Ultimate Green Taco Wraps with Lentil-Walnut Taco Meat (Vegan + Gluten-Free)

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My desire for vegetables has been fleeting over the course of the first and second trimesters. Some days I don’t want to touch them with a ten foot pole (except in smoothies, maybe), but when I do get a craving for veggies I have to eat all the vegetables, as soon as possible. There’s no middle ground. I either make a salad the size of my head or no salad at all.

These lettuce-wrapped tacos are the result of one of my undeniable, all-consuming veggie cravings last week. All I could think about was something super fresh and crunchy. Before I knew it I was pulling every single vegetable out of my fridge and piling it onto the counter. Eric could see that crazy look in my eyes and he knew I would stop at nothing to get my fix. I whipped up the lentil-walnut taco meat from my cookbook, sautéed some red pepper and onion, blended up some cashew sour cream, and got to chopping. I knew this was going to be the veggie-packed meal of my dreams. I almost shed a tear of joy when I took my first bite. Heck yes. I hit the flavour, texture, freshness jackpot! Somehow I managed to share with Eric and we stuffed ourselves silly. Surprisingly, we even had leftovers for lunch the next day. I’m telling you, these tacos prove that leftovers can be a great thing. It was such a fun treat to open the fridge the next day and have this great lunch waiting to be gobbled up a second time around.

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Here’s how I constructed the wraps:

1) Romaine/Iceburg/Butter lettuce “wrap” + Lentil-Walnut Taco Meat (creates an amazing base for a taco!)

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2) Sautéed onion and bell pepper:

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3) Chopped tomatoes or salsa:

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4) Lots of Cashew Sour Cream:

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5) Chopped green onion + a squeeze of lime juice

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Other topping ideas = sliced avocado, cilantro, hot sauce,  _________ ?

6) Stuff into face. Make a HUGE mess. Repeat as necessary (until you can’t fit one more bite).

Veggie craving conquered.

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Ultimate Green Taco Wraps

Vegan, gluten-free, grain-free, soy-free

By

Get ready to pack a ton of veggies into one irresistible, healthy meal! If you haven't tried my lentil-walnut taco meat, this is a great recipe to do so. It's high in protein, and the taco seasonings and chewy texture create a realistic-tasting taco base. Feel free to use tortilla wraps or corn shells instead of lettuce wraps to change it up, or you can make this recipe into a big salad, too. You can save time by cooking the lentils and prepping the taco meat in advance (or simply use canned lentils). This recipe is inspired by Minimal Eats taco wraps. The lentil-walnut meat is adapted from the from the The Oh She Glows Cookbook (page 186).

Yield
8 large tacos (approx)
Prep Time
Cook time

Ingredients:

For the lentil-walnut taco meat (makes 2 1/2 cups):
  • 1 cup uncooked French green lentils (you will use 1 3/4 cups cooked lentils)*
  • 1 cup walnut pieces, toasted
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt, or to taste
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons water
For the toppings and wraps:
  • 1 to 2 large bell peppers, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 to 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • Cashew Sour Cream
  • Diced tomatoes or salsa
  • Green onion
  • Fresh lime juice
  • Lettuce wraps (large romaine, iceberg, or butter lettuce leaves)
  • Other topping options: sliced avocado, hot sauce, cilantro, etc.

Directions:

  1. Cook the lentils: Rinse lentils in a fine mesh sieve. Add to a medium pot along with a few cups of water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium, and simmer for 20 to 25 minutes until tender (cook time will vary depending on the type of lentils you use—see package). Drain off excess water.
  2. Toast the walnuts: Preheat oven to 300°F. Add walnuts onto a rimmed baking sheet and toast for 10 to 13 minutes, watching closely, until lightly golden and fragrant. Set aside to cool for a few minutes.
  3. Sauté the pepper and onion filling: Add 1/2 to 1 tablespoon of oil into a large skillet or wok. Cook the onion and peppers over medium heat for about 15 to 20 minutes, reducing heat if necessary and stirring frequently, until translucent.
  4. Prepare the taco meat: Add 1 3/4 cups cooked lentils (you'll have some leftover) and all the toasted walnuts into a food processor and pulse until chopped (make sure to leave texture). Stir or pulse in the oregano, cumin, chili powder, and salt. Stir in the oil and the water until combined.
  5. Prepare the rest of your vegetable toppings and wash and dry the lettuce wraps.
  6. Assemble: Add a large lettuce leaf onto a plate, top with taco meat, sautéed peppers and onion, and the rest of your desired toppings.
  7. Leftovers can be stored in the fridge in sealed containers to be enjoyed the next couple days. The cashew cream will keep for at least a week in the fridge. Use sour cream leftovers on sandwiches, wraps, stirred into salad dressings, on vegan nachos, or with chili or soup.

Tips:

  • * To save time, you can use one (15-ounce) can of lentils (drained and rinsed) instead of cooking the lentils from scratch. When I have time, I love to cook French green lentils due to their chewy texture, but regular green and brown lentils will work too. Do not use red lentils as they are much too mushy and don't have the required chewy texture for this recipe.
  • Make it nut-free: I haven't tried this yet, but you could try subbing the walnuts for 1/2-3/4 cup toasted pepita seeds (shelled pumpkin seeds) and swapping the Cashew Sour Cream with vegan mayo (such as Veganaise).

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{ 52 comments… read them below or add one }

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Mike Radogna April 14, 2017
Recipe Rating:

OMG this recipe is amazing!

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Danielle | Virtual Assistant April 12, 2017

I saw this lentil-walnut taco meat on your Insta yesterday and knew I had to come find the recipe! This looks perfect wrapped in a tortilla for lunches! Can’t wait to try it! :)

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Angela Liddon April 12, 2017

Hope you enjoy it when you give it a try, Danielle! :)

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Angie February 19, 2017
Recipe Rating:

These were amazing! Loved them!! Will definitely be making again.

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Lindsey January 5, 2017
Recipe Rating:

This gets 5 stars from my husband and I. I haven’t seen him get so excited about something I’ve cooked in a long time. It’s not that he doesn’t like what I cook, he just doesn’t get THIS excited. He was very excited about how much the taco filling reminded him of “real” tacos (he has been vegetarian for 20 years and kind of misses some things). These were just absolutely delicious. I made the “sour cream” after soaking the cashews for only about 15 minutes. It turned out fine, just a little grainy which doesn’t bother us. I also toasted the nuts in a pan on the stove instead of the oven (it’s winter in Texas and it’s warm here). My husband wants me to make the tacos next time with real tortillas, but I think I’ll just leave that option for him because I loved being able to pig out on these with the 2 calorie “tortillas.” I’m definitely making these again…..with flour tortillas and lettuce tortillas.

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allie January 4, 2017
Recipe Rating:

seriously..wayyy better than any meat and i am NOT a vegetarian
the texture and spice of this taco meat is brilliant.. just snuck some in for Breakfast ..it was just sitting there and needed to tasted.. just as good cold too!!

thank you!

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Angela Liddon January 4, 2017

Oh, I’m so happy to hear that you’re loving it, Allie!

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Sara Kuhlman December 14, 2016
Recipe Rating:

I made the lentil walnut taco meat and it was great!! I added a little garlic powder, onion powder, chipotle powder and cayenne for more a kick though.

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Angela Liddon December 14, 2016

I’m so happy you enjoyed it, Sara! A bit of extra kick is never a bad thing ;) love that idea!

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GenXFashionista December 13, 2016
Recipe Rating:

This recipe was easy and delicious – I loved the depth of flavor of the taco meat (good combo of spices), and the cashew cream drizzled over the top was delish! Additional bonus: my two kids – who are inherently suspicious of any “green stuff” – ended up finishing, and, dare I say, liking it! Well done! :)

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Angela Liddon December 14, 2016

Aw, I’m so happy to hear it was a hit with the kiddos! That’s always a huge bonus. :)

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Ranee Franti December 9, 2016

Wow! This is a great recipe. I have seen your recipe one week ago and at once I decided to make and wanted to present my husband. I just made a taco meat with normal onion instead of green onion and it tasted fantastic. My husband really amazed to taste it and for that I really grateful for you. I will definitely make this again. Thank you Angela for share this.

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Monique December 6, 2016
Recipe Rating:

Made this for dinner tonight and they were SO good! I’m not vegan but your recipes are so tasty and easy that I incorporate them into my week! I added turmeric to the “meat” which made it extra tasty and healthy! Can’t wait to have the left overs for lunch tomorrow – thanks!

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Shannon Bradley October 10, 2016
Recipe Rating:

I’ve made this at least 10 times in the past year and I’m SO happy to eat it every time! Thanks for such an amazing healthy recipe.

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Angela Liddon October 11, 2016

Aw, thanks for the lovely comment, Shannon! I’m so glad you enjoy the recipe. :)

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Christine September 27, 2016
Recipe Rating:

I made the “meat” version of this recipe for someone who already had all the regular taco fixings. But anyway, it was awesome! Great texture and flavor. It will be added to my regular schedule.

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Angela Liddon September 28, 2016

I’m glad it was a hit, Christine!

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Lisa August 25, 2016
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I just made these and they are SOOOO delicious. This is going into my weekly rotation. Thank you so much for sharing.

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Angela Liddon August 25, 2016

Glad the taco wraps are a hit, Lisa!! :)

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Jessica August 12, 2016
Recipe Rating:

I made the lentil walnut taco filling from this recipe and it was very tasty. I added a scoop of salsa to the mixture as that is what I usually do when making meat tacos and it added a nice tomato flavor. I have finally found a great vegan replacement for one of my favorite foods -tacos! Thanks Angela! Looking forward to the new book.

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Cathy August 4, 2016
Recipe Rating:

This taco meat is delicious! Very flavorful, nice texture and quite filling. Even my non-vegetarian husband and son love it. It also freezes well so it’s handy for a quick taco or taco salad lunch. It’s become a staple in my house.

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Angela Liddon August 10, 2016

So glad to hear it, Cathy! :) It’s a staple around here, too, for sure.

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KB July 16, 2016

Oh. My. Goodness! First recipe I have tried from “oh she glows”/I am a convert/sign me up PLEASE for more meals like these! I am a meat eater, but if vegan tastes this good, I could get used to being vegan. Thanks a million for a game changing meal =)

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Angela Liddon July 18, 2016

Aw, thanks for the awesome comment! I’m so happy to hear you loved the recipe so much. :)

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Malz June 29, 2016

Hi, Angela!

I am very eager to try this recipe, but I have a severe allergy to pecans and walnuts. I’m wondering if you personally have tried any other nuts (e.g. almonds, cashews) or seeds to make this. If you have, how have they turned out?

Thank you :)

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ChristineinMass June 9, 2016
Recipe Rating:

This was just beyond. Beyond!! My husband did the “meat” part and I was supposed to do the peppers and onions. Since I got involved in chatting with my neighbor, I forgot the peppers and onions. We ended up just putting avocado and cherry tomatoes on it. I cannot believe how delicious it was.

It was easy, and incredibly delicious.

I am so glad you are in the business of making recipes! My husband said to me at the dinner table while we at it “she’s amazing” talking about you and your recipes. Since I work from home on Thursdays, I’m going to make that avocado/strawberry/balsamic thing and surprise him with it for a morning snack. Thanks again for all you do!

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Angela Liddon June 9, 2016

Aw, thanks so much for the sweet comment, Christine! You’re too kind. :) I’m so glad to hear you and your husband enjoyed the green taco wraps, and I hope you love the Strawberry Caprese when you try it today!

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Melanie @hopealchemy May 27, 2016
Recipe Rating:

Love this taco “meat”! I just wrote a blog post about feeling fulfilled or just full (not in the food sense, but in the how do you spend your time since) and as I was eating my tacos I realized that they left me feeling fulfilled. I added some different toppings and used corn taco shells, but Delicious! I was just recently turned on to your site and I love it! It has inspired me to cook and eat healthy delicious food again! Thank you!

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Angela Liddon May 31, 2016

Thank you so much for the lovely comment, Melanie! I’m glad you enjoyed the recipe, and am so happy you’ve been finding inspiration in my blog. :)

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teri May 26, 2016

yesterday and todays lunch. So amazingly good!

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LisaRose April 17, 2016
Recipe Rating:

Shared this recipe with my non-vegan friends. They were blown away, too. I cannot believe the walnut meat tasted so, well, meaty. As a newly minted vegan (that’s a thing, right?), I am so happy to have stumbled across this website for creative recipes. Mind you, I love a good salad, but not for every meal, every day. Plus, I need protein and carbs and all the other stuff. Thanks for being such a wonderful teacher, Angela, and for sharing all your wisdom. :-)

Oh, and I made these as taco bowls, btw, using quinoa corn chips as the base. Yummo! Next time, going for the lettuce, just did not have any in the house this time around. ~LR

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Angela Liddon April 18, 2016

I am so happy to hear it was such a hit! Also, taco bowls? Awesome idea! I hope you’ll find lots of other recipes here that you’ll enjoy just as well. :)

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Asha April 13, 2016

Seriously the best thing I have ever ate! They’re so easy to make too! My Omni boyfriend loved them!!

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Angela Liddon April 14, 2016

I’m so happy to hear the recipe was such a hit, Asha!:)

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Melissa April 8, 2016
Recipe Rating:

A coworker brought this recipe to work today as part of a project she was working on. They were a huge hit with everyone and she had printed a copy of the recipe so that we could find it to make it. I am so glad that she did!! They were delicious and won over a lot of skeptics. I’ll be making them for my next dinner party group to pass the good food vibes on. Great job:)

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Angela Liddon April 12, 2016

That’s so great! I’m glad the recipe was such a hit with everyone – thanks for sharing. :)

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Jamie Pacheco March 31, 2016
Recipe Rating:

These are a summer staple for me, but I made them for my meat loving boyfriend last night and he loved them!

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Angela Liddon March 31, 2016

Yay! I’m glad they were a hit, Jamie. :)

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Mary March 28, 2016
Recipe Rating:

These are truly fabulous! Such a great mix of flavors. I doubled the taco meat because I wanted to use up all the lentils we had on hand, and put half in the freezer for the future use. And cheers to you on the best cashew sour cream recipe ever. I could eat it with a spoon.
Thank you!

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Angela Liddon March 29, 2016

I could definitely eat it with a spoon, too! ;) Thanks for the great comment, Mary — so glad to hear you like the recipe!

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Katie February 29, 2016
Recipe Rating:

Once again, you hit this one out of the park!!! Your recipies are so delicious that I feel like there must be some witchcraft involved. This recipe was so easy and quick to make. Thank you for creating recipes that have ingredients that are available everyone and without random ingredients that you have to buy but will never use again. I was super skeptical of the vegan sour cream (as someone that LOVES regular sour cream) and it was perfection!! Keep it up you, you are helping to make eating healthy so delicious and fun for me.

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Angela Liddon March 1, 2016

Hi Katie, this was such a great message to read, thank you! It’s always so great to hear that my recipes are helping to make a healthy, plant-based lifestyle enjoyable and fun for my readers. :)

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Carmella January 29, 2016
Recipe Rating:

I am so excited I just bought your cookbook!! Congratulation on your baby!!

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Vicki January 19, 2016

I made these last night. O. M. G. This will be on my permanent meal rotation. How do you come up with such amazing recipes?!

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Amy January 5, 2016
Recipe Rating:

I bought lentils the other day, wanting to cook something with them but not knowing what. This taco meat is a win! I will use it in some enchiladas and other Mexican dishes. 5 stars!

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Andrea September 22, 2015

Making these for dinner tonight! They look delicious! Quick question, could I use taco seasoning in replace of all the other seasonings listed?

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April August 28, 2015
Recipe Rating:

Does anyone know how long the taco “meat” stays good for in the fridge? I want to do some Sunday night prep for a mid-week meal and just make the taco meat ahead of time!

Thanks!

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Erica August 3, 2015
Recipe Rating:

Just made this for dinner and it was AMAZING! I am 24 weeks pregnant and can’t get enough veggies either, so this meal was perfect for my family and I. We are a non-vegan family whom love and adore every recipe we have tried of yours and this is now one of my favorites! Even my two year old approves.

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Kristin July 25, 2015
Recipe Rating:

These tacos are the first-ever vegan meal I have made, and I could not believe how delicious and satisfying they were!!!! I love that there were very few ingredients for the taco “meat”- it was super easy to make! I don’t have a food processor so I used a pestle to smash the walnuts and lentils up, and it worked really well. I used avocado, tomatoes, and cilantro for the toppings… And the vegan sour cream??? Uh ma gawd. I almost didn’t make it but I’m so glad I did. I’m almost converted ;)

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Kate July 17, 2015
Recipe Rating:

These are AMAZING!!!!
And so filling too!

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Betsy July 15, 2015

I am a fledgling vegan health coach in training and just made these for a client. She was over the moon! She will be buying your cook book, even though this recipe isn’t in it ( the new one anyway). I printed a copy of the recipe. She is borrowing my “Oh She Glows” cook book until hers arrives.

All your recipes are a hit!

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Christine July 14, 2015
Recipe Rating:

This recipe is amazing! I made it for a non-vegan friend, and he kept all the leftovers! Hence, I’m making it again today!

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