Frito Taco Salad

This vegetarian Frito Taco Salad comes together quickly by using bottled dressing. It’s full of tomatoes, onions, cheese, lettuce and beans and has crunchy Fritos mixed in!

Fritos. Those crunchy corn chips are one of those food items that I can’t keep in the house.  When that craving for something salty hits at 2:30 in the afternoon, I go straight for the pantry. Because I have no self control around them, I rarely in the house. But every now and then I indulge myself.  Fritos are one of my secret pleasures.

This easy Frito Taco Salad finds its way on the table at many of our family gatherings.  Although I’ve always loved eating it, I’ve only recently started making it more. The kids are old enough to enjoy it now, so that makes it a great side dish, and in some cases, a perfect vegetarian main dish.

frito taco salad in a glass bowl

Why you’ll love this recipe:

  • Light and cool for a warm weather dinner.
  • Perfect with a side of soup or even a burger.
  • It’s a great potluck salad.
  • Make it without meat…or add taco meat for more protein.

Ingredients Needed

  • Lettuce. We use iceberg lettuce and sometimes mix in Romaine lettuce. You can use whatever type you’d like. A spring mix would work well too.
  • Tomato. Roma tomatoes are “meatier” and won’t produce as much juice in your sauce, but any tomatoes will work.
  • Onion. Red onion have a mild flavor and look really pretty in salads.
  • French & Catalina dressing. This combination of dressings add sweet and a little spicy, but also a touch of creamy. You can use just one dressing, but it will change the flavor slightly.
  • Kidney beans. I’ll be honest. I did not like these in my salad as a child. Even as an adult, I go very light on the kidney beans. You could use a smaller black bean if you’d like.
  • Cheddar cheese. Freshly shredded cheddar cheese is best, 100% of the time. Sharp cheddar gives a great flavor.
  • Fritos. Any brand of corn chips works.

Prepare Ahead

This is a quick and easy weeknight recipe, but there are a few things you do in advance to keep it easy.

  • Cut the tomatoes and onions ahead of time and allow them to marinate in the French dressing mixture for a few hours.  
  • Shred the cheddar cheese. Because you’re shredding your own, right? 😉
  • You can cut lettuce in the morning to serve this salad in the evening, but if you cut it too far in advance, it may brown.

How to Make Frito Taco Salad

  • In a small bowl, combine the Roma tomatoes, onions and dressings. Allow this to marinate in the refrigerator for at least an hour before serving.
  • Cut the head of lettuce into bite-size pieces. Place the lettuce in a large bowl.
  • Add the kidney beans and cheddar cheese to the lettuce.
  • Add the dressing mixture.
  • Add the fritos right before serving.
a plate full of frito taco salad

Serving Ideas

We serve this salad with just about anything, but especially at family holidays when there is a large spread of all kinds of food. It’s a great potluck dish. Here are a few ideas to make a meal:

a layered taco salad in a glass bowl
a layered taco salad in a glass bowl

Frito Taco Salad

5 from 4 votes
This vegetarian Frito Taco Salad comes together quickly by using bottled dressing. It’s full of tomatoes, onions, cheese, lettuce and beans and has crunchy Fritos mixed in!
Servings 8 servings
Prep Time 10 minutes
Resting Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes

Ingredients
 

  • 1 head iceberg lettuce
  • 4 Roma tomatoes diced
  • 1/2 cup chopped red onion
  • 1/2 cup French dressing
  • 2/3 cup Catalina Sweet & Spicy dressing
  • 1 can kidney beans drained and rinsed
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese freshly shredded
  • 4 cups Fritos corn chips slightly crushed

Instructions
 

  •  In a small bowl, combine the Roma tomatoes, onions and dressings. Allow this to marinate in the refrigerator for at least an hour before serving.
  • Cut the head of lettuce into bite-size pieces. Place the lettuce in a large bowl.
  • Add the kidney beans and cheddar cheese to the lettuce.
  •  Add the dressing mixture.
  • Add the fritos right before serving.
  • Mix well and serve immediately.

Video

Notes

The calories shown are based on the recipe making 8 servings, with 1 serving being ⅛ of the salad. Since different brands of ingredients have different nutritional information, the calories shown are just an estimate. **We are not dietitians and recommend you seek a nutritionist for exact nutritional information. The information in the nutrition box are calculated through a program and there is room for error. If you need an accurate count, I recommend running the ingredients through your favorite nutrition calculator.**

Nutrition

Serving: 251g | Calories: 465kcal | Carbohydrates: 41g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 30g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 10g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 22mg | Sodium: 768mg | Potassium: 274mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 11g | Vitamin A: 881IU | Vitamin C: 7mg | Calcium: 246mg | Iron: 1mg
Course Salad
Cuisine American
Calories 465
Keyword easy salad recipe, potluck

About Lizzy T

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Comments

  1. Been making this for 20+ years but with drained and rinsed Ranch Style beans or pintos AND, hold in to your hat, chopped dill pickle. I know it sounds crazy but that pickle just adds something special.

  2. 5 stars
    This brings me back! When I was younger we used to eat Frito pie which was basically just Fritos in their own bag, with chili and cheese sauce poured over. It was so disgusting but so good at the same time. I had forgotten about those delicious Frito pies until I saw this recipe! I like this slightly more grown up version, and Fritos are THE BEST! I also do not keep chips in my house because once I sit down to watch TV at night, I IMMEDIATELY want those delicious chips. And I will eat them…all!

    1. Oh I’m the same!! I just had my husband run to the store yesterday for chips, lol. Thankfully the family helped me eat them!

  3. 5 stars
    This is a very tasty salad! My kids used to get “walking tacos” at the football games when my eldest daughter cheered and its basically all of this with salsa or/and sour cream instead of the dressing & beans. We had this brought to us around Christmas time with the kidney beans, Fritos & cool ranch Doritos, added olives and there was arugula in it too which we didn’t care & took out for but with everything else plus added some meat & it was delicious. I never would’ve thought of adding kidney beans to this but it was really good & overall healtby.

  4. This salad sounds amazing for this hot memorial day party! Just got back from the store. Thank you for sharing!

  5. 5 stars
    I made this taco salad and it was delicious. I used thousand Island dressing and added black olives. Thank you for a great recipe!! 🙂

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