Salsa Verde Turkey Tacos

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The best salsa verde ground turkey tacos are made with store-bought green salsa and ready in just 15 minutes. Serve this amazing taco meat as tacos, quesadillas, burritos, or taco bowls!

214 CAL 5g CARBS 5g FAT 36g PROTEIN 1
1 Comment

These healthy and simple Salsa Verde Turkey Tacos have only five ingredients and make the perfect quick and easy Mexican dinner.  Serve them with some Mexican Corn Salad or Crockpot Pinto Beans.

I am automatically drawn to anything that includes salsa verde. You can be assured that when I see it on a menu, I always order it and there are always at least a few jars of tangy green salsa in our pantry and fridge.

Plus this tomatillo-based salsa is usually mild, which means it's a salsa that can work for almost any palette.

Now let's talk about these tacos. Instead of reaching for a sodium-packed taco seasoning pouch, let the salsa verde do the heavy lifting in this recipe. It adds all the flavor you need without all that extra salt.

Personally, I am partial to turkey for these tacos since it really soaks up all the salsa flavor but you could definitely use chicken or beef as well.

If you are thinking about meal prep, this taco filling is the perfect thing. It just gets more flavorful after a few nights in the fridge and makes an amazing homemade taco bowl.

Love salsa verde tacos? You'll want to try this Instant Pot Salsa ChickenSlow Cooker Salsa Verde Chicken, or Chile Verde as well.

Salsa verde ground turkey tacos in corn tortillas with jalapenos, cilantro, and limes.

Ways to Serve Salsa Verde Tacos

  • Choose your tortillas: Grab some corn or flour tortillas and warm them directly on the burner. Or consider baking up some crispy baked taco shells. For a low-carb option, you can use low-carb tortillas or make taco lettuce wraps
  • Prepare your toppings: When we have tacos, I love having a million toppings. Consider cilantro, diced onions, tomatoes, avocado, queso fresco or shredded cheese, jalapenos, cabbage, or some corn or black beans.  This pico de gallo is a favorite in our house and sneaks in some extra veggies.
  • Optional heat: If you are serving this to kids, I like to make it with mild salsa. Then I buy some spicier green salsa to serve on the side so we can add extra heat to our meal. 
  • On the side consider serving regular or refried beans, corn, or some roasted veggies. A green salad with a Mexican inspired dressing is another great option or this Tomato, Corn, Cucumber, and Avocado Salad.

Ways to Use Leftover Salsa Verde Turkey Meat

The leftovers from this recipe are so good! You will definitely want to make a double or triple batch. They are a favorite in our house for meal prep.

  • Ground turkey taco bowls: Grab some brown rice or quinoa, add ground turkey meat, and some canned black beans or corn. Then add fresh veggies like chopped Romaine lettuce, tomatoes, red onion, and cilantro. Top with cheese, avocado, and some extra green salsa.
  • Quesadillas: This turkey with some melted cheese grilled between a couple of flour or low-carb tortillas is pretty magical. 
  • Burritos: Wrap this up with some cooked rice (or cauliflower rice), beans, cilantro, onion, and salsa for a quick and easy burrito.
  • Scrambles: You will want to try this with some scrambled eggs. Start by scrambling your eggs in a hot pan and add them right before they finish cooking. Top with cheese. It's also great as an omelet filling.
  • Soup: For an easy dinner, grab some of your favorite canned black bean soup and stir in this ground turkey. Top with baked tortilla chips and avocado.
  • Stuffed peppers: Toss with some rice, quinoa, or cauliflower rice. Then add some extra salsa verde. Baked in the oven with tomato sauce and top with cheese.

Is ground turkey better for you than ground beef?

It really depends on your diet and what you are looking for. When comparing 93% lean ground beef with 93% ground lean turkey, the calorie amounts are similar with 162 calories in 3 ounces of ground beef and 176 calories in ground turkey.

However, if you choose 99% lean ground turkey, it only has 120 calories. When it comes to protein, they both have about 22 grams of protein per serving.

In terms of saturated fat, ground turkey has about 4% less saturated fat than ground beef and the 99% lean variety has even less. It also normally has slightly less sodium than ground beef. Lastly, in terms of minerals and vitamins, they are pretty equal but beef will provide you with more iron. 

So what does that mean? It actually means that there isn't as much difference between ground turkey and ground beef as many people think as long as you are choosing a lean variety. However, if you want the leanest option, then 99% lean ground turkey is the lowest in fat, calories, cholesterol, and saturated fat.

Looking for a more classic beef option? Try these Ground Beef Tacos.

Tips for Making Salsa Verde Tacos

  • When looking for salsa verde, you can go with a mild or medium salsa depending on how spicy you like things. You can also look for a roasted salsa verde if you want something with a bit of a deeper flavor. My go-to brand for store-bought salsa is Herdez, but you can buy any brand of salsa you like. 
  • This recipe will work with ground turkey, beef, chicken, or pork. You can also make it with vegetarian crumbles or beans for a vegetarian option.
  • If you find your salsa lacks flavor, just doctor it up with some additional spices and flavors. You can add cumin for smoke, chili powder for heat, or garlic powder or onion powder to kick things up. You can also add fresh cilantro, lime juice, or jalapenos.
  • If you are worried about your turkey drying out, choose a 93% lean variety instead of the 99% lean option.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are the most common questions about making these salsa verde tacos.

Salsa verde is tangy, slightly spicy, and full of bright flavors from cilantro, onion, garlic, and lime.  It pairs really well with queso fresco, queso cotija, or feta cheese. It is also delicious with some added crunch from shredded lettuce or cabbage. Add even more spice with sliced jalapenos. Try adding guacamole or sliced avocado to counteract the spice. 

These tacos will turn out great with chicken as well. Use ground chicken, chopped chicken breast, or thinly sliced chicken thighs. It will also work with previously cooked shredded chicken. 

The Recipe
Ground turkey tacos with salsa verde in yellow corn tortillas.

Salsa Verde Turkey Tacos

214 CAL 5g CARBS 5g FAT 36g PROTEIN 1
1 Comment
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  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1.33 lbs 99% lean ground turkey (or beef or chicken)
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 2/3 cup salsa verde (mild or spicy, plus extra for serving)

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Heat the olive oil in a pan over medium high heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook for 4-5 minutes until it begins to become tender. For a spicier version, you could also add a diced jalapeno in this step.


Add the ground turkey, cumin, salt, and pepper Cook for 6-7 minutes until browned and cooked through, breaking it up as you go.


Add the salsa verde and let simmer for at least 5 minutes.


For tacos: Serve the tacos in warmed corn tortillas with any toppings you like.

Nutritional Facts
Serving Size: 6 oz.
Amount Per Serving
Calories 214
Calories from Fat 48
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 5g
Saturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Cholesterol 83mg
Sodium 581mg
Total Carbohydrate 5g
Dietary Fiber 0g
Sugars 1g
Protein 36g

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

The Nutritional Values provided are estimates only and may vary based on the preparation method.

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About the author Meet Kristen McCaffrey
Hi, I’m the cookbook author, recipe developer, and food enthusiast behind Slender Kitchen. I am obsessed with making healthy food that is easy to prepare and absolutely delicious. Meal planning is my secret weapon and I hope I can make meal time easier for you with our tried and tested recipes and foolproof meal plans. Learn More
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1 Comment
On Salsa Verde Turkey Tacos
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Jennifer P.
August 16, 2022 - 16:51
Add a Rating:
Love this dish…the simplicity, the flavor, the quickness (especially on a work night)!
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