Family dinners are always challenging. First you make a salad, then a side dish or two, followed by a main course of some sort. Even before kids I couldn’t coordinate these pieces of the meal puzzle and I certainly don’t have time for it now. Needless to say, all-encompassing meals are my favorite way to cook. They are so much easier to make, and generally provide more time-saving left overs.
At the moment, my favorite meal to make (and eat!) is sweet potato tacos. It combines all of our favorite foods into one super, tasty package. They’re pretty much God’s gift to Taco Tuesday.
One of the best things about tacos is their versatility. You can add as much or as little of what you want, and these spuds are no different. I like to add lettuce, tomatoes (or salsa), and cheese, whereas, B strictly does a little meal and cheese with tomatoes on the side. To each their own, and they can with these tacos!
4 sweet potatoes
1lbs ground beef, ground chicken, or meat of your choice
2T extra virgin olive oil
½t ground black pepper
2T taco seasoning (or more to taste)
Whatever you like on your tacos (tomatoes, salsa, lettuce, cheese…)
- Preheat oven to 400°F
- Wash sweet potatoes and cut off any undesirable spots (usually the ends).
- In a bowl, take the olive oil and apply generously to the potato skins. Add salt and pepper to the skins. Once the skins have crisped in the oven, you’ll be happy you seasoned the skins.
- Place fully oiled and seasoned potatoes onto a baking sheet. I use a jelly roll pan since the potatoes have a tendency to want to roll and no one likes fishing a rogue potato out of the bottom of the oven.
- Vent the potatoes, using a fork, and place baking sheet in the oven.
- They will remain in the oven, depending on size, between 45-60 minutes. We are looking for a well baked potato, so if at 45 minutes your potato is still resisting your fork, give it the extra time it needs to soften. I have found that most sweet potatoes I’ve made will bake for closer to the 60-minute mark.
- Once they’re ready, take them out of the oven and let them sit. If you’re still working on making the taco meat, you don’t have to worry about the potatoes getting cold. They hold their heat very well.
- Once you’re ready to serve, cut potato down the middle lengthwise. Open potato and smash with a fork. Now you’re ready to add your taco fixings.
Tip: If you are short on time, try prepping the meat with other meals requiring ground beef. Taco meat freezes beautifully.
- Brown meat and drain off excess fat.
- Place meat back into pan and add 1/3 C water with 2T of taco seasoning. Cover and let simmer while stirring occasionally (between chopping toppings) for about 10-12 minutes. If you are tired of forgetting the small packet of pre-made taco seasoning or are just looking for a better alternative, whole new mom has my favorite taco seasoning recipe. It is free of preservatives, added sugars, and dairy.
- Is your meat done? Well, you are ready to taco! Pile taco meat, cheese, and whatever else you like on top of the mashed sweet potato. With every bite, you will be hit with the salty goodness of the meat along with the molasses-sweet flavor of the sweet potato.
I hope you and yours enjoy the sweet potato tacos as much my family does.