Vegan Chorizo Tacos

5 from 11 votes
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Vegan Chorizo Tacos made with chickpeas, mushrooms, chiles, and spices. Ready in just 30 minutes, you’ll never believe how hearty (and healthy!) these vegan tacos are. Serve with your toppings of choice and watch even the most devout carnivores swoon over them!Three vegetarian tacos filled with plant-based chorizo and topped with avocado and red onion

Why You’ll Love these Vegan Chorizo Tacos

Find these flavor fiestas right at the intersection of hearty and healthy. The filling delivers the same robust flavor and smoky edge as the classic cured meat, yet is completely plant-based

The vegan chorizo is made of a mix of mashed chickpeas and walnuts, which are infused with loads of spices and dried herbs. Chipotle chiles offer a peppery punch, while dried oregano and cumin lend earthy undertones. A mix of chili powder and smoked paprika give it extra spice and smoky dimension.

Not only is vegan chorizo a more nutrient-dense alternative to the classic cured meat, it’s also super versatile. Beyond adding it in tacos, you can also use it in tostadas, breakfast burritos, or even spoon it over nachos. The chickpeas offer dietary fiber and plant-based protein to make it a hearty and satiating alternative to ground meat. 

Kid-friendly, and hearty enough to win the approval of vegetarians and omnivores alike. 

Recipe Ingredients and Substitutions:Recipe ingredients in a cutting board with blue labels

  • Chickpeas: For a one-two punch of protein and fiber, chickpeas create the bulk of the vegan chorizo. Their mild flavor acts as a great blank canvas for taking to bold, smoky spices. 
  • Mushrooms: Cremini (baby bella) mushrooms add meatiness and umami to the filling. You can also use shiitakes here, which are even more savory, however cremini are less expensive and easier to find. 
  • Red Onion: Sautéed red onion lends an aromatic backbone and subtle sweetness to the vegan chorizo. You can also use shallots here, if desired. 
  • Walnuts: Walnuts have the most ALA (plant-based omega-3 fatty acid) out of the nine tree nuts. They’re also a good source of magnesium, vitamin E, and polyphenols (plant antioxidants). I love the texture, richness, and crunch they add to the filling. 
  • Chipotle Peppers: You’ll find chipotle peppers canned in adobo sauce (typically in the international aisle of most grocery stores). They can pack quite the spicy-smoky punch, so if you’re spice adverse, I suggest only using one. If you can handle the heat, feel free to bump it up to two. 
  • Spices: A mix of cumin, chili powder, smoked paprika, oregano, and garlic powder create a similar taste profile to what you’d experience with classic chorizo. 
  • Toppings: A mix of cooling, crunchy toppings can sooth the spice of the filling and create a fresh finish. I love a mix of salsa (homemade or store-bought), sliced red onion, shaved radishes, and creamy avocado. 

Cooked vegan chorizo in a skillet

Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1: Sauté Mushrooms and Red Onion

Heat 1 Tbsp. oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Once hot, add mushrooms and red onion; cook until mushrooms are golden and onion softened; about 8 minutes. Transfer mixture to a food processor.Mushrooms and red onion being sauteed in a skillet

Step 2: Pulse Ingredients in Food Processor

Add chickpeas, chipotle chiles, spices, and vinegar to food processor with mushroom mixture. Pulse until finely chopped, about 8 times, stopping to scrape down the sides as needed.Chickpeas, mushrooms, chipotle peppers, and spices being pulsed in a food processor

Step 3: Cook Vegan Chorizo until Crispy

Heat remaining 2 Tbsp. oil over medium-high in the same skillet you cooked the mushrooms in. Once hot, carefully empty contents of food processor into skillet. Spread chickpea mixture in an even layer and cook without stirring for 2 minutes.

Stir and continue cooking 5 to 7 more minutes, stirring only occasionally, until mixture is browned and slightly crisp.Chickpea chorizo mixture being cooked in a skillet until crisp and browned

Step 4: Serve Tacos with Toppings of Choice

Heat the corn tortillas in a cast iron skillet or over a gas flame until warm and slightly charred. Divide the vegan chorizo evenly between the tortillas, and add toppings of choice. One vegan chorizo taco on a white surface topped with avocado, red onion, and radish slices

More Ways to Use the Vegan Chorizo Filling:

  • Vegan Enchiladas: Roll inside flour tortillas and line up side by side in a 13×9-inch baking pan. Top with red enchilada sauce and shredded cheese, then bake in a 350ºF oven until hot and bubbly.
  • Mexican Casserole: This recipe uses a similar vegan chorizo filling, and is a must-try!
  • Chorizo Breakfast Hash: Top with a fried egg and/or sautéed peppers and onions, salsa, and a sprinkle of cheese. 
  • Nachos: Spread tortilla chips on a rimmed baking sheet and sprinkle the filling overtop. Sprinkle generously with shredded cheese, then place under the broiler for a few minutes until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Garnish with toppings of choice and a dollop of sour cream (Tofutti sour cream for vegan/dairy free) or Greek yogurt. 
  • Vegan Burrito Bowl: If you haven’t tried my copycat Chipotle Burrito Bowls, this vegan chorizo would be a fabulous addition. They’re perfect for weekday meal prep, and even more flavorful than the famous fast-casual bowls. 

Make-Ahead and Storage Tips:

  • Make-Ahead: You can sauté the mushrooms and red onion up to 2 days ahead and store in the refrigerator. You can also pulse the whole mixture in the food processor 1 day in advance, and wait to sauté it until ready to eat. 
  • Store: Place leftover filling in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 4 days.
  • Freeze: Place filling in an airtight freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
  • Reheat: Filling can either be reheated in the microwave or in a skillet. I prefer adding a drizzle of olive oil to a hot skillet, and reheating the mixture until warm and crisp (about 3 to 5 minutes depending on amount). 

Side view of vegan taco with filling and toppings

Full-fledged flavor AND nutritional perks? Sign me up! If you give this recipe a try, snap a pic and tag #dishingouthealth so I can see your beautiful creations. I’d also love if you could leave a recipe rating and review!

More Vegan Tacos to Try:

Al Pastor Chickpea Tacos

30 Minute Mushroom and Lentil Tacos

Chipotle-Roasted Butternut Squash Tacos

5 from 11 votes

Vegan Chorizo Tacos

Vegan Chorizo Tacos made with chickpeas, mushrooms, chiles, and spices. Made in just 30 minutes, you'll never believe how hearty and healthy these vegetarian tacos are.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4

Equipment

  • Food processor
  • Large skillet

Ingredients  

  • 3 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 8 oz. baby bella (cremini) mushrooms, quartered
  • 1/3 cup diced red onion
  • 1 (15-oz.) can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 to 2 chipotle peppers in adobo (1 for mild-medium heat; 2 for medium-hot)
  • 1 Tbsp. ground cumin
  • 2 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 cup walnut halves
  • 1 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 8 6-inch corn tortillas, warmed
  • For serving: Thinly sliced red onion, sliced avocado, fresh cilantro, salsa (optional)
  • For serving: Cashew Chipotle Cream (optional, however these definitely benefit from a sauce!)
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Instructions 

  • Heat 1 Tbsp. oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Once hot, add mushrooms and red onion; cook until mushrooms are golden and onion softened; about 8 minutes. Transfer mixture to a food processor.
  • Add chickpeas, chipotle peppers, and next 7 ingredients (cumin through vinegar) to food processor with mushroom mixture. Pulse until finely chopped, about 8 times, stopping to scrape down the sides as needed.
  • Heat remaining 2 Tbsp. oil over medium-high in the same skillet you cooked the mushrooms in. Once hot, carefully empty contents of food processor into skillet. Spread chickpea mixture in an even layer and cook without stirring for 2 minutes. Stir and continue cooking 5 to 7 more minutes, stirring only occasionally, until mixture is browned.
  • Serve vegan chorizo in warm tortillas with toppings and sauce of choice.

Notes

*Nutrition facts include filling and tortillas only (not toppings).
Make-Ahead: Sauté the mushrooms and red onion up to 2 days in advance and store in the refrigerator. You can also pulse the whole chorizo mixture in the food processor 1 day ahead, and wait to sauté it until ready to eat. 
Store: Place leftover filling in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 4 days.
Freeze: Place filling in an airtight freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
Reheat: Filling can either be reheated in the microwave or in a skillet. I prefer adding a drizzle of olive oil to a hot skillet, and reheating the mixture until warm and crisp (about 3 to 5 minutes depending on amount). 

Nutrition

Serving: 2tacos | Calories: 415kcal | Carbohydrates: 43g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Sodium: 845mg | Fiber: 9g | Sugar: 12g

I calculate these values by hand to ensure accuracy, however expect up to a 10% variable depending on food brands.

If you love this recipe, please leave a star rating and review below!
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Recipe Rating




12 Comments

  1. Beth says:

    5 stars
    So good! My whole family loved them!

    1. Beth says:

      Can I substitute water for the orange juice in the cashew cream sauce – or any other suggestions?

      1. Jessica says:

        5 stars
        You mentioned smoked paprika in the blog post, but I don’t see it in the recipe… I have made it twice now without it, and LOVE it, but wondered how much paprika ypu would suggest for next time I make it!!

  2. Karen says:

    I have a Question. It says in the beginning of your explanation there is smoked paprika in the recipe but under the list of ingredients I don’t see smoked paprika. So I’m wondering if there is smoke paprika how much do I add?

  3. Josie says:

    5 stars
    So delicious! Especially with that cashew-chipotle-orange sauce. All tacos are good – these were supreme.

  4. Colleen says:

    5 stars
    These are the BEST. I often shy away from plant based foods because they’re boring, but I make these so often I have the recipe memorized!

    1. Jamie Vespa says:

      Ah, that’s amazing!! I’m so glad you enjoy these, Colleen. Thank you for taking the time to leave a rating and review!
      Cheers

  5. Adriane Spence says:

    5 stars
    Made these as part of a week of vegetarian dinners for my parents to try to sway them to eat less meat. This was their favorite of the lot! We had it with a crunchy, vinegary cole slaw which complimented it well. Thanks for the recipe!

    1. Jamie Vespa says:

      Hi Adriane, I’m so glad you enjoyed this one! Love the idea of adding a crunchy slaw. Thank you for taking the time to leave a rating and review!

  6. Angie says:

    5 stars
    You have done it again! I love these and love that they are made with mushrooms. All of your recipes are five stars for me. I wish you would make a cookbook with your vegetarian recipes. If you do, count me in!

    1. Jamie Vespa says:

      Hi Angie! I’m so thrilled you enjoyed the recipe! Thank you so much for the kind feedback, and for taking the time to leave a review.

  7. Kyle says:

    5 stars
    My wife dropped these off at work for my lunch break. Enough was made so I could share with some co workers. They did not stop praising these the rest of the day. I highly recommend these.