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Dutch Oven Camping Tacos

Use your Dutch Oven to make these amazing Camping Tacos on your next camping trip. This baked taco recipe can be customized with your favorite meat, beans, salsa, and cheese.

Dutch Oven Taco Casserole Camping Recipe

Tacos are a family favorite food in America. Hard tacos, soft tacos, fish tacos, walking tacos, you name it, people love it!

Traditionally, you cook up taco meat, heat up some beans, and pile on your favorite toppings to create a handheld taco. This camping taco casserole is a little different as it is all baked in one dish.

While we give directions for making this in a Dutch oven out at the campground, you can make it in at home in your oven or on a grill. Home directions for this easy meal are included in the recipe notes.

Why You Will Love These Camping Tacos

Your family and friends will love these Dutch Oven Tacos because they are:

  • fun to make and eat
  • hearty and filling
  • can be prepped ahead
  • piled with favorite ingredients
  • adaptable with different meat, beans, and cheese
  • can be individualized with toppings of your choice
  • great for feeding a large group

After you make them, we would love to hear what you think of this easy recipe.

Dutch Oven Taco Recipe

This recipe is a cross between tacos and enchiladas. We have gone with tacos because the tortillas are not rolled.

Campfire Taco Ingredients

This new camping recipe calls for the following ingredients:

  • ground or shredded meat of choice
  • canned beans of choice
  • Spanish rice mix
  • salsa of choice
  • diced tomatoes & green chilies
  • onion
  • corn tortillas
  • shredded cheddar cheese
  • red or green enchilada sauce
  • oil

Switch up your choices of ingredients and create a different taco meal each time. Check out this Walking Tacos recipe.

Ingredients for Camping Tacos
enchilada sauce is missing from this photo

DO Camping Tacos Directions

This is one of the more involved Dutch Oven dinner recipes that we have posted, but the effort is worth it. You should check out Dutch Oven Chicken & Veggies, Dutch Oven Mac & Cheese, or Dutch Oven Salisbury Steak.

The basic instructions for this recipe are:

  1. prepare coals for the Dutch oven
  2. cook the taco meat and onions
  3. add the beans and tomatoes
  4. mix in the rice packet and salsa
  5. assemble tacos by adding meat mixture to tortilla
  6. arrange tacos in the Dutch oven
  7. add enchilada sauce and cheese
  8. create a second layer of tacos
  9. top with the remaining sauce and cheese
  10. cover and bake for 60-70 minutes

Campfire Tacos Camping Recipe with a serving on a plate

Preparing Coals

Since these are wet tacos, you can go with higher heat on this recipe. Prepare at least 35 pieces of charcoal. We recommend 20 briquettes under the DO and 15 pieces on top.

Dutch Oven Tip
Need to replenish the heat over or under your oven? Use hot coals from your campfire.

Creating the Meat Filling

This recipe can be made entirely in the Dutch Oven, but the meat mixture must be transferred out of the pot before assembling. Therefore, we create the meat mixture in a separate pan. A better way is to make the filling at home and store it in a Ziploc bag in your cooler for assembly at the campground.

In a large skillet (we use a 12-inch cast iron skillet), brown the chopped onion in a little oil or butter. When they are starting to get translucent, add the ground meat.

When the meat is browned, add the taco seasoning plus the liquid from the canned tomatoes & green chilies. If there is not enough liquid for the seasoning, add a little water. Let it simmer for a few minutes.

Drain and rinse two cans of beans (we used a can of kidney and a can of pinto beans) and add them to the meat along with the remaining canned tomatoes & green chilies. Stir to combine.

Add the contents of the Spanish rice packet. Read the packet instructions to find out how much water is needed, and add that amount of salsa instead of water. Ex: Our package asked for 2 cups of water, so we added 16 ounces of salsa.

You can add butter or oil as called for on the rice package if you want. Ours tasted just fine without it.

Mix thoroughly, cover, and simmer for 5 minutes less than the stovetop directions on the rice packet.

taco meat in a cast iron skillet

Assembling the Tacos

Line the Dutch oven with a liner. You can make your own or purchase paper or aluminum liners. If you prepared the meat in your pot, it probably has enough oil left on the surface to bake unlined.

Take a corn tortilla and fill it with about two-thirds full of the meat, bean, and rice filling. Line up the tacos so they are tightly packed in the bottom of the Dutch oven.

We fit 26 tacos (12 on the bottom layer and 14 on top) in our cast-iron oven.

Pour half of the can of enchilada sauce over the tacos. Sprinkle half the cheese over the entire layer.

Repeat the process, creating a second layer of tacos. If you run out of meat, break up the rest of the tortillas and lay them over the first layer.

Cover with the rest of the enchilada sauce and cheese.

Time to Bake

Put the lid on the Dutch oven. Place 20 charcoal briquettes underneath the pot and 15 coals on the lid.

Bake for 60 to 70 minutes, rotating the pot a quarter turn every 20 minutes. Add or replace briquettes or coals from the campfire if needed.

The meal is done cooking when it is bubbling, the cheese is melted, and the tortilla edges are crispy.

Top with your favorite taco toppings, such as sour cream, chopped tomatoes, green onions, jalapenos or peppers of choice, or even hot sauce, such as Cholula.

close up of the camping enchilada taco casserole

Recipe FAQ

Can I use flour tortillas or a bag of chips instead of corn tortillas?

Flour tortillas will not soak up the enchilada sauce as corn does, so cut the sauce in half if you substitute with flour. Tortilla chips are not recommended because they will just get soggy.

What meat is best for this recipe?

Ground beef or turkey, shredded chicken or pork, or a vegan option such as tofu, TVP, or another meat alternative.

What beans do you use in camping tacos?

We love using a can of black beans or kidney beans along with pinto beans.

How do you adapt this for the grill?

Cook this recipe in the Dutch oven on your grill over medium heat. Bake for 60-70 minutes.

What temperature should I heat the oven for this recipe?

Cover your cookware with a lid or foil and bake in a 350-degree oven for 60 minutes.

How do you store the leftovers?

The leftovers can be stored in an air-tight container in the refrigerator.

crispy edges on a baked taco

We think the best part of these Dutch oven tacos is the crispy corn tortilla edges that mimic a taco shell. We rush to call dibs on those.

Let us know what your favorite thing about these Dutch Oven Camping Tacos is in the comments below, on our Facebook page, or on this pin on Pinterest. We would love a 5 star review on the recipe card below.

More Dutch Oven Camping Recipes

Yield: 25

Dutch Oven Camping Tacos

overhead shot of mexican corn tacos in a dutch oven

This Camping Tacos recipe may be the best way yet to enjoy one of the most popular foods around. This tasty camping meal can be adapted with your choice of meat & beans. Turn the heat up or down with salsa or added toppings.

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Additional Time 10 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 pound of ground meat
  • 2 cans of beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 package Spanish rice mix
  • 1 jar of salsa
  • 1 can diced tomatoes & green chilies
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 package of corn tortillas (30-count)
  • 1 pound shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 28 oz can enchilada sauce (red or green)
  • oil as needed
  • optional: toppings of choice

Instructions

  1. Prepare 35+ charcoal briquettes for the Dutch oven
  2. Cook the onions in a little bit of oil or butter til translucent.
  3. Add the meat and stir around until browned.
  4. Add the taco seasoning and the liquid from the can of tomatoes & chilies. Simmer for 3-5 minutes, adding in a little water if needed.
  5. Stir in the beans and tomatoes & chilies.
  6. Read the Spanish rice package instructions to find out how much water is needed. Add that amount of salsa instead of water, along with the contents of the package. Mix thoroughly.
  7. Simmer for 5 minutes less than the package instructions.
  8. Assemble a taco by filling a tortilla ⅔ full of the meat mixture.
  9. Tightly arrange tacos in the Dutch oven.
  10. Pour half of the enchilada sauce over the first layer.
  11. Sprinkle half the cheese on top.
  12. Create a second layer of tacos.
  13. Break up any remaining tortillas on top of the tacos.
  14. Top with the remaining sauce and cheese.
  15. Place the lid on the Dutch oven and place 20 coals under the pot and 15 on the lid.
  16. Bake for 60-75 minutes, adding more coals as needed.
  17. Add toppings and enjoy!

Notes

Detailed directions and tips are in the post above.

Grill Directions: Bake with the lid on over medium heat for 60-70 minutes.
Oven Directions: Also bake with the lid on in a 350° oven for 60 minutes.

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