Tailgating Taco Salad

Tailgating Taco Salad Recipe

Looking for party salads? Bring your taco salad recipe up a notch by incorporating braised short ribs and a homemade southwestern ranch dressing into this otherwise traditional Mexican style staple. It’s the perfect tailgate food!



  • 1 bag Fresh Express 24 ounce Iceberg Garden
  • 4-6 short ribs, bone in (approximately 6 pounds total)
  • 1 750 ml bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled and sliced
  • 2 celery ribs, peeled and sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 bunch of thyme
  • 3 cups of water
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 firm avocado, diced
  • 2 large tomato, diced
  • 1/4 lb coarsely grated Monterey jack cheese
  • 1 (15 ounce) can black beans, drained
  • 1/2 fresh lime
  • 50 blue corn tortilla chips


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • Generously season the short ribs with kosher salt and fresh ground pepper
  • In a large dutch oven, heat the olive oil and add the short ribs. Brown on each side, approximately 15 minutes (work in batches to prevent overcrowding)
  • Transfer the ribs to a plate, set aside.
  • In the dutch oven used to cook the short ribs, cook the onions, carrots and celery (approximately 5 minutes)
  • Add the tomato paste and wine and bring to a boil over high heat then reduce to a simmer until wine is reduced by half (approximately 30 minutes)
  • Add all thyme, bay leaves and garlic. Stir in water
  • Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, return ribs to pot, cover and transfer to oven
  • Cook until tender and falling off the bone (approximately 2 to 2 1/2 hours)
  • When short ribs are done, fork off pieces onto a plate and season with salt and pepper to taste. *Strain off juices and save for a beef stock or sauce in the future
  • In a bowl, mix all salad ingredients together. Top with shredded short rib and drizzle desired amount of ranch over the entire salad.
  • Around the perimeter of the bowl, place blue corn tortilla chips.
  • Finish with fresh lime juice.

Dressing Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp white vinegar
  • 1 tsp fresh lime juice
  • 1/4 tsp paprika
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 tsp hot sauce
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • Fresh ground pepper, to taste

Dressing Instructions:

  • In a food processor, mix all ingredients. Serve chilled
 (3 Reviews)
Average Rating 5 out of 5
Patrick L.
May 23, 2017 (4 years 2 months ago)
Party Pleaser.
Love this salad ... hearty and delicious!
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Diane E.
May 22, 2017 (4 years 2 months ago)
Party Favorite
My friends and family love this salad. They request it for every family get together and party!
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Diane E.
May 22, 2017 (4 years 2 months ago)
Crowd Favorite
My family and friends love when I make this recipe for them! It's a hit at any party.
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