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Taco salad without chips

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I am planning to make taco salad for a group of friends who are mostly paleo/low carb. i was surprised that there were many moans and groans, as they usually stray away as they miss the crunch of tortilla chips. Anyone routinely make taco salad without tortilla chips? Do you miss the crunch at all? Any good substitutes?

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  1. Kale chips.

    1. As a WW, I would just put it over green cabbage or iceberg lettuce and be very happy with that crunch.

      1 Reply
      1. re: rabaja

        Similarly, romaine leaves as wraps taste fresh and the ribs make for a bit of juicy crunch.

      2. We prepare taco salads routinely without chips by simply layering the filling ingredients (chili, cheese, etc.) on a bed of chopped lettuce. Never miss the chips at all.
        Pork Rinds (chicharrones) might be another option. But crunchy veggies (e.g. celery) might also do the trick.

        1. You can also just make chips from low carb tortillas. It's easy. That won't work for strict paleo folks but it would for LC folks. There are also plenty of grain free crackers to serve along side a taco salad.

          1. Hmm. Lots of delish ideas so far. How about making frico from jalapeno cheddar last minute (Cabot has a good one, and it crisps better than jack cheese) to garnish? Of course, like sedimental's idea, it's not for the paleo folk, but the LC'ers will eat 'em.

            1 Reply
            1. re: pinehurst

              Frico is perfect - I either make chips of it or turn it into a bowl and serve the taco salad inside of it. Pork rinds are also an awesome addition.

            2. All the time. I typically don't eat chips in my taco salad and request it without the fried tortilla shell if they use it.

              Oh so good no matter how you serve it!

              1 Reply
              1. re: Crockett67

                Wow, I love all the great ideas. I was shocked at the responses of "a taco salad is no good without chips: :) I think I will go with crisp lettuce and find out if I can convince anyone.

              2. Chicharrones are perfect for a taco salad, though including really crunchy Romaine and marinated onions also makes up for the missing texture.

                1. I add flour tortilla pieces and a like it much better. I don't find a fork stabs hard taco pieces very well.

                  DT

                  1. jicama is great for crunch. Can you do cheddar chips, like parmesan cheese crisps but with cheddar? (Never tried them, but maybe they'd be good? http://recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe...)

                    ~TDQ

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: The Dairy Queen

                      +1 on the jicama. I slice thin "chips" to serve with guacamole in lieu of tortilla chips. In salad, it is good in small dice.

                    2. Nuke little piles of grated cheese on piece of parchment paper until it is crunchy. I think the recipe said 45 seconds. Peel them off the parchment and you have cheesey crunchy paleo/keto chips.
                      Vary the cheeses. Can also be done with american cheese cut into strips for cheese sticks.
                      see pic here: http://i.imgur.com/yGa4r.jpg

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Nanzi

                        Wow, that looks like a great idea.

                      2. Taco salad satisfyingly enjoy with a whopping helping of iceberg lettuce and extra guacamole with no chips. Thanks for the suggestions, will try them out in the future.