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Freezing Taco Meat

One of my favorite things to freeze is taco meat. It is so easy to make a large batch, place it into Ziploc bags, and freeze.

What I love about having taco meat in the freezer is that I can use it for so many things. It works great for tacos, taco salad, and nachos. I also use it in enchiladas and burritos.

Crock Pot Taco Soup

You can also use in it taco pasta, taco soup and oven tacos.

There are so many ways to use seasoned taco meat, which is why it is one of my favorite things to keep in the freezer.

I have been making and freezing my taco meat for at years. My sister gave me a recipe for freezing taco meat a long time ago, and I have been using it ever since when

The trick to this recipe for freezer taco meat is the tomato sauce. You do not want to freezer water, or at least you should try to avoid it.

Oven Tacos

Most seasoned taco meat contains water. I don’t like water in my freezer meals, because water is more likely to form ice crystals and have freezer burn. If you can avoid it don’t freeze items that contain water.

This recipe uses tomato sauce in place of the water. Not only does it freeze better this way, I think it also tastes better. I like the flavor that tomato sauce gives the meat.

You can almost always find a package of this taco meat in my freezer. I usually make and freeze six to eight pounds of meat at once.

I love being able to make this all at once and use it over several months. It really is one of my favorite things to have in my freezer.

Lynn's Kitchen Adventures


  1. I am totally going to try this!! I am just getting started in the whole freezing meals business :). Thanks for the fabulous blog! I love it!!

  2. love this – thanks for this recipe! With the softball/baseball and end of year activities upon us this spring, I need to speed up prep and I am definitely going to plan on cooking big batches of this recipe for the next few weeks. My kids like most kids LOVE anything taco, so this will be a lifesaver!

    I often cook the ground beef during my lunch break from work (I work from home) and throw it in the crock pot to keep it warm until its dinner time…wondering if I can throw the frozen taco meat in there midmorning and let it thaw and keep warm on low until afternoon/evening??

  3. So funny you posted this today I was just thinking yesterday about fixing meat up and freezing it, but wasn’t sure how it would turn out. Thanks a bunch – I will give this a try. We eat taco items around here all the time. Do you do anything else with hamburger and then freeze it?

    • @Amy, I hope you enjoy this taco meat Amy. I will try to do more posts on what I freeze. I also freeze hamburger cooked/browned with onions and green peppers. I like to keep that on hand especially during the fall and winter when I am making more soups, chili, and things that I use that combo in. I used to freeze the majority of my meals, so I will work on doing a few posts on what has worked for me.

  4. Amateur question: You freeze the taco meat, and then want make tacos for dinner one night. You take a bag out to thaw. Then what? (aka how do you reheat it?)

    • @Megan, The best way to do it is thaw in the fridge overnight and then reheat when ready to use. I usually just microwave it. But there have been times that I just microwave the frozen meat because I forgot to take it out. I hope that helps.

  5. Thanks for the tomato sauce tip. I have been adding black beans to my taco meat–about 30% bean, 70% meat. It stretches my meat budget and adds a bit more nutrition. Kids love the mix, hubby is getting used to it. 🙂

  6. Hi Lynn! I absolutely love your blog. You have given me so many ideas for dinner and I thank you!

    I have a couple of questions about freezing the taco meat. I have never done this so I was wondering how long do you suggest keeping it in the freezer (longest length of time before it’s unusable)? Also, what size freezer bags do you use for this?
    .-= Stephanie´s last blog ..Essie. =-.

  7. Taco meat is a staple in our freezer! One other way I store it is to make taco meat “muffins”. I put the cooked meat into muffin tins (regular size). Once they are frozen, I pop them out and freeze in a freezer bag. Its a perfect size for one tortilla/two hard shells/one baked potato. Its a great way to make indvidual portions for lunches.
    .-= Tricia´s last blog ..Menu Plan Monday–Weeks of April 19 & 26 =-.

  8. Great idea using tomato sauce instead of water. I think whether you do the “freezer meal” thing (which is a fantastic idea, by the way) or not just think of the extra flavor that you add when you substitute out the water.

    Thanks for the recipe – I’m thinking I’ll have some of these in my freezer VERY soon.
    .-= Kat´s last blog ..Life’s Little Lessons =-.

  9. Pam Rodriguez says

    Have you ever used chicken breast instead of hamburger for frozen taco meat? What amounts of seasoning would you use? Thank You….

  10. I mix in refried beans or lentils to a combination of ground turkey and ground beef. It lowers the fat content.

  11. if you do this and don’t add taco seasoning, you can pull out the frozen meat/tomato sauce combo and add Italian seasoning, garlic and onion and more tomato sauce for a great Spaghetti sauce. I always have this in my freezer for a fast taco or spaghetti type meal.

  12. If I want to use this recipe for taco meat that will immediately be eaten, how long do I cook the meat with the tomato sauce and ingredients after the meat has been browned and drained?

    • Just enough to heat it through. When I make this I usually make a large batch and we eat some that day and I freezer the rest. I hope that helps.

  13. When using your homemade taco seasoning, do you add in the coen starch & 1/2 cup tomato sauce before freezing it?

    • Yes, I cook it and add the seasoning mix and tomato sauce and then freeze it. That way all I have to do is reheat it to use it. I hope that helps.

  14. Coleen K Williams says

    Can ground turkey be used instead of ground beef or chicken?

    • Yes, I have used ground turkey and ground chicken and it works fine. I also use a mix of beef and turkey or chicken. I have also used venison. Pretty much any basic ground meat will work. I hope that helps.


  1. […] Taco meat is not a meal by itself, but it is my favorite item to keep in my freezer because of how versatile it is. It can be used for tacos, taco salad, nachos, burritos, enchiladas, and more. […]

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