Welcome to Riches to Rags by Dori. This is a place where I share a little bit of everything. My experiences, the good the bad and the ugly. Life isn't easy but worth living and my hope is that we can get through it together.

Sunday, December 18, 2011


One thing I wanted to do with this blog is create one day a week to share a really good recipe. I tie this in to being "CHEAP" and thrifty because I know ALOT of people that don't know how to cook, don't have good recipes or are just sick of the same old ones they have so then they opt to eat out several times a week. I have LOTS of great recipes I would love to share with you. If you cook at home you will save yourself SOOOO much money, plus you deserve it :). I have chosen Sunday to do this because that is the day I don't work by going shopping at the thrift stores and I try to get as much rest as I can on that day. Because I have nine people in my house I have to cook some big meals and since I have to cook anyways Sunday is the perfect day to share this recipe with you.

There is a secret ingredient in this that I am sharing. My favorite place in the whole world to eat (well one of my favorites) is Cafe Rio. Ahhhhhh, it is pure bliss. If I was stuck on an island and the only food I had everyday was the Chips, Salsa and Queso at Cafe Rio I would be fine forever. I know you will LOVE it!

Dori's Taco Salad......

These are the ingredients you will need.

  • 1 pound of Ground Beef
  • Cheddar Cheese (I use sharp)
  • Oil (Veg or Olive)
  • Cojita Cheese
  • Lettuce
  • 2 Avocados
  • Sour Cream
  • Ranch Dressing
  • Corn Tortillas
  • 1 Cafe Rio Salsa's (1 Fresca and 3 Pico)
  • Cilantro
  • Seasoning for meat, you can use your personal favorite or see what I use.

If you are going to make this for dinner then you can do certain steps the night before or throughout the day and put them in a container. The first step I do is start the crunchy chips.

Take about 10 corn tortillas and cut them thin and then spread them around a cookie sheet. (Ignore my horrific cookie sheet) and then drizzle olive or vegetable oil on top then mix it around until all the pieces are light coated. Then spread them back out around the cookie sheet and put in the oven pre-heated to 400 degrees.

Check them after 5 minutes and stir them around and put them back in for another 5 minutes and stir them again. After that check about 2 minutes later and they should be done. I like to sprinkle them with Kosher Salt.

So tasty.

While those are cooking you can start the meat if you haven't already made the chips earlier.

This is a pound of ground beef and if you have alot of people like I do I double that. I always season my meat with the same seasoning.

Kosher Salt, Garlic Powder, Lawry's Seasoning and Black Pepper. Notice the name brands? I'm cheap and it tastes just the same.

After the meat has cooked and you have drained the grease here comes my secret ingredient. Cafe Rio has two different salsa. One is Fresca and the other is Pico. You will want 1 Fresca and three Pico. I put about 2 heaping Tablespoons of Fresca in the meat and then add a half a package of Taco Seasoning. You can adjust that but make sure you leave about a heaping Tablespoon for later.  Then add about a half a cup of water, mix and let simmer on low while you do some more prep.

Yummy, it has such a great flavor.

Ok now the rest of the prep that you need to do.

Cut up the Lettuce
Grade the Cheese. I use Sharp Cheddar
Use the side of the grader to grade the Cotija Cheese. This makes the whole meal and is one of my favorites.

Are you getting hungry yet??????

Smash up the two Avocado's and then add the rest of the Fresca Salsa from Cafe Rio with a good pinch of Kosher Salt and mix good together. Perfection.

Make the Ranch, I always use nothing but Hidden Valley Ranch. Truly the best.

Put some Sour Cream, the 3 Pico Salsa's from Cafe Rio, some Cilantro, Guacamole and Ranch in small dishes. I got this great dish this summer at Savers for 50 cents and it is a Crate and Barrel! Love it!

Now the assembly line!

You can assembly it how ever your heart desires but this is how I do it.
Lettuce, Meat, Cheese, Sour Cream, Guac, Salsa, Chips, Cilantro, Cojita Cheese and then drizzle the Ranch on top.

Voila!  Oh you will love this. Enjoy!
Side note: My 28 year old step son was grumbling when I was making this because he isn't a "Salad" kind of guy. I said "You take one bite of this and I guarantee you will like it" 

He ate three plates and is now a salad believer.

The picture does not do this wonderful meal justice. The flavor is soooooo good. This is a great dinner with guests, you will be the hit of the party!
Please share this recipe with your friends with a link back to my page.I will keep posting some great recipes. I would love to hear how you liked it if you make it. ENJOY!

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