Mix and match for the perfect summer taco

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) Hot days mean you don’t want to spend time slaving over a hot stove or oven for a great meal. Chef Terri Rees, owner of Tuxedo Junction Catering, has some great ideas for delicious and fresh summertime meals.

One option that has so many variations is tacos. You can cook your meat or protein ahead of time so it’s chilled and ready to go when you need it. Mix up some salsas and dressings and feel free to experiment with different ingredients. Think outside the box of your standard beef or bean taco.

You can learn new tips and tricks in the kitchen with a cooking class with Tuxedo Junction Catering. Check out the schedule online by clicking here.

Summer Tacos

Ingredients per taco: 

  • 4 – 6 oz. Smart Chicken Tenders – cooked and cooled or 4 oz. Tilapia – cooked and cooled
  • Arugula or spinach
  • Coleslaw mix
  • 8” flour taco shells as needed


Avocado Dressing:

  • 1 avocado
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • ½ cup water (or a bit more if needed0
  • ¼ cup cilantro chopped

Combine all ingredients together in a blender until smooth.

Watermelon Salsa

  • 2 cups chopped seedless watermelon
  • 1 jalapeno minced
  • ½ small red onion – minced
  • ¼ cup lime juice
  • ¼ cup chopped cilantro
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • ½ cup crumbled feta cheese

Mango Salsa

  • 1 mango diced into ½ inch pieces plus any juices
  • 1 cup diced pineapple
  • ¼ cup diced celery
  • ¼ cup red onion
  • Pinch of salt
  • ½ tsp freshly grated nutmeg and cinnamon

Mix and match! Make up a taco bar for the family and let everyone make their new favorite taco!

The possibilities are endless! 

  • Chicken Tenders with avocado dressing and coleslaw
  • Fish with mango salsa and arugula
  • Chicken with watermelon salsa
  • Fish with coleslaw and avocado dressing
  • Chicken Tenders with Mango Salsa and Coleslaw


Cucumber Aqua Fresca

Yield: Serves 8

  • 4 1/2 cups coarsely chopped seeded peeled cucumbers (about 4 medium)
  • 4 cups cold water
  • 2 cups ice cubes
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2/3 cup fresh lime juice
  • 2 large pinches of salt
  • Additional ice cubes

Combine 2 1/4 cups chopped cucumbers, 2 cups water, 1 cup ice cubes, 1/2 cup sugar, 1/3 cup lime juice, and 1 pinch of salt in blender. Blend until sugar dissolves and mixture is smooth but slushy, about 2 minutes. Transfer mixture to pitcher. Repeat with remaining chopped cucumbers, 2 cups water, 1 cup ice cubes, sugar, lime juice, and salt.

Place additional ice cubes in 8 glasses. Fill with cucumber drink.


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