Fiesta Salad

This is such an easy, cheap, and fun meal I always end up asking myself why I don't make it more often. Probably because I try to wait until I have some leftover tortilla chips instead of buying a whole bag of them, we never seem to eat them when I do it that way and then they go stale!!

Here is what you need to get started:

1 pound of meat (I normally use hamburger, but I was all out - the turkey turned out great, plus I had bought around 4 of these with a coupon about a month ago so they were about half the normal price!) and your old friend the Chili Packet (to see other recipes that have used this click here and here!)

Brown the meat:
I found this handy little chopper tool in the clearance corner at the commissary, I love it, chops all the meat up perfectly!

When the meat is browned and the grease is drained, add the packet along with a cup of water and mix it all in, let it simmer for a few minutes while you chop up the lettuce and tomato:
I am a messy tomato chopper, the juice always flies everywhere, but I am normally in a hurry so I suppose that's why.

Here is the fiesta meat all ready to go after I've chopped up the veggies:
Next you'll just need to assemble the other goodies you will be putting on  your salad:
Salsa, sour cream, and Mexican cheese (if you have more time I suggest shredding your own, it saves a lot of money, but I try to always have one of these around for when I'm rushing.)

You'll also need tortilla chips. I had about a quarter of a bag left in my pantry, so I just smushed the bag a few times to get them just right:
As you can see, there is a real science to this. (ha!) But if you have a full bag, just grab a big handful for each plate you are serving and throw them in a plastic bag to crush, it is quicker and easier than using your hands, plus your hands don't get all greasy.When you’ve got everything ready to go, it’s time to assemble the salad.

First, put a decent amount of lettuce on the plate:

Then, add the meat:
Then cheese (so it melts!):
Then tomatoes:
And finally, top with crushed chips:
This is my stepson’s plate so no sour cream or salsa get added OR ELSE! But I add a nice healthy dollop of sour cream and a few spoonfuls of salsa to the grown up plates!

Then just serve it up and watch it disappear. I even got a big hug from my stepson after dinner with a “thanks for dinner!!” (This is an unusual occurrence, so I’m assuming his tummy was very happy!)

If you want to see other delicious and inexpensive meals check out The $5 Dinner Challenge! I don't know where this meal falls on the price scale, but we always have these ingredients on hand (I am guilty of not being able to survive without sour cream!), and I will use the lettuce and tomato again later in the week so all in all it is a cheap meal in this house!

Here is the printable version. Let me know how it turns out!

Love and Luck to you,

The Packet Queen

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