There are some things that are just meant to go together.
Peanut butter and chocolate. Bagels and cream cheese. Yogurt and granola.
You get the point. They combine to make a perfect medley of texture and flavor, hitting all the notes that keep you coming back for more.
Black beans and sweet potatoes are a marriage made in heaven. I’ve featured several recipes with this glorious combination and as much as I wanted to try something different for this Meatless Monday, I decided to just go with it. Besides, I had it on hand and I was hungry.
Now, let’s talk about tacos. If you’re looking for something quick and easy to make while sticking to a budget, than tacos are your friend.
You can keep it light by using fresh produce that’s in season, nutrient-rich greens, and heart-healthy avocado. Also, be sure to pick corn tortillas over flour. They have fewer calories (about 90 cal each) and a great chewy texture. The bonus is that it’s gluten free for those of you following that diet.
With my key ingredients in mind, I chose to go with a black bean, mushroom, and red pepper saute that I spiced up with ground chipotle. Canned chipotles in adobo sauce would be a great addition if you have it on hand. Just be mindful of the amount of adobo sauce you use, and make sure to remove the seeds of the peppers before adding them to your dish. Unless you like the kind of heat that makes your eyes water and underarms sweat, then by all means, have at it.
Roasting the sweet potatoes brings out their natural sweetness while the cayenne gives it an extra kick. The cabbage and cilantro gives a nice crunch with a bit of lemony tanginess to contrast the sweet and smoky. Altogether, it’s a kick-butt combo.
The best part is that these tacos pack a nutritious punch:
- Vitamin A and C in the sweet potatoes and red peppers help boost your immunity, vision, and provide cancer fighting antioxidants.
- Fiber in the avocado and black beans not only keep you feeling full longer, but it also protects you from cardiovascular disease by lowering your cholesterol, along with many other health benefits.
- A cup of cabbage yields about 80% of your vitamin K DV, which supports bone health and plays a key role in blood clotting.
Why go out for tacos when you can make this delicious and healthy option at home for a fraction of the cost? Makes sense to me.
Serving 4, 2 tacos each
- 1 can of black beans, rinsed
- 1 medium sweet potato, peeled and diced
- 1 cup of diced bella mushrooms
- 1 cup shredded cabbage
- 1 Haas avocado, sliced
- ½ red bell pepper, chopped
- Bunch of fresh cilantro, cleaned and trimmed
- 8 white corn tortillas
- 2 tbsp of olive oil, separated
- 2 large cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 tbsp of tomato paste
- 1 tbsp of naranja agria marinade (aka bitter orange or lime juice if unavailable)
- 2 tsp of salt, separated
- ½ tsp ground cayenne
- 1 tsp ground chipotle powder
- ½ tbsp dried oregano
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- Freshly ground black pepper
1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a small rimmed baking sheet with foil, add sweet potatoes, 1 tbsp of oil, 1 tsp of salt, cayenne, and freshly ground black pepper; mix well. Place sheet in oven and bake for approx 20 minutes or until potatoes are golden and tender.
2. While potatoes are baking, heat remaining oil in a skillet over medium flame. Cook the minced garlic for 1-2 minutes, but be careful not to burn them otherwise you’ll end up with a bitter flavor! Add mushrooms and red peppers, stirring occasionally for 3-5 minutes. Once the veggies have softened, throw in the rinsed beans along with the paste, salt, chipotle, oregano, garlic powder, and black pepper. Mix everything together and allow it to cook for 8-10 minutes. About halfway through, add the bitter orange marinade (or lime juice). Remove from heat.
3. Now comes the fun part! Make sure you have all of your taco toppings ready on the side for easy prep. Turn on a burner to low-medium flame. Working with one tortilla at a time, carefully place it over the flame using tongs. Once you see the edges darken and it puffs up in the center, then flip it over. Cook each side for about 1-2 minutes. Place on serving plate.
4. Spoon about 1 tbsp of black bean and mushrooms, along with 1 tbsp of sweet potatoes on each tortilla. Top with sliced cabbage, avocado, and a small handful of cilantro. Squeeze a bit of lime juice on top if you have it, or just enjoy it as is.
I was a little hungry so I had three of these bad boys. How could I resist?
All that’s missing is a frozen margarita….but I’ll save that for another time. Cinco de Mayo is right around the corner after all.
What’s your favorite taco combination?
I’m always looking for something new, so please feel free to share your favorite recipes in the comments below or on FB and Twitter!