Cauliflower Black Bean Taco Filling

[Total: 16    Average: 4.8/5]


Do you have taco night at your house? We usually alternate between taco night and make-your-own pizza night.  It’s a great way to get the kids involved with dinner prep (my 3 year old loves taking charge-and well, my 17 month old doesn’t mind watching…and sneaking in a few bites during the prep process).

As of late, taco night has been put on the back burner…and it’s all my fault! I’m tired of the same options-ground turkey, ground beef, ground MEAT! And so, I had the brilliant idea (if I say so myself) to come up with a VEGAN version of the traditional recipe!

Sort of, kind of looks like ground beef, don’t you think? (I KNOW you vegans out there have my back right now!)


In my opinion, this is a “meat-eater turned vegan” person’s dream! Ground beef used to be my vice and I’m being 100% honest when I say that I really don’t miss it in this dish!

The cauliflower has that same chunky consistency as ground beef, but it just tastes so much fresher, healthier, cleaner…have I made my point?!


Let’s be objective for a minute-if you really think about it, all the ingredient are the same. The only difference is instead of preparing this taco filling with heavy (saturated-fat laden) beef, I’ve used healthy (somewhat inconspicuous) cauliflower!

(Ok, I’ll be honest-if someone in the family hates cauliflower as much as my husband does, they will notice the difference in a heartbeat!). And on that note, I simply prep some ground beef beforehand (or store in the freezer) and then heat it up for him!


(Serves 4)
2 cups black beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 head of cauliflower, roughly chopped
1/2 medium red onion, finely diced
1-2 garlic cloves, finely diced (or halved then removed before serving)
2 tbs. extra virgin olive oil
2 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. paprika
1/4 cup tomato puree
1/2 cup distilled water or vegetable broth
2 tbs. freshly chopped parsley (or cilantro)
salt and pepper to taste

Garnish options:
avocado (sliced thinly), or fresh guacamole
Greek yogurt or sour cream
freshly chopped parsley or cilantro
raw red onion or scallions, finely chopped
soft/hard tortilla shells or lettuce wraps
Nacho or pita chips

Pulse the cauliflower in a food processor, consistency depends on your preference. Pulse it until finely ground or leave it somewhat chunky so it’s more similar in consistency to ground beef.

In a large saucepan, heat oil on medium heat for 1-2 minutes. Add the garlic, onions and pepper and saute for 5-7 minutes or until translucent. Add the cauliflower, tomato puree, and spices and cook for 8-10 minutes or until the cauliflower is fork tender or longer tastes raw.


Add the black beans and heat through for about 5 minutes.


Add salt and pepper to taste and garnish with parsely or cilantro, if desired.


Garnish with your favourite fixings such as avocado, fresh lime juice and Greek yogurt.


Wrap in a tortilla shell, stuff into a hard or soft taco shell, or go all out vegan and opt for fresh lettuce leaves.


  • I love how you think ‘outside the box’ when it comes to food. I would have never thought about this. Thanks for sharing…I pass on all of your recipes to my aunt who loves to cook. She made that raspberry parfait you posted about and she loved it. I didn’t get any because I went out that day!! Hmmmppphh!!!

    • Lisa @bitesforbabies

      Sometimes I think out of the box because I feel I have to! If I want to be mindful about what I eat I kind of HAVE to find new, creative ways to make traditional recipes so that I enjoy them and don’t feel I’m missing out on anything! And thanks for the feedback-I’m so happy your aunt enjoys my recipes ;-)))

  • Vanessa Jordaan

    This honestly looks lovely and I am definitely going to try this.

    • Lisa @bitesforbabies

      It’s a worth a try…I think even meat-lovers will appreciate it!

  • This looks delicious and it’s very healthy too! Thanks for dropping by my blog.

    • Lisa @bitesforbabies

      Thanks to you too! ;-)

  • Danielle

    This looks yummy…might have to give it a try!! Danielle (:

    • Do you eat vegan Danielle? It’s worth a try ;-)

  • monica

    Who would guess that there is cauliflower in there! You inspire me with every visit!

    • Lisa @bitesforbabies

      You wouldn’t by looking at it…you can taste it a bit in there but that’s a good thing!

  • Kim Diskin Verdam

    this looks so good! I have to try this soon!

    • Lisa @bitesforbabies

      Thanks! Let me know when you try it-I appreciate the feedback!

  • This is too funny! Whenever I look at your blog, I think we are the same people-haha! We totally alternate between making vegan pizza and mexican night-our two favs! Hence the reason for my Mexian Pizza recipe… :) this recipe looks tasty!

    • Lisa @bitesforbabies

      I know…I’ve actually thought the same thing, lol! We have a lot in common ;-)