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Black Bean Tacos

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posted: 03/05/20

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This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy

Black Bean Tacos make for a delicious and affordable easy dinner. Done in about 20 minutes, and full of flavor! This will become a favorite for vegetarians and meat eaters.

overhead of four vegan black bean tacos on a rimmed baking tray, garnished with sliced radishes, shredded cabbage, and corn

Recently, a good friend of mine posted on Facebook that she was looking for more vegetarian options to feed her family. She talked about how feeding her family meat every night for dinner, was getting pricey and she’d like some other options.

I wanted to be able to give her a full list of meat free dinners, but the fact is that I just don’t have that on my blog. But I bet there are other families out there, non vegetarian families, that would like more meat free options for when the budget feels tight.

That makes total sense, and I’m on it. These vegan Black Bean Tacos are first up. They are a super easy stove top recipe that are restaurant level quality. Your family will love them!

What Makes these Tacos Amazing

The bulk of the flavor from these tacos comes from sautéing onion and garlic on the stove top and then seasoning it.

The combination of spices that we throw together make the black beans so good, you could just put them over hot rice and call it a day.

But! We don’t. We take it a step further and add them to warmed corn tortillas. After that we add cut up green and red cabbage, sliced radishes, and a little corn. While this extras aren’t absolutely necessary, they add so much flavor and texture to this great dinner.

A overhead photo of a cast iron skillet filled with the black bean filling

How to Make Black Bean Tacos

In my humble opinion, the key to this recipe is not over cooking the beans. They really just need to be warmed through. If you cook them too long, you are going to have a mushy situation that I just don’t love as much.

  1. Heat olive oil in a medium skillet.
  2. Add garlic and onions. Cook until the onions are translucent, about 5 minutes.
  3. Stir in the chili powder, cumin, and cayenne pepper.
  4. Gently fold in the rinsed beans and the water. Cook until the beans are just warmed, about two to three minutes.

That’s it! Super easy and delicious.

Why Water?

As you will read in the recipe card below, the point of the water is just to keep the beans from getting mushy. Just add it a little at a time.

I ended up using the full amount, but keep in mind that we are not making black bean soup. You may not need it all.

Spiciness

The kick in this recipe comes from the cayenne pepper. We aren’t adding that much, but it does add spice.

I encourage you to measure out 1/4 teaspoon, add a tiny bit and keep tasting until you get the level of heat you want.

Taco Seasoning

Because this recipe is primarily black beans in a taco shell, I thought that the addition of fresh onion and garlic plus the spices called for would work best.

That said, you could also just add some taco seasoning. It wouldn’t be the exact same flavors, but it would be delicious.

You would need a tablespoon of taco seasoning (homemade or store bought) to replace the seasonings in this recipe.

up close of a vegan black bean taco from the side in a corn tortilla

Toppings

As mentioned above, for me the peak of perfection with these tacos is the crunch and flavor added by the fresh toppings. I used:

  • Red and Green Cabbage
  • Sliced Raddishes
  • Canned Corn

These aren’t 100% necessary, but I felt like they made it awesome.

I bought whole heads of cabbage, but you could also buy the bagged stuff.

Other great toppings for these tacos would be avocado and Cotija. Cotija is a crumbly Mexican cheese that would be great, though might up the cost.

Other Great Vegetarian Dinners

side view of four black bean tacos on a small baking tray lined with parchment paper, garnished with radishes and cabbage
overhead of four vegan black bean tacos on a rimmed baking tray, garnished with sliced radishes, shredded cabbage, and corn
0 from 0 votes

Black Bean Tacos

Serves: 4 servings
(tap # to scale)
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Total: 25 minutes
Black Bean Tacos make for a delicious and affordable easy dinner. Done in about 20 minutes, and full of flavor! This will become a favorite for vegetarians and meat eaters.

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion diced (or two small)
  • 4 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 30 ounces canned black beans drained and well rinsed
  • 12 corn tortillas

TOPPINGS

  • 4 radishes sliced
  • 1 cup chopped red and green cabbage
  • 11 ounces canned corn drained

Instructions

  • In a large skillet over medium heat, heat your olive oil.
  • Add in the onion and garlic, season with salt and pepper, and cook until the onions are translucent, about 5 to 7 minutes.
  • Season with the chili powder, cumin, and cayenne pepper, cooking for another 30 seconds.
  • Stir in the black beans. Add the water a little at the time. You are looking to keep the beans from becoming mushy by adding the water, but we aren't making black bean soup. So only add in as much as is necessary. Cook just until the black beans are warmed – about 3 to 5 minutes.
Serving: 3tacos Calories: 397kcal (20%) Carbohydrates: 63g (21%) Protein: 13g (26%) Fat: 11g (17%) Saturated Fat: 1g (6%) Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g Monounsaturated Fat: 5g Sodium: 376mg (16%) Potassium: 98mg (3%) Fiber: 19g (79%) Sugar: 5g (6%)
Author: Lisa Longley
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican

Video

overhead of four vegan black bean tacos on a rimmed baking tray, garnished with sliced radishes, shredded cabbage, and corn

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Black Bean Tacos

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Hi! I'm Lisa Longley, and I am committed to giving you simple dinner ideas and recipes that are easy to make; recipes that will fill your home with joy. I am the owner and author of SimpleJoy.com and I'm so glad that you are here.

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