These easy vegan tacos are perfect for your next taco night. I love that they are soy-free, so you don’t have to use tofu or processed meat substitutes. Instead, they’re made from a combination of vegetables and walnuts, seasoned with a classic taco spice mix, to create a healthy taco “meat.”
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This recipe comes from my friend Ali’s new book, Inspiralized & Beyond.
If you’re not familiar with Ali, she’s the force behind Inspiralized.com, a go-to resource for spiralized recipes. (She even designed her own spiralizer– the Inspiralizer— which is what I use in my own home.)
In her latest book, Ali shares even more creative ways to enjoy vegetables, beyond just spiralizing them. For example, in her cover photo, you’ll see that she’s turned zucchini halves into the “bun” for a vegetarian meatball sandwich. She also includes recipes for using vegetables as lasagna sheets, brussels sprouts as mini “slider” buns, and bell peppers stuffed with a savory Philly Cheesesteak filling. If you need some fresh inspiration when it comes to serving vegetables, this book has you covered!
Vegan Taco Meat
These vegan tacos are a great way to sneak more vegetables into your day. The vegan “taco meat” is entirely plant-based, made from mushrooms and cauliflower that have been briefly pulsed in the food processor, then sauteed with crushed walnuts and plenty of taco seasoning.
I served them in traditional taco shells to appease my picky family members, but you can also serve them in jicama “shells,” as Ali suggests in her book, for a lower carb meal with a refreshing crunch.
When you top them with your favorite taco toppings, like shredded lettuce, tomatoes, green onions, and avocado, they’ve got all the classic taco flavor that you love. I hope you’ll enjoy them.
- 2/3 cup crushed walnuts
- 8 ounces button mushrooms , sliced
- 4 cups cauliflower florets , chopped
- 1 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 garlic clove , minced
- 2 teaspoons minced jalapeno (about half of one)
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- 1 (15 ounce can) black beans , drained and rinsed
- Fresh cilantro leaves , for garnish
- 1 small jicama, peeled and sliced into 1/8-inch thick rounds
- 3 limes , quartered
- sliced black olives
- pico de gallo
- In a food processor, pulse the walnuts until ground but not powdered, about 7 pulses. Transfer to a large bowl. Place the mushrooms in the food processor and pulse until finely chopped, about 15 pulses. Add them to the bowl with the walnuts. Place the cauliflower in the food processor and pulse until crumbled, about 10 pulses; do not overpulse. Add to the bowl with the walnuts and mushrooms.
- Heat the olive oil in a large, wide skillet over medium-high heat. When the oil is shimmering, add the garlic and jalapeno and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the cauliflower mixture, chili powder, cumin, and oregano. Season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is no longer crunchy, about 5 minutes. Stir in the beans and cook for 2 minutes, until heated through. Taste and adjust the seasonings as needed.
- Transfer the meat mixture to a serving bowl and top with the cilantro. Serve alongside the jicama shells, lime wedges, and optional toppings of your choosing for tableside assembly.
For each of 6 servings: Calories: 238, Fat: 11g, Carbohydrate: 26g, Fiber: 12g, Protein: 11g
Recipe reprinted with permission from Inspiralized & Beyond by Ali Maffucci
- For food combining purposes, this recipe is properly combined when served in jicama shells, or simply in lettuce wraps. If you would like it to be properly combined with a corn or flour tortilla, omit the walnuts.
- This recipe is also Paleo-friendly when you serve the “meat” in a lettuce wrap or jicama shell.
Giveaway (Now Closed)
Congrats to Heidi S.! The winner has been contacted via email. Thanks for your entries!
Reader Feedback: What’s your favorite creative way to serve vegetables? I think my favorite might be cauliflower rice. Cauliflower “Fried Rice” and my Mexican Cauliflower Casserole are two staples in my home!
Disclosure: Ali sent me a complimentary copy of her new cookbook, but I am under no obligation to post a positive review.