Aunt Agnes’ Mexican Salad – Guest Kitchens

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Today’s post is from Lora Roberts, a Southern Plate Family member that I had the privilege of meeting while I was on my book tour. I actually had the privilege of getting to eat with her, too! I was headed to a signing at a bookstore located in a mall and got there early hoping to grab some supper in the food court. As I stood in line to place my order Lora came up and said hi to me! She had also arrived early for the signing hoping to eat. I asked if she would mind if I sat with them and we spent the next half hour chatting away!


Thank you for your hospitality, Lora, and thank you for sharing this recipe and heartwarming story with us today. I am so intrigued by it that I’m heading out to the grocery store to get the makin’s today!  If anyone reading this has ever made it, I’d love to hear about it in the comments below. I know you’ll also want to chat with Lora in the comments as well so feel free!


I had to stop and think of which recipe I wanted to share the most and which had a story really worth telling.  My grandmother passed away when I was 17 and my mother when I was 19.  Most of my recipes I have acquired over the years have been from other family members.  I guess the one with the most meaning is the one I will share!
Aunt Agnes has always brought this recipe to the family reunion and it is always one of the first things gone.  Now you have to remember my dad’s family is good old East Tennessee folks, raised on cornbread, beans and other traditional Southern cooking.  But everyone loves this!  When Aunt Agnes lived too far away to make the reunion (uncle was a preacher and they lived many places over the years), my stepmom would bring it in her place.  I fixed it for my boyfriend a couple of summers ago and he loved it.  Just a good fresh and cool salad for summertime and something he enjoyed taking in his lunch, light but filling.


Last year after the family reunion, we stopped by Aunt Agnes’ house to visit as she had not been feeling well and she didn’t attend the reunion.  While visiting I told her I had fixed Rick the Mexican Salad and how much he loved it so I asked….how did you get this recipe?  What she told me made the recipe mean that much more to me.


In the early 80’s after losing my grandmother, mother, favorite uncle and a couple other relatives, I lost my cousin Linda (Aunt Agnes’ only girl).  When I was a small girl they called me “Little Linda” as I was so much like her and tended to talk through my nose like her!  Linda first got sick with a tumor on her spine.  Eventually other cancers took her from us.  Aunt Agnes and Uncle Charles lived in Texas at the time and Aunt Agnes came back to Atlanta to stay with Linda.  When Linda was really bad and in the hospital for a long time, one of the nurses came in one day with a bowl of the Mexican Salad for Aunt Agnes and the other family members to eat since she felt they had to be tired of the hospital cafeteria by then.  Everyone loved it and Aunt Agnes asked her for the recipe.  So through the loss of a much beloved family member, we received a much beloved family recipe.  One I will continue to fix and share in honor of Linda and Aunt Agnes.
~Lora Roberts


Aunt Agnes’ Mexican Salad

Aunt Agnes has always brought this recipe to the family reunion and it is always one of the first things gone.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Course: Salad
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: salad
Servings: 4
Calories: 141kcal


  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 c. shredded cheese
  • 1 can pinto beans
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 1 bottle Catalina dressing
  • 1 or 2 tomatoes chopped
  • 1 head of lettuce chopped (or 1 bag salad mix)
  • 1 bag Doritos Nacho cheese flavor, crumbled


  • Brown ground beef, stirring constantly. Drain and cool. Mix ground beef with cheese, pintos, onion and dressing. Refrigerate. Before serving, add tomatoes, lettuce and Doritos.


Calories: 141kcal
Tried this recipe?Mention @southernplate or tag #southernplate!

“Lack of direction, not lack of time, is the problem.

We all have twenty-four hour days.”

— Zig Ziglar

Similar Posts


  1. I’m originally from TN. When I first moved to TX this is one of the first things Texans taught me to make. I know that you can get Ranch Style beans in middle TN. If you can’t find them, use Mexi flavored beans. We drain and rinse them. We use taco seasoning in the meat and usually serve it warm. We use taco chips which you crush in your hands as you are serving yourself. We put all the ingredients out in separate bowls and left everyone fix their own. We also use Catalina Dressing (though you could use Russian dressing). Some of my Tx family uses salsa on it instead of dressing. A lot of Texans make their own guacamole and a spoon of that and/or sour cream is good, though we don’t usually include those. I’m allergic to beef like a previous writer, so I use ground turkey. With the taco seasoning in it, no one knows the difference. We call it Taco Salad.

  2. A little dab of sour cream and guacamole atop each serving adds a splash of taste and a splash of color.

  3. I have made this a bunch, but like someone else said, I use Fritos instead of Doritos. And, here in Texas, we use Ranch-style beans in that salad. I think you can only get those here, but they make it extra yummy. Also, my recipe doesn’t call for beef, so if you try leaving it out, it will still be good.

    1. We are able to but canned ranch style beans in Arkansas grocery stores. The even have them with jalapenos in them

  4. Made this and its really yummy, next time I think Ill use Ranch on mine, it was a little too sweet for me but hubby LOVED it. I also used taco seasoning (homemade) in my meat. We have lots of leftovers so we will probably have it for dinner too 🙂 I took a pic, wish I could add it 🙂 Carmen

  5. I’m another one who had forgotten about this recipe and now remember how yummy it was – thanks! We called it “Taco Salad” and used Fritos. My taco salad” version mixed everything together, except the Fritos that were sprinkled on top for crunch, and the meat was hot. It made lots as I recall. It did not store well so I’m with you Christy – seems like salad with individual toppings is the way to go.

  6. I have only made it with Fritos and we use drained Ranch style beans in ours. I mix my hamburger meat with Taco seasoning. I had picky children so I just put all the ingredients into small bowls and everyone would fix theirs the way they liked it.

  7. Warren introduced me to this salad shortly after we met. We both love it. His version uses Fritos, but I’m sure Dorito’s would be just as good. Also, we use drained Ranch style beans, but that could just be a Fort Worth thing, since they used to make them there. We’ve never had it with meat in it but I’m sure it would be delicious!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe or Post Rating