This easy Cauliflower Beef Taco Skillet is a flavorful, low-carb way to satisfy your cravings for Mexican food. An easy, busy weeknight meal that takes about 30 minutes to make!
You know you’re on to something good when you make a recipe three times in a month. That is precisely what happened with this seriously delicious Cauliflower Beef Taco Skillet. It’s officially on my list of favorite low-carb meals for a busy day.
Small bites of roasted cauliflower and a smoky, saucy ground beef mixture are topped with shredded cheese and broiled briefly until gloriously melted and golden brown. Top it off with your favorite taco toppings for an easy, family-friendly meal.
The combination of fresh ingredients and pantry staples make this meal easy to make any day of the week and any time of year.
Table of contents
- Cauliflower florets – Cut into bite-size ½ – to 1-inch pieces.
- Ground beef – 90% to 93% lean ground beef.
- Extra-virgin olive oil
- Seasoning – Chili powder, ground cumin, dried oregano, smoked paprika, cayenne pepper, salt, and freshly ground black pepper
- Other vegetables – Chopped yellow onion, green bell pepper, and minced garlic.
- Tomatoes – A can petite diced tomatoes.
- Cheese – Shredded sharp Cheddar cheese.
How to Make Cauliflower Beef Taco Skillet
Roasting the cauliflower in advance helps pull out some of the excess moisture and creates great flavor.
Roast the Cauliflower
- Place the cauliflower on a large rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and season with a little salt and pepper.
- Roast in a preheated 425 degree F oven for 12 to 14 minutes, or until beginning to brown and barely fork tender. Remove from the oven, toss with a spatula, and set aside.
While the cauliflower is roasting, you’ll have time to get the beef mixture cooking.
Cook the Beef Mixture
- Sauté the onion and bell pepper in a little oil until softened.
- Add the beef and cook, stirring to break it up, until it is cooked through.
- Drain off the excess grease from the skillet and return it to the heat. Add the garlic and seasonings.
Finish and Bake
- Cook, stirring, for about a minute until the beef is well coated with the spices.
- Next, add the tomatoes and the roasted cauliflower and bring the mixture to a low simmer. Then, reduce the heat to low and cover and simmer for about 5 minutes, or until the cauliflower is tender.
- Finally, sprinkle the cheese over the cauliflower beef mixture and transfer the skillet to the oven and broil briefly until the cheese has melted and it is lightly browned in spots.
Tips for the Best Result
- Cut the cauliflower into small pieces: To ensure that the cauliflower will roast evenly and quickly, cut it into small bite-sized pieces.
- Don’t overcook the cauliflower: Overcooked cauliflower can become mushy and lose its texture. Roast it until it’s just tender, but still has texture.
- Brown the beef first: Before adding the cauliflower and tomatoes, brown the beef in the skillet and toss it with the spices to develop the best flavor.
- Serve with your favorite taco toppings: Serve it with your favorite taco toppings like fresh cilantro, chopped avocado, sour cream, and hot sauce. Jarred jalapeño rings add a great pop of flavor!
- Wrap it in tortillas: For those not watching their carbs, toast some flour or corn tortillas briefly in a dry skillet to serve with the Cauliflower Beef Taco Skillet.
- Make it ahead of time: This dish can be made ahead of time and reheated when you’re ready to eat. It’s a great option for busy weeknights or for meal prep.
More Wholesome Skillet Meals
- Loaded Taco Skillet
- Chicken Green Bean Skillet
- Pesto Chicken and Veggies
- Mushroom Spinach Pasta
- Skillet Chicken Fajitas
Cauliflower Beef Taco Skillet
- 3 ½ cups cauliflower florets, bite-size ½ – to 1-inch pieces
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- 1 teaspoon salt, divided
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
- ¾ cup chopped yellow onion
- ¾ cup green bell pepper, chopped
- 1 pound 90% to 93% lean ground beef
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 2 tablespoons chili powder
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 15 ounce can petite diced tomatoes
- 2 cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
Optional for Garnish
- Cilantro leaves, thinly sliced green onion, pickled jalapenos, sour cream, hot sauce
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
- Place the cauliflower on a large rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil and season with ¼ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Toss it with your hands to coat it well with the oil then spread out evenly over the baking sheet. Roast for 12 to 14 minutes (no need to stir), or until beginning to brown and barely fork tender. Remove from the oven, toss with a spatula, and set aside.
- Meanwhile, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil in a 12-inch oven-safe skillet over MEDIUM heat. Add the onion and bell pepper and cook, stirring, 3 to 4 minutes, until softened. Add the beef and cook, stirring to break up the beef, until it is cooked through, about 5 minutes. Drain off the excess grease from the skillet and return it to the heat. Stir in the garlic, chili powder, cumin, oregano, smoked paprika, remaining ¾ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon black pepper and the cayenne pepper (if using). Cook, stirring, for about 1 minute. Add the tomatoes and their juices and the roasted cauliflower. Increase the heat under the skillet as needed until you hear it bubbling. Then, immediately reduce the heat to LOW, cover, and simmer for 5 minutes, or until the cauliflower is tender.
- Meanwhile, set the oven to BROIL with a rack in the upper third of the oven. Sprinkle the cheese over the beef mixture. Transfer the skillet to the oven and cook until the cheese has melted and it is lightly browned in spots, about 3 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and garnish with cilantro, green onions, pickled jalapenos, and sour cream.
Nutrition information is automatically calculated using generic ingredients, and is an estimate not a guarantee. For more accurate results, please refer to the labels on your ingredients at home. All information provided regarding nutrition on this website is intended to be used for informational purposes only. Content related to nutrition is not medical advice nor is it intended to replace medical advice. The website is not intended to diagnose, prescribe, or treat any disease, condition, illness, or injury. Before beginning any diet program, modifying your diet, or making changes to the diet of a child in your care, including following the nutrition information available on the website, you should seek advice from a licensed professional.
Adapted from Eating Well.