Black Bean Tacos

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.

Black Bean Tacos make good use of pantry staples and are topped with a creamy citrus-cilantro sauce, avocado, and saucy cabbage. Make delicious vegetarian tacos that can also be vegan.

Use extra black beans in this Mango Black Bean SalsaBlack Bean Bowls, or this Quinoa Black Bean Salad.

Black bean tacos with cilantro sauce and limes, ready to eat.

Black Bean Tacos

This site may have an abundance of taco recipes, but there’s always room for more. Packed with protein, bursting with flavor, and loaded with healthy ingredients, you really can’t have too many taco recipes.

Black Bean Tacos are uniquely served with a zesty cilantro sauce that’s both rich and creamy, yet remarkably without the need for any mayo or sour cream. The magic ingredient? Half an avocado, lending the same lush texture and depth of flavor as it does in our Kale Avocado Salad dressing. This avocado-based sauce elevates the tacos with its creamy texture and vibrant taste.

Onion and garlic sautéing, seasonings added, black beans and stock mixed, with beans being smashed for prep.

Ingredients In Black Bean Tacos

Black Beans Mixture:

  • Olive oil: For cooking onions and garlic.
  • Diced yellow onion and minced garlic: Sautéed for flavor base.
  • Cumin, chili powder, and paprika: Spices added for flavor.
  • Black beans: Main ingredient of the mixture. 
  • Vegetable broth (or chicken broth/water): Added to beans for cooking.

Tacos:

  • Corn or flour tortillas: Used as the taco base.
  • Green cabbage: Mixed with sauce for taco filling.
  • Queso cotija cheese and lime wedges: Used as toppings. Use extra cotija cheese in these BBQ Chicken Sweet Potatoes.

QUICK TIP

If you have leftover cooked black beans (cooked from their dried state) you can use them in this recipe. One can of black beans is 15 ounces, and the equivelent amount of cooked-from-scratch black beans is a skimpy two cups. (Two cups is 16 ounces.)

How To Make Black Bean Tacos

  1. Sauce: Blend ripe avocado, cilantro, lime and orange zest and juice, garlic, honey, jalapeño, and water. Season with salt and pepper, blend until smooth, then chill.
  2. Black Beans: Heat olive oil in a skillet, cook diced onion and minced garlic until soft. Add cumin, chili powder, paprika, and black beans. Mix in vegetable broth and mash the beans slightly. Simmer until thickened.
  3. Cabbage: Toss shredded cabbage with some of the sauce and refrigerate.
  4. Prepare Tortillas: Prepare tortillas as preferred, like charring over a gas flame.
  5. Assemble Tacos: Fill tortillas with cabbage, bean mixture, slices of avocado (left from the sauce), and drizzle with sauce. Add toppings like cheese, cilantro, jalapeños, and a squeeze of lime. Enjoy your black bean tacos!

Blending cilantro and avocado for sauce, mixed into cabbage, and adding to the rest of the meal.

VARIATIONS

Taco Variations

  • Don’t want to use canned black beans? Use 3 cups of cooked black beans instead.
  • Make it low carb: Serve in low-carb tortillas or over cauliflower rice. 
  • Swap to a bowl meal: Make some cilantro-lime rice to serve the black bean mixture over. Add in a chopped avocado, a handful of cabbage, and drizzle the sauce over everything. 
  • Use a different sauce: If you want a different sauce on these tacos, try the sauce I use on these Shrimp Tacos; it’s a huge hit. We also love this cilantro lime dressing
  • Add some spice: Drizzle hot sauce over these black bean tacos or top tacos with jalapeños. 
  • Make these tacos vegan: Leave out the cheese and replace the honey with maple syrup.  Here are some more tips on making this recipe vegan.

Savory Black Bean Tacos with sauce, fresh cheese, and cilantro topping, ready to enjoy.

More Vegetarian Recipes

FOLLOW ALONG! Subscribe to my newsletter and follow along on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram for the latest updates, recipes and content.

Black Bean Tacos

4.80 from 5 votes
Black Bean Tacos make good use of pantry staples and are topped with a creamy citrus-cilantro sauce, avocado, and saucy cabbage. Drizzle some fresh lime and a sprinkle of cheese over these tacos for the best vegetarian tacos ever! These tacos can also be made vegan.
Black bean tacos with cilantro sauce and limes, ready to eat.
Print Recipe

Black Bean Tacos

Black bean tacos with cilantro sauce and limes, ready to eat.
4.80 from 5 votes
Black Bean Tacos make good use of pantry staples and are topped with a creamy citrus-cilantro sauce, avocado, and saucy cabbage. Drizzle some fresh lime and a sprinkle of cheese over these tacos for the best vegetarian tacos ever! These tacos can also be made vegan.
Course Dinner
Cuisine Mexican, Vegetarian
Keyword Black Bean Tacos
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Chelsea Lords
Calories 489kcal
Cost $6.71

Ingredients

Citrusy Cilantro Avocado Sauce

  • 1/2 large fully ripe avocado (1/2 cup)
  • 3/4 cup cilantro, packed
  • 1 large lime (2 tablespoons juice; 1 teaspoon zest)
  • 1 large orange (4 tablespoons juice; 1 teaspoon zest)
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon jalapeño pepper, coarsely chopped(~1/2 jalapeño)
  • Fine sea salt and freshly cracked pepper
  • 1/2 cup water

Black Beans

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup diced yellow onion (~1/2 of 1 onion)
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic (~2 cloves)
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon EACH: ground chili powder and paprika
  • 2 cans (14.5 ounces EACH black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/3 cup vegetable broth or stock (or use chicken broth/stock if not vegetarian; water can also be used)

Tacos

  • 10-12 small corn or flour tortillas
  • 1/2 head green cabbage (~3 cups finely shredded)
  • queso cotija cheese and lime wedges, for serving
  • Optional: additional cilantro, additional jalapeños

Instructions

  • SAUCE: Add 1/2 cup ripe avocado and the 3/4 cup cilantro (it's fine to include stems; this will take most of a bunch) to a small blender jar, along with 1 teaspoon lime zest, 2 tablespoons lime juice, 1 teaspoon orange zest, 2 tablespoons orange juice, 1 teaspoon minced garlic, 2 tablespoons honey, 1 tablespoon jalapeño, and 1/2 cup water. Season to taste with salt and pepper; I add 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Blend until smooth. Taste and adjust any flavors to personal preference. Place in the fridge to chill while preparing everything else.
  • BLACK BEANS: Rinse and drain the black beans. Heat the 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add in the 1/2 cup diced onion and 1 teaspoon minced garlic. Stir until softened, about 4-5 minutes. Add in the 1 and 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin, 1/2 teaspoon chili powder, and 1/2 teaspoon paprika. Add in salt and pepper (1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper). Stir until fragrant, about 30 seconds to one minute. Add in 1 and 1/2 cups of the beans along with 1/3 cup broth, stock, or water. Stir and then gently mash the beans with the back of a wooden spoon (or potato masher). Continue to cook over medium-low heat, stirring often, until the mixture reaches a simmer and thickens. Mash the beans again and then add in the reserved beans. Stir to combine. Reduce the heat to low and cover the pot. Stir occasionally while finishing everything else. Taste and adjust salt to personal preference; I usually add another 1/4 teaspoon here, but remember the cheese (if used) is salty as well.
  • CABBAGE: Add cabbage to a large bowl and drizzle about half the sauce over it. Toss the sauce with tongs to combine and place in the fridge.
  • TORTILLAS: See Note 1 for preparing the tortillas. I typically char them over a gas flame on my stovetop, but any method works.
  • ASSEMBLY: Place a large scoop of cabbage down the center of the tortillas and then a few spoonfuls of the beans on top. Thinly slice the other half of the avocado (left from the sauce) and add it to the tacos. Add a generous drizzle of sauce and any other desired toppings such as cheese, additional cilantro, and/or jalapeños. If you aren't adding the cheese, you may want an extra sprinkle of salt to the tacos. Squeeze some fresh lime wedges over the tacos and enjoy immediately.

Recipe Notes

Note 1:Warming tortillas:
On the grill:
  • Preheat a grill to medium-high (about 400-450 degrees F.). Generously oil the grill by drenching a rolled-up paper towel in vegetable oil and, holding it with tongs, rubbing it over the grill grates.
  • Spray both sides of the tortillas with cooking spray, lightly sprinkle with salt, and then place on the grates for 30-45 seconds. Flip and leave on for another 30-45 seconds. Remove and immediately fold into a taco shape and set aside to slightly cool.
On a gas stovetop:
  • Spray the tortillas (both sides) with olive oil cooking spray and then place directly over the gas flames for a few seconds. Use tongs to flip until tortillas are lightly charred.
  • Remove and immediately fold into a taco shape and set aside to slightly cool.
Skillet or microwave:
If you don't have a gas stove, I'd recommend heating the tortillas in a skillet or microwave.
  • Skillet: Spray the tortillas (both sides) with olive oil cooking spray and then place in a dry skillet over medium-high heat. Use tongs to flip until tortillas are lightly browned, about 20-30 seconds per side. Remove and immediately fold into a taco shape and set aside to slightly cool.
  • Microwave: Put up to five tortillas on a microwavable plate and cover them with a damp paper towel. Microwave in 30-second bursts until they are warmed through and then remove and immediately fold into a taco shape and fill.

Nutrition Facts

Serving: 4servings | Calories: 489kcal | Carbohydrates: 87.7g | Protein: 19.1g | Fat: 9.6g | Sodium: 956.2mg | Fiber: 23.9g | Sugar: 19.3g

We do our best to provide accurate nutritional analysis for our recipes. Our nutritional data is calculated using a third-party algorithm and may vary, based on individual cooking styles, measurements, and ingredient sizes. Please use this information for comparison purposes and consult a health professional for nutrition guidance as needed.

DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE?

I love hearing from you when you've made one of my recipes! Tag me on Instagram at @ChelseasMessyApron or leave me a comment below.

 

More Recipes You'll Love

Vegetarian Lettuce Wraps

50 mins

Vegetarian Lettuce Wraps

Click the Bookmark Icon to Add to Your Favories

Vegetarian Enchiladas

30 mins

Vegetarian Enchiladas

Click the Bookmark Icon to Add to Your Favories

Butternut Squash Tacos

45 mins

Butternut Squash Tacos

Click the Bookmark Icon to Add to Your Favories

Sweet Potato Bowl

1 hrs

Sweet Potato Bowl

Click the Bookmark Icon to Add to Your Favories

FREE BONUS

FREE BONUS

EASY MEAL SECRETS:
How to Make Mealtime Hassle Free!

5 secrets to easy, fast and delicious dinners.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

4.80 from 5 votes

Leave a Comment:

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating




5 Comments

  1. 4 stars
    Please learn how to write a recipe. The salt and pepper not being mentions in the ingredients list then randomly mentioned threw me off. and do actual steps. Do sections then steps, instead of just a clump of text.

    1. Add salt and pepper to taste; I’m just sharing what I recommend 🙂 Sorry the recipes aren’t how you’d write them, I’m working my best to continually improve. Thanks for the feedback; I appreciate it! Happy New Year!

Never Miss a Recipe

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.