Beach Living + a 10 Minute Taco Salad

Encinitas Beach  Mountain Mama Cooks

My boys and I are finishing up a week long vacation to southern California. We rented a beach front condo and let’s just say it’s been UN-BE-LIEVE-ABLE. We’ve spent the majority of our days at the beach, digging for sand crabs and perfecting the art of body surfing. I don’t even like to run yet I find myself running every morning. Partly because I’ve had to take the last two plus months off from vigorous exercise due to my knee that just being able to run has got me giddy. But mostly because the view is stunning and there is nothing quite like breathing in the salty humid air. I love it.

Easy Taco Salad  Mountain Mama Cooks

With two kids, eating out isn’t quite as fun as it used to be when it was just my husband and I. So instead ending the day with a stressful dinner out, we’ve been to three farmers markets over the last week and dining at home. I’m happy to do the cooking because we’ve kept it super simple and dining al fresco with a glass (or two) of wine while watching the Olympics is a darn near perfect evening in my book. Night before last, I made a taco salad that was just too good not to share. It’s so simple and seriously takes only 10 minutes to make. 15 if you add time it took to make the dressing. I used tried and true recipe for simple ground beef tacos and threw it over a salad of local produce. The Creamy Tomatillo Dressing comes from my good friend Kalyn over at Kalyn’s Kitchen. Feel free to use what you like but here’s how I made my salad.

  • a mix of romaine lettuce and baby spinach
  • sliced seedless Japanese cucumber
  • halved cherry tomatoes
  • fresh pineapple
  • shredded purple cabbage
  • shucked fresh corn
  • sliced yellow bell pepper
  • seasoned organic extra lean ground beef
  • creamy tomatillo dressing

Serve with some chips and salsa and a cold glass of sauvignon blanc.