Delicious Skillet Beef Tamales Recipe!

Welcome to my latest recipe article, where I’ll teach you how to cook one of my all-time favorite dishes – Skillet Beef Tamales Recipe. As a chef specializing in Brazilian and American cuisine, I take great pride in sharing the best of both worlds with my customers and now with you too!

This recipe is perfect for those who love a flavorful, nutritious meal that’s easy and quick to prepare. It’s also an excellent choice for those who are looking for substitutions for traditional tamale recipes or exploring new ways to enjoy ground beef beyond tacos and burgers.

This skillet beef tamales recipe is versatile, delicious and can be customized to suit your preferences. With ingredients that are easy to find but packed with flavor, you can create a perfect main course for any occasion.

So, without any further ado, let’s dive into the world of skillet beef tamales! Get ready to treat your taste buds and impress your guests!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Skillet Beef Tamales
Skillet Beef Tamales

Listen up, foodies! Today, I am going to share with you one of my all-time favorite recipes, the Skillet Beef Tamales. Why should you love this recipe? Let me tell you!

First and foremost, this recipe is incredibly delicious. The combination of the tender and flavorful beef and the corn tortillas will leave your taste buds in complete ecstasy. You have to try it to believe it.

Secondly, this recipe is so easy to make. All you need is a cast iron skillet, some simple ingredients, and around an hour of your time. Even if you consider yourself as a novice cook, this recipe is very forgiving and easy to follow. Trust me; you won’t be sweating bullets in the kitchen when making this dish.

Thirdly, this Skillet Beef Tamales recipe is super versatile. You can customize it according to your preferences by adding or removing certain ingredients. Want it spicier? Add more chili powder or jalapenos. Want it milder? Use less chili powder or skip the jalapenos. You can even substitute the beef with chicken if that’s more up your alley.

Lastly, not only is this recipe super affordable but it’s also highly nutritious. Using lean ground beef, nonfat sour cream, reduced-fat cheddar cheese, and a plethora of colorful vegetables ensures that this meal is packed with essential vitamins and minerals while keeping calories and fat content low.

So there you have it! My top reasons why you should love this Skillet Beef Tamales recipe. Simply put: it’s delicious, easy-to-make, versatile, and healthy. What are you waiting for? Head to your kitchen and give this recipe a try!

Ingredient List

 A deliciously savory taste of Mexico and America merged into one hearty meal.
A deliciously savory taste of Mexico and America merged into one hearty meal.

Before we dive into the recipe steps, let’s talk about the ingredients you’ll need to make these delicious Skillet Beef Tamales.

  • 1 pound lean ground beef (90% lean): This is the base of our dish! I recommend using a leaner cut of beef, so it won’t become too greasy.
  • 1/3 cup chopped sweet red pepper: Feel free to use any color bell pepper of your choice. I like to use red to add a pop of color.
  • 1/3 cup chopped green pepper: Balanced with the sweetness of the red pepper, adding a green one will give you a more complex flavor.
  • 1/3 cup chopped onion: I recommend using sweet onions or white onions as they are more mild and will complement the other flavors nicely.
  • 3/4 cup frozen corn: This adds some sweetness and texture to our filling.
  • 3/4 cup salsa: You can use store-bought or homemade salsa for this recipe. Try spicing things up by using a spicy salsa variation.
  • 2 cups reduced-fat cheddar cheese: Cheese lovers, rejoice! We’ll be adding plenty of cheddar cheese to make these tamales extra cheesy and flavorful.
  • 12 corn tortillas: These are easily found in most grocery stores. You can use any size, although I recommend using small ones, as they’ll fit better in your skillet.
  • 1 1/2 cups water

All ingredients are now ready. Now let’s move on to the recipe instructions in section (4) The Recipe How-To.

The Recipe How-To

 The perfect way to warm up on a chilly evening.
The perfect way to warm up on a chilly evening.

Now, it’s time to get our hands dirty! Let’s dive into the recipe how-to of this savory skillet beef tamales. Grab your cast-iron skillet and preheat the oven to 375°F.


  • 1 pound lean ground beef (90% lean)
  • 1 cup chopped sweet red pepper
  • 1 cup chopped green pepper
  • ⅔ cup chopped onion
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • ⅔ teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups salsa
  • 1 3/4 cups water
  • 1 can (15 ounces) frozen corn, drained
  • 12 corn tortillas (6 inches)
  • ⅔ cup reduced-fat shredded cheddar cheese

Step 1: Brown the ground beef

Heat a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering hot. Add the beef and cook, breaking it up with a wooden spoon until browned, for about 8 minutes.

Step 2: Add the vegetables and spices

Add the onions, sweet red pepper, green pepper. Cook and stir for about 5 minutes. Add chili powder and salt.

Step 3: Incorporate the sauce and frozen corn

Add salsa of your choice (I like mine spicy!) and water to make it saucy. Scrape down any bits from the bottom of the skillet. Stir well to combine.

Stir in the drained frozen corn for extra texture and sweetness. Bring everything to a boil.

Step 4: Layer in tortillas and cheese

Cut each corn tortilla in half or leave them whole if you prefer. Lay them over the meat mixture in your skillet, overlapping slightly if necessary.

Sprinkle with shredded cheddar cheese.

Step 5: Bake in oven

Bake, uncovered, for 25-30 minutes, or until bubbly and cheese has melted.

Step 6: Serve and Enjoy

Remove from oven and let it cool for a few minutes before serving. Top with some nonfat sour cream or any toppings of your preference like chopped cilantro or some diced tomatoes.

And it’s done! A hearty and delicious skillet beef tamale pie recipe for dinner tonight.

Substitutions and Variations

 These skillet beef tamales are guaranteed to be a crowd-pleaser.
These skillet beef tamales are guaranteed to be a crowd-pleaser.

Hey there, it’s your boy Gary Vee, back with some more value for you guys. Today, we’re talking about the skillet beef tamales recipe and how to spice things up with some substitutions and variations.

If you want to switch up the flavors in this recipe, here are some ideas for ingredient substitutions:

– Ground chicken or turkey instead of beef: If you prefer a lighter meat, go for ground chicken or turkey. You can also try mixing them together for a healthier option.

– Pork tenderloin instead of beef: Feeling fancy? Swap out the ground beef for pork tenderloin. It will give your tamales a richer flavor and tender texture.

– Different vegetables: This recipe uses green and sweet red peppers, but feel free to add different veggies to mix things up. Try adding chopped zucchini, carrots or kale to sneak in those extra nutrients.

– Salsa variations: If you’re feeling bold, switch up the type of salsa you use in this recipe! Try experimenting with flavors like chipotle or roasted tomato to give your tamales a spicy kick.

For a vegetarian twist on this recipe, swap out the ground beef for black beans and corn, and use vegetable broth instead of water. You can also make mini tamale pies by baking the mixture in muffin tins.

If you want to take this recipe up a notch further, try incorporating some other common tamale ingredients. For example, adding olives or jalapenos inside each tamale before rolling them up can really elevate the flavors. Or if you’re feeling adventurous, top each tamale off with a fried egg sunny-side up to create an exciting breakfast dish!

Remember though, these are just suggestions — feel free to get creative and make this recipe your own. That’s it for now – keep cooking!

Serving and Pairing

 Get ready to enjoy some mouthwatering beef, wrapped in a delicious masa dough.
Get ready to enjoy some mouthwatering beef, wrapped in a delicious masa dough.

One of the absolute best things about skillet beef tamales is how versatile they are in the pairing department. This dish is incredibly satisfying on its own, but if you’re looking to add a little something extra to your meal, there are a few sides that will help take it to the next level.

First and foremost, you can never go wrong with adding some guacamole and tortilla chips to the mix. The creamy texture of guacamole pairs perfectly with the rich, savory flavors of the beef tamales. You can even try making your own guac from scratch by mashing up some ripe avocados with diced tomatoes, onions, and jalapenos.

Another great side option is a crisp green salad. The acidity from a tangy vinaigrette dressing adds a refreshing contrast to the heartiness of the tamales.

If you’re looking for something a little more substantial, rice and beans are always a great choice. The soft texture of rice combined with the protein-packed goodness of beans is the perfect complement for this dish. You can even mix in some corn kernels or diced bell peppers to add some extra flavor and texture.

Finally, if you’re looking for an adult beverage to pair with your skillet beef tamales, look no further than a cold beer or a glass of red wine. A hoppy IPA or light lager will help cut through the richness of the dish, while a bold Malbec or Cabernet Sauvignon will complement it beautifully.

No matter what you choose to serve alongside your skillet beef tamales, one thing’s for sure: your taste buds are in for one heck of a ride!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 The ultimate comfort food with a twist.
The ultimate comfort food with a twist.

Now, we’re talking about making your life easier in the kitchen. I love to set myself up for success by preparing things ahead of time so that when it’s time to eat, I don’t have to start everything from scratch. Skillet beef tamales keep well in the refrigerator and can be reheated without losing their flavor or texture. Plus, they make an excellent meal prep option.

Once you’ve made the skillet beef tamales recipe, store any leftover tamales in an airtight container in the fridge for up to four days. You can also freeze them for up to two months. When you’re ready for a quick and easy meal, all you have to do is thaw the tamales overnight in the refrigerator, then reheat them on a microwave-safe plate for three to four minutes until heated through.

To reheat your skillet beef tamales on the stovetop, place them in a cast-iron skillet over medium heat and cover with a lid. Add a tablespoon of water to steam them and heat them through for five minutes, occasionally flipping each side.

Now let’s talk about making these bad boys ahead of time. You can easily assemble your tamales one day ahead and store them covered tightly with aluminum foil in the refrigerator until you’re ready to cook them. Just increase the cook time by 10-15 minutes when you’re baking them. You’ll have more taste, and it will save you a good bit of time.

In conclusion, this dish is excellent for making ahead of time and reheating without losing any flavor or texture. Plus, if there are any leftovers after dinner (not likely), they’ll keep well in the fridge or freezer and provide an easy meal later on. So go ahead – make some extra tamales!

Tips for Perfect Results

 A one-pan wonder that will take your taste buds on a trip to the South.
A one-pan wonder that will take your taste buds on a trip to the South.

Alright, here are some tips for ensuring that your skillet beef tamales turn out perfectly. Trust me, I’ve made this recipe countless times, and I’ve learned a thing or two about how to make it just right.

First off, make sure you use a cast iron skillet for cooking the tamales. While any skillet will do, cast iron is ideal because it retains heat really well, which makes a big difference in how your tamales cook.

Next up is to preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit before you start cooking. This ensures that the oven is at the right temperature when it’s time to bake the tamales.

When browning the ground beef in the skillet, use medium-high heat and break up any clumps with a spoon or spatula. Be sure to cook until there is no more pink visible and it’s all browned.

Another key tip is to not overfill the tamales with filling. If you put too much filling in each tamale, they won’t cook evenly and can become soggy or fall apart. To avoid this issue, put only a tablespoon or so of filling on top of each tortilla before rolling it up.

Speaking of tortillas, be sure to warm them slightly before using them for the tamales as this makes them pliable enough for rolling without cracking. To warm them up, wrap them in a damp kitchen towel and microwave on high for about 30 seconds.

Finally, after adding the final layer of cheese and salsa to the top of your tamales in the skillet, cover it with aluminum foil before baking in the oven. This helps keep everything moist and ensures that the cheese doesn’t burn.

Follow these tips and I guarantee you’ll have some delicious skillet beef tamales that will impress all your family and friends at your next gathering.

Bottom Line

I hope you enjoyed this recipe article for Skillet Beef Tamales. As a chef, I strongly recommend this dish for all those who love traditional Mexican cuisine and want to experience its taste in a unique way. Skillet Beef Tamales are an easy skillet dinner recipe that will please your taste buds and satisfy your hunger.

One of the greatest things about this recipe is its versatility. You can add or substitute ingredients depending on your personal preferences or dietary needs. For example, if you want to make it healthier, you can use nonfat sour cream, reduced-fat cheddar cheese, and lean 90% ground beef. Another great variation of this recipe is tamale pie, which is simply a baked version of the skillet tamales.

When it comes to serving and pairing, Skillet Beef Tamales go well with hot tamales of salsa or even cornbread on the side. You can also make it an appetizer by serving smaller portions as bite-sized mini tamales. And if you have leftovers, don’t worry about storing them in the fridge or reheating them later as they will still taste great.

To ensure perfect results every time you make Skillet Beef Tamales, follow my tips carefully and make sure to preheat the skillet before cooking to prevent sticking. Finally, don’t hesitate to experiment with different ingredients or create your own version of the tamales recipe using your favorite spices and herbs.

In conclusion, this easy skillet tamales recipe is a must-try for anyone who enjoys Mexican cuisine, comfort food, or simple yet flavorful dishes that are perfect for family meals or gatherings. So whether you’re making it for dinner tonight or planning to host a party soon, give Skillet Beef Tamales a try and see how delicious they can be!

Skillet Beef Tamales

Skillet Beef Tamales Recipe

Delicious southwestern cheesy skillet dinner.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Mexican
Servings 5 tortillas
Calories 313.6 kcal


  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 1/3 cup chopped green pepper
  • 1/3 cup chopped sweet red pepper
  • 2 cups salsa
  • 3/4 cup frozen corn
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 6 (6 inch) corn tortillas, halved, and cut into 1/2 inch strips
  • 3/4 cup shredded reduced-fat cheddar cheese
  • 5 tablespoons nonfat sour cream


  • In a large non-stick skillet coated with cooking spray, cook beef and peppers over medium heat until meat is no longer pink, drain.
  • Stir in the salsa, corn, and water and bring to a boil.
  • Stir in tortilla strips, reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 10-15 minutes or until tortillas are softened.
  • Sprinkle with cheese, cover and cook 2-3 minutes longer or until cheese is melted.
  • Serve with sour cream.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 289gCalories: 313.6kcalCarbohydrates: 33.1gProtein: 23.8gFat: 10.7gSaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 60.4mgSodium: 708.3mgFiber: 5gSugar: 5.2g
Keyword < 60 Mins, Cheese, Lunch, Meat, Vegetable, Weeknight
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Dora is a chef well-versed in Brazilian and American cuisine. After a hard day's work in the kitchen of her restaurant, she finds the time to jot down recipes for her food blog. Her recipes are sure to delight foodies everywhere, as she strives to make each one unique and enjoyable to read.