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This cozy crescent roll taco bake is an easy dinner that’s ready in 30 minutes! The zesty beef and corn filling is topped with a cheesy cheddar crescent roll crust for a comfort food casserole that the whole family will love. Pair it with tortilla chips and salsa, guacamole, or a simple green salad.

Close overhead shot of a crescent roll taco bake in a white dish

Taco Bake with Crescent Rolls

This casserole is similar to the taco crescent ring that I made for Taste of Home, but it’s even easier to prepare! The meal is mild enough for kids to enjoy, while the adults still get plenty of flavor from the zesty taco seasoning. Best of all, you have protein, veggies, and carbs in one dish…with very little effort! The simple taco casserole is a family-friendly way to simplify weeknight dinners.

Taco filling in a cast iron skillet

This meal is exactly what it sounds like — a taco that’s baked in a casserole dish! You’ve got the meat, the seasoning, the cheese, and a buttery, flaky, crescent roll crust in lieu of a tortilla. Feel free to adapt the ingredients to make it your own, though. You can substitute ground turkey for the beef, use a can of beans instead of corn, and garnish with any toppings that you prefer. Chopped lettuce, fresh herbs, diced avocado, sliced olives, sour cream, and halved cherry tomatoes are all delicious ways to finish it off!

Sprinkling cheese on top of taco casserole

Ingredients

This is just a quick overview of the ingredients that you’ll need for a simple taco-bake. As always, specific measurements and step-by-step cooking instructions are included in the printable recipe box at the bottom of the post.

  • Ground beef: feel free to substitute with ground turkey or ground chicken if you prefer.
  • Onion: I like a sweet Vidalia onion, but yellow onion or white onion will also work.
  • Salsa: any brand that you prefer will work well! Use a spicy variety to give your dish some extra heat.
  • Corn: frozen corn kernels are convenient to have on hand, but fresh corn off the cob or canned corn will also work.
  • Petite diced tomatoes: drained of excess juices. Substitute with regular diced tomatoes if that’s what you have, or use Rotel diced tomatoes with green chilies for a spicier option.
  • Chili powder, cumin, smoked paprika, kosher salt, and ground black pepper: the spices that come together to make the homemade taco seasoning that flavors the beef filling.
  • Cheese: grated cheddar cheese or a Mexican blend works well. You can also use Monterey Jack, Pepper Jack, Colby, Colby Jack, or just about any other good melting cheese that you like.
  • Crescent roll dough: I like Pillsbury brand best. The dough sheets work well because they’re not perforated, but you can also use regular crescent rolls and just pinch together the seams.
Placing crescent roll dough on top of casserole

How to Make Crescent Roll Taco Bake

This easy taco casserole recipe requires just a handful of very simple ingredients that you can keep stashed in your kitchen for last-minute meals!

  1. Cook the ground beef and onion in a large skillet or Dutch oven over medium heat until the meat is no longer pink. Drain off the excess fat.
  2. Stir salsa, corn, tomatoes, and seasoning into the beef and onion mixture.
  3. Spoon meat mixture into a greased 2-quart casserole dish.
  4. Sprinkle with 1 cup of the shredded cheese.
  5. Unroll the sheet of crescent roll dough, and place the dough on top of the beef filling in the bottom of the pan.
  6. Sprinkle remaining cheese on top of the meat.
  7. Bake the casserole in a 375°F oven for 15-20 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown and cooked through.
Square overhead shot of crescent roll taco bake with serving spoon

What to Serve with the Pillsbury Crescent Roll Taco Bake

We serve this Mexican-inspired taco bake casserole with tortilla chips for scooping. It’s also nice to garnish the dish with sour cream, diced avocado or guacamole, or a bright, fresh sprinkling of chopped cilantro, parsley, or green onions.

Here are a few more easy options that go well with the taco casserole:

Crescent roll taco casserole in a bowl of a dinner table

Storage

  • Prep ahead: You can cook the filling in advance and keep it covered in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours before adding the crescent roll dough and baking.
  • To freeze: Assemble the casserole, cover tightly with foil, and freeze for up to 3 months. When ready to bake, thaw in the refrigerator overnight and then allow to sit on the counter and come to room temperature for 30 minutes before baking.
  • Have leftovers? The cooked casserole will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days, or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
Horizontal side shot of a bowl of crescent roll taco casserole with ground beef and chips and salad in the background

How to Reheat

Cover the dish loosely with foil to avoid excess browning. Warm in a 300°F oven for about 20 minutes, or just until heated through. You can also reheat individual portions in the microwave.

Square overhead shot of a bowl of crescent roll taco casserole

Recipe Variations

  • Swap out the ground beef and use ground turkey or ground chicken instead.
  • Rather than corn, use a can of drained, rinsed beans.
  • Use a packet of taco seasoning mix rather than the homemade mix of spices.
  • If you can’t find Crescent Dough Sheets, you can substitute with a can of regular crescent roll dough. The crescent roll dough is perforated so that you can tear it into individual rolls, so you’ll need to pinch and seal those perforations before using the dough in this recipe.
Square side shot of crescent roll taco bake in a bowl with sour cream and herbs on top

Tips for the Best Crescent Roll Taco Bake Recipe

  • Garnish the casserole with your favorite fresh taco toppings for the best flavor and texture. Good options include fresh cilantro or parsley, chopped green onions or minced red onion, chopped lettuce, sour cream, diced avocado, halved cherry tomatoes, or sliced black olives.
  • Keep a close eye on the casserole as it’s baking. Make sure that the crescent roll dough is cooked through before your pull it out of the oven. If the top starts to get too dark before the dough is fully cooked, just tent the top loosely with foil.
  • For an extra cheesy casserole, feel free to add an extra ½ cup -1 cup of grated cheese into the beef filling.
  • Use Pillsbury brand crescent dough sheets for the best quality and flavor. I’ve experimented with store-brand versions and I’m always disappointed.
Overhead shot of a crescent roll taco bake with a serving spoon

More Taco Casserole Recipes to Try

Overhead square featured image of a crescent roll taco bake

Crescent Roll Taco Bake

5 from 4 votes
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Total: 30 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Calories 442 kcal
This cozy crescent roll taco bake is an easy dinner that's ready in 30 minutes!

Ingredients
  

  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 cup diced onion
  • 1 ½ cups salsa (about one 16-ounce jar)
  • 2 cups frozen corn, thawed
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can petite diced tomatoes, drained
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • 1 ½ cups shredded cheddar cheese or Mexican blend cheese, divided
  • 1 (8 ounce) can refrigerated Crescent Dough Sheet

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C). Spray a 2-quart (about 11 x 7-inch or deep 8-inch or 9-inch square) baking dish with cooking spray. Set aside.
  • In a large skillet over medium heat, cook beef and onion until beef is no longer pink (about 6-8 minutes), breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon as you stir.
  • Drain off any excess fat in the pan.
  • Stir salsa, corn, tomatoes, chili powder, smoked paprika, cumin, salt, and pepper into the skillet with the beef and onion. Transfer mixture to prepared baking dish. Sprinkle with 1 cup of the cheese.
  • Unroll the sheet of dough (if using crescent rolls, press perforations to seal). Place dough on top of meat mixture. Sprinkle with remaining ½ cup of cheese.
  • Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until heated through and crust is golden brown.

Notes

  • Garnish the casserole with your favorite fresh taco toppings for the best flavor and texture. Good options include fresh cilantro or parsley, chopped green onions or minced red onion, chopped lettuce, sour cream, diced avocado, halved cherry tomatoes, or sliced black olives.
  • Keep a close eye on the casserole as it’s baking. It’s important to make sure that the crescent roll dough is cooked through before your pull it out of the oven. If the top starts to get too dark before the dough is fully cooked, just tent the top loosely with foil.
  • For an extra cheesy casserole, feel free to add an extra ½ cup -1 cup of grated cheese into the beef filling.
  • Use Pillsbury brand crescent dough sheets for the best quality and flavor. I’ve experimented with store-brand versions and I’m always disappointed.
  • Swap out the ground beef and use ground turkey or ground chicken instead.
  • Rather than corn, use a can of drained, rinsed beans.
  • Use a packet of taco seasoning rather than the homemade mix of spices.
  • If you can’t find Crescent Dough Sheets, you can substitute with a can of regular crescent roll dough. The crescent roll dough is perforated so that you can tear it into individual rolls, so you’ll need to pinch and seal those perforations before using the dough in this recipe.

Nutrition

Serving: 1/6 of the casseroleCalories: 442kcalCarbohydrates: 36gProtein: 28gFat: 22gSaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 76mgSodium: 1416mgPotassium: 733mgFiber: 4gSugar: 7gVitamin A: 1385IUVitamin C: 7.2mgCalcium: 250mgIron: 3.8mg
Keyword: Crescent Roll Bake, crescent roll taco bake, ground beef casserole, taco casserole
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American, Mexican
Author: Blair Lonergan

This recipe was originally published in September, 2016. It was updated in July, 2022.

blair

Hey, I’m Blair!

Welcome to my farmhouse kitchen in the foothills of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains. Inspired by local traditions and seasonal fare, you’ll find plenty of easy, comforting recipes that bring your family together around the table. It’s down-home, country-style cooking!

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Comments

  1. This definitely looks like my kind of comfort meal! And my husband would love this too. Such a great idea to use crescent rolls in here, and I love how easy this is to make! Pinning to try out later!

    1. Hooray! Isn’t that the best?! Love when I realize that I have all of the ingredients on hand for an easy dinner! Enjoy, Shannon!

  2. What an awesome take on a fall classic! I have two huge batches of chili in the freezer I made pre-baby. I might try and see how I can use what I already have to make this yummy dinner. My husband would love it!

    1. Oh, I hope you’ll try it Chrissa! It’s definitely man-friendly food (and you’ll need a lot of that in the coming years with all of those boys you’re raising)! 🙂

  3. I am a sucker for crescent roll anything, and this recipe looks like the perfect way to ring in the newly chilly fall weather – perfect!

  4. This looks incredible! We don’t have crescent rolls in Australia but I wonder if I could make them from scratch to use in this!

  5. 5 stars
    I met you on the Sticky Blogging group. I made this last night, with quadrants for kiddos who won’t eat various combinations of cheese (who doesn’t like cheese?), tomatoes, onions, etc. It was a grand success! I was so excited to get out of my humdrum chicken routine.

    1. Hi, Christine! You’re so sweet to stop by, and I’m thrilled that the dinner was a hit! Thanks so much for letting me know! 🙂

  6. I’m going to have to try and find the crescent sheet. Maybe at the Super WalMart near me. That’s where I finally found frozen puff pastry. I usually go to a smaller Wal Mart which I prefer but they seem short on speciality items. Igg’ve read reviews on other sites which suggest making sure that the filling is very hot before putting the crust on. I guess I could have the skillet mix simmering before I put it in the casserole and put the crust on to bake? would that work? Also how would I check to see if the bottom of the crust is done? I’ve never made anything with a top crust before. Thanks!

    1. Hi, Marion! There’s no bottom crust in this recipe, so you don’t need to worry about that. As long as the filling is warm from the skillet when it goes into the dish, it will be fine by the time the crust is done. Hope you enjoy!

    2. Hi Marion. I’m not sure where you live but I’m in GA and if you’re in the South and have an Ingles grocery store near you, they have the Cresent Roll Sheets there. There are 5 Super Walmarts within a 30 minute drive from me and none of them have the sheets dough. Hope this helps and happy cooking.

  7. No, I meant you say to make sure the that the crescent is done all the way through. How do I make sure of that? I know the top side of the dough will be brown. Sorry for the mix-up! Thanks!

    1. Oh! I suppose you could cut a slit in the top of the crust with a paring knife and just take a look to make sure that it’s cooked through. Otherwise, press with your fingers and make sure that it’s firm. In reality, though, if it’s nice and brown on top, it will likely be done all of the way through, because it’s not too thick. 🙂

  8. 5 stars
    I used this recipe as a way to use my leftover turkey after thanksgiving! I just substituted chopped turkey for the ground beef. My husband, who never compliments anything I make, actually said that I need to do it again! I call that a WIN!!