Jul 27 2015

Walnut Meat Tacos with Sun Dried Tomato Spread

by Kathryn Budig

Meaty Meatless Tacos!



I was recently getting my lashes done with the amazing Daniella Allen out of Charleston, SC. I basically lay there for an hour or so with my eyes closed, so we have ample time to talk about anything ranging from family life, travel, to recipes. She was going on and on about this amazing meatless taco meat made out of walnuts. I took notes on her approach and went home to experiment.

I’ve gotta say—I was truly impressed with the results! It basically tastes like awesome taco/chili meat. The next step was finding the perfect pairings to make a kick-ass taco (my next project is making walnut meat balls and/or bolognese). I wanted a hearty base (thus the sun dried tomatoes), a good pinch of green (fresh raw spinach) a feeling of cheese without the cheese (bring on the nutritional yeast), and something bright to top it off (fresh herbs and limes to the rescue).

This recipe is a piece of cake, and if you don’t tell your company they’re meatless, I would be surprised if they’d even notice:) Enjoy!!


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Walnut Meat Tacos with Sun Dried Tomato Spread

serves 4 small tacos


for walnut meat:

1 cup walnuts

1.5 tablespoons tamari or soy sauce

1/4 teaspoon chili powder

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

3 dried Thai bird eye chili peppers

1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika

1/4 teaspoon cumin


the other goods:

1/2 cup Vegenaise (or regular mayo)

5-7 sun dried tomatoes (in oil, + 2 teaspoons of that oil)

1 cup spinach

4 small gluten free flour tortillas (I use Udi’s)

1.5 tablespoons nutritional yeast

1 lime, quartered

bunch chives and cilantro, chopped for garnish

coconut oil spray


Place walnuts, tamari, chili powder, chilis, garlic powder, cumin, and smoked paprika in a food processor. Blitz a few times for several seconds until the mixture resembles ground meat.

Combine Vegenaise, sun dried tomatoes, and their oil into a high speed blender and blend on high for about 15 seconds or until it turns into a lovely pink color. Set aside.

Warm a skillet sprayed with coconut oil on medium heat. Warm your tortillas on both sides for about 45 seconds each. You’re aiming for a golden brown. The tortillas will start to bubble a bit—that’s the perfect time to flip and/or remove from the heat.

Layer your tortilla with a blob of sun dried tomato mayo followed by a sprinkle of walnut meat. Toss on a handful of spinach, dust with nutritional yeast, fresh herbs and a quarter of lime juice. Roll it up, crack your favorite Mexican beer or beverage and dig in!!


photos and styling: Cynthia Groseclose


Screen Shot 2015-09-08 at 2.27.48 PMEnjoy my recipes? Look for way more like this in my new book Aim True (March 2016)available for pre-order HERE.