in ,

Baked Taquitos with Cauliflower and Black Bean Filling

It may sound bizarre if you’ve never tried it, but my favorite ingredient for creating a meaty taco-like filling is actually cauliflower. By pulverizing a head of cauliflower in a food processor into small bits, and then sautéing it with some spices, shallots, beans, and corn, you have a super-delicious filling that has both the flavor and texture of taco filling.

But the fun doesn’t stop there, because then we’re going to roll this filling into corn tortillas and bake them into taquitos! To be honest, I was shocked at how easy it is to make vegan taquitos. I had horrible images of broken tortillas cracking and unraveling into a mess, but if you follow the process below, it’s incredibly easy to roll the tortillas. And once they bake, they set into their shape for the perfect crispy snacks:

taquitos_vegan

Makes 8 taquitos

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 head cauliflower
  • 15 oz can black beans
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 shallots
  • 1 cup corn kernels
  • 1 small chili (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder blend
  • 8 small corn tortillas
  • 3-4 sprigs cilantro
  • lettuce, for serving
  • Blended raw cashews (garnish)

Step One

In a food processor combine about half of a large head of cauliflower, broken into bits, along with 1 15 oz can of black beans and pulse 10-15 times until you have small, uniform “grains” of cauliflower and beans. Set this aside for a moment.

Step Two

In a large skillet, heat a tablespoon of olive oil and throw in two minced shallots. Allow these to caramelize for about 5 minutes over medium heat. Then, pour in the cauliflower/bean mixture along with a cup of (fresh or frozen) corn kernels and an optional minced chili pepper (jalapeño, anaheim, etc.). Also, begin adding spices. Start with the amounts listed and then use your own taste as a guide for increasing the amounts. Give this about 15 minutes to simmer and reduce into a tasty taco filling, stirring occasionally.

Before finishing, be sure to taste and adjust the spices to your preference. If it’s too bitter, a bit more salt will help. Too bland, more chili powder or smoked paprika.

Preheat the oven to 325º F

Step Three

Filling and rolling the tortillas into taquitos is surprisingly easy and fool-proof if you do it correctly. The secret is to warm each tortilla in the microwave for 15 seconds. This will soften the tortilla until it’s as bendable as paper. Then add a few tablespoons of filling lengthwise and roll as tightly as possible. Place seam-side down on a baking sheet and repeat with the other 7. I recommend warming each tortilla individually because they cool/stiffen too quickly and will be more likely to crack.

taquito_prep

Step Four

With all 8 tortillas on the baking sheet, pop them in a 325º oven for about 20 minutes. This is where the magic happens: the filling firms up while the tortillas harden so they don’t unravel when serving. When the outside of the tortillas feel crispy and are slightly more brown, remove from the oven and allow to cool before serving on a bed of lettuce, garnished with cilantro, salsa, guacamole, and/or some cashews that have been pulverized in a blender for a cheese-like topping. They also make excellent leftovers if wrapped in foil and stored in the fridge for up to two days.

taquito_plate

taquito_top

22 Comments

Leave a Reply
  1. This will be dinner this evening. Thank you for another awesome yet simple to prepare recipe. Just in case I haven’t told you lately I love your site and your recipes. 🙂

  2. I made this filling on Friday but didn’t use it to make taqueria! Just wanted the filling. I layered it with tomatoes and avocado over lettuce and it was delicious. Even better the next day. Yesterday and today I am eating it cold like a salad mixed again with fresh tomato and avocado. This is a keeper! Delicious!!!!!

  3. I made these this week, and they were a hit. However, I didn’t drain the beans. But they turned out great anyways.

  4. I’m thinking of making these for a party tomorrow. Do you recommend making them the day of, or would they keep their crunchiness after spending the night in the fridge?

    • Hmm! I don’t think they would keep their crunchiness, unfortunately. You could reheat them in the oven obviously but I’m not sure how much of the crunchiness that would restore. It might work, but they would probably be better made on the same day.

  5. OMG this is the perfect vegetarian dish! I never thought of putting cauliflower and black beans together. This sounds incredible.

  6. Hi, I know you live in California and probably wouldn’t think of this, but for those who don’t know the difference, you should specify whether the tortillas should be white or yellow corn tortillas.

    Also, I notice in your recipes you specify using a microwave, food processor, juicer, etc. Some of us do not have access to those tools, so an occasional nod to an alternative method would be greatly appreciated, and a time-saver as well.

    Many thanks.

    • I don’t know if California has anything to do with it, but I used yellow corn. It doesn’t matter as long as the specific brand is thin and pliable enough to roll effectively.

  7. I live in the desert and found my tortillas still cracked unless I microwaved them on a damp paper towel. Made 20 taquitos, not 8. Super yummy. I also found the filling was very dry so I added water during the simmer. I drained and rinsed the beans, maybe I wasn’t supposed to?

    I am a recent vegan and was missing taquitos. Now I don’t have to miss them anymore!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Sakejito! The Sake Mojito

5-Minute Microwavable Chocolate Lava Cake in a Mug!