Tex Mex Turkey Taco Skillet

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This easy Turkey Taco Skillet made with ground turkey, beans, brown rice, corn, and bell peppers comes together in about thirty minutes and is perfect for taco night.

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This easy taco skillet dish takes all the flavors of a traditional Tex Mex style taco and combines them in an easy one-dish meal that is always a crowd pleaser. It's hearty, filling, and is a complete meal made in a single skillet. 

What can I say? Sometimes I just love a skillet dish. And of course, I love Mexican food. So, it just makes sense that I would tie the two in together and make a Mexican Turkey Skillet.

Wait though, it just wouldn't be Slender Kitchen with just any ordinary Mexican skillet dish though, would it? No way, it has to be both tasty AND healthy. That's where the turkey and veggies come in.

So, should you find yourself with lots of time to cook, and you're craving Mexican, or basically just a yummy rice dish piled high with all the good stuff, like peppers, garlic, tomatoes, black beans, corn, rice, onions, cheese, then this recipe is for you!

This skillet dish went over great with my family but it's also a great menu item to pull out when you have unexpected guests in town or need something in a hurry. Done in just a little over 30 minutes, it's worth every second! Plus it's a way to use the homemade taco seasoning I started earlier today. 

Turkey taco skillet in a bowl with brown rice, black beans, ground turkey, and taco seasoning.

How do you make Turkey Taco Skillet?

Making this dish is easy! (Have I emphasized that enough yet?) The first thing you want to do is to heat up your oil over a medium-high heat. Add to that the diced onions and peppers. Cook these down until they begin to soften, about 4-6 minutes.

Next add the ground turkey, making sure to break it up as it cooks. It should be browned and cooked through after about 6-8 minutes. Add to the ground turkey the taco seasoning and the garlic. Cook for another minute, or until the garlic becomes fragrant. (Mmmm I just LOVE that smell, don't you?)

Add the tomatoes, corn, brown rice, and chicken broth. Bring the whole mixture to a simmer then turn the burner down to low. Cover the skillet and cook for about 15-20 minutes, or until the rice is tender and has soaked up most of the liquid.

Once it's done, top the skillet dish with cheese, then cover again to melt the cheese. This should only take about 1-2 minutes.

When the cheese is melted, it's ready to serve! I like to garnish mine with cilantro and green onions, but you can add all sorts of toppings! More on that below.

Topping Ideas

While I mentioned that I like to top my Southwestern skillet dish with green onions and cilantro, there are other ways you can top this dish, such as:

  • Sliced black olives
  • Diced red onions
  • Salsa
  • Hot sauce
  • Pickled or sliced jalapenos
  • Light sour cream
  • Red pepper flakes
  • Green chilis
  • Avocado
  • Guacamole
  • Diced tomatoes

Ground turkey taco skillet with brown rice being picked up with a fork.

Tips and Recipe Ideas

  • While you can make this dish using regular white rice, I like to use brown rice for its nutritional content. If you are going to use white rice, I'd use the quick-cook variety as well and keep an eye on it to make sure it's soaking up all liquids adequately and that it doesn't dry out too fast.
  • For onions, I like to use a white or yellow onion, diced. But you can use whatever onion you have on hand. I save the green onions for toppings or garnish after the ground turkey skillet dish is done cooking.
  • If you like your skillet dishes to be very spicy (either spice-wise, or heat-wise) then feel free to change it up to your liking. If you want to make it hot, add 1 finely diced, seeded jalapeno in with the bell pepper mixture and cook as directed.
  • If you don't have fresh, whole garlic to cut yourself, you can use frozen or jarred minced garlic.
  • This dish will keep in the fridge for about 2-3 days so long as it's covered properly.
  • You can freeze any leftovers for up to 3 months.
  • To make this dish vegetarian, substitute vegetable broth for the chicken broth and leave the meat out, but double up the vegetables or beans. Watch that the mixture doesn't get too liquidy though.
  • When cutting up the green onions, I strip off any outside pieces that are brown or slimy looking and I only cut down to just the tops of the whites.

Looking for more taco recipes?

So what do you think? Will you be making this Mexican Turkey Skillet any time soon?

The Recipe
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Tex Mex Turkey Taco Skillet

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  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 onion, minced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 lb 99% lean ground turkey
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 14 oz canned diced tomatoes (or salsa)
  • 14 oz canned black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup canned corn, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup quick cooking brown rice
  • 1 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 2 tbsp green onions, chopped
  • 2 tbsp cilantro, chopped

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Heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onions and peppers. Cook for 4-6 minutes until beginning to soften.


Add the turkey, breaking it up as it cooks. Cook for 6-8 minutes until browned and cooked through.


Stir in the taco seasoning and garlic. Cook for 1 minute until fragrant.


Add the tomatoes, corn, brown rice, and chicken broth. Bring to a simmer and then turn down heat to low. Cover and cook for 15-20 minutes until rice is tender and has soaked up most of the liquid.


Top with cheese and cover for 1-2 minutes to melt the cheese.


Serve with green onions and cilantro.

Nutritional Facts
Serving Size: 1.5 cups
Amount Per Serving
Calories 485
Calories from Fat 155
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 18g
Saturated Fat 8g
Monounsaturated Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Cholesterol 94mg
Sodium 1292mg
Total Carbohydrate 41g
Dietary Fiber 11g
Sugars 7g
Protein 45g

* 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 authorMeet 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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