What to make with budget-friendly ground turkey? Try these flavorful ground turkey tacos! Pile on the toppings to make them tacos drool-worthy.

Ground turkey tacos: Flavorful ground turkey with Mexican spices. Pile on the toppings!

If you are looking for a few budget-friendly meal ideas to add to your dinner rotation (who isn’t right now?!) – then you should definitely consider ground turkey as an essential ingredient.

I purchased 1 lb. package of frozen ground turkey at ALDI for $2.49. This was enough meat to make 8 tacos – 2 per person. But ground turkey is generally affordable no matter where you shop. Look for frozen ground turkey to save even money.

The rest of the ingredients are also quite budget-friendly: Flour tortillas, some basic spices, onion, and your favorite taco toppings.

Ground turkey tacos: Learn how to make a delicious meal out of budget-friendly ground turkey.

What You’ll Need To Make Delicious Ground Turkey Tacos

The ingredients for this recipe are easy to find and low cost. You’ll need:

  • Ground turkey: To save even more money on this affordable meat, look for frozen lean ground turkey (I buy it at ALDI). 
  • Onion and garlic: Any good ground meat recipe calls for chopped onions and fresh garlic. To save time, you can use minced garlic from a jar.
  • Bouillon: I like adding a spoonful of Better Than Bouillon to savory recipes – it’s a concentrated broth paste made out of meat and/or vegetables depending on the flavor you purchase (chicken broth, beef broth, vegetable broth). Alternatively, you can dissolve a couple of chicken-flavored bouillon cubes in water and add it to the ground beef. This adds more flavor to the ground meat.
  • Seasonings: Here’s where you have a little wiggle room: A variety of different spices will work in this recipe. I used chili powder. But you can use a blend of garlic powder/onion powder/ground cumin/ancho chili powder/cayenne pepper/a pinch of brown sugar. Or you can use store-bought taco seasoning or your own taco seasoning blend. Start out with a teaspoon, taste, and go from there.
  • Bacon grease: Lean ground turkey can be lacking in moisture and flavor. To add more savoriness and flavor to this ground turkey mixture, I added 2 tablespoons of bacon grease. Alternatively, you could substitute beef tallow or butter – or cooking oil. 

Pile the seasoned ground turkey filling into flour tortillas, corn tortillas, crunchy taco shells – or for a grain-free option, lettuce wraps.

How To Make Ground Turkey Taste Better

Lean ground turkey tends to be lacking in flavor and dry. 

But I’ve discovered a way to make ground turkey taste really good – on par with ground beef.

The trick? Cooking it in bacon grease. 

Yes, bacon grease. (Don’t forget to save your bacon grease and store it in the fridge until ready to use!)

Instead of starting with cooking oil, use bacon grease to give ground turkey more flavor and more of that fat/grease associated with ground beef. Adding fat to lean ground turkey is the key to making it more flavorful and improving the taste overall.

Another option: When a recipe calls exclusively for ground turkey, use 1/2 ground turkey and 1/2 ground beef instead.

Ground turkey tacos: Mexican-spiced ground turkey makes an affordable taco base. Don't forget to pile on the toppings!

Another Ground Turkey Tip

Aside from adding fat to ground turkey to make it taste better (see tip above), I like to go heavy on the seasonings.

I find Mexican spices and flavors ideal to spice up ground turkey. Although I recommend using basic chili powder as one of the seasonings in the ground turkey, you can use whatever Mexican blend seasonings you have on hand.

And don’t stop with the dry spices. Add a squeeze of lime juice, a splash of hot sauce or even a can of green chiles to the ground turkey mixture.

Ground turkey tacos: These tacos are made out of budget-friendly ground turkey. Click through for recipe!

Pile On The Toppings

Sure, these ground turkey tacos are great on their own. But they’re really good when you add toppings such as:

  • Shredded cheddar cheese
  • Sour cream
  • Salsa
  • Pico de gallo
  • Avocado
  • Shredded lettuce
  • Chopped red onion
  • Black beans
  • Squeeze of fresh lime juice
  • Hot sauce

Save money: Use toppings you already have on hand. Scour your fridge, freezer, and pantry for ideas.

Ground turkey tacos: Flavorful ground turkey with Mexican spices. Pile on the toppings!

Ground Turkey Tacos

Yield: 8 tacos
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes

Save money by using what you have on hand to use as taco toppings. Try to avoid a potentially costly trip to the grocery store!


  • 2 tablespoons bacon grease (or vegetable oil)
  • 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 lb ground turkey
  • 1 tablespoon chicken Better Than Bouillon (or 2 small bouillon cubes dissolved in hot water)
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • Hot sauce, optional

For serving

  • 8 small flour tortillas
  • 1 Roma tomato, chopped
  • Shredded lettuce
  • 1 avocado, cut into small pieces
  • Optional: Sour cream, salsa, pico de gallo, hot sauce


  1. Heat bacon grease in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions and cook, stirring, until softened - about 3 minutes. Add garlic and cook for another 30 seconds.
  2. Add ground turkey and remaining seasonings. Stir and break up meat until it is browned and very little liquid remains in the skillet.
  3. To serve: Carefully heat flour tortillas over a gas burner over low heat, until there are some charred spots. Use a tong to flip the tortilla.
  4. Place about 1/3 cup taco meat in each tortilla, and top with tomatoes, lettuce, and avocado.

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