These perfect veggie tacos with balsamic glaze are hearty, chewy, fresh, and delicious. You don’t need meat or dairy to make a good taco, and this recipe proves it. You’ll love them with a drizzle of the tangy and sweet balsamic glaze that compliments the spicy seasoning in the veggies. Serve it with our guacamole and a side of tortilla chips.
Published September 22, 2014 and updated March 24, 2020.
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Hi there! We’re Linda and Alex, the mother daughter duo and creators of Veganosity. Thanks for visiting us, we’re so happy you’re here. If you’re looking for Southern inspired vegan comfort food recipes, you’ve come to the right place.
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Summer Vegetables are a Great Meat Substitute
This vegetarian taco recipe was inspired by a Mexican restaurant that Alex and I discovered many years ago, shortly after going vegan.
We were trying to navigate ordering vegan in restaurants and we were so excited to see a veggie option on the menu.
Because this was over 6 years ago, many chefs weren’t vegan friendly, and that made it difficult to find anything besides the typical roasted portobello mushroom.
Now don't get us wrong, there's nothing wrong with mushroom tacos, but when that's the only option, it gets old.
What makes this meatless taco recipe so good is the variety of textures and flavors.
Here’s what you’ll find in regard to texture and flavor:
What Can You Put in Tacos Instead of Meat?
Vegetables, specifically zucchini, yellow summer squash, red bell pepper, and onion.
Zucchini is a great meat substitute because it soaks up the spice that you cook it in and it’s super chewy when it’s cooked properly.
Yellow squash is also a great alternative to meat because like zucchini, it takes on the flavor of the spices and has a perfectly tender texture.
How to Make Them
The first thing that you’ll want to do is dice the vegetables.
To ensure that they cook evenly and look good in the tacos, they should be evenly diced. Meaning, they should be the same size.
You don’t want small, medium, and large pieces; they should all be the same size.
Once you finish chopping, you’ll want to sauté the onion and bell pepper until they soften, approximately 5 minutes.
Then add the zucchini, yellow squash, and spices.
Cook for approximately 15 minutes on medium-high heat, or until the veggies are just fork tender. You don’t want them to be too soft.
Put the veggies in a corn or flour tortilla and drizzle with the balsamic glaze and add fresh cilantro.
You can also use the vegetable taco filling to make burritos or a burrito bowl.
You can make your own glaze or buy premade.
It’s easy to make your own, just heat balsamic vinegar in a saucepan on medium heat until it begins to boil, then reduce the heat and simmer and stir until it thickens.
When balsamic vinegar is turned into a thick glaze, it loses a lot of the vinegar flavor and becomes sweeter, and it’s so good when it’s combined with the spiciness of the vegetable filling.
Heat the tortillas. Cold tortillas are no good.
The best way to heat them is over an open flame on a gas stove.
Place them directly on the burner over the flame for about 30 seconds and then use long tongs to flip.
You can also heat them in the oven or in a microwave.
More Vegan Taco Recipes You’ll Love
Make our healthy veggie taco recipe and let us know what you think. We love to hear from you! And, don’t forget to take a picture of your gorgeous creation and tag us @veganosity on Instagram.
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Veggie Tacos with Balsamic Glaze
- Balsamic Glaze
- 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar SEE NOTE
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil SEE NOTE
- 1 onion diced
- 1 zucchini – diced
- 1 yellow squash –diced
- 1 red bell pepper – diced
- 2 tsp chili powder
- 2 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp coriander
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper if you like it spicy
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 8 tortillas flour or corn
- Bring the ½ cup vinegar to a boil and then reduce the heat to a simmer for 10 to 15 minutes. Watch it carefully and stir often to make sure it doesn’t burn. It should be thick and have a sticky consistency.
- Heat the 1 tbsp vegetable oil in a medium skillet on medium-high heat. Add the onion and bell pepper and cook for 5 minutes. Add the zucchini and squash and cook for 5 minutes. Add the 2 tsp chili powder, 2 tsp cumin, 1 tsp coriander, 1 tsp smoked paprika, ¼ tsp cayenne pepper (if you like hot food, if not add less or leave it out), and salt and pepper to taste and cook for 5 to 7 minutes, or until the vegetables are just fork tender.
- Heat the tortillas and fill with the vegetable mixture. Drizzle the glaze over the taco.