If you have ever read this blog or had a conversation with me about food you have probably heard me ramble on about my love of breakfast tacos. In fact, one of my friends that came to visit started a count for every time my partner and I said the word “taco”. People are sick of hearing about it but I’m not going to stop until every city in the world has access to fresh vegan breakfast tacos. It is my mission in life!
Someone from California asked me the other day what makes a taco a breakfast taco. I couldn’t really answer her because all I could think of was how sad it was that she didn’t know. I think they eat breakfast burritos out there which BTW is totally different. Then I didn’t even get her a taco so I feel a lot of guilt about that. Usually I force my friends from out of town to eat nothing but tacos and then they ask, “Can we have something that isn’t Mexican” and I think about it and take them to a more Tex less Mex taco stand. The point is not that I am a terrible host, but that for some of you, the only way to enjoy breakfast tacos for now is to make them at home so here is, what I hope, will be a helpful guide.
Step 1. The Tortilla
I think this step can be all too easily overlooked but, for me, it is probably the most important difference between a taco from a gas station and a taco that you will long for. I have made tortillas in the past but I can get 50 fresh corn tortillas for like a dollar at the grocery store so I realized it wasn’t the best use of my time (my dogs need near constant love). If you aren’t so lucky to have fresh tortillas then you should try your hand it making them, it is really quite easy and totally worth it, check out Crystal’s tutorial. I found some that had anchos baked right into the tortilla at Central Market the other day and they really elevated my taco to a whole new level, I know in the pic it look like mold but it isn’t! I promise! In Viva Vegan Terry has a recipe that uses Chia seeds because basically you can add anything you want to a tortilla. Just make sure the tortillas are warm when you make the taco, we usually wrap them in foil and stick them in the oven but you can also warm them up one at a time on the stove or stick them in a microwave. The steam has to keep them pliable, toasting is the opposite.
Step 2. The Protein
In Austin the top protein options are either refried beans, whole black beans or vegan chorizo. All fine choices but, for me, tofu scramble is the best thing to stuff into a breakfast taco, it kind of whispers “breakfast” in your ear. Tofu scramble is actually the main way we use tofu at home. I like to keep it kind of simple for tacos with a little bit of nooch, seasonings, and not to heavy on the spices sort of like this one from Vegan Dad or the basic one from Vegan Brunch.
Step 3: The Starch
At whole foods you can get a cilantro lime rice on your taco or if you want to add a little bit of health you could use brown rice and greens for Arroz Verde but what really makes a breakfast taco a breakfast taco is the potatoes, otherwise you really don’t know what the hell kind of taco you are eating. French fries, tater tots, and even mashed potatoes will all work. Usually I dice some potatoes, roll them around in some smoked paprika, salt and pepper, and stick them in an oven for 20 minutes or so flipping occasionally. But, over the weekend we were using Vegan Brunch for the cookbook challenge and I loved the diner style potatoes recipe with peppers & onions.
Step 4: The Toppings
This is the part that you can really get carried away on. Roasted vegetables, vegan sausage, green onions, pico de gallo, tofutti sour cream, limes, verde salsa, hot sauce, grilled onions, toasted garlic, avocado, vegan cheese, nopalitos, chimmichurri, sprouts, greens, bacon bits, tomatoes, zucchini, guacamole, really whatever you have is an option. We recently had the seitan breakfast strips from American Vegan Kitchen
along with pickled red onions and both added a lot of flavor to our tacos. Keeping all this stuff around makes taco assembly super simple in the morning pre-coffee confusion.
Step 5: Eat
So there you have it, a perfect meal.
Do you guys make breakfast tacos?