• Leslie

Vegan Tacos Three Ways

Updated: Jul 10


After searching for the best vegan tacos in Mexico City, I can safely say I found them right here in my own backyard! I am sharing three of my absolute favorites here and I am so excited. This is such a festive and delicious way to get #moreplants in your diet without using processed fake meats. And we all know what's going on with the real meat factories these days. Frightening.


While we absolutely LOVED all three versions, they are listed in my order of personal preference. They are all soooo good, I hope you'll put these on repeat both during and after quarantine!


Nutritional benefits go as follows:


Butternut Squash is loaded with vitamins (especially A and C), minerals and antioxidants but is very low in calories. One cup contains 457% of your daily recommended intake of Vitamin A and more than half the (RDI) of Vitamin C*, both critical for a healthy immune system. Squash is also a good source of FIBER (~7 grams per cup).


Butternut squash is naturally sweet and caramelizes nicely when roasted.


Cauliflower is a cruciferous vegetable also rich in vitamins and minerals but low in calories. One cup contains ~77% RDI of Vitamin C and only 25 calories. Cauliflower also contains antioxidants that have been shown to protect against cancer and may even reduce the risk of other disease including heart disease. Also rich in choline, sulforaphane, the latter which has been studied and found to help reduce blood pressure, potentially stop cancer growth and possibly prevent diabetes.


Cauliflower is an incredibly versatile food and takes seasoning nicely.


Jackfruit is grown mainly in Asia (I buy a canned version at Trader Joes that is packed in brine). It is loaded with vitamins (mostly A & C) and minerals (including potassium) and plant-based protein (~ 3 grams per cup). It is a great source of magnesium, copper and manganese.


Jackfruit is also versatile, and has a texture similar to meat. When seasoned right, it makes a wonderful whole food plant-based (and way more satisfying) alternative! Here is what it looks like when cooked in this recipe:




Butternut Squash Taco Filling


Ingredients:

1 medium butternut squash, peeled and cubed (can sub with sweet potatoes)

1-2 TB avocado oil (enough to evenly coat)

1 tsp ancho chili powder (or sub any chili powder)

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1/2 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper


Directions:

1) Preheat over to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

2) In a large bowl, toss squash with oil until completely coated. Add spices and toss well until evenly coated.

3) Spread evenly on the baking tray, leaving space in between cubes.

4) Bake for 20-30 minutes, until caramelized and you can pierce easily with a fork.

Note: You can buy squash pre-prepped at stores including Whole Foods and Trader Joes.


Cauliflower Taco Filling


Ingredients:

1 small head cauliflower (or 1/2 medium-large head), washed, dried and cut into florets

1/2 cup almond milk (or sub another plant milk like cashew)

1/2 cup gluten free flour (I used garbanzo bean flour)

1 tsp smoked paprika

1 tsp ancho chili powder

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1 tsp salt


Directions:

1) Preheat over to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

2) In a large bowl, combine milk, flour, and seasonings. Add cauliflower and toss well to completely coat.

3) Spread on the baking sheet, leaving space between pieces.

4) Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until tender when pierced with a fork. Remove from oven and allow to cool before assembling your tacos.


Jackfruit Taco Filling


Ingredients:

1 can jackfruit (in brine)

1/2 large yellow onion, diced

1 tsp garlic powder (or 2 cloves, minced)

1 tsp ancho chili (or sub chili powder)

1 tsp cumin

1 tsp dried oregano

1 tsp smoked paprika

1 TB apple cider vinegar

1TB pineapple juice (or sub 2 TB fresh orange juice)

1 tsp salt

1 tsp pepper

1/2 cup vegetable broth (or water), as needed


Directions:

1) Drain and rinse the jackfruit. Pat dry and shred with a fork, breaking up tough core into smaller pieces.

2) Heat a large saucepan and add 1-2 TB broth or water. Add onion and saute for about 2 minutes, or until translucent.

3) Add the shredded jackfruit and saute for another 2 minutes. Add spices, stir in well, and cook for another minute or just until fragrant.

4) Add broth and cook on low heat covered for about 5 minutes, then remove cover and continue to cook until liquid is gone, about 10 minutes. You can continue to shred as the jackfruit cooks to make the consistency even finer if you like. Taste and adjust seasonings if necessary.

5) Remove from heat and allow to cool before assembling your tacos.


Recommended Toppings:


I like adding the chickpeas to this for lower calorie fiber and additional micronutrients. It also allows your avocados to go a little farther since they can be harder to come by. You may also omit the chickpeas and add more avocado.


Chickpea-Avocado Mash


Ingredients:

2 cups (1 can) chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained and rinsed

1 large (2 medium) avocados

1/4 cup frozen corn, soaked in warm water to thaw, optional

1/4 cup chopped cilantro

1 tsp garlic powder

2 TB freshly squeezed lime juice (can be previously frozen)

salt and freshly ground pepper to taste


Directions:

1) In a medium bowl, mash chickpeas using a potato masher, until most large pieces are gone.

2) Cut avocado(s) in half, remove the seed and scoop out the flesh using a spoon.

3) Drain corn (if using) and add, along with avocado and remaining ingredients to the bowl and mix well. Taste and adjust seasonings. Serve with your tacos.


Rainbow Bean Slaw


Ingredients:

2 cups (about 1/4 large head) of red cabbage (can sub any type), sliced thin and large pieces cut in half

1 cups (about 1/2 can) black beans, rinsed

1/4 cup chopped onions

1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

2 TB fresh mint, chopped, optional

2 TB fresh lime juice

1 TB olive oil (or avocado oil)

1/2 tsp salt (or to taste)


Directions:

1) Combine cabbage, beans, onions, cilantro in a bowl. Toss well.

2) Add lime, oil & salt and toss well again. Serve with your tacos.


Any leftovers can be made into some incredible nachos!


DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE?

Tag @feedingyourgoals on Instagram and Hashtag #feedingyourgoals


#vegantacos #ranchogordo #tacosthreeways #tacos #tacostonachos



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