I studied them. I inspected them. I devoured them. And then I did what I always do. I came home and tried to make an inspired version for all of you. Let’s do this!
Origins of Tacos
Who exactly invented the taco? It’s still a bit of a mystery! But a professor who has spent much time researching the topic theorizes that tacos were invented by Mexican silver miners in the 18th century. (source)
Tacos became popular throughout Mexico and were introduced to the US by Mexican immigrants in the 19th century. Authentic Mexican tacos tend to have simple ingredients such as corn tortillas, meat, lettuce, a small amount of cheese, and lime. (source)
These inspired, veggie-heavy tacos are similarly served in a corn tortilla for the perfect handheld meal or snack.
About These Cauliflower Tacos
This is an easy, 30-minute recipe with smoky, roasted cauliflower and a spicy romesco-inspired sauce*. It’s also plant-based, gluten-free, and oil-free optional and grain-free optional. I do a lot for you people! I must like you a lot (wink, wink).
While the cauliflower is roasting, make your sauce, which is comprised of roasted almonds, roasted and fresh garlic, fire-roasted tomatoes, lime juice, spices, chipotle peppers*, and a little maple syrup. The result is a smoky, tangy, spicy, well-balanced sauce that’s thick and creamy and perfect for these cauliflower tacos.
I hope you all LOVE these tacos! They’re:
Easy to make
& So delicious
This would make the perfect healthy, satisfying weeknight meal when you don’t have much time to cook. The cauliflower could be roasted ahead of time and reheated in the oven or stovetop if you’re short on time. And the sauce lasts up to 1 week in the refrigerator, so it can also easily be made ahead of time to enjoy throughout the week.
If you’re into Mexican-inspired meals, also be sure to check out our 5-Ingredient Ginger Beer Margaritas, Watermelon Margaritas, 1-Pot Vegan Barbacoa, Black Bean Butternut Squash Enchiladas, Mexican Quinoa Salad with Orange Lime Dressing, Quinoa Black Bean Salad Cups, Vegan Mexican 7-Layer Dip, Easy Red Salsa, Garlicky Guacamole with Plantain Chips, 3-Ingredient Plantain Tortillas, Roasted Jalapeño Vegan Queso, and Mexican Green Chili Veggie Burgers!
If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo #minimalistbaker on Instagram so we can see. Cheers, friends!
*Note: quantity of cauliflower doubled on 10/09/2018.
Roasted Cauliflower Tacos with Chipotle Romesco
- 2 small heads cauliflower (chopped into bite-sized pieces // smaller pieces roast more quickly!)
- 2-4 Tbsp avocado or coconut oil (if avoiding oil, omit or sub with water)
- 3 tsp ground cumin
- 2 tsp chili powder
- 2 tsp smoked paprika
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 4 small-medium cloves garlic (skin on)
- 1/4 cup raw almonds
- 1 15-ounce can fire-roasted tomatoes (drained)
- 1-2 medium cloves raw garlic (peeled)
- 2 Tbsp olive oil (or sub water)
- 1 medium lime, juiced (~3 Tbsp or 45 ml as original recipe is written)
- 1/4 tsp smoked paprika
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- 1/4 tsp sea salt (plus more to taste)
- 1 Tbsp maple syrup (plus more to taste)
- 1-2 whole chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (more for spicier sauce)
- 12-15 whole corn tortillas (to keep grain-free, use my Plantain Tortillas)
- Lime juice / wedges
- Fresh cilantro (optional)
- Thinly sliced red cabbage (optional)
- Pepitas (optional)
- Sliced avocado (optional)
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (204 C) and add cauliflower to 2 large baking sheets (use more baking sheets if increasing batch size). Add oil (or omit/sub water), cumin, chili powder, paprika, and salt. Toss to combine and roast on the bottom rack for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown and tender.
- To a separate baking sheet, add raw almonds and the 4 unpeeled garlic cloves (amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size). Roast on the center rack for 10-12 minutes, checking at the 8 minute mark. If the almonds are dark brown and cracking, remove from the oven to avoid burning, but continue cooking garlic until light golden brown and slightly softened. Remove from oven and set aside.
- While cauliflower finishes roasting, add drained, fire-roasted tomatoes to a high-speed blender along with almonds, roasted garlic (peeled), raw garlic (peeled), oil (or water), lime juice, paprika, cumin, salt, maple syrup, and chipotle peppers in adobo sauce.
- Blend on high until creamy and smooth, scraping down sides as needed. Taste and adjust flavor as needed, adding more lime for acidity, garlic for kick/zing, salt for saltiness, paprika or cumin for smokiness, maple syrup to offset heat/add sweetness, or chipotle peppers for more heat.
- To serve, warm tortillas in the microwave or in the oven directly on the still-warm oven racks until pliable. Then add 1-2 Tbsp of the romesco sauce and a generous portion of cauliflower. Serve as is or garnish with lime juice/wedges, cilantro, cabbage, and/or pepitas (optional).
- Best when fresh. Store leftover sauce in the refrigerator up to 1 week (or 1 month in the freezer), and the cauliflower in the refrigerator up to 3 days. Reheat cauliflower in a 350-degree F (176 C) oven until warm (best when fresh).
*Prep time does not indicate total hands-on prep time, but also includes prep completed while other items are cooking.