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Quinoa Tacos

These flavor-packed, meatless Quinoa Tacos couldn't be easier; we dump everything into the slow cooker (no chopping or sautéing beforehand) and let the appliance work its magic! Once the quinoa is cooked, load the delicious filling on warmed tortillas and add your favorite taco toppings. It doesn't get much easier than this recipe! 
Course Dinner, Main Course, Vegetarian
Cuisine American, Healthy, Vegan, Vegetarian
Keyword quinoa tacos
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours
Total Time 4 hours 10 minutes
Servings 6 -8
Calories 272kcal
Author Chelsea Lords
Cost $6.72

Equipment

  • 6-quart slow cooker/crockpot
  • Olive oil or canola/vegetable oil cooking spray

Ingredients

  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 1 cup chicken stock or vegetable stock (we love Swanson's stock best)
  • 2 cans (15.25 oz.) black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can (14.5 oz.) fire-roasted diced tomatoes (we love Muir Glen)
  • 1 can (10 oz.) enchilada sauce Note 1
  • 1-1/2 cups frozen corn (or 1 can corn, drained)
  • 3 tablespoons taco seasoning or 1 packet (1.25 ounces) Note 2
  • Corn or flour tortillas
  • Top with your favorite taco toppings: cheese, avocado, diced cherry tomatoes, cilantro, fresh lime, etc.

Instructions

  • PREP: If the quinoa isn't pre-rinsed (the bag will usually specify if it is), rinse the quinoa in a fine-mesh sieve under cool water for about 30 seconds.
  • SLOW COOKER: Generously spray a large slow cooker (6 quarts) with nonstick cooking spray. Add in the rinsed quinoa, chicken or vegetable stock, drained and rinsed black beans, undrained tomatoes, enchilada sauce, corn, and taco seasoning. Stir everything well. Cover and cook on high for 2.5 hours to 4 hours, depending on the heat of your slow cooker (Note 3). Once cooked, stir through gently and taste for seasonings, adding additional salt/pepper if needed.
  • TORTILLAS: See Note 4 for preparing the tortillas. I typically char them over a gas flame on my stovetop, but any method works.
  • ASSEMBLE: Fill warmed tortillas with the quinoa filling. Drizzle on fresh lime juice, add fresh cilantro and avocado if desired. Add in cheese and any other favorite taco toppings. (Cheese, lime juice, and diced cherry tomatoes are "must-haves" for us)

Notes

Note 1: We personally like medium enchilada sauce in this recipe, but use mild if you're worried about the heat. Enchilada sauce can vary greatly in heat from brand to brand. I personally love and recommend Old El Paso's red enchilada sauce. I would say this particular brand keeps Quinoa Tacos quite mild. If you aren't able to find this specific brand, I'd recommend tasting the enchilada sauce first to make sure it isn't too spicy. 
Note 2: Taco seasoning packets vary in spice level and even in overall flavor. I've generally found the cheaper the taco seasoning packet, the less flavor it has. Our personal favorite is McCormick's Mild Taco Seasoning. If you don't mind spending a couple of extra minutes of prep time, you can always make your own:
  • 1 tablespoon ground chili powder (McCormick for mild chili powder)
  • 1 teaspoon EACH: ground cumin, paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon EACH: onion powder, garlic powder, dried oregano, fine sea salt, and pepper
Note 3: Slow Cooker: Slow cookers cook at different temperatures! You'll want to watch this carefully if you have a slow cooker that runs hot, so the quinoa doesn't get mushy. This recipe doesn't work on low because quinoa gets mushy when cooked on low for long time periods. You'll know it's done when the quinoa has popped and absorbed most of the liquid. 
Note 4: Instant pot: I prepared this recipe in the Instant Pot and unfortunately wasn't successful. It kept getting the burn warning and with more liquid added it ended up overly mushy.
Note 5: To warm tortillas: Spray both sides of the tortillas with olive oil cooking spray and char the tortillas directly over the gas flames for a few seconds. Use tongs to flip until tortillas are lightly charred and soft. Immediately fold the tortilla in half (so it will fold into a taco nicely later) and place it under a towel to keep warm. Alternatively, warm tortillas in a large skillet over medium heat (in batches so the skillet isn't over-filled). Flip to warm each side, remove from heat, fold in half, and place under a towel to keep warm.
Special diets: If you're gluten-intolerant, make sure to buy a gluten-free taco seasoning packet. If vegan is a concern, make without cheese!
 

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 272kcal | Carbohydrates: 49.6g | Protein: 12.3g | Fat: 3.2g | Cholesterol: 0.9mg | Sodium: 729mg | Fiber: 11.4g | Sugar: 3.5g