One of my hands-down favorite foods: tacos. Pretty much any and all Mexican food, for that matter. I grew up eating homemade tacos and enchiladas and the love for it has stayed with me through several kitchens. When I first gave up meat, I was introduced to the world of TVP (textured vegetable protein), which can be found in several forms in your average market (seitan, tempeh, Morningstar products, etc). It’s derived primarily from soy, and can also be formed from wheat, oats, This is a pretty versatile ingredient and really worthwhile to keep in your kitchen, especially if you’re new to the meatless life.


Yves Meatless Ground

By itself, this stuff smells strongly like dog food. The ball is now in your court to make it actually taste like something, and that’s where this recipe comes in. It’s quick, semi-from scratch, and a great way to make sure you’re getting the protein you need with a veggie diet!

Portobello Mushroom TVP Tacos:

You’ll need:

  • 4 to 5 portobello/crimini mushrooms, chopped (I had some spare crimini mushrooms, so I threw them in. Make sure you mainly use portobello, since that’s your main source of meaty flavor.)
  • 1 12 oz package of TVP ground “meat”
  • at least 1/2 an onion, chopped and diced
  • 1 can sliced olives (optional)
  • 2 to 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 packet taco seasoning or 1 can El Pato tomato sauce (I tried a combination of both of these, which was on the spicier side. Will try to make my own seasoning next time!)
  • Several scallions (garnish)
  • Shredded Mexican cheese
  • Corn tortillas
  • Limes
  • Lemon juice (optional)

Get out a large saucepan or skillet and sauté the onions, mushrooms, and garlic for 4-6 minutes or until the onions become transparent. Add the TVP, olives (if you like them) and tomato sauce/seasoning and simmer for several minutes until the mixture has absorbed the sauce. Taste test it to see what it needs…I recommend adding a touch of lemon or lime juice, garlic salt, pepper to taste. I also chopped up a few scallions and threw them into the mix.
Your filling is done! Wasn’t that fast? Heat up your tortillas directly over the stove flame if you aren’t totally inept at anything involving fire. Stuff them with filling first, then cheese, scallions, sour cream and taco sauce!! YUM.

I should mention that I originally found a similar recipe for enchiladas, which is fantastic. You basically make the same filling, but instead:

  • drizzle the bottom of an 8 x 8 baking dish with enchilada sauce
  • roll the filling into tortillas
  • place enchiladas into dish (squeeze them together, 6-7 should fit in one dish)
  • drizzle them with enchilada sauce.
  • Bake at 375 degrees for 20-25 minutes with or without cheese (potentially vegan!). Also YUM.