everyone pick their toppings. Enjoy!

One thought on “Incredible Ground Beef Taco Quinoa Bowl

  1. 5 stars
    I am loving everything about this dish. Your photos look so delicious that it makes me want to gobble this whole thing up! The quinoa with all the other great ingredients you used makes this such a perfect healthy bowl. I definitely will be throwing this together in the near future.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating




This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.