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Playing Sydney McCoy's Taco Cake


  • 1 1/2 pounds ground chicken or turkey
  • 3 tablespoons EVOO - Extra Virgin Olive Oil, divided
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, grated
  • 2 tablespoons cumin, about 2 palmfuls
  • 2 teaspoons ancho chili powder, about a half palmful
  • 2 teaspoons coriander, about a half palmful
  • 3/4 cup water, divided
  • 1-14 ounce can vegetarian refried beans
  • 8 sprouted corn tortillas
  • 3 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup taco sauce
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 2 cups romaine lettuce, thinly sliced
  • 1 lime
  • 2 vine ripe tomatoes, chopped


Serves: 4-6




Preheat oven to 350F



Prepare an 8-inch springform pan by spaying with non-stick cooking spray.



In a large skillet over medium-high heat and two turns of the pan with about 2 tablespoons EVOO, add meat and lightly brown.



Add the onions, garlic, cumin, ancho chili powder and coriander to the meat and let cook until onions are soft and meat is caramelized. Then add 1/2 cup of water and let cook 10 minutes or until consistency is slightly saucy.



Meanwhile, in a small sauce pot over medium-low heat, combine the refried beans and remaining 1/4 cup water and heat until easy to mix and spreadable.



Lightly char each tortilla over an open gas burner flame or grill.



To build the taco cake, start by placing 3 charred tortillas into the prepared springform pan. Top the tortilla with 1/3 of the refried beans and meat and top with 1/4 of the cheese. Next, place 3 more tortillas down and repeat the same layering amounts as before and do this until you run out of charred tortillas. Once the last 2 tortillas go down sprinkle with the last bit of cheese and put into oven for 10 minutes.



Remove taco cake from oven and let rest for 10 more minutes so it can set.



In a small bowl mix together the taco sauce and sour cream. Spoon into a squeeze bottle or resealable bag.



In another mixing bowl dress the lettuce with lime juice and remaining tablespoon of EVOO, salt and pepper. When taco cake is ready, slide it onto a serving platter, using a spatula. Top the cake off with dressed lettuce, chopped tomatoes and a decorative drizzling of creamy taco sauce.