Munchies, snacks, treats, whatever you call them, have them ready. For my late-night cravings, I stock a kitchen drawer with dark chocolate bars, spicy jerky, peanut butter protein bars and individual packets of spice cookies and nuts.

Better yet are the containers of spicy marinated cheese cubes and pickled eggs in the refrigerator. High in protein, these bold snacks satisfy without an excess of guilt and regret.

I feel young again when we pull up to the late-night taqueria after seeing a concert or comedy show. It’s fun to enjoy rich, greasy tacos and endless baskets of tortilla chips with mind-numbing hot salsa. I always over-order, over-garnish and then spill on my clothes.

Better to have made the recipe here for short-rib taco soup instead. You’ll impress friends who join in on a bowl. No matter the hour, a quick reheat and a few easy garnishes more than satisfies any craving.

Taco soup — what a concept. I first heard of it at a diner in the South. Turns out, the internet offers up dozens of recipes. For good reason. This bowl of soup sports all the luscious flavors of beefy tacos, but can be made ahead and eaten out of a bowl. I use a combination of beef short ribs and meaty-tasting flank or skirt steak for the deepest possible flavor. Pulling the cooked meat into large shreds proves reminiscent of carne asada tacos.

Set out garnishes like you would see at a taqueria: Bowls of crunchy tortilla chips, minced green chile, diced white onion with cilantro, cubes of avocado and tomato. Shredded cheese boosts richness. Tangy hot sauce and squeezes of fresh lime add spice and a bright finish.

I love to set out guacamole tacos while the soup reheats. Simply crush ripe avocado pulp with salt and hot sauce, then sandwich a spoonful in small flour tortillas (heated directly over the flame).

Admittedly, satisfying every craving proves detrimental to the waistline, but giving in once in a while keeps life enjoyable. The trick is to plan ahead for last-minute munchies.

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