Roasted Veggie and Black Bean Tacos

photo of two roasted veggie and black bean tacos on corn tortillas

Tacos are a Great Anytime Meal!

Living in Texas the past 23 years has taught me one thing for sure… Tacos can be eaten any time of day, and they make an especially good breakfast! Roasted Veggie and Black Bean Tacos are nutrient-dense and plant-based, and loaded with flavorful veggies, so try them the next time you need a taco fix!

At our house we have tacos for breakfast more than any other time, but on weekdays they usually consist of some leftover beans, avocado, and cilantro. Sometimes we will sauté a little zucchini, mushrooms, or onion on the side. On the weekends, we get more elaborate and roast some veggies or make a homemade salsa.

Vary Your Toppings

Don’t worry about following the recipe exactly. Use whatever veggies you have on hand, such as yellow squash, butternut squash, sweet corn, or other kinds of mushrooms.  I also love to top my tacos with homemade ume pickles. The possibilities are endless!

Make a Big Batch of Beans

You can make a big pot of homemade black beans once a month and freeze the leftovers in quart-sized ziplock bags. Once a week, take out a bag to thaw and reheat it with a little olive oil and salt to freshen it up. Sub pinto beans for black beans if you prefer.

If using canned beans, I’d take the time to sauté some onions and garlic, add the beans (that have been drained and rinsed), season with some sea salt, add a little water, and simmer for about 10 minutes to let the flavors blend. Beans right out of the can have no taste and usually need to be softened up too.

photo of two roasted veggie and black bean tacos on corn tortillasPlease Pass the Salsa!

For me, salsa is optional. For others, a taco isn’t a taco without a spicy salsa! Here are some of my favorites if you’re into salsa!

No-Nightshade Verde Sauce

Salsa Doña, a creamy green salsa made with roasted jalapeños and garlic (inspired by my favorite Austin taco chain Tacodeli)

Classic Pico de Gallo, a chunky fresh salsa with tomatoes, onion, peppers, cilantro, and lime.

Cassava Tortillas are a Grain-Free Alternative

Have you tried Cassava tortillas? If you’re looking for a grain-free or corn-free tortilla, give them a try. There are at least 2 brands available in my area but I think the Siete brand Cassava tortillas are my favorite. They are much more expensive than corn tortillas but they are super delicious and will not break apart (tapioca flour makes them more pliable). Stock up when they go on sale and store extra packages in the freezer.

Roasted Veggie and Black Bean Tacos
 
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We love to make these tacos for breakfast in the fall and winter, but you can also serve them for lunch or dinner! Make extra veggies to have on hand at your next meal as a side or to make more tacos.
Author:
Recipe type: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Serves: 8 tacos
Ingredients
  • 1 medium zucchini, small dice
  • 1 medium sweet potato, small dice
  • 1 cup green beans, trimmed and cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 cup shiitake mushrooms, trimmed and sliced
  • ½ teaspoon unrefined sea salt
  • a few tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • ½ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 2 cups cooked and seasoned black beans
  • 1 package non-GMO corn tortillas, El Milagro brand recommended
  • 2 ripe avocados, sliced or cubed
  • 2 limes, cut into wedges
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line large sheet pan with parchment paper.
  2. In a mixing bowl, toss together zucchini, sweet potato, and sweet corn, drizzle with 1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil, and sprinkle with salt.
  3. Spread vegetables onto prepared sheet pan and roast in the oven for 10 minutes. Toss veggies to make sure they cook evenly and return to the oven for 10 minutes more. Check again and remove from oven when edges are starting to turn golden brown. If you have too many veggies for one sheet pan, you can do them in batches.
  4. Place roasted veggies back into mixing bowl and mix in fresh cilantro. Cover and set aside.
  5. In a small to medium saucepan, heat up black beans with a tablespoon of olive oil. When black beans are soft, mash with a fork or potato masher. Add a little water if needed. Season with a little sea salt if needed.
  6. Heat a cast iron skillet (or nonstick skillet) over medium heat for about a minute. Add a few drops olive oil and place tortilla on hot skillet. Using a pancake spatula, flip tortilla every 10-15 seconds to heat up evenly on both sides. Remove to a plate or a tortilla warmer and make sure to cover with a clean towel or pot lid. Repeat with as many tortillas as you need for your meal, about 2 per person. Tortillas can also be kept warm in a 200 degree oven by placing in an ovenproof dish (like a pie plate) and keep covered with foil.
  7. At the table, pass around the tortillas and each person can fill their tacos with roasted veggies and avocado. Garnish with a squeeze of lime.
Variations
  1. Substitute some other vegetables, such as sweet corn, winter squash, red onion, or yellow squash.
  2. Add some fresh baby arugula or some finely shredded green cabbage on the top of each taco.
  3. Use pinto beans instead of black beans.
  4. Serve with cassava tortillas (Siete brand) if you prefer them to corn tortillas.

Share Your Roasted Veggie Tacos

Enjoy making your Roasted Veggie and Black Bean Tacos! Share your taco photos on Instagram with hashtag #cookloveheal so we can benefit from each other’s creative ideas.

Taco fixings set up to make tacos including yellow squash, corn, green beans, cilantro, guacamole, scrambled eggs, sauteed red onions, and pinto beans
Make Your Own Tacos Kids’ Cooking Class – Summer 2019

Asian Mushroom Lettuce Wraps

Asian mushroom lettuce wraps are the perfect start to an Asian-themed meal or any gathering. I brought these to a potluck last week held in honor of a friend visiting from Asheville, NC. By the end of dinner, all that was left was one lonely lettuce leaf!

I wanted to make these lettuce wraps healthier than the restaurant variety, so added more vegetables, and left out the soy, sugar, and gluten! Instead of soy sauce or tamari I used Coco Aminos (I like the Big Tree Farms brand) which is naturally sweet and savory.

If you like your filling a little sweeter, you can always add a dash of maple syrup or agave, but you probably won’t need to.

 

Asian Mushroom Lettuce Wraps (V, GF)
 
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This recipes is a vegan, gluten-free version of Chicken Lettuce Wraps served at Asian restaurants.
Author:
Recipe type: Appetizer
Cuisine: Asian, Vegetarian
Serves: 8 servings
Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons untoasted sesame oil
  • ½ cup leek, spring onion, or sweet onion, finely chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, minced or grated
  • 3 cups mushrooms (crimini, shiitake, and/or oyster), thinly sliced
  • 1 cup carrots, small dice
  • 1 cup zucchini, small dice
  • ½ cup water chestnuts or celery, finely chopped or sliced
  • ½ cup bamboo shoots, finely chopped (optional)
  • 1½ teaspoons brown rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons coconut aminos (Big Tree Farm brand recommended)
  • sea salt, to taste
  • ½ cup fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
  • ¼ cup green onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 head green or red leaf lettuce, butter lettuce, or Romaine lettuce
Instructions
  1. Heat large skillet or wok on medium-high heat. Make sure all ingredients are prepped so they can be added to the pan quickly. Add sesame oil and swirl to coat pan.
  2. Add onion, garlic, ginger, and a pinch of salt. Sauté for about a minute. Reduce heat a bit to prevent burning.
  3. Add carrots, zucchini, and another pinch of salt and sauté a few minutes more.
  4. Add mushrooms and sauté until mushrooms are cooked through.
  5. Add water chestnuts and bamboo shoots.
  6. Season with brown rice vinegar, coconut aminos, and sea salt (to taste).
  7. Put mushroom filling into a serving bowl in the middle of a large plate or platter. Garnish with cilantro and green onion. Place lettuce leaves around the bowl or on a separate plate. To serve, take a lettuce leaf, place a spoonful or two of mushroom filling onto the leaf, and eat like a taco.
Variations
  1. For a heartier appetizer or main dish, add ½ lb. cooked chicken thigh cut into bite-sized pieces. Adjust seasonings.

Chef Rachel Zierzow is available for group classes, private dinners, and corporate team building sessions. Contact her below to find out more.

Miso Vegetable Soup

Miso soup, a Japanese tradition, is an integral part of a healthy, modern diet, and can be made with all-American ingredients. My family loves to make this soup for breakfast, as it is light and easy to digest, soothing to the stomach, and chock full of minerals. Miso soup is a great start to any meal, as it stimulates digestion and prepares the stomach to receive food. Miso soup, which contains wakame seaweed, is long known to be good for air travelers because it is alkalizing, hydrating, good for regularity, and mitigates the negative effects of radiation you are exposed to at high altitudes.The good news is that miso soup can be made simply in just 5-10 minutes, after a little bit of practice. Make your soup fresh each time, as it loses its vitality if it sits for a day or longer.

There are just 5 components of this quick and healthy miso soup:

  1. Water or vegetable stock
  2. Wakame sea vegetable
  3. Sliced land vegetable(s)
  4. Unpasteurized miso
  5. Garnish

Miso soup (1)Wakame is the most common sea vegetable used in miso soup. Although sea vegetables are often associated with Asian diets, there are a number of great sea vegetable compnies on the Atlantic and Pacific coasts of the United States. I usually buy Atlantic wakame (or Alaria) from Ironbound Island Seaweed (also locally available at Wheatsville Coop) where sea vegetables are hand harvested and sun-dried. Maine Coast Sea Vegetables and Maine Seaweed are also wonderful companies specializing in sustainably harvested seaweed.

Miso is a high-protein seasoning that offers a nutritious balance of natural carbohydrates, essential oils, minerals, vitamins, and protein, containing all of the essential amino acids. It is usually made with soybeans, cultured rice or barley, and salt. I look for miso that is traditionally made, as it is the highest in quality. It should be unpasteurized and produced with organic, non-gmo soybeans (or some other kind of bean), organic rice or barley koji, and sea salt. No alcohol or other preservatives are used in making this kinds of miso. My favorite brands that I can buy locally (or order online if I want a special variety) are South River Miso from Conway, Massachusetts and Miso Master made in North Carolina.

There are many delicious miso varieties to choose from when making miso soup. Some of the ones that I prefer to use in the hot Texas climate are chickpea miso, sweet white or yellow miso, or a combination of red miso and a lighter colored miso (stir together half and half).

Here is a compelling video about the miso making process at New England’s South River Miso Company which produces traditionally made, superior quality misos at their Massachusetts facility. Check out their web site for additional information and videos.

Before adding miso paste to your soup, dissolve it in a small cup with some warm water or soup broth. Whisk it until it is a smooth mixture, then add it into the soup at the point the vegetables are done cooking.

Any vegetables of your choice can be used in miso soup. I like to slice them thinly so that my soup will cook quickly. Some of my favorites include: shiitake mushrooms, celery, daikon radish, sweet potato, carrot, and baby bok choy. I usually choose about two vegetables to put into my soup each time. Including a garnish for miso soup is essential for having a fresh touch to an otherwise cooked soup. I like to use thinly sliced scallions, grated daikon radish, or fresh parsley to top my soup for color, texture, and flavor.

Miso Vegetable Soup
 
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Author:
Recipe type: Soup
Cuisine: Japanese, Macrobiotic
Serves: 2 servings
Ingredients
  • 3 cups filtered or spring water or vegetable stock
  • 2 strips wakame sea vegetable or pinch of wakame flakes
  • 1 cup thinly sliced vegetables
  • 1-2 tablespoons unpasteurized miso paste
  • 1 scallion, sliced into very thin rounds
Instructions
  1. Heat water or stock in small saucepan.
  2. Add wakame strips or flakes. Wakame flakes will instantly rehydrate. Wakame strips take a little longer. If using wakame strips, remove them from the pot and slice into small squares that are bite-sized and return to the soup pot.
  3. Add vegetables and simmer for a minute or two. If vegetables are sliced very thinly, this will only take about one minute.
  4. Whisk together miso and a little of the hot soup broth in a small cup or bowl until smooth. Add miso to soup pot, stir, and turn off the heat. Miso will appear to "bloom" in the pot, which is a sign it is ready to serve.
  5. Ladle a cup or so of the soup into a small soup bowl or cup.
  6. Sprinkle gently with scallion slices for garnish. Serve and enjoy!
Notes
  1. Some delicious vegetable combinations include: celery and carrot or daikon, shiitake mushrooms and baby bok choy, or sweet potato or winter squash and baby bok choy.
  2. Miso varieties can include any light or dark misos. In warmer weather you may prefer a lighter miso such as chickpea, sweet brown rice, yellow, or sweet white miso. In colder weather you may want a stronger, saltier miso such as 3-year barley, chickpea and barley, red, or hatcho (the darkest variety).
  3. Other garnishes can include: grated daikon radish, pan-toasted mochi cubes, fresh parsley, or other fresh herbs.

 

 

 

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