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Easy Vegan Taco Meat With Lentils and Quinoa

August 19, 2022

by Alyssa

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This Quinoa and Lentil Vegan Taco Meat is a wholesome plant-based various to floor beef. It’s simple to make and loaded with daring Mexican flavors for a scrumptious vegetarian spin on Taco Evening!

Three vegan tacos on white board with garnishes and lime wedges

I normally make tacos not less than as soon as every week, and my go-to methodology is to pile spicy black beans into tortillas with our fave toppings. Generally, although, we wish a filling that is a bit of nearer to meat. We have purchased the fake meat crumbles on the retailer, however I am not a fan. I do not just like the elements and I do not just like the style. 

Enter: this plant-based quinoa and lentil taco meat. After seeing this recipe for quinoa taco meat from Minimalist Baker, I made a decision to create my very own vegan taco meat at house utilizing lentils and quinoa!

Overhead view of quinoa and lentil taco meat in skillet

Is Quinoa a Good Substitute for Meat?

In lots of circumstances, quinoa is a nice substitute for meat! I discover that cooked quinoa has a really related texture to floor beef or turkey, which is why it really works so nicely on this vegan taco recipe.

I’ve additionally used quinoa to switch meat in different recipes. My vegan sloppy joes and my vegetarian quinoa chili are each superior plant-based recipes which have a considerably “meaty” texture.

Quinoa can be a superb substitute for meat from a dietary standpoint because it’s a whole protein with all 9 important amino acids. 

Overhead view of ingredients for vegan taco meat made with quinoa and lentils

What You’ll Want

Scroll all the way down to the recipe card beneath this submit for ingredient portions and full directions.

  • Spanish Quinoa – In the event you do not wish to make the Spanish quinoa, cook dinner a cup of quinoa, add 1/2 cup of chunky salsa, and enhance the baking time by 10 minutes.
  • Cooked lentils – You should utilize brown, inexperienced, or black lentils for this vegan taco meat, however don’t use pink lentils, as they collapse when cooked.
  • Dietary yeast
  • Chili powder
  • Floor cumin
  • Floor coriander
  • Smoked paprika
  • Salt and pepper to style

Can I Substitute Common Paprika for Smoked Paprika?

You’ll be able to, however smoked paprika brings so a lot taste to the desk, and it’s used typically in vegan cooking to copy the smoky taste of meat. A substitute for the smoked paprika could be minced chipotle in adobo, which can even add some smoky taste.

Wooden spoon scooping vegan taco meat from sheet pan

Find out how to Make Vegan Taco Meat

Since this vegan taco filling freezes nicely, you could wish to double and even triple the recipe and stick some within the freezer for future meals! 

Put together. Preheat your oven to 400ºF and line a baking sheet with parchment paper, if desired.

Side-by-side photos showing vegan taco filling being mixed in glass bowl

Stir collectively the elements. Place all the taco filling elements in a big mixing bowl and stir to mix.

Side-by-side photos of vegan taco filling before and after baking

Bake. Pour the taco filling onto the baking sheet and unfold it into a skinny, even layer. Bake on the middle rack for 35 to 40 minutes, stirring each quarter-hour or so.

Methods to Use This Vegan Taco Meat

Naturally, you need to use your Quinoa and Lentil Taco Meat for filling tacos—I really like utilizing my gluten-free quinoa tortillas, then piling on mango salsa, vegan bitter cream, and spicy guacamole. However you may also use this vegan taco meat for:

  • Nachos
  • Topping baked candy potatoes
  • Burritos
  • Taquitos
  • Taco salads

Suggestions for Success

Listed here are some easy hints and ideas for excellent Quinoa and Lentil Vegan Taco Meat:

  • Don’t over-cook the lentils. Brown lentils particularly generally tend to get gentle when cooked too lengthy, and that’s not the feel you wish to replicate floor beef. 
  • Use a baking sheet with edges. A rimmed baking sheet will make certain not one of the filling falls off the edges of the pan!
  • Make it your personal. This recipe is very customizable, so don’t be afraid to experiment! Utilizing totally different salsas, including cayenne or scorching sauce for a kick, or substituting your favourite do-it-yourself taco seasoning mix are all choices.
Overhead view of quinoa and lentil vegan tacos

Find out how to Retailer and Reheat Leftovers

This vegan taco filling shops nicely, which suggests it’s additionally an incredible possibility for meal prep. Place it in an hermetic container and refrigerate for as much as 5 days. You’ll be able to reheat it within the microwave or in a skillet over medium warmth.

Can This Recipe Be Frozen?

You’ll be able to freeze Quinoa and Lentil Vegan Taco Meat for as much as 3 months in an hermetic container or freezer bag. I like to recommend letting it thaw within the fridge earlier than reheating based on the directions above.

Vegan taco filled with lentil and quinoa "meat"

Different Straightforward Vegan Taco Recipes to Strive:

Quinoa Lentil Vegan Taco Meat

This simple vegan taco filling is a scrumptious and wholesome plant-based various to floor beef!

  • Preheat the oven to 400ºF. In the event you baking pans are liable to sticking, line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

  • In a big bowl, mix all of the elements. Stir collectively till all the pieces is evenly integrated.

  • Switch the contents of the bowl onto a baking sheet and unfold it out into a skinny layer.

  • Bake on the middle rack for 35 – 40 minutes, stirring each quarter-hour or so to make sure even baking.

  • Serve instantly together with your favourite taco elements or enable to chill fully and reheat as desired.

* in the event you do not wish to make the Spanish quinoa, add 1/2 cup chunky salsa and enhance baking time by 10 minutes.
** impressed by Minimalist Baker
Retailer leftovers in an hermetic container and refrigerate for as much as 5 days. Reheat within the microwave or in a skillet over medium warmth.

Serving: 0.5cups | Energy: 138kcal | Carbohydrates: 23g | Protein: 7g | Fats: 1g | Sodium: 23mg | Potassium: 327mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 425IU | Vitamin C: 0.6mg | Calcium: 27mg | Iron: 2.9mg

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