24 Creative Side Dishes to Make Your Taco Salad Sing

Taco salad is a delicious and easy dish to make, but it can sometimes feel like you’re missing something. This salad is a family favorite that is easy to make and customize. 

That’s where side dishes come in! Adding a few unique side dishes to your taco salad will take it up a notch and make it truly memorable.

But what to serve with taco salad? There are so many options out there, but it can be hard to narrow down the choices. 

In this blog post, we’ll explore some of the best sides to serve with taco salad that is sure to please even the pickiest eaters! Read on to find out the best things to pair up with this tasty dish. 

What is taco salad? What does taco salad taste like?

Taco salad is a dish typically composed of a base of lettuce or shredded cabbage, topped with other ingredients such as tomatoes, onions, avocados, cheese, sour cream, and grilled or fried meat. 

The dressing for taco salad can include salsa, spicy ranch sauce or even guacamole. The flavor usually comes from the spices and herbs used in the beef or chicken filling and the toppings such as tomatoes, onions and cheese. 

Taco salad has a bright and zesty mix of flavors that can be highly enjoyable to eat. It can be served either cold or hot, depending on preference.

With its combination of flavors and textures, it makes an ideal lunchtime meal or side dish to go along with dinner. 

To make it extra special, you can add some diced jalapenos or a drizzle of hot sauce for a bit of heat. Whether you opt to make it in individual bowls or as one big bowl, taco salad is sure to be a hit! Enjoy!

24 Sides to serve with taco salad

1. Tortilla Chips and Salsa 

The perfect way to round out your taco salad is with some crunchy tortilla chips and salsa. 

Tortilla Chips and Salsa 

Tortilla chips are great for scooping up the salad, adding a bit of extra crunch, and providing the perfect balance for the creamy ingredients in the taco salad. 

For an extra kick, why not try making your own homemade salsa? It’s fun, easy, and much more flavorful than store-bought varieties. 

Explore More: Best Chips to Enhance Your Ceviche Experience

2. Refried Beans 

If you want something warm and comforting as a side dish for your taco salad, refried beans are a great option. 

Refried Beans

Refried beans can be served hot or cold, so they can easily be paired with any taco salad. Plus, they’re loaded with protein and fiber that will help fill you up after your meal. 

Try adding some diced onions or jalapenos for an extra flavor boost. 

3. Grilled Vegetables 

Grilled vegetables are always a great addition to any meal – especially when they’re topped off with melted cheese!

Grilled Vegetables

You can grill just about any vegetable you like – zucchini, bell peppers, mushrooms – or even fruit like pineapple or peaches! 

Just slice them into thin strips, season them with salt and pepper, brush on some olive oil or butter if desired, then cook them on the grill until lightly charred. 

Top them off with some melty cheese for an even more delicious side dish that pairs perfectly with your taco salad. 

4. Cornbread 

Cornbread is a classic side dish that pairs perfectly with taco salad. It’s easy to make, and you can find many different recipes online or in cookbooks. 


You can also buy pre-made cornbread mixes at the store if you don’t have time to make your own. Cornbread is a great way to add a little sweetness and texture to your taco salad meal. 

5. Fruit Salad 

Fruit salads are an excellent choice for pairing with taco salads because they help balance out the spicier flavors of the main dish. 


Fruit salads are also incredibly versatile—you can mix and match any type of fruit you like, from apples and oranges to strawberries and blueberries. 

The possibilities are endless! Add some yogurt or honey for extra flavor, or drizzle some lime juice over the top for a zesty kick. 

Learn More: Delicious Fruit Salad Toppings ideas to serve with fruit salad to Transform Your Desserts

6. Rice Pilaf 

Rice pilaf is another great option for serving alongside taco salad. It adds a nice crunchy texture along with plenty of flavors from herbs and spices such as garlic, oregano, thyme, and parsley. 

Rice Pilaf 

You can use long-grain white rice or brown rice, depending on what type of flavor profile you’re going for. 

If you want something a bit heartier, try adding cooked beans or roasted vegetables such as peppers or squash cubes into your pilaf mixture before cooking it up in a skillet on the stovetop! 

7. Chipotle Corn Salad

Add a burst of flavor to your taco salad with this Chipotle Corn Salad. With ingredients like corn, tomatoes, jalapenos, garlic, and chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. 

It’s sure to make your taste buds happy.

8. Mexican Street Corn

Another classic Mexican side dish that pairs perfectly with taco salads is Mexican street corn—or elotes in Spanish. 

Mexican Street Corn

It consists of fresh corn on the cob coated in mayonnaise and Cotija cheese, then sprinkled with chili powder or chile lemon seasoning.

9. Tex-Mex Rice

Looking for a heartier side dish? Prepare some Tex-Mex rice flavored with cilantro and lime juice, or toss cooked white rice with black beans, diced tomatoes and green onions for a simple but delicious accompaniment to your taco salad. (Recipe)

10. Avocado Cream Sauce

Give your tacos salads an extra creamy texture by whipping up a batch of avocado cream sauce which can be made quickly by blending cooked avocados until smooth, then mixing it into sour cream and adding salt to taste.

11. Nacho Cheese Dip

What better way to enjoy your tacos than with some warm nacho cheese dip? Delicious when combined with homemade tortilla chips! 

Nacho Cheese Dip

Simply melt cheese over medium heat, stirring constantly until smooth, then add diced tomatoes, jalapenos, chili powder and cumin for an irresistible cheesy indulgence!

12. Taco Slaw

Make your own crunchy slaw mix by combining shredded cabbage, carrots and onions dressed in a vinaigrette made from olive oil and lime juice, along with some diced bell peppers or jalapenos if desired! 

13. Pickled Jalapenos

For those who like their food on the spicy side, serve pickled jalapenos as a condiment option, perfect for topping off any taco bowl!  (Recipe)

14. Roasted Tomato Salsa

Roasting tomatoes gives them an extra flame-grilled flavor that’s perfect for making salsa fresca! 

Simply combine roasted tomatoes with garlic cloves and fresh cilantro leaves blended together, then season to taste with salt pepper, oregano, cumin chili powder, and a bit of lime juice! 

15. Mango Salsa

Mango Salsa

Change up the traditional salsa flavors by creating a mango salsa instead, which combines chopped mangos, red onion, cilantro, jalapeños lime juice, honey sea salt, pepper smoked paprika, cumin, garlic powder, oregano, ground coriander, allspice, cinnamon, clove, nutmeg, cardamom, bay leaves, allspice! 

16. Guacamole Salad

Who doesn’t love guacamole?! Serve it up as an easy side dish by throwing together diced avocados, shallots, garlic cloves, jalapeños lime juice, olive oil, fresh cilantro, sea salt, pepper smoked paprika, ground coriander, allspice, cinnamon clove, nutmeg, cardamom, bay leaves, allspice, oregano! 

17. Cilantro Lime Rice & Black Beans Casserole

Take classic Mexican flavors next level by layering cooked white rice, black beans, pico de gallo, sautéed vegetables, enchilada sauce, melted cheese topped off with freshly chopped cilantro, limes wedges, sour cream, avocado cubes, parsley flakes, olives, scallions, feta cheese and jalapeños – delicious! 

18. Southwest Egg Rolls

Leftover taco fixings come in handy when making these tasty egg rolls stuffed full of seasoned beef beans, bell peppers, lettuce, tomato, onion, Spanish rice, grated cheese, chiles, corn, chili powder.

Southwest Egg Rolls

Plus plenty of other tasty ingredients rolled into Fried wontons wrappers deep fried golden brown crispy deliciousness awaits you! 

Discover More: Delicious Side Dishes to Serve with Southwest Egg Rolls

19. Charred Corn Salad

Bring smokiness and sweetness together in this charred corn salad recipe involving grilled ears of sweetcorn, cherry tomatoes, onions, citrus juices, freshly squeezed lime juice, olive oil, chili flakes, sea salt, pepper, parsley flakes, olives, feta cheese, scallions. 

Gorgeous vibrant colors and lovely flavors await you, a perfect match for any Mexican feast, especially tacos salads! 

20. Sweet Potato Fries & Avocado Ranch Dip

For a delightful side dish, serve sweet potato fries alongside some avocado ranch dip made from blending mayonnaise, sour cream, fresh dill, garlic powder, paprika, cayenne pepper, chile-lemon seasoning, freshly chopped parsley, and salt to taste – perfect for dipping those delicious sweet potato fries!

21. Ground Beef Quesadillas

Make your own quesadillas at home with ground beef, onions, bell peppers, jalapenos, corn, chili powder, garlic powder, cumin, oregano, cilantro allspice cheese. 

Shredded some lettuce, tomatoes, diced onion, freshly chopped cilantro, sour cream, guacamole salsa verde, crumbled feta cheese, scallions, olives, black beans, pico de gallo, diced tomatoes. 

22. Churros

Looking for a sweet ending to your meal? Make churros from scratch using cake flour, sugar, baking powder, butter, milk, eggs, and vanilla extract.

Deep fry in hot oil until golden brown, then roll in melted butter and cinnamon sugar for the perfect crunchy sugary treat! 

23. Salsa Verde

Salsa Verde

Create your own salsa verde at home – simply blend together tomatillos, jalapeños onions, garlic cloves, cilantro, lime juice, olive oil, sea salt, pepper smoked paprika, ground coriander, allspice cinnamon clove, nutmeg, cardamom bay leaves, allspice oregano – delicious! Enjoy your homemade Mexican feast!

24. Carne Asada Tacos

Create these tacos with flavorful marinated meat combined with chopped onions, bell peppers, jalapenos, corn, chili powder, garlic powder, cumin, oregano, cilantro allspice cheese. 

Shredded some lettuce, tomatoes, diced onion, freshly chopped cilantro, sour cream, guacamole, salsa verde, crumbled feta cheese, scallions, olives, black beans, pico de gallo, and diced tomatoes.

Cook the beef on a hot grill until crispy, then fill your tacos, adding whatever toppings you love best!

What to serve with taco pasta salad? 

Taco pasta salad is a versatile dish that pairs well with many sides. Some great options to serve with it include chips and salsa, guacamole, cornbread, roasted vegetables such as peppers and onions, fruit salads, or a simple green salad. 

For something heartier, you could also add black beans or grilled chicken to make it a complete meal. Whatever you choose, your taco pasta salad is sure to be a crowd-pleaser!

What to serve with taco salad casserole?

Taco salad casserole can be served with a variety of sides, from traditional Mexican dishes to classic American favorites.

Some popular side dishes that pair well with taco salad casserole include refried beans, Spanish rice, guacamole and sour cream. 

For those looking for something lighter, a simple green salad or fresh fruit can also be served alongside the casserole. Crusty bread like cornbread or flour tortillas are also great accompaniments and add an extra layer of flavor to the dish. 

Finally, don’t forget about some fun and flavorful condiments like salsa or hot sauce to really bring out all the flavors of your taco salad casserole! Enjoy!

What are the best flavors to go with taco salad?

When it comes to creating flavorful taco salads, there are a few key ingredients you should consider adding. Traditional Mexican flavors such as cilantro, fresh lime juice, diced tomatoes and chopped onions can all help add flavor and texture to your taco salad. 

You may also want to consider adding some diced avocados for creaminess or perhaps some jalapenos for a bit of heat. For the dressing, it’s best to stick with something light and bright – either a classic vinaigrette or a creamy ranch dressing will do nicely. 

Finally, don’t forget the cheese! Shredded Monterey Jack or Cotija cheese are both popular options that pair well with taco salads. With these simple additions, you’ll be sure to have a delicious and flavorful taco salad!

How do you jazz up taco salad?

One way to jazz up taco salad is to add a variety of colorful and flavorful toppings. Add diced tomatoes, onions, peppers, corn, and black beans for an added crunch and texture. 

For extra flavor, top the salad with a dollop of guacamole or some crumbled queso fresco cheese. You can also stir in salsa for an extra kick. 

Finally, add fresh cilantro leaves as a garnish for a bright and zesty finish! Enjoy your tasty taco salad!

How do you display taco salad on a platter?

To display taco salad on a platter, start by arranging the lettuce and greens as a base. 

Place the cooked ground beef, beans, or other protein in an even layer over the lettuce. Layer chopped tomatoes and onions, salsa, guacamole, shredded cheese, sour cream, jalapenos (optional), and olives over the top of the meat layer. 

Lastly, add crushed tortilla chips for added crunch. Serve with your favorite dressing or hot sauce for extra flavor! Enjoy your delicious taco salad platter!

Wrap Up on What to serve with Taco salad

Whether you’re looking for something sweet, savory, crunchy, or creamy – there’s no shortage of delicious sides that pair perfectly with taco salad! 

From cornbread and fruit salads to rice pilafs and roasted vegetables – there’s something here for everyone! 

So get creative in the kitchen and come up with new combinations that your family will love!

And remember – when it comes to food pairings – sometimes it pays off big time when you think outside the box! Enjoy!


How much taco salad per person?

It depends on how many people are being served. Generally, an individual serving of taco salad can range anywhere from 1-2 cups per person

If you plan to serve the taco salad as a main dish, 2 cups per person is recommended. If it is served as a side dish, 1 cup per person should be enough. 

When making your calculations, try to account for the other dishes that will be served alongside the taco salad.

What do you serve with a taco buffet?

A taco buffet presents a variety of possibilities for sides and accompaniments. Popular options include Mexican rice, refried beans, chips and salsa, guacamole, and sour cream. 

Variety is key when creating an appetizing buffet spread. Consider including additional toppings like lettuce, tomatoes, cheese, olives or jalapenos to add flavor and texture. 

Other sides, such as southwestern salads, cornbread muffins, fruit cups or churros, are also great additions to tacos on a buffet table. 

For drinks, you may opt for freshly squeezed limeade or agua fresca for a more traditional approach. Sweet tea or assorted sodas may be added for those looking for something different. 

Dessert can be simple with sugar cookies or churro bites. Be sure to have plenty of napkins and plates on hand as well! 

Having a taco buffet is an enjoyable way to bring people together and create lasting memories. Bon appetite!

What kind of bread goes with taco salad?

One of the great things about taco salad is that it can go well with a variety of different types of bread. For something light and crunchy, try pita chips or tortilla chips. 

If you’re looking for something a little heartier, try some warm flour tortillas or cornbread.

For something even more filling, try a soft bolillo roll or garlic flatbread. 

What dessert to serve with taco salad?

One delicious way to finish off a taco salad meal is with a fruity sorbet or ice cream. 

Another great option is an easy flan or churro cake.

For an even lighter option, serve fresh fruit like pineapple slices or mango chunks on the side. 

Whichever you choose, these desserts are sure to complement your taco salad and leave everyone feeling satisfied.

And for those who prefer something savory over sweet, try serving chips with salsa and guacamole for a flavorful end to your taco-inspired meal. 

What dressing goes good with taco salad?

Adding a creamy, tangy dressing can really take taco salad to the next level! 

A classic choice is a good quality ranch dressing, as it adds just the right amount of flavor to the crunchy lettuce and flavorful toppings. 

For something with a little more zip, you might want to try a prepared vinaigrette or an avocado-based dressing. 

You can also make your own taco salad dressing by combining olive oil, lime juice, chili powder, cumin and garlic.

Whatever your preference, adding a tasty dressing to taco salad will have you coming back for more!

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