So, are you setting up a taco bar for guests? We believe it will be a fun event with family and friends.
Have you considered what to serve with a taco bar?
You can keep several items for the taco bar and add more options so your guests can choose their favorite items.
When it’s about side dishes, there are even more choices.
Refried black beans, Mexican sweet potatoes, fiesta salad, guacamole, and elote are some dishes that pair nicely with a taco bar, and each one tastes delightful.
Why Consider Serving Side Dishes with Taco Bar?
A taco bar has all the typical ingredients you add to a taco, like cooked ground meat, tortillas, tomatoes, herbs, onion, sauce, corn, seafood, etc.
You use these to make a taco. Tacos are delicious, and you can consume them on their own.
But you’ll also need side dishes to make a complete meal.
If you have guests, side dishes will come in handy because tacos alone won’t be enough to fill everyone’s belly.
Your guests and family will enjoy the event more if there are more dishes.
What to Serve at Taco Bar? 10 BEST Side Dishes
In this section, we’ll learn about the dishes you can serve with a taco bar.
1 – Instant Pot Pinto Beans
Pinto bean is a variety of common bean, but when it comes to taste, it’s on par with any other delicious legume.
You can make many different dishes with beans, and instant pot pinto beans are one of them.
It’s a hearty dish that can satisfy your cravings, and of course, it tastes incredibly delicious with a taco bar.
You get to experience multiple textures and flavors when you serve them together.
Instant pot pinto beans don’t need too many ingredients, but when they’re cooked, the dish becomes immensely flavorful.
It’s already rich but make it richer by adding chicken or vegetable broth.
2 – Mexican Cauliflower Rice
Plain cauliflower rice tastes good, but when you add a Mexican flair, it becomes even better.
It not only tastes more flavorful, but it also looks more appetizing.
This dish has ingredients similar to a typical cauliflower, with the addition of cumin, paprika, tomatoes, and jalapenos.
These items not only add taste but also make it colorful with a slight orange-red tinge.
Cauliflower harvested before the right time will taste bitter, so choose veggies with pure white heads and closely packed florets.
3 – Refried Black Beans
First of all, “refried” doesn’t mean twice fried.
Instead, you cook the beans, fry them with seasonings and smash them.
This black bean dish is filling and makes an excellent side dish with a taco bar.
You can make it soupy or thick, depending on how you like the beans.
Along with the spices, garlic, onion, and herbs, you can also add cotija cheese for more flavor.
Use dry black beans for cooking the dish but soaking them overnight with a bit of salt.
The beans will be soft and won’t take much time to cook, saving you plenty of time.
4 – Lemon Garlic Prawns
Seafood is an excellent option for side dishes if you don’t have much time to spare.
Make prawns with garlic and lemon in fifteen minutes and serve them alongside the taco bar.
It may not take much time to cook the dish, but the prawns will taste crispy, smoky, tangy, and tasty, leaving you wanting more.
Add a little crushed chili flake for some heat.
While frozen and fresh varieties work, the former is not as flavorful as fresh prawn when cooked.
Hence, if you can find fresh varieties, it’s best to use them.
5 – Mexican Sweet Potatoes
Adding a slightly sweet dish serves two purposes; it can act as a dessert and satisfy your cravings.
Mexican sweet potatoes do just that, and it’s a guarantee that you won’t regret making the dish.
Sweet potatoes in Mexican style are yummy, so you must make several batches, or there won’t be enough for everyone.
Cook the potatoes with the skin on because it’s tasty as well.
A black bean salsa with red onion, jalapeno, tomatoes, and cilantro makes a lovely topping for the sweet potatoes.
You can also include a cilantro sauce for more taste.
Add corn kernels and enjoy the yummy potatoes with a taco bar.
The meal will fill your belly, and you’ll experience different flavors, including something sweet, crunchy, tangy, and herby, all in one dish.
6 – Fiesta Salad
This salad also contains black beans, but it won’t feel boring because it’s canned beans, so that the dish will have a different flavor than the previous dishes.
But fiesta salad is delicious, and it’s a popular side dish with a taco bar.
Hence, you’ll have a hit dish on the menu.
Don’t forget to add reduced-fat sour cream and ranch dressing to enhance the salad’s flavors.
These items add depth to the salad.
Since you’re using canned beans, rinse and drain before adding them to the dish because some varieties have high sodium content.
7 – Guacamole
The avocado-based dip must be the most popular condiment in Mexican cuisine.
It’s undoubtedly the most versatile and also one of the tastiest varieties.
Not only does it taste good with taco bar but also with many other dishes.
How to make guacamole? It’s easy; you only need avocados, onion, lime juice, cilantro, tomato, jalapenos, garlic, and salt.
If you’re unsure about choosing avocadoes, look for dark shades; they should be almost black.
These are ripe and good for the dish.
If you buy in advance, pick green but not a lighter shade.
It will ripen in a few days and be perfect for making the dish.
8 – Elote
Also called Mexican street corn, elote is yummy and makes a lovely side dish with a taco bar.
The difference between elote and typical grilled corn is the ingredients used.
Elote has Mexican sour cream, ground chipotle pepper, cotija cheese, lime juice, and mayonnaise.
You can also add garlic, cilantro, and lime zest.
Fresh corn is juicy and sweet and the best option for making elote.
Hence buying corn, check the silk and husk.
The former should be pale and silky, while the latter should be bright green without spots and bruises.
9 – Mexican Cabbage Slaw
Classic coleslaw is a versatile and popular side dish, so you can add a similar item but with slightly different flavors.
Mexican cabbage slaw is a good choice.
It suits the taco bar and offers a fresh aspect to the meal.
Colorful food looks more appetizing, so you can add red, green, and white cabbage.
Make the slaw from scratch or buy prepped slaw if you can’t spare the time.
Add jalapenos, lime juice, zest, and cilantro with olive oil, salt, cumin, onion, and coriander powder to make a dressing.
The combo will bring out lovely flavors when added to the cabbage.
You’ll not only have a colorful, fresh, and delightful salad but also absorb plenty of nutrients simultaneously.
10 – Kohlrabi Slaw Salad
This dish may not be too popular simply because people don’t know much, but it makes a nice pairing with a taco bar.
It’s fresh, different, and of course, flavorful.
Kohlrabi is a vegetable of the cabbage family with a crisp and crunchy texture.
It has a mild, sweet flavor with a slightly peppery hint in older veggies.
But they’re edible, both raw and cooked.
The salad includes various ingredients, and all of them blend nicely to bring out the fresh, tangy, and crunchy flavor and texture.
A dressing made with Greek yogurt, apple cider vinegar, salt, pepper, and fresh herbs makes the salad perfect.
Along with kohlrabi, you’ll also need red cabbage, lettuce, zucchini, toasted pumpkin seeds, crumbled goat cheese, and fresh herbs.
The ten dishes will be useful whenever you have plans for a taco bar.
Serve different items, so you don’t get bored since several dishes have similar ingredients.
You should experiment and mix and match to experience new flavors and textures.
Apart from the ten items, you can also serve.
- Cilantro lime salad.
- Instant pot borracho beans.
- Mango habanero salsa.
- Easy Spanish rice.
What to Serve at Taco Bar? 10 BEST Side Dishes
- Instant Pot Pinto Beans
- Mexican Cauliflower Rice
- Refried Black Beans
- Lemon Garlic Prawns
- Mexican Sweet Potatoes
- Fiesta Salad
- Mexican Cabbage Slaw
- Kohlrabi Slaw Salad
- Pick your favorite recipe from the article.
- Organize your ingredients and utensils.
- Follow the detailed instructions in the recipe to make your side dish.
- Prepare and serve for delicious meal!
Andrew Gray is a seasoned food writer and blogger with a wealth of experience in the restaurant and catering industries. With a passion for all things delicious, Andrew has honed his culinary expertise through his work as a personal chef and caterer.
His love for food led him to venture into food writing, where he has contributed to various online publications, sharing his knowledge and insights on the culinary world. As the proud owner of AmericasRestaurant.com, Andrew covers a wide range of topics, including recipes, restaurant reviews, product recommendations, and culinary tips.
Through his website, he aims to inspire and educate fellow food enthusiasts, offering a comprehensive resource for all things food-related.