Taco Salad is such a classic summer salad, it’s tasty, filling and easy to make. This version is healthy, vegetarian and even tastier, you really won’t miss the meat in this salad!
This vegetarian taco salad is epic, definitely not your average salad, it’s good enough for dinner or a very satisfying lunch. With black beans, quinoa and feta cheese this salad is packed with protein. And enough veggies to help you on your way to your ten a day. I use celery, cherry tomatoes, courgette, and pepper with cos lettuce, however, you could use whatever veggies you have in the fridge. The lime, coriander and jalapeño dressing really brings this salad to life, it’s fresh and zesty with a little kick of heat from the jalapeño. If you’d rather have more heat in the dressing then you could add more chopped jalapeño. Likewise, if you would prefer less heat then use less jalapeño.
How to Make Taco Salad
- Make the dressing, this is so easy! Just whisk the lime juice into the extra virgin olive oil. Then stir in the jalapeño, coriander/cilantro, garlic and salt an pepper. Keep this in the fridge until you are ready to serve. This dressing will keep in the fridge for 3 or 4 days, just give it a good stir or shake when you’re ready to use it.
- Next, make the crispy tortilla strips. These tortilla strips are really tasty, so definitely don’t skip making these! Add the oil, spices and dried coriander to a large bowl, mix until combined then add the tortilla strips. Toss the strips gently making sure all the strips are covered in the oil mixture.
- Lay the strips on a baking tray then place in the oven and bake for 8 – 10 minutes, turning the strips halfway through cooking. Keep an eye on them as they will cook quickly.
- Cook the quinoa according to the packet instructions then leave it to cool then fluff it up with a fork. Add all the veggies to a large serving bowl. Add the black beans, quinoa and tortilla strips. Crumble over the feta then pour the dressing over it all. Serve it with lime wedges, coriander/cilantro and extra slices of jalapeño.
Customizing your Taco Salad
- Veggies: this is a really flexible salad so you can add most salad type vegetables to this salad. Cucumber is great in this, radishes are too. Carrots are good in this too, we like them shaved into ribbons for this one.
- Beans: Cooked black beans are great in a taco salad, but if you don’t like them then chickpeas are a great substitute. Cold cooked puy lentils work well too.
- Grains: I love quinoa in this but wild or brown rice is great too.
- Cheese: Feta is best in this but you could try crumbled goat’s cheese.
More Tasty Salad Recipes:
- Broccoli Pasta Salad
- Mexican Bean Salad
- Mediterranean Couscous Salad
- Greek Chickpea Salad with Spinach
- 2 heads of cos lettuce chopped
- 150 g cherry tomatoes cut in half
- 1 medium yellow bell pepper sliced, pith and seeds removed
- 4 spring onions (scallions) chopped
- 1 ripe avocado sliced
- 1 stalk of celery sliced thinly
- 1 medium courgette (zucchini) shaved into ribbons
- 50 g feta cheese
- 150 g cooked black beans rinsed
- 80 g quinoa (dry weight)
For the tortilla strips
- 2 whole wheat tortillas cut into thin strips
- 1 1/2 tbsp olive oil
- 1/2 tsp ground cumin
- 1/2 tsp dried coriander leaf
- 1/4 tsp ground coriander
- 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
For the dressing
- 45 ml extra virgin olive oil
- 2 1/5 tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
- 1 tbsp finely chopped green jalapeño pepper
- 1 heaped tbsp chopped coriander
- 1 fat clove of garlic minced
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- 1/4 tsp cracked black pepper
To make the crispy tortilla strips:
- Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C, 356F.In a large bowl add the oil, spices and dried coriander, mix until combined then add the tortilla strips. Toss gently making sure all the strips are covered in the oil mixture.Lay the strips on a baking tray then place in the oven and cook for 8 - 10 minutes, turning the strips halfway through cooking. Keep an eye on them as they will cook quickly.
To make the dressing:
- Whisk the lime juice into the oil then add the remaining ingredients and stir well. Keep in the fridge until you are ready to serve.
To make the salad
- Cook the quinoa according to the packet instructions. Leave to cool then when ready to add to the salad fluff it up with a fork.
- Add all other ingredients to a large salad bowl. Add the quinoa and black beans. If serving straight away pour the dressing over the salad then add the tortilla strips and crumble over the feta cheese.
- Serve with lime wedges, sour cream a few leaves of fresh coriander and pickled jalapeños.
- If you have tortilla strips leftover keep them in an airtight container for up to a week.
- The tortilla strips are great as a snack with guacamole or hummus.
- If you want more heat in the salad you could add some pickled jalapenos.
- Want to make it vegan just ditch the feta or add some nutritional yeast for saltiness.
- Want to add meat? Grilled chicken works really well with this.
- Don't like quinoa? Try brown rice or red rice.
- Calories listed are approximate and do not include the dressing.