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Rotel Tacos

Taco Tuesday just got better with these Rotel Tacos! Take the standard ingredients from a taco kit but add some extra flavor with a Rotel cheese sauce. This recipe is ready in under 30 minutes and is perfect for a quick and yummy meal. 

Rotel Taco with meat and velveeta cheese sauce.

I’ll be honest, I was never excited for taco night when I was growing up. I always thought that the taco seasoning and pre-packaged shells were boring and, honestly, that they didn’t taste very good.

But, as is true for most busy households, the tacos were easy and made a lot of food for a cheap price, so they stayed on the menu. 

This Rotel Taco recipe is my way of taking that pre-packaged taco kit and turning it into something SO craveable! The Rotel cheese sauce truly adds a whole other dynamic to this recipe, turning taco night from mundane to so exciting! 

And it’s STILL cheap and easy, ready in just 25 minutes! Prep the meat, make the cheese sauce, and toast the shells (only if you want to be really extra), and you have dinner on the table. This viral TikTok recipe can’t be beat! 

Rotel Taco Ingredients

Labeled ingredient shot.
  1. Olive oil: You can also use avocado oil or vegetable oil
  2. White onion: Use a red or yellow onion, or omit this altogether if preferred. I had frozen chopped onion on hand, so that’s what I used! 
  3. Ground beef: I used 85% lean. Use a leaner beef if you prefer or sub out the beef for ground turkey or ground chicken.  
  4. Taco Seasoning Packet: Get a packet for 1 lb of meat. I like Siete Mild, but choose whatever you’d like. You can also make homemade taco seasoning
  5. Rotel Diced Tomatoes: I used the kind with Lime Juice and Cilantro, but you can also use the Diced Tomatoes and Green Chilies can. This will make the recipe spicy, so opt for a mild version if you are sensitive to spice. 
  6. Velveeta Cheese: Original flavor. For an extra cheesy sauce you can also add the Queso Blanco flavor. 
  7. Hard Shell Tacos: I used Nacho Cheese Flavored Taco Shells but you can also use plain. This recipe has a lot of sauce, so soft taco shells may not be a good substitute as they could get soggy. 
  8. Shredded Lettuce

How to Make this Recipe

Step 1: Cook the Beef

sauteed onions in a pan
Cooked taco meat in a pan.

In a medium pan, heat the olive oil until warm. Then add the white onion and saute for 2-3 minutes until the onion softens. 

Add the ground beef and prepare according to the Taco Seasoning packet’s instructions. Once the seasoning has been added, set the meat aside.

Step 2: Make the Cheese Sauce

Small pot filled with ingredients needed to make Rotel Cheese Sauce.
Small pot with melty rotel cheese sauce.

In a small pot, add the can of Rotel Diced tomatoes and the velveeta cheese

Stir until the cheese melts and a cheese sauce is formed! 

Step 3: Assemble your Tacos

Taco holder filled with taco shells and ground beef.

While the cheese is melting, warm the taco shells according to package instructions. 

To assemble, fill the taco shells first with lettuce, then taco meat, and then top with the velveeta cheese sauce. Serve and enjoy! 

Expert Tips

  • Heating your taco shells according to the package’s instructions makes them extra crispy, so I highly recommend this step! 
  • Make sure to serve these tacos right away after assembling. The shell will get soggy if they sit for too long! 
  • Some recipes call for mixing the Rotel tomatoes and the velveeta right into the cooked beef. You can do this if you prefer, but I like being able to control the amount of each ingredient which is why I prepare them separately. 

Extra Topping Suggestions

Hand holding Rotel Tacos filled with taco meat and cheese sauce.

There are so many additions you can add to your Rotel Tacos. Try any of these suggestions: 

  • Vegetables: Corn, bell pepper, raw onions, jalapeños
  • Beans: Black beans or pinto beans
  • Rice: Mexican Rice 
  • Sauces and Spreads: Guacamole, pico de gallo, sour cream, 
  • Others: Cilantro, shredded cheese

Sides to Serve with Rotel Tacos

These tacos can be a meal all on their own, but if you want a more well-rounded dinner, feel free to try serving your Rotel Tacos with any of these sides: 

  • Salad
  • Spanish rice
  • Refried Beans 
  • Black Beans
  • Pico de Gallo 
  • Guacamole
  • Tortilla Chips
  • Sauteed Bell Peppers and Onions
  • So much more! 

Recipe FAQs

Rotel Tacos sitting on a cutting board.
Storing Leftovers

Do not assemble any tacos that you will not be eating. When it comes time to storing leftovers, store each element separately in airtight containers. The meat and cheese can go in the fridge for up to 4 days. The taco shells should be stored at room temperature for up to a week. 

Do I Have to Use the Rotel Brand?

No, if you cannot find Rotel Brand Diced Tomatoes, you can use any other brand of diced tomatoes with green chilies or diced tomatoes with cilantro and lime juice. 

Can I Freeze Leftover Taco Meat? 

Yes you can freeze leftover taco meat in an airtight container for 2-3 months! Put the taco meat in the fridge 24 hours before you plan on eating it to allow it to thaw. 

Is this Recipe Gluten Free? 

The meat and cheese ingredients in this recipe are gluten free! Double check to make sure that your taco shells are gluten free as well. 

Did you enjoy this Rotel Tacos recipe? If so, make sure to check out these other recipes I picked out just for you: 

Rotel Taco sitting on a cutting board.

Rotel Tacos

Taco Tuesday just got better with these Rotel Tacos! Take the standard ingredients from a taco kit but add some extra flavor with a Rotel cheese sauce. This recipe is ready in under 30 minutes and is perfect for a quick and yummy meal.
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Course: Main Course
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 10 tacos
Calories: 257kcal

Equipment

  • Medium Pan
  • Small pot

Ingredients

  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped white onion
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 Taco Seasoning Packet, For 1 lb of meat. I like Siete Mild, but choose whatever you’d like
  • 1 10 oz can Rotel Diced Tomatoes with Lime Juice and Cilantro, or Diced Tomatoes and Green Chilies
  • 8 oz Velveeta cheese, cubed
  • 10 Nacho Cheese Flavored Hard Taco Shells
  • 3 cups Shredded Lettuce, for assembly

Instructions

  • In a medium pan, heat the olive oil until warm. Then add the white onion and saute for 2-3 minutes until the onion softens.
  • Add the ground beef and prepare according to the Taco Seasoning packet’s instructions. Once the seasoning has been added, set the meat aside.
  • In a small pot, add the can of Rotel Diced tomatoes and the velveeta cheese. Stir until the cheese melts and a cheese sauce is formed!
  • While the cheese is melting, warm the taco shells according to package instructions.
  • To assemble, fill the taco shells first with lettuce, then taco meat, and then top with the velveeta cheese sauce. Serve and enjoy!

Notes

Recipe copyright The Domestic Spoon. For educational or personal use only. 
  • Olive oil: You can also use avocado oil or vegetable oil
  • White onion: Use a red or yellow onion, or omit this altogether if preferred. I had frozen chopped onion on hand, so that’s what I used! 
  • Ground beef: I used 85% lean. Use a leaner beef if you prefer or sub out the beef for ground turkey or ground chicken.  
  • Taco Seasoning Packet: Get a packet for 1 lb of meat. I like Siete Mild, but choose whatever you’d like. You can also make homemade taco seasoning
  • Rotel Diced Tomatoes: I used the kind with Lime Juice and Cilantro, but you can also use the Diced Tomatoes and Green Chilies can. This will make the recipe spicy, so opt for a mild version if you are sensitive to spice. 
  • Velveeta Cheese: Original flavor. For an extra cheesy sauce you can also add the Queso Blanco flavor.
  • Hard Shell Tacos: I used Nacho Cheese Flavored Taco Shells but you can also use plain. This recipe has a lot of sauce, so soft taco shells may not be a good substitute as they could get soggy.
  • Heating your taco shells according to the package’s instructions makes them extra crispy, so I highly recommend this step! 
  • Make sure to serve these tacos right away after assembling. The shell will get soggy if they sit for too long! 
  • Some recipes call for mixing the Rotel tomatoes and the velveeta right into the cooked beef. You can do this if you prefer, but I like being able to control the amount of each ingredient which is why I prepare them separately.

Nutrition

Serving: 1taco | Calories: 257kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 13g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 42mg | Sodium: 440mg | Potassium: 282mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 343IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 158mg | Iron: 1mg
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