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

by Angela (Oh She Glows) on June 17, 2014

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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
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.

Nutrition Information

Serving Size 1 large taco | Calories 160 calories | Total Fat 13 grams
Saturated Fat 1.5 grams | Sodium Fat 230 milligrams | Total Carbohydrates 8 grams
Fiber 1 grams | Sugar 0 grams | Protein 6 grams

Nutritional information excludes toppings, and is based on 8 servings.
* Nutrition data is approximate and is for informational purposes only.

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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{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

Page 8 of 8« First...«45678
Pamela Green February 18, 2018 at 1:36 pm

Love the look of your recipes , but totally put off making the ones that dont have actual weights put besides the ‘cups of ‘. Love the ones you DO put weights.

Reply

Angela (Oh She Glows) February 20, 2018 at 10:17 am

Hey Pamela, I started adding metric measures to my recipes in late 2016/early 2017 and we’re in the process of updating previous ones too. I’m so glad to hear you appreciate the conversions!

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Tara February 18, 2018 at 5:48 pm

Hi Angela! I love your lentil-walnut taco meat, and I was wondering if this could be made into sloppy joes. Most sloppy joe recipes are just lentil based, but the texture of your lentil-walnut meat is spot on for texture. I would love to hear your thoughts!

Reply

Angela (Oh She Glows) February 20, 2018 at 10:15 am

Hey Tara, Ohh I’ve actually wondered the same myself but haven’t got around to trying it! I honestly can’t see why it wouldn’t work. I think the texture of the walnuts would be amazing.

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Amber Frank March 12, 2018 at 5:07 am

Tacos are one of my and my kids’ favorite recipe, but I love salmon tacos and I never try other beef or chicken tacos but after this, I’ll try this recipe for my kids and tell you about my experience.

Reply

Grace March 19, 2018 at 7:16 pm

I am wondering whether this can be prepared in advance, and frozen. And for leftovers, do you reheat it in the microwave, or stove top? Thanks.

Reply

Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2018 at 10:46 am

Hey Grace, I haven’t tried freezing the taco meat before (I think that’s what you are referring to?), but if you try it please let me know how it goes. As for reheating, we don’t have a microwave so I would reheat the “meat” on the stove top and would likely add a bit of oil or water to moisten it back up.

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Grace March 23, 2018 at 8:31 am

Hi Angela,
Yes. I was referring to freezing the taco meat! I’ll let you know!

Thanks for the advice on reheating. Not much of a microwave fan myself, so stove top is perfect.

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Angela (Oh She Glows) March 25, 2018 at 1:42 pm

Okay great! I’d love to hear how it goes. :)
Oh and I’m not sure if you know, but the vegan cashew cream freezes beautifully. SOmetimes I freeze it in those mini silicone muffin trays.

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Mary-Jo April 20, 2018 at 9:58 pm

The meat eaters at my house love this recipe more than my vegetarian daughter. She says it tastes too much like meat! It freezes like a dream. I use it in spahgetti, chili, on wraps (spelt, lettuce and rice), on pizza and on salads. I am using this recipe for my friend that has terminal cancer. She removed meat from her diet and really misses it. I’m soaking lentils instead of cooking them to make the recipe a little more raw. Thanks for a great recipe.

Reply

Angela (Oh She Glows) April 21, 2018 at 7:05 am

Hi Mary-Jo, That’s so wonderful to hear how much you love it. It really is so versatile, right? I love that about it too. Such a sweet gesture to make it for your friend. <3

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Yolanda Dunmore May 7, 2018 at 12:19 pm

Hi Angela! My friend gave me your cookbook for my 50th birthday now I’m a huge fan. I am allergic to walnuts, peanuts, and sesame seeds what nut can I substitute for the walnuts in the lentil walnut taco “meat” recipe? I am thinking pecans or cashews and would appreciate your take. Thank you and congratulations on your new baby!

Reply

Angela (Oh She Glows) May 9, 2018 at 6:18 am

Hey Yolanda, Thank you! :) I often sub in toasted pepita seeds for a nut-free version. I think there’s one in my taco salad in the app.

Reply

Kaeleigh May 24, 2018 at 1:48 pm

Delicious!! We make this regularly and add the lentil-walnut meat to our pasta sauce now as well. The vegan mayo alternative works too, add a bit of garlic, garlic powder and celery powder and it is a delicious alternative to the cashew cream.

Reply

OKK August 8, 2018 at 12:50 pm
Recipe Rating:

Really grateful for this fabulous recipe.
I wanted to share a quick tip I just discovered for an easy way to make lentils with great texture: instead of boiling them and watching them, tasting a million times, which can take forever, I had a busy morning, so I put sprouted lentils in the pot with a bay leaf, garlic clove, and a big scoop of Better than Bouillon, as I normally would. I then boiled water in the kettle while I started heating the stove element (with the pot off), put the boiling water in, stirred it, put it on the preheated hob, let it boil for a few minutes, covered, then turned it off and left it on the hot element. I came back one to two hours later, and the lentils were perfectly cooked–with better texture and shape than the usual method.
Thanks again!

Reply

Angela (Oh She Glows) August 9, 2018 at 7:06 am

That’s such a great tip! Thanks for sharing :)

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