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Renthead Mommy

Side dish to go with tacos?

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I need side dishes to go with tacos. Not beans and rice, they aren't a big hit around here.

 

Food snob chef inlaws coming for dinner. It's a wierd time of day since they are moving furniture here. If it was regular dinner time I'd make chicken and stuffing and veggies and stuff, but because of the time, I'd have to be cooking it all while they are here. I figured tacos would be super easy and I could put the meat in the crock pot to stay warm.

 

But what do I make to go with???

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Hmm...it's tough without beans or rice. Is it possible you could make those things for your guests and just figure your family won't eat much of it?

Homemade refried beans and really good rice are easy to make, and cheap!

Alternatively, would your family eat ranch beans rather than refried beans? That might work.

 

The only other things that I can think of would be salad, or some roasted vegetables. I toss veggies (usually broccoli or cauliflower) with olive oil, and then toss with montreal steak seasoning and chili powder. Then you can spread it out on a cookie sheet and broil it, turning occasionally, until it's roasted. It turns out a bit spicy, and would be good with mex.

 

Oh, you could also do a quick saute of onions and a variety of peppers. That would be good with tacos too.

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How about a green veggie? Either a mexican themed salad (guacamole mixed with a nice vinagrette makes an awesome dressing) or maybe roasted green beans mixed with roasted red bell peppers (slice peppers, mix with frozen or fresh green beans, coat in olive oil plus salt, garlic, and another herb or two. Roast at 450 or so)

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Yeah, definitely fresh guacamole and pico de gallo. They're relatively simple to prepare (well, lots of chopping, but not difficult), and the freshness of the ingredients means you can impress even foodie snobs. :)

 

A pretty plate of sliced mangoes is likely to gain you some goodwill as well. :)

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I always do corn, fruit salad and cornbread when I serve tacos to my family. Dh thinks chips & salsa are a side dish, so he throws those on the table, too.

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Mexican coleslaw

 

3 cups shredded green cabbage

1 cups shredded red cabbage

1/2 cup shredded carrots

 

(OR buy a big bag of coleslaw mix)

 

1/2 cup sliced radishes

1/2 cup corn kernels

1/4 cup rough chopped cilantro

 

Dressing: Combine...

 

1/4 cup mayonnaise

1 Tbl. lime juice

2 tsp vinegar

1 tsp honey

1/2 tsp cumin

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp black pepper

 

Toss. I prefer to chill the salad so the flavors combine but it isn't necessary.

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You can make a mexican pasta salad. Pasta, black olives, colby cheese and/or Monterrey jack cheese, onions, peppers (red is pretty), corn, some black beans (not a full can just maybe 1/2 or 1/3 of a can) ... and whatever other veggies you have. Then mix taco seasoning with mayo (or you could mix mayo, sour cream & taco seasoning mixed together) gently fold it all together. You can make your own taco seasoning too if you don't have it, chili seasoning, cumin, paprika etc.

 

Or you could do a rice salad. I use all the same things, but instead of mayo, I'd use olive oil and vinegar and some seasoning.

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Hmm...it's tough without beans or rice. Is it possible you could make those things for your guests and just figure your family won't eat much of it?

Homemade refried beans and really good rice are easy to make, and cheap!

Alternatively, would your family eat ranch beans rather than refried beans? That might work.

 

The only other things that I can think of would be salad, or some roasted vegetables. I toss veggies (usually broccoli or cauliflower) with olive oil, and then toss with montreal steak seasoning and chili powder. Then you can spread it out on a cookie sheet and broil it, turning occasionally, until it's roasted. It turns out a bit spicy, and would be good with mex.

 

Oh, you could also do a quick saute of onions and a variety of peppers. That would be good with tacos too.

 

Yes the bean thing is hard. I'll eat black beans, but I'd probably be the only one other than maybe my sil, and I'm only guessing she would because she Dominican.

 

Roasted veggies doesn't sound like a bad idea. My 7yo is sure to eat broc adn cauli.

 

I was already planning on chips and salsa and guac. I just feel like I need something else. Mainly because they are coming. If it was just us, I'd just make tacos.

 

This is just not easy. My husband doesn't really like tacos, but will eat them once a year or so. 7yo and I love them, but only get them on special occasions. Add to that the husband can't eat beef. The FIL can't eat any cooked veggies that have seeds in them (seeds harden up, he ends up in hospital). SIL had lap band surgury. My 7yo is well a 7yo. My BIL is a PITB. Normally I'd say we would just go out, but with the BIL it's just a pain. He can't go to a regular restuarnt. We end up at some over priced place (that never really has anything I REALLY like, so I'm over playing for things I normally wouldn't order) that takes forever and the 7yo is done for before we are ever done. Plus he complains the whole time how it's just not done right or he wouldn't have done it that way. Yeah, fun.

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Giant crisy salad. You could add diced avo and some shredded jalapeno cheese to keep the theme.

 

Do they like rice without beans? You could add chopped red bell peppers and corn to the rice. To liven it up, stir in some cumin, sprinkle it with a handful of chopped fresh cilantro or parsley, and squeeze a bit a lime juice over it all.

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Sounds like you need to make several simple things each with just one or a few ingredient to help everyone out. And then just let them mix or match as they like. You might put out tortillas and those who want to could make a burrito instead of a taco.

 

My favorite mexican recipe is potatoes, onions, corn, and pablano peppers cooked together and put in a tortilla with cheese. Just to give you an idea that something like potatoes which one wouldn't normally think of with burritos or tacos, can work too.

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How about creamstyle corn? I mix one can of creamstyle corn with one to two cups of frozen corn. It makes the creamstyle can go a little further and we like the consistency better than straight out of the can.

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What about cream style corn? I like to mix one can of creamstyle corn with approx. 1 1/2 cups of frozen corn. It makes the can go a little further and we like the consistency better.

 

Sorry, I didn't think the first one went through. I'm new here. :)

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Yes the bean thing is hard. I'll eat black beans, but I'd probably be the only one other than maybe my sil, and I'm only guessing she would because she Dominican.

 

Roasted veggies doesn't sound like a bad idea. My 7yo is sure to eat broc adn cauli.

 

I was already planning on chips and salsa and guac. I just feel like I need something else. Mainly because they are coming. If it was just us, I'd just make tacos.

 

This is just not easy. My husband doesn't really like tacos, but will eat them once a year or so. 7yo and I love them, but only get them on special occasions. Add to that the husband can't eat beef. The FIL can't eat any cooked veggies that have seeds in them (seeds harden up, he ends up in hospital). SIL had lap band surgury. My 7yo is well a 7yo. My BIL is a PITB. Normally I'd say we would just go out, but with the BIL it's just a pain. He can't go to a regular restuarnt. We end up at some over priced place (that never really has anything I REALLY like, so I'm over playing for things I normally wouldn't order) that takes forever and the 7yo is done for before we are ever done. Plus he complains the whole time how it's just not done right or he wouldn't have done it that way. Yeah, fun.

 

Would your husband be able to eat chicken?

 

Sometimes, if I am having a crowd, I'll make 2 types of meat for the tacos. I guess it feels like the meal more rounded out or something. Usually, it's chicken and ground beef. I'll run chicken breasts in the food processor 'til the texture is pretty fine, then cook it up just as I do ground beef, adding chili powder, cumin, and garlic salt.

 

I usually forget about beans, as they aren't my favorite, but I do make some type of variation on spanish rice. Saute shredded onions (my kids don't mind the flavor but hate the texture) and chopped carrots in a some olive oil, add 4 cups of rice, and a T of cumin; stir around until the rice is turning a bit opaque; add 4 cups of water and about 2 cups of tomato sauce (whatever is in around 2 small cans or one bigger can of sauce), cover and cook. Stir occasionally.

 

Have you ever had Cowboy Caviar? I could live off that stuff!

 

1/3 cup fresh lime juice

1/2 cup olive oil

1 clove garlic, minced

1 teaspoon salt

1 t cumin

1/8 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper

2 (15 ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained

1 1/2 cups frozen corn kernels

2 avocado - peeled, pitted and diced

1 red or green bell pepper, chopped

2 tomatoes, chopped

6 green onions, thinly sliced

1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro (I add more as I am crazy for cilantro)

Serve with chips.

 

Then of course I have tons of leftovers and we live off them for the next week! :tongue_smilie:

 

I usually present this buffet style so everyone can take what is really wanted in whatever combination seems pleasing. I usually end up eating the cowboy caviar on top of rice and skipping everything else. :D

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Guacamole, salsa and chips are more of an appetizer than a side dish.

 

I've often gone on the idea that no side dish is necessary. Tacos are a complete meal full of protein, veggies and grains.

 

However, if it just doesn't look like enough, you could make empanadas, quesadillas, tamales or Mexican chicken soup. Mmm... tamales.

 

You say "rice and beans" aren't a hit but there are many ways to prepare them. Have you tried saffron rice? Maybe only ever had refried pinto beans? I only like refried black beans; they're totally different from pintos. Do you mean kidney beans in white rice? How about chik peas in brown rice?

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Yeah, definitely fresh guacamole and pico de gallo. They're relatively simple to prepare (well, lots of chopping, but not difficult), and the freshness of the ingredients means you can impress even foodie snobs. :)

 

A pretty plate of sliced mangoes is likely to gain you some goodwill as well. :)

 

:iagree: I might also throw in some sort of fresh corn side dish. I think corn goes particularly well with Latin American cooking.

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If you give them margaritas, they might not notice too much about the dinner!

 

I LOVE guac and chips.

 

My trick is to ask DH to go to Chevy's and buy their salsa to go. It's so good and it's makes my meal seem much better.

 

Alley

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Iceburg lettuce, right before serving coat with Catalina/French dressing, finely shredded cheddar cheese, and crushed fritos.

 

I usually add fresh fruit with tacos.

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I've often gone on the idea that no side dish is necessary. Tacos are a complete meal full of protein, veggies and grains.

/QUOTE]

 

Depending on the type of tacos you are making, guacamole and salsa may be a good topping also radishes if you like them...either whole or thinly sliced. You can remove the seeds from tomato and chile peppers. Also here in Mexico we often put slices of onion out to top the tacos, some people marinate in lemon for 30 min or so and ten set on the table... for soft tacos. Also, cheese may be a good thing to have. If you really need something extra try starting with a soup. You can do fideo or something similar using elbow pasta, or what you have at hand. Sautee pasta with diced onion (white/yellow) until slightly browning then cover with water. ONe it is simmering add chicken boullon. Cover and simmer til tender. Very simple and something served in every house thoughout Mexico.

 

 

knowing what type of tacos (soft o hard) and type of filling (chicken, pork, round meat, or sliced meat) could probably allow everyone to help you out more. Good luck.

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Our pastor and his wife often do a big taco meal when they have a large group of people over. She serves:

 

For the tacos...

~shredded chicken

~seasoned ground beef

~taco fixings (cheese, lettuce, sour cream, salsa, onions)

~tortillas

~corn tortilla chips

 

Side dishes:

 

~canned corn (for some reason this goes pretty well)

~sliced steamed carrots (picky kids eat these)

~refried beans with cheese on top

~Mexican rice

~fruit salad (this is really popular with kids and adults...it's a nice cooling contrast to the spicy food)

 

and my *favorite* thing: Chile Rellenos Casserole This casserole has sort of quiche texture to it. It's made with canned chilies so it's not too spicy for people who are sensitive to spices. It's got cheese on top, and it tastes really good with beans and rice and tacos. It's one of those things I never thought I would like, but somehow it's just the perfect texture and flavor to pull the other taco things together.

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A home-smashed and heavy guacamole would be enough for a side, even without chips. I would rather serve an appetizer, I think I've posted this before, but a huge hit at one of dh's restaurants is: shrimp and goat cheese quesadilla (add a little bit of lime and cilantro, not much) with salad served on top: just mixed greens, sliced avocado, mango, and a lime or other sweet vinaigrette.

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Corn with cilantro-lime butter. Cook fresh or frozen corn and top with the butter -- soften butter, stir in chopped fresh cilantro, cumin, a splash of lime juice, and sea salt to taste. I am not a fan of corn but I do like it this way.

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Not typically a taco go-with but the first thing I thought of was chicken wings! Because it's in the finger food category. ;)

 

 

Cinder

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don't know if someone already mentioned this, but we often do fried plantains on taco night. Kind of iffy though you have to get them the right ripeness and depending on where you live it's difficult.

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i like the corn and bean mixtures of veggies that come in the frozen food section. i throw them in a salad of crisp romaine, finely diced cucumbers and tomatoes, fresh salsa, black olive slices and spicy ranch dressing (or sour cream), and it works.

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Are you making fresh tacos? If you are then you could roll them instead of doing tacos (taquitos). That would have a salad make more sense, since there's no garnishing a taquito. You could do taquitos with several types of filling which is easy, put out a couple different salsas, and guacamole. Serve a green salad, and a fruit salad. You could do a caesar salad (it's a Mexican salad), tropical fruit like mango, banana, papaya, coconut. If it is dinner, and it's chilly where you live, why don't you do a soup? I love a good pozole this time of year. You could do a red pozole if everyone likes spicy food, or a brown one with chili (fresh jalapeno) served on the side to keep it mild.

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Okay, I am definitely having tacos tonight. We make Mexican food at least twice a week, but some of these recipes and ideas will make it seem like a real treat! I'm going to try the cabbage salad and the goat cheese and shrimp quesadillas along with our usual tacos, rice, and guac. :drool:

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