Easy, low carb taco casserole has all the Tex-Mex flavor you’ve been hungry for but with just 3 net carbs per (very generous) serving. A creamy, spicy queso covers taco seasoned ground beef and 0 carb dumplings to give the dish that chewy, carb-loaded experience. It takes under 30 minutes to make and, while I don’t recommend freezing, it will stay delicious in the fridge for several days.
For this recipe you’ll need: cooked ground beef seasoned with 0-carb taco seasoning, onion, Hatch chiles, tomatoes with green chiles, cream cheese, heavy cream, cilantro, eggs, gluten flour (no substitutes please – this is only 1/4 teaspoon and will not cause problems unless you are allergic to gluten or have celiac), cumin
If anything is going to lure me off of my eating plan it’s going to be Mexican food. I love the warm spices, the heat of the chiles, the textures, the flavors… I love it ALL. Sadly, there aren’t many cuisines that have the high carb counts that Tex-Mex does. Oh, and don’t point out that in Mexico they eat fresh fish. Tex-Mex and Mexican are two different things and… I have to admit… I do not like fish – no, not even very fresh fish… not even your grandmother’s recipe for fish… nada. nope. nothing. Ew.
What I do like are brisket tacos, creamy chicken enchiladas, tostadas… you know… all that carby stuff. I’m constantly trying to recreate, not just the flavors, but the textures as well.
I’ve been working on low carb chicken and dumplings – it seems like forever. In fact, that’s how the chicken pot pie soup came about. The last dumplings I came up with weren’t right for chicken and dumplings BUT I thought they were perfect for Tex-Mex casseroles.
So this happened.
Let’s Talk about the Gluten Factor
So awhile ago I made some bomb low carb egg noodles AND they are SO noodley! Then everyone saw that they had 1/4 teaspoon…ONE FOURTH TEASPOON of gluten in it and lost their minds. Don’t lose your mind.
The gluten will not kick you out of ketosis. It will not cause you to gain weight or have cravings. 1/4 teaspoon of gluten divided between two servings has 0 carbs. None. Nada. The only reason it might cause you a problem is if you have celiac or an allergy to gluten – most of you do not.
You can leave the gluten out OR you can substitute xanthan gum. It will not be the same. It will not be as good. Trust me on this.
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Gluten will last forever in your freezer. You’re not going to use much but it really is perfect for noodles and for my low carb yeast bread. I prefer Bob’s Red Mill Vital Wheat Gluten – it’s reasonably priced and it’s the one I’ve always used.
Low Carb Taco Casserole Recipe
This low carb taco casserole recipe has all of that enchilada/taco/Tex-Mex flavor that you love but the carbs are cut way back by using these dumplings instead of tortillas or macaroni. Pepper Jack works well in this as a substitute for the Cheddar if you like things a little spicier.
You could also spoon it into a casserole dish, top with a little more cheese, and bake it for 20 minutes if you like. The texture is a little different and I think it makes the cheese gooey-er but it’s usually not worth the time it takes to do it for me. Try it and see if you like it better than way.
I wouldn’t freeze this but it will last, tightly covered, in the refrigerator for several days. If you like this recipe please give it a 5 star rating. Remember you can change the serving sized and the measurements will change to match.
Low Carb Taco Casserole
- 2 eggs
- 1 ounce cream cheese
- 1 teaspoon cilantro chopped
- 1/4 teaspoon vital wheat gluten , no substitutions - really - I'm serious
- Pinch salt
- Pinch cumin
- 1 cup ground beef , seasoned with 0-carb taco seasoning, measured after cooking
- 1 tablespoon chopped onion
- 1 tablespoon diced Hatch chile
- 1/4 cup diced tomatoes with green chiles I use Ro*Tel
- 2/3 cup water , may not need all of it
- 1 ounce cream cheese
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 1/3 cup cheddar cheese , grated
- 1 tablespoon cilantro , chopped
- Preheat the oven to 325F.
- Add the eggs, cream cheese, gluten, salt, and cilantro to a blender.
- Blend until very smooth - about 1 minutes.
- Place Silpat or parchment in the bottom of a 9x9-inch baking pan.
- Lightly oil with olive oil.
- Pour in the egg mixture and bake for 10 minutes or until very firm but still spongy when you press down on it.
- Remove from oven and let cool.
- Cut into small squares.
- Melt the butter in a high sided frying pan with a lid.
- Add the onions and peppers - saute until soft.
- Add the meat, tomatoes, and 1/3 cup of the water.
- Bring to a simmer and add the dumplings.
- Cover and simmer for 5 minutes. You may need to add more water - don't let it go dry.
- Uncover - the dumplings will have puffed up.
- Simmer until the water is almost all evaporated.
- Add the cream cheese, heavy cream, and cheddar. (If you want a creamier, smoother sauce you can heat the cream cheese and cream together in the microwave, stir until smooth - then stir in the cheese until melted)
- Stir in the cilantro. Serve hot topped with more cheese, avocado, sour cream, or whatever you like.
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Click on the image to see the recipe. From left to right (all low carb): Beef Pozole, White Chicken Chili, Arroz con Pollo
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