Tool Box Tacos


By Caitlin Murray Giles


Add an unexpected element to taco night by creating a “taco tool box” for each member of the family to hold the various elements for make-your-own tacos. Buy a plain, wood mini tool box from the craft store for each member of the family (if you can’t find mini tool boxes, plain wooden boxes will do). Line each tool box with parchment paper and fill it with all of the taco fixin’s divided into sections, such as hard taco shells, tortillas, meat, cheese and veggies. Instruct your crew to get building! Messy? Yes, but totally worth it. Serves 4


2 tsp. Anchochile powder
¼ tsp. cumin
¹∕8 tsp. oregano, Mexican if you have it
¹∕8 tsp. garlic powder
¹∕8 tsp. onion powder
¹∕8 tsp. paprika
1 pinch cayenne pepper
½ tsp. kosher salt
1 pound ground beef, preferably grass-fed
½ cup frozen corn
1 box hard shell
corn tortillas
Soft flour tortillas
1 avocado, thinly sliced
Tomatillo or tomato salsa
Grated Monterey
Jack cheese
Sour cream


Preheat the oven to 350° F. Lay the taco shells on a baking sheet and place in the middle of the oven.

While the shells are baking, mix together the first eight ingredients in a small bowl. Saute the ground beef in a large skillet, breaking it up with a wooden spoon. After a minute or two, sprinkle on the seasonings and stir until the meat almost loses all its pink. Add corn and cook a minute or two more.

Warm the flour tortillas. Assemble all of the elements of each taco tool box. Serve salsa and sour cream in a bowl for topping.


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