vegan tacos… dare I say my favorite food?
I’m always very hesitant to say that I have a favorite food. as a foodie, I just can’t commit. but, vegan tacos, particularly with homemade mango salsa is definitely a contender for number 1. anything that combines avocado, spicy salsa, fragrant cilantro, and tangy lime juice are my jam. so if you’re with me on the taco loving train, I have a 20 minute recipe for anyone going meatless this monday. they are “meaty” shiitake mushroom lime tacos made dairy free with a quick homemade mango salsa! let’s do it.
replace the meat – but no soy.
when starting to replace meat, often times we reach for soy replacements. laden with sodium, and always unsure of the soy being used, it’s tough. it’s a great place to start on your journey to plant based, but I encourage everyone to try other all natural ingredients to replace meat. and always look for non-gmo soy!
mushroom, eggplant, beans, there are so many. and it all depends on what you need from the recipe- obviously eggplant and beans are better for recipes that need to bind or stick together such as meatballs. but for this vegan taco creation, I used shiitake mushrooms and flavored them with lime, chipotle, cumin, smoked paprika, and a little secret ingredients.
by the way, I discuss sodium a lot, huh? I’m thinking about maybe a post discussing bloat (my enemy), the different types of salt to cook with (sea salt, pink himalayan, table), why we crave it, and just generally decoding the mystery of how much is to much/too little? let me know- I’m down.
mango + cherry tomato salsa.
the shining star of this dish, the salsa is made with only 8 ingredients – all fresh, simple and flavorful. try using leftover salsa to top salads or add black beans for a heartier and more filling salsa. anyone catch the latest black bean burger recipe? another awesome meal sans meat.
shiitake mushrooms made meaty.
I LOVE mushrooms. I know there is a lot of love/hate thrown at this fungi, but if you love mushrooms too, experiment with the texture of them. I took off the stems of the shiitake, then sliced into thin strips, as if I was going to make a steak fajita or taco. next, it was all about the seasoning.
I added smoky flavor with smoked paprika, cumin to really kick up the flavor, and of course chili powder (or cayenne) to give the spice. I cooked the mushrooms down with lime juice and…beer. yup! not a drinker, but BF had a Corona in the fridge and I thought- WHY NOT? so glad I did it. cooking with booze is not in my comfort zone, but I realized it added a more complex flavor.
ready for the recipe? not kidding it’s a quick one- and will WOW.
- 3 ripe mangos, diced.
- 1/2 cup red onion, diced.
- 1/2- 1 whole* jalepeno, deseeded and chopped into small pieces. (*depending on spice preference)
- 1 cup of cherry tomato - chopped
- juice of 1 lime
- 1/2 tbsp. garlic powder
- 1/2 cup of chopped cilantro
- salt and pepper to taste
- 5 cups shiitake mushrooms - washed, stems removed, and cut into strips.
- 1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
- juice of 1 lime
- 1/2 cup of Mexican beer
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. cumin
- 1 tsp. chili powder
- dash of cayenne pepper
- 2 tsp. smoked paprika
- 6-8 gluten free corn tortillas.
- dairy free chipotle aioli, cilantro, lime wedges, chopped romaine to garnish/serve.
- 1. wash and chop mushrooms and all ingredients for mango salsa.
- 2. in a large bowl, combine all salsa ingredients and stir well. set aside while preparing the mushroom "meat."
- 3. in a large skillet, heat 1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil, and add mushrooms.
- 4. add spices, and stir while mushrooms sauté about 2 minutes allowing mushrooms to brown.
- 5. add lime juice and allow to cook for 1-2 more minutes.
- 6. pour beer over mushrooms, cover, reduce heat, and allow to simmer for 5 minutes until beer is cooked out.
- 7. remove from heat, and serve immediately on corn tortillas.
I topped these vegan tacos with my chipotle aioli from this post. the aioli is simply vegan mayo, some spices and a bit of hot sauce. you could also try a dairy free avocado sour cream or eat without sauce! still delicious.
what do you think? simple enough? afraid of subbing meat for mushroom? your cholesterol and the cows will thank you- promise.
experimenting in the kitchen can be one of the most fun and rewarding ways to nourish your body. like my beer addition, just go for it. don’t over think it and don’t get stuck in a rut. food shouldn’t be a chore- your favorite foods list should be miles long…. but that’s just my foodie opinion!
have a wonderful Meatless Monday, enjoy these vegan tacos, and go kale this week! xo