Copycat Taco Bell Mexican Pizza
The absolute BEST copycat Taco Bell Mexican Pizza recipe! Made just like the original fast-food favorite, only healthier, even tastier, and easy enough to whip up in just 30 minutes. Learn how to make a homemade Mexican pizza from Taco Bell—including how to make Mexican pizza shells, Mexican pizza sauce, & Taco Bell seasoned meat.
What is Mexican pizza?
A Mexican pizza is like a taco-inspired pizza-meets-quesadilla—a pizzadilla! Typically, a tortilla serves as the pizza ‘crust,’ topped with red sauce, cheese, and taco toppings like meat, beans, tomatoes, etc. By some accounts, the first Mexican pizzas were served in the 1950s, at Matt’s El Rancho restaurant in San Antonio, TX. But the iconic Taco Bell Mexican Pizza first appeared on the fast food chain’s menu in 1985, when it was originally called the “Pizzazz Pizza.”
What is Mexican Pizza made of?
Just like the original, this copycat Taco Bell Mexican Pizza features seasoned beef and refried beans, sandwiched between 2 crispy tortillas, topped with Mexican Pizza sauce, cheese, and fresh tomatoes. The sauce here is a combination of pizza sauce, salsa, red enchilada sauce, and green chiles. And, just like at Taco Bell, you can customize your homemade Mexican pizza with toppings like green onion, sour cream, guacamole—whatever you like!
What does the Mexican Pizza taste like?
This homemade Taco Bell Mexican Pizza tastes like a crispy, meaty quesadilla covered in a zesty, tangy tomato sauce and plenty of melted cheese. Unfortunately, I haven’t had a chance to try the original TB pizza just yet. But I’ve read that Taco Bell’s Mexican Pizza shells are quite crunchy, rather than crispy and flaky like the baked flour tortillas in this recipe.
What is on a Taco Bell Mexican Pizza?
- Mexican Pizza Shells. The Taco Bell Mexican Pizza crust is made of crispy fried flour tortillas. Technically, their tortillas are made of both flour and corn, and many folks say the Mexican Pizza shells are now crunchier—more like corn tostadas.
- Meat & Beans. The classic Mexican Pizza from Taco Bell has both meat and beans on it—typically seasoned ground beef and refried beans. They also offer a Veggie Mexican Pizza which is vegetarian, made with just refried beans and no meat. Or you can ask to replace the meat with black beans like in their Vegan Crunchwrap Supreme!
- Mexican Pizza Sauce. The Taco Bell Mexican Pizza sauce is a tomato-based sauce with zesty flavor from green chiles, onion, and spices. It tastes like a red pizza sauce combined with enchilada sauce or salsa.
- 3-Cheese Blend. A blend of cheddar, mozzarella, and Monterey Jack is melted on top of the Mexican Pizza at Taco Bell.
- Toppings. Although the original 1985 recipe also came topped with green onion and black olives, the current Taco Bell Pizza comes with just diced tomatoes as a topping. Of course, you can customize your order however you like—or make your own homemade Mexican pizza and jazz it up with your favorite toppings!
Why did Taco Bell discontinue the Mexican Pizza?
After being a menu staple for 40+ years, Taco Bell discontinued the Mexican Pizza in 2020—in part due to the pandemic, and because of the restaurant’s commitment to be more eco-friendly. (The pizza’s packaging produced a lot of waste.) By popular demand, Taco Bell tried to re-launch the Mexican Pizza in May 2022, but they had to discontinue it again because so many stores sold out of it. Honestly, that’s what inspired me to make a homemade Mexican pizza instead!
When is the Mexican Pizza coming back to Taco Bell?
After a long wait, the Mexican Pizza finally returned to Taco Bell on September 15, 2022. (At the time of publishing this post, that’s today!) It’s set to be a permanent menu item again—although some fans complained the new Mexican Pizza in May tasted different, with a less-flaky and more-crunchy crust. You should be able to get your hands on one today, but if you can’t or they’re sold out, this copycat Mexican Pizza can hold you over (and it may be even tastier)!
Copycat Taco Bell Mexican Pizza Ingredients
- Baked Flour Tortillas. For my homemade Mexican Pizza shells, I baked fajita-size flour tortillas until deliciously crispy—similar to my Baked Taco Salad Bowls. If preferred, you can use corn tostadas instead for simplicity. (Although I think they’re not as tasty!)
- Taco Meat. Cook ground beef and season with taco seasoning—or substitute with ground turkey or ground chicken. Be sure to crumble the meat into small pieces for an authentic Taco Bell experience. For a homemade vegetarian Mexican Pizza, you can skip the meat altogether.
- Refried Beans. Spread between the crispy Mexican Pizza shells, refried beans add a crave-ably creamy, salty, savory element that makes this dish so comforting.
- Mexican Pizza Sauce. Combine your favorite pizza sauce, salsa, red enchilada sauce, and some diced green chiles to make your own DIY Taco Bell Mexican Pizza sauce! For a simplified version in a pinch, you could mix just pizza sauce + salsa.
- Mexican Cheese Blend. Personally, I use a premade Mexican cheese blend for convenience. For the truest Taco Bell copycat, look for or create a 3-cheese blend with cheddar, mozzarella, and Monterey Jack.
- Tomatoes & Toppings. Keep it simple and serve with diced tomatoes on top, or go old-school Taco Bell and add some green onion & black olives! The beauty of any homemade copycat recipe is that you can customize it, so go all-out with toppings like sour cream, guacamole, corn, jalapeños—whatever you enjoy.
How to Make Taco Bell Mexican Pizza at Home
- Cook Taco Meat. In a pan over the stove, cook and crumble ground meat, seasoning to taste with taco seasoning.
- Make Mexican Pizza Sauce. Whisk together pizza sauce, salsa, red enchilada sauce, and diced green chiles, then set aside.
- Bake Mexican Pizza Shells. Poke holes in flour tortillas and bake on a wire rack for 10 minutes, until starting to brown.
- Assemble & Cook Mexican Pizza. Layer refried beans, meat, and cheese onto one Mexican Pizza shell. Then, place the other shell on top and add sauce, cheese, and tomatoes. Bake homemade Mexican Pizza at 425°F for 3-5 minutes, until the cheese melts.
How to Make Taco Bell Mexican Pizza Shells with Flour Tortillas
To make flour tortillas crispy and crunchy, start with fajita-size (6-inch) soft flour tortillas. Use a toothpick to poke holes in them to prevent poofing up in the oven. Then, spray them on both sides with cooking spray. Finally, place the tortillas on a wire baking rack on a baking sheet and bake at 375°F for 10 minutes. You want them browned and crisp—but monitor to make sure they don’t burn!
Watch my Taco Bell Mexican Pizza Copycat video to see how I made my homemade Mexican Pizza!
Mind Over Munch-ifying Mexican Pizza
This homemade Taco Bell Mexican Pizza recipe is a true copycat, but I’ve also Mind Over Munch-ified it. That means the ingredients are lightened-up & healthier, the process is quick & easy, the recipe is adjustable—AND it’s even tastier than the original! To achieve the full Mind Over Munch-ified effect, here’s what I recommend:
Recommendations for the Best Homemade Mexican Pizza
- Use flour tortillas instead of corn tortillas or corn tostadas. Baking flour tortillas is quick to do, and it results in a much tastier, flakier Mexican pizza crust.
- Choose meat that suits your lifestyle. Although I genuinely love Taco Bell, the quality of their meat isn’t always ideal. Make your copycat Mexican pizza using a quality of meat that suits you—whether it’s organic, grass-fed, natural, hormone-free, etc. Or, if you don’t eat beef or want to reduce the fat content, use a quality ground turkey or chicken.
- Season the meat with homemade taco seasoning instead of store-bought. With a homemade seasoning, you control the flavors and sodium level, and you don’t have to worry about questionable additives.
- Check the sodium on your Mexican Pizza sauce ingredients. Ingredients like pizza sauce and enchilada sauce can contain a lot of sodium, so there’s no need to add salt. If needed, choose lower-sodium options to reduce the overall sodium in this meal.
- Add full-fat cheese on top and in the middle of the pizza. Full-fat cheese tastes better, it melts better, and our bodies need nourishing fats for so many essential functions. Taco Bell only puts cheese on top, but I recommend also adding some cheese between your pizza shells—simply because your homemade Mexican pizza will taste better!
Homemade Mexican Pizza (Taco Bell Copycat)
Homemade Mexican Pizza (per 1 pizza)
- 2 fajita-size soft flour tortillas, (6-inch diameter)
- 2 Tbsp refried beans, (canned)
- 3 Tbsp taco meat, (see below)
- ¼ cup Mexican cheese blend, (or mix of mozzarella, pepper Jack, & cheddar)
- 2 Tbsp Mexican Pizza sauce, (see below)
- 1 Tbsp Roma tomatoes, diced
- 1 Tbsp guacamole
- 1 Tbsp sour cream
- 1 Tbsp green onions, chopped
- ½ lb ground beef, (or turkey/chicken)
- 1 Tbsp homemade taco seasoning, (or store-bought Taco Bell brand)
- (*yields ~1½ cups beef, enough for ~8 pizzas)
Mexican Pizza Sauce
- ¼ cup pizza sauce
- ¼ cup salsa
- 2 Tbsp red enchilada sauce
- 1 Tbsp diced green chiles
- (*yields ~⅔ cup sauce, enough for ~5 pizzas)
Cook Taco Meat
- Heat oil in a pan over medium-high heat. Add ground beef and break meat into large pieces. Let meat brown for 3-4 minutes.
- Gradually break meat into smaller pieces with a spatula, seasoning to taste with taco seasoning. (For an authentic Taco Bell experience, you want small beef crumbles!)
- When beef is evenly browned and cooked through, remove from heat and set aside.
Make Mexican Pizza Sauce
- In a measuring cup or jar, combine pizza sauce, salsa, red enchilada sauce, and diced green chiles. Whisk to integrate.
- Set aside or store in the fridge until ready to assemble Mexican Pizza.
Bake Mexican Pizza Shells
- Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C).
- Poke several holes in tortillas with toothpicks and spray on both sides with cooking spray.
- Add to a wire baking rack on a baking sheet and bake 10 minutes, until beginning to brown.
- Remove tortillas from oven and set aside.
Assemble & Cook Mexican Pizza
- Raise oven temperature to 425°F (220°C).
- Place one Mexican Pizza shell on a flat surface and spread refried beans (~2 Tbsp) onto it.
- Add taco seasoned meat (~3 Tbsp) and some optional cheese (1-2 Tbsp). (*Although cheese isn't in the middle layer of the Taco Bell Mexican Pizza, I added some because it will taste even better!)
- Place next Mexican Pizza shell on top and spread Mexican pizza sauce (2 Tbsp) onto it. Finish with plenty of cheese (2-3 Tbsp) and diced tomatoes (1 Tbsp).
- Bake on a wire rack for 3-5 minutes to melt the cheese.
- Serve warm with a dollop of guacamole, a drizzle of sour cream, and green onion for garnish!
Nutrition Notes:Nutrition for 1 Mexican Pizza with optional toppings (guacamole, sour cream & green onion): 444 calories | 22g fat | 44g carbs | 3g fiber | 4.5g sugar | 17g protein
1170mg sodium | 55mg cholesterol *Nutrition provided below for 1 Mexican Pizza excluding optional toppings.