Walking Taco Casserole

This walking taco casserole recipe combines all the flavors of a classic taco in a convenient and delicious casserole. It’s ready in 45 minutes, making it a crowd-pleasing dish perfect for weeknight dinners. Serve this gluten-free casserole with your favorite toppings. It’s sure to become a family favorite!
A white plate topped with Frito pie and corn chips.
A skillet filled with Frito taco casserole with ground beef, tomatoes and lettuce and wood spoon scooping a portion out of the skillet.

Elevate your next Taco Tuesday with this easy walking taco casserole filled with layers of seasoned ground beef, black beans, corn, and gooey melted cheese, all topped with a crunchy layer of Fritos corn chips. It’s so easy to make and incredibly versatile to change up the ingredients depending on your preferences. 

If you haven’t had a walking taco before, it’s very common in the Midwest where I’m from. You take a bag of Fritos and add a ground beef mixture seasoned with homemade taco seasoning. Then, you just add some cheese and your favorite toppings and eat it straight from the bag with a fork.

This walking taco casserole recipe is a play on the classic walking tacos, just in casserole form! This one-pan recipe is guaranteed to impress whether you’re making it for an easy weeknight meal or for guests. Best of all, it’s on the table in just about 40 minutes!

You’ll love this recipe because:

  • It’s a one-pan dish. This recipe is made in just one pan, reducing the number of dishes to clean up and making mealtime a breeze.
  • It’s versatile. You can customize this walking taco casserole by adding your favorite taco toppings or adjusting the spice level with hot sauce or roasted jalapeños.
  • It’s gluten-free. This recipe is made gluten-free by using store-bought or homemade gluten-free taco seasoning. Frito corn chips are labeled gluten-free, so if you have celiac disease or are on a gluten-free diet, you can enjoy this easy meal!


Ingredients in bowls to make walking taco casserole, including ground beef, gluten-free taco seasoning, shredded cheese, salsa, sour cream, black beans, Frito corn chips, and diced yellow onion with text overlays over each ingredient.

Ingredient Notes

  • Ground beef – I used 90/10 ground beef, which has 10% fat. You can use your favorite ground beef with whatever fat percentage for this recipe. You can use ground turkey or chicken as a leaner alternative.
  • Black beans – I used canned black beans for this recipe. Rinse and drain the black beans before using. 
  • Salsa – I used mild salsa for this recipe because I just wanted to create a saucy mixture without much heat. You can use hot or medium salsa instead if you prefer. Salsa verde will also work in a pinch. 
  • Sour cream – To make the beef mixture creamy, a little bit of sour cream is added to the taco meat.
  • Gluten-free taco seasoning – Packets of taco seasoning that you find in the grocery store are not always gluten-free, so be sure to check for a gluten-free version if you need it to be gluten-free. You can also make my homemade gluten-free taco seasoning recipe, which is super simple. 
  • Shredded cheddar cheese – I used Tillamook Triple Cheddar Farmstyle Thick Cut Shredded Cheese, which is a combination of sharp, medium cheddar and white cheddar cheeses for this recipe. Use your favorite cheddar cheese for this recipe, or use other varieties like monterey jack cheese, pepper jack cheese, or colby jack cheese. 
  • Frito corn chips – You can use regular Fritos or Frito scoops for this recipe. Both are labeled as gluten-free. If you can’t find Fritos, you can use tortilla chips instead.

To make this recipe vegetarian, substitute the ground beef with your favorite plant-based crumbles or use extra black beans or mushrooms in its place.

Topping ideas

I topped my Frito taco casserole with cherry tomatoes, shredded lettuce, and cilantro to keep it simple. If you’re looking for more topping ideas, try the following: 

  • Diced avocado
  • Pickled onions
  • Green onions
  • Diced red onions
  • Sour cream
  • Roasted jalapeños
  • Pickled jalapeños
  • Fresh corn
  • Salsa
  • Pico de gallo 
  • Guacamole
  • Sliced black olives
  • Lime wedges

Step-by-Step instructions

This walking taco bake is very simple to make in just one pan. The below photos with matching steps are meant to help you see the recipe made at various stages so you can make it perfectly every time. It is not the full recipe with ingredient measurements.

For the ingredient list with measurements, full instructions, printable recipe, and additional notes, please scroll down to the recipe card.

A white skillet filled with ground beef and diced onions before cooking.
Add the ground beef and diced onions to a skillet preheated over medium heat.
A skillet filled with meat and onions that have been cooked together.
Cook until the ground beef is browned and the onions are tender.
A skillet filled with cooked ground beef and topped with black beans, sour cream, salsa, and gluten-free taco seasoning before mixing together.
Add the sour cream, salsa, black beans and gluten-free taco seasoning.
A white skillet with cooked ground beef, salsa, and black beans that have been simmered together with bowls of shredded cheese and corn chips to the side.
Stir together and cook for a few minutes, until the mixture is thickened.
A skillet with cooked taco meat topped with shredded cheese before melting.
Sprinkle 1 cup of the shredded cheese over the taco meat.
A skillet with ground beef topped with shredded cheese and Frito corn chips before baking in the oven.
Add the corn chips and top with the remaining cheese.
An overhead view of a skillet of walking taco casserole that has been baked until the cheese is melted with bowls of lettuce, tomatoes and cilantro to the side.
Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes, until the cheese is bubbling.
A braising pan of walking taco casserole topped with cherry tomatoes, lettuce and cilantro with bowls of toppings.
Sprinkle with your favorite toppings before scooping to serve.

Recipe FAQs

Can I use different types of beans?

Feel free to use your favorite beans or a combination of different beans like pinto beans or kidney beans.

Can I use a different type of cheese?

Definitely! While shredded cheddar cheese is what I typically use, you can experiment with other cheeses such as Monterey Jack, Pepper Jack, or a Mexican cheese blend for different flavor profiles.

Can I adjust the spice level of the casserole?

Yes, I use mild salsa to keep my Frito taco pie less spicy, but you can use medium or hot salsa instead if you like a higher spice level. 

Can I add additional vegetables to the casserole?

Yes! Feel free to add more vegetables to the casserole, such as diced bell peppers, zucchini, or even roasted sweet potatoes, to incorporate extra flavor or to add some hidden vegetables. 

hints & tips

  • Be sure to layer strategically. Add some cheddar cheese on top of the beef so that it melts easily, then top with Fritos and add more cheese on top for the perfect cheesy casserole. 
  • Feel free to customize the toppings based on your personal preferences. Choose a variety of toppings that complement the flavors and add freshness, texture, and a burst of color to the casserole.
  • Allow the casserole to rest for a few minutes after removing it from the oven. This makes it easier to cut and serve without being too soupy.
  • Try adding different ingredients like diced bell peppers, mushrooms, or even swapping out the protein with cooked shredded chicken or ground turkey for different flavor profiles.

Storage instructions

  • Storage: Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. For best results, leave the Fritos off the casserole if you plan on having leftovers as they can get a little soggy in the refrigerator. Add the Fritos before reheating.
  • Freezer Option: To freeze the walking taco casserole with Fritos, ensure it has completely cooled. Then cover it tightly with plastic wrap or aluminum foil. Store it in the freezer for up to 3 months. To reheat frozen casserole, let it thaw completely before following the reheating instructions below. 
  • Reheat: To reheat individual portions, microwave them for 1-2 minutes until heated through. For larger portions, you can reheat the casserole in the oven at 350°F (175°C) for about 15-20 minutes or until warmed to your liking.

A white plate topped with a taco pie and a fork next to bowls of toppings like lettuce and tomatoes.

Did you make this recipe?

I’d love to know! Please rate it and leave a comment below. You can also share your pictures and tag @adashofmegnut on Instagram.

A white plate topped with Frito pie and corn chips.

Walking Taco Casserole

This walking taco casserole recipe combines all the flavors of a classic taco in a convenient and delicious casserole. It’s ready in 45 minutes, making it a crowd-pleasing dish perfect for weeknight dinners. Serve this gluten-free casserole with your favorite toppings. It’s sure to become a family favorite!
5 from 4 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Diet: Gluten Free
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 693kcal
Author: Megan


  • 1.5 lbs ground beef (680g)
  • 1 cup yellow onion (diced (from 1/2 yellow onion) (130g))
  • 15 oz can black beans (rinsed and drained (425g))
  • 1 cup mild salsa (260g)
  • 1/2 cup sour cream (120g)
  • 2 tablespoons gluten-free taco seasoning (homemade or store-bought)
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese (6 oz/170g)
  • 2 cups Frito corn chips (80g)

Optional Toppings:

  • 1 cup shredded lettuce (55g)
  • 1/2 cup diced tomato or halved cherry tomatoes (180g)
  • 1/4 cup cilantro (chopped (5g))


  • Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C).
  • Place a skillet or cast iron pan on the stove top over medium heat. Add the ground beef and onion and cook for 6-8 minutes, breaking up the beef with a spatula as it cooks.
  • Cook until no more pink remains and the onions are translucent. If there is a lot of fat in the skillet, drain most of it with a spoon.
  • Add the black beans, salsa, sour cream, and taco seasoning. Stir to combine.
  • Let cook 2-3 minutes to let the sauce thicken.
  • If your skillet is not oven-safe, place the ground beef mixture into a greased 2 quart baking dish or 7×11-inch baking dish.
  • Top with 1 cup of the cheese. Sprinkle the corn chips on top of the cheese. Top with remaining 1/2 cup of cheese.
  • Cover the casserole dish with foil and bake at 350°F (175°C) for 20-25 minutes, until the cheese is melted.
  • Top with your desired toppings before serving, like sour cream, shredded lettuce, sliced avocados, diced tomatoes, jalapeño, pickled onions, fresh cilantro, or black olives.
  • Serve immediately.


  • If you have celiac disease or are on a gluten-free diet for any reason, be sure to double check ingredients to ensure they are gluten-free. 
  • If you are gluten-free, be sure to use gluten-free taco seasoning as many brands of taco seasoning packets are not gluten-free found at local grocery stores. You can use my homemade gluten-free taco seasoning recipe that uses basic spices and is very simple to make. 
  • The nutritional information calculated is an estimate and does not account for any toppings that you add to your casserole, as the toppings you choose will vary in nutritional value. 


Calories: 693kcal | Carbohydrates: 37g | Protein: 34g | Fat: 46g | Saturated Fat: 17g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 6g | Monounsaturated Fat: 16g | Trans Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 120mg | Sodium: 1045mg | Potassium: 811mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 858IU | Vitamin C: 9mg | Calcium: 327mg | Iron: 4mg
Tried this Recipe? Tag me Today!Mention @ADashofMegnut or tag #adashofmegnut!
a white plate topped with a salad and a fork.

about megan

I’m Megan

A gluten-free food blogger from Chicago and lover of all things food, showing you gluten-free can be easy and delicious, too. Let’s make gluten-free stress free together! Read more…

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Recipe Rating

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  1. 5 stars
    Had this last night and the family is obsessed.

  2. 5 stars
    This was amazing. It was so easy to make and I liked that it was already put together as a dish. The Fritos were still crisp.