My Favorite Vegan Tacos

Who says it needs to be Tuesday to enjoy tacos? After many years of vegan taco making & eating, this recipe is my tried and true go-to. In my opinion, the avocado crema and pickled onions are what separate these tacos from the rest. Spicy, bright, comforting and refreshing? Sign me up.

For peak taco experience, I recommend enjoying these with my favorite drink (recipe included below). Spoiler alert: it’s tequila.

 

TACOS

Olive oil
1 red onion (½ thinly sliced and ½ diced)
½ cup white vinegar
½ cup water
1 tbsp salt
1 tbsp sugar
1 large head cauliflower (or 2 small), cut into florets
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp salt
1 bunch kale, stems removed and chopped
3 limes
1 (15 oz) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 (15 oz) can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
2 tbsp chili powder
1 tbsp cumin
1 (12 oz) light beer
1 ripe avocado
1 handful fresh cilantro
8 corn tortillas

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Start on the pickled onions right away. Place the sliced onions in a container that has a lid. Add the vinegar, water, salt and sugar. Secure the lid and shake to make sure salt and sugar dissolve. Refrigerate the onions in the pickling solution until ready to serve.
  3. Add your cauliflower florets onto a sheet pan and toss with olive oil, about a third of the minced garlic and 1 tsp salt. Bake for 25-30 minutes, tossing halfway through. I like my cauliflower to get browned and crispy, but you can monitor this to your liking.
  4. Add the chopped kale to a bowl and toss with 1 tbsp olive oil, the juice of one lime and a sprinkle of salt. Set aside.
  5. Warm a large skillet over medium heat with 2 tbsp of olive oil. Once hot, add the remaining diced onion and saute. Once the onion starts to turn translucent, add the remaining minced garlic. Continue to saute for another minute or so.
  6. Add the chili powder and cumin. Cook until the onion/garlic/spice mixture is dry. Slowly add some of the beer and scrape the dry bits from the bottom of the pan. Once most of the beer is added, add half the beans (both black and pinto). Let the beans cook in the beer and marry with the flavors in the pan for about 3 minutes. Use a potato masher (or wooden spoon) to mash the beans until they’re as smooth as you can get them. If it gets too dry, add more beer. Drink any leftover beer.
  7. Once you’ve reached the consistency you want, add in the remaining beans and combine with the mashed mixture.
  8. The last step before assembling the tacos is to create the avocado crema. Combine avocado, lime juice, cilantro and salt in a food processor or blender. This can also be mashed by hand, but I happen to love how pretty it looks when blended. Puree until completely smooth and refrigerate (I add this sauce to a squeeze bottle, but again, it’s only for looks).
  9. To assemble the tacos, warm the tortillas, and first add a layer of the bean mixture (about three tbsp). Next add a flew cauliflower florets. Top with some of the dressed kale, pickled onions and a squeeze of the avocado crema. If you’d like some extra heat, add some of your favorite hot sauce.
  10. Eat some damn delicious vegan tacos!

TACO COMPANION TEQUILA

½ tsp agave
Juice of ½ lime
1 ½ oz. silver tequila
6 oz. club soda
Sliced hot peppers (optional)
Ice

  1. Add agave, lime juice and tequila to a glass. Stir until agave is dissolved.
  2. Add a few ice cubes to the glass along with the club soda and stir.
  3. If you like spice, add a slice or two of a hot pepper.
  4. Enjoy!