Don't worry, there are tacos in it.

By Tim Nelson
November 18, 2020
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Taco Bell
| Credit: Taco Bell

If you're like me, your in-person Friendsgiving plans have transitioned to a virtual setting or been scrapped entirely. The truth is, it unfortunately just isn't a wise idea to gather together to share a meal with the squad, especially for those hoping to responsibly quarantine in the hope of safely seeing family. 

At the same time, you can choose to see the freedom from Friendsgiving and its crushing expectations of "normal" Thanksgiving dishes as an opportunity to truly go wild and make something indulgent and unexpected for yourself. For example, you could throw caution to the wind and truly live mas by following Taco Bell's recipe for a Crunchy Taco shepherd's pie, a new-age spin on the meat and mashed potato-based dish associated with English cuisine. 

In addition to possibly representing the first time in culinary history that "crunchy taco" and "shepherd's pie" have appeared next to each other in a sentence, the dish is remarkable for its simplicity— at least as far as the necessary Taco Bell ingredients are concerned. All it takes is two crunchy tacos (stripped of their lettuce and cheese) plus four sauce packets at your preferred level of spiciness. You'll need a handful of more traditional ingredients for the Mashed Sauce Packet & Cheddar Potatoes and the sauteed vegetables, but (as the name implies) the crunchy tacos are a must. 

This isn't the first time that the south of the border-style fast food chain has tried to worm its way into celebrations of the American (and Canadian, in October) holiday. In previous years, Taco Bell Executive Chef Rene Pisciotti has rolled out Fire Tortilla Chip Crusted Chicken and a Rolled Chicken Tacos Bisque, to name a few. However, this would seem to be the first time that Taco Bell has suggested some sort of Mexican-English culinary fusion. 

Given that vegetarians and vegans haven't been the biggest Taco Bell fans this year, the good news is that this particular shepherd's pie recipe can be easily adapted to suit vegetarian (though perhaps not vegan) palates: Simply swap out the seasoned beef from the crunchy tacos and swap in black beans, whether at the Taco Bell itself or on your own at home. 

So while it may be sad that no one can share in and celebrate whatever special dish you feel like whipping up, no one can judge something strange like a taco-driven Shepherd's Pie either. So even when you're locked down, just know that there's always —always—a way to try and live mas. 

This story originally appeared on allrecipes.com