This post was last updated on May 3, 2020 by India
This Vegan Lentil Taco Meat with Walnuts and Mushrooms is a whole food, plant based alternative to the quintessential ground beef taco meat–and it is insanely delicious! Use this taco Lentil Taco Meat with Walnuts and Mushrooms to stuff into tortillas for tacos, melted into a quesadilla, to top a taco salad, on top of nachos, or any other way you use taco meat!
About Lentil Taco Meat with Walnuts and Mushrooms
I’m always trying to incorporate more plants and plant based protein into our diets and this Lentil Taco Meat with Walnuts and Mushrooms is one of my favorite ways to do so! Here in the Olson household we LOVE tacos and this recipe is no exception. It’s so flavorful, the texture is spot on to ground beef, and the best part? It’s healthy and nutritious!
Ingredients in Lentil Taco Meat with Walnuts and Mushrooms
Here is what we got going on to make the flavor and texture in this Lentil Taco Meat so addicting and spot on:
- Lentils. Cooked lentils provide the perfect base for Lentil Taco Meat. They have a ton of plant protein and are awesome at absorbing flavor.
- Mushrooms. Little mushroom bits give a bit of necessary chew to the lentils and walnuts and make this vegan taco “meat” feel more “meaty”. I like to use baby portabella mushrooms, but you can use whatever mushrooms you prefer.
- Walnuts. Lentils are not a complete protein, until they’re combined with grains or nuts, like walnuts! We’re going to lightly cook the walnuts, which gives this recipe a light toasty, nutty flavor and create a lightly crunchy texture!
- Miso. I love using miso paste in vegan recipes to add more umami. I use traditional red miso by Miso Master which is certified gluten free and I can find it easily at Whole Foods or other health food stores. If you’re using a different miso, ensure its gluten free if necessary!
- Gluten Free Soy Sauce/Tamari. Like the miso paste, gluten free soy sauce/tamari adds depth of flavor and umami which helps this vegan Lentil Taco Meat become more “meaty”!
- Spices. Traditional taco seasoning spices like garlic powder, chili powder, oregano, cumin, and crushed red pepper flakes make this taste like taco meat made with the yellow taco seasoning packet!
- Olive Oil. For flavor and to cook the walnuts, mushrooms, and lentils.
How to Make Lentil Taco Meat with Walnuts and Mushrooms
This recipe does take a little bit of time to make, but overall it’s pretty simple to make! You’ll need a saucepan, food processor, and large skillet. Here is how you make this Lentil Taco Meat with Walnuts and Mushrooms:
- Cook the lentils. In a small saucepan, bring water to a boil and cook the lentils until cooked through, roughly 15 – 20 minutes.
- Chop the walnuts and mushrooms. While the lentils are cooking, work in batches to pulse the walnuts and mushrooms in a food processor until both are broken down into small pieces, about the size that resembles ground beef. Transfer the mushrooms and walnuts to a large mixing bowl and stir to combine.
- Mix the seasonings. Mixing the gluten free soy sauce/tamari with miso paste, the spices, and water will help them mix completely, make sure there aren’t any clumps in the spices, and the water well help the flavorings mix with the lentil, walnut, and mushroom mixture.
- Cook the taco “meat”. Transfer the cooked lentils and walnut and mushroom mixture to a large skillet, add the liquid seasoning mixture, stir to combine and cook until warm and liquid has evaporated.
- Serve. I love to eat this taco meat with guacamole and tortilla chips, lettuce cups,
How to Serve Lentil Taco Meat with Walnuts and Mushrooms
Use this Lentil Taco Meat anyway you would use traditional ground beef or ground turkey taco meat! My favorites? I love to use this as a taco filling topped with shredded lettuce, salsa, and quick pickled red onions OR spooned into romaine lettuce leaves and topped with guacamole OR make some ultimate vegan nachos with salty tortilla chips, vegan cheese sauce, guacamole, and tomatillo lime salsa verde UGH literally so good just thinking about it makes my belly grumble. Let me know in the comments below how you would use this Lentil Taco Meat with Walnuts and Mushrooms!
More Plant Based recipes You’ll Love
If you like this recipe, here are some other plant based recipes you’re sure to love:
- Sweet Potato and Kale Tacos –> a regular in my house (tip? mix leftovers with black beans and serve with quinoa for lunch the next day)
- Rosemary Garbanzo Beans with Quinoa and Chimichurri–> Italian inspired comfort food
- Cashew Free Vegan Butternut Squash Cheese Sauce –> amazing mixed with noodles, or as a nacho cheese sauce!
Lentil Taco Meat with Walnuts and Mushrooms
This Vegan Lentil Taco Meat with Walnuts and Mushrooms is a whole food, plant based alternative to the quintessential ground beef taco meat--and it is insanely delicious! Use this taco Lentil Taco Meat with Walnuts and Mushrooms to stuff into tortillas for tacos, melted into a quesadilla, to top a taco salad, on top of nachos, or any other way you use taco meat!
- 1 cup brown lentils
- 1 cup walnuts
- 1 cup mushrooms roughly chopped
- 2 tablespoons chili powder
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 3 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons black pepper
- 1 teaspoon gluten free soy sauce/tamari
- 1 teaspoon red miso paste Miso Master is my preferred brand
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
Place lentils in a small sauce pan. Add 2 cups water. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer until lentils are tender and cooked through, about 15-20 minutes.
While the lentils are cooking, work in batches to pulse the walnuts and mushrooms in a food processor until both are broken down into small pieces and into a size that resembles ground beef. Transfer the mushrooms and walnuts to a large mixing bowl and stir to combine. Once the lentils are cooked, add the lentils to the bowl with the chopped walnuts and mushrooms. Stir to combine the ingredients.
In a bowl, add the tamari, miso paste, and 1/2 cup water. Whisk until combined. Add the chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, crushed red pepper flakes, dried oregano, paprika, ground cumin, salt, and black pepper. The mixture should be a thick liquid (not a thick paste, but pourable). If necessary, add more water tablespoon by tablespoon, but no more than 3/4 cup total.
Heat the olive oil in a large sauce pan over medium heat. Add the lentil mixture and pour the spice mixture over the lentils, walnuts, and mushrooms. Stir to completely coat and cook the lentil mixture until heathed through and the seasoning mixture has evaporated, about 5 minutes.
STORE IT IN THE FRIDGE
This Lentil Taco Meat with Walnuts and Mushrooms will keep in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
STORE IT IN THE FREEZER
This is freezer friendly for up to 3 months.
DID YOU MAKE THIS Lentil Taco Meat with Walnuts and Mushrooms
If you’ve tried this recipe or any other recipe on the blog, please rate this recipe and let me know how you liked it in the comments below, I love hearing from you! You can also like me on facebook and follow me on Instagram and Pinterest to see more delicious meals I’m cooking! You can also mention @indiafromindianaor tag #indiafromindiana on Instagram so I can see what you’re making in the kitchen
HELPFUL RECIPE INFORMATION
All recipes are tested and developed in my home kitchen. Unless otherwise stated, I always use extra virgin olive oil and this Himalayan pink salt in my recipes