Most of us eat our tacos in corn or flour tortillas. But these Navajo Tacos are served on crunchy Indian Fry Bread that is out of this world. If you've never had a Navajo Taco you don't know what you are missing! Similar in nature to a Mexican Tostada like my Fish Tostadsa or Beef Tostadas recipes.
While most taco recipes are really easy to make as you typically use pre-made tortillas, these Navajo Tacos are a little more involved as you need to make the Indian Fry Bread by hand. But believe me, it will be well worth it in the end.
You might be inclined to make the Fry Bread ahead of time but it will be best if you make it as close to the time you will be making these delicious Tacos. While making the dough is pretty straightforward, you need to make sure your oil reaches somewhere around 350°F before frying the bread. If you add your fry bread too soon it will take longer to cook and might become oil logged (yuck).
💭 Recipe Tip
When you are deep-frying, I always recommend using a thermometer to ensure you are at the proper temperature. The temperature of the oil will fluctuate as you add stuff to it so you need to monitor it very closely for the best results. A temperature of 350°F is a good target temperature for the oil.
As with all taco recipes, the toppings I list on the recipe card are my suggestions but feel free to use all, some or none of them. Make it your own and use whatever toppings you like on your tacos. You can't go wrong with this one.
For the red enchilada sauce, you can use whatever brand you have on hand. I usually use La Victoria brand as I always have some on hand but on a few occasions, I've used Las Palmas and Old El Paso brands with excellent results. And as always, you get to pick the heat!
If you are fortunate enough to own a tortilla press you can use it to make the Indian fry bread instead of rolling the dough out with a rolling pin. So much easier. They are pretty cheap so if you flatten out dough on a regular basis then it might be worth the small investment.
💭 Deep Frying Oils
When it comes to Deep Frying food you want to choose an oil that has a high smoke point and neutral in flavor so it won't affect the flavor of whatever you are frying. Vegetable Oil, Corn Oil, Canola Oil and Peanut Oil are some of the more popular and affordable options.
For more great recipes like this one, I suggest you check these recipes out:
📋 What Ingredients do I need
You will need the following ingredients to make this Navajo Tacos recipe (see recipe card for quantities): Lean Ground Beef, Yellow Onion, Garlic Cloves, Pinto Beans, Red Enchilada Sauce, Salt, Indian Fry Bread, Shredded Lettuce, Grated longhorn or Cheddar Cheese and Diced Tomatoes.
🥣 How to make Navajo Tacos
Make the Meat Filling
In a large skillet, sauté the onion and garlic with a little bit of oil. Add the ground beef and cook until browned. Drain any excess fat.
Add the red enchilada sauce and salt to taste. Stir in the pinto beans and heat until heated through.
Make the Indian fry bread
In a mixing bowl, combine all the dry Indian Fry Bread ingredients. Add the warm water and mix with your hands until a dough forms. Add more water as needed. Let sit for 5 minutes.
Break off a golf-ball-sized piece of dough. Roll the piece of dough into circles that are about 6 inches in diameter. Try to make them as thin as possible.
In a saucepan with about 2 inches of oil heated to 350°F, fry until the dough is golden and puffs up, flipping once. Set on a paper towel to drain oil.
Assemble the Tacos
Spoon a generous amount of the meat mixture on each piece of fry bread.
Garnish each taco with lettuce, tomato, onion, salsa and cheese.
Navajo Tacos 🌮
- 1 lb Lean Ground Beef
- 1 large Yellow Onion, chopped
- 2 Garlic Clove, chopped
- 15 oz Pinto Beans, rinsed and drained
- ½ Cup Red Enchilada Sauce, or to taste
- Salt, to taste
Indian Fry Bread
- 2 Cups All Purpose Flour
- 2 teaspoon Salt
- 1 tablespoon Baking Powder
- 1 Cups Warm Water, or more as needed
- Grated longhorn or cheddar cheese
- Chopped onion
- Diced tomato
Make the Meat Filling
- In a large skillet, sauté the onion and garlic with a little bit of oil. Add the ground beef and cook until browned. Drain any excess fat.
- Add the red chili sauce and salt to taste. Stir in the pinto beans and heat until heated through.
Make the Indian Fry Bread
- In a mixing bowl, combine all the dry ingredients. Add the warm water and mix with your hands until a dough forms. Let sit for 5 minutes.
- Break off a golf-ball sized piece of dough. Roll the piece of dough into circles that are about 6 inches in diameter. Try to make them as thin as possible.
- In a saucepan with about 2 inches of oil heated to 350°F, fry until the dough is golden and puffs up, flipping once. Set on a paper towel to drain oil.
Assemble the Tacos
- Spoon a generous amount of the meat mixture on each piece of fry bread.
- Garnish each taco with lettuce, tomato, onion, salsa and cheese.
Nutritional information provided for this recipe is based on 1 serving. This information is an estimate and may vary based on several factors. If nutritional information is important to you and your diet, please verify this recipe with a Registered Dietitian.