Fact: tacos have existed for close to three millennia.
Traditionally comprised of three ingredients—corn tortilla, filling, and salsa—the taco has become an international symbol of Mexican cuisine. Sadly, when I first got into fitness, I assumed I had to say goodbye to my favorite food to achieve my fat loss goals.
But here’s what I didn’t realize. Tacos are the one food that can provide you all the nutrients you need to fuel your workouts and build more lean muscle. They’re the most versatile form of food on Earth—perfect for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and even dessert.
More importantly, tacos are perfect no matter your goals: fat loss, muscle gain, and every other day of the year when you’re “gaintaining.” So here are four high-protein, delicious taco recipes you can make while you get shredded for summer.
Bacon Pineapple BBQ Chicken Tacos
Warmer weather means it’s time to fire up the grill. And when it comes to putting more taste in your mouth, nothing beats BBQ grilled chicken. But if you want to give your taste buds one awesome surprise add some grilled pineapple and bacon to it and tell me what happens in your mouth.
These are hands down the best tacos I’ve ever made. The saltiness of the bacon, the tanginess of the BBQ sauce, and the sweetness from the grilled pineapple provides all the deliciousness you crave while dieting.
Here’s what you need:
- 6 ounces of chicken breast
- BBQ sauce
- 1 ounce Cheddar Cheese
- Red Cabbage
Marinate the chicken in the BBQ sauce for 30-60 minutes; or for the most flavor, overnight.
Chop and then dice the red cabbage. Then dice the jalapenos. Shred the cheese. Leave the veggies and cheese to side until you’re done. (If you don’t like super spicy things, discard the jalapeno seeds. But since you’re not a wuss, so leave the seeds for some fire.)
After the chicken has marinated for 30-60 minutes, cook it on your grill 3-4 minutes per side. At the same time, add the pineapple to the grill and let it cook for 10 minutes, rotating as needed. Once the pineapple is soft, it’s done.
While the chicken and pineapple grill, cook the bacon on your stove on a low-medium heat; this will provide you time to run out and flip the chicken and pineapple a few more times. Once the bacon is done, chop it up.
Once the chicken and pineapple are finished, bring them inside and chop them up into bite-sized pieces. Now add the chicken, bacon, pineapple, and diced jalapeno and red cabbage to the tortilla. Top with the cheese. And then prepare your taste buds for awesomeness.
Aquaman Avocado Tuna Tacos
The Summer comes with one horrible problem: butt sweat. And I’m not talking about the kind that happens when you workout. It’s annoying and that’s not anything that any of us want to deal with. Especially when making food.
When it comes to food on a god-awful hot day, do you really want to stand in front of a grill while it’s 90 plus degrees outside? Nope. On days like this, you need to chomp down on this perfect protein-packed perspiration preventative provision.
This burrito combines the cool, delicious taste of avocado with protein-rich tuna. Plus, they’re packed with vital nutrients like Vitamin K, Potassium, Vitamin B5, Vitamin E, and more importantly, avocados provide a cool your taste buds even under the hot summer sun.
For these tacos, you need:
- 1-2 Cans of tuna (depending on your protein requirements)
- Olive Oil
- Cheddar Cheese
- Red Onion
- Tortillas* (carbs may vary depending on the type of tortillas you buy)
- Black Pepper
- Lemon Juice
- Sea Salt
Chop the cucumber, red onion, and celery. Dice half the avocado into small ¼ inch pieces. Then drain the tuna—opt for the tuna in water and not in oil—and place it in a bowl.
Add the veggies and avocado to the tuna. Add 1 teaspoon of lemon juice, and 1 teaspoon of olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Then mash and mix all the ingredients together.
Spoon the mixture into the tortillas, top with shredded cheese, and add lettuce as a garnish.
Peach Prosciutto Burrito
Let’s keep it on both the light and fresh side (and the sweet and salty). This burrito won’t’ weigh your stomach down, and it’s light and fresh taste will keep you from feeling sluggish while you spend a day on the beach.
This burrito is well balanced in terms of macros, too. It’s packed with a moderate amount of healthy fats (26g), less than 60g of carbs—perfect for those staying low-carb while getting shredded—and packed with 48g of delicious muscle building and energy-sustaining protein.
What you need:
- 3-4 ounces of prosciutto
- 1 Peach
- 1 Large Tortilla shell
- ½ cup of reduced fat mozzarella
- A handful of fresh basil
- 1 Teaspoon Olive Oil
- 1 Teaspoon Balsamic Vinegar
Slice the peaches into ¼ inch slices. Place peaches in a bowl and drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar; mix the peaches, coating them with oil/vinegar.
Grill the peaches for 2-3 minutes on each side. Place warm peaches on the tortilla and cover with mozzarella. Place the prosciutto over the cheese/peaches, then top with basil. Roll the burrito up and grill until both sides are brown.*
*Grilling is optional for both the burrito and peaches. But it does help lock in more of the flavors.*
The Beast Breakfast Tacos
With longer days and warmer nights, winding down after a day of fun in the sun usually involves a few drinks. And I’m not telling you something you don’t already know: hangovers effing suck.
Now, we all know the best way to soak up excess booze is by chowing down on a good bacon cheeseburger. But you’re getting lean and don’t want to pound down a greasy bacon cheeseburger the morning after you turned into Frank the Tank with the tequila. (Don’t worry. You didn’t go streaking, I promise. *snickers* you totally did *snickers*)
Besides begging your friends to delete any embarrassing photos/videos that they may, or may not, have taken last night during your drunken streaking escapades, you need quick help in erasing the headache you have this morning.
And I have the perfect protein-packed taco prescription that will cure that debilitating hangover.
The Beast Tacos clock in at under 500 calories but comes packed with 36g of protein. The protein you need to re-ignite your fat-burning furnace. These tacos are just what the doctor ordered.
What you need:
- 4 ounces of 90/10 Lean Ground Beef
- 1 Scrambled Egg
- 2-3 tortillas
- ¼ of reduced fat cheese *optional*
Beat the egg and leave it to the side. Cook the bacon on medium heat; then cook the beef in the leftover bacon grease over medium-high heat.
Once both the bacon and the beef are done, wipe the pan and spray the pan with non-stick spray. Turn the pan to medium and cook the eggs. Take them off the heat right before they’re done, they’ll continue to cook as they cool.
Spoon the beef into the tortilla, add the egg, top with the bacon. Kill your hangover.
Eat More Broitto’s
Dieting during Summer doesn’t have to mean you eat boring foods. During the hottest months of the year, heavy meals are the last thing you want to ingest. Summer is meant to be filled with plenty of sun and fun. And these tacos will keep you feeling your best, while also providing your taste buds with the fun flavors it wants the most.