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raw + vegan taco vibes


There’s a gal at work who will jokingly proclaim “My body is a temple!” before predictably reaching for something that may or may not promote one’s health (brownie scraps are my favourite example for many reasons). I always laugh because I totally say that kind of hippie BS all the time, but like half seriously. Actually, mostly seriously… Maybe all the way serious with a shot of E3 Live and a ginger juice chaser too.

It’s true that at any given time, there are multiple jars of coconut oil open in my house for any and all uses. It’s also true that I use the all natural sandalwood conditioner that donates 47% of its revenue to environmental relief organizations, even though it tangles the hell out of my curly ass hair. My mum randomly picked me up a bottle of coconut aminos while she was out because she knew I would freak (“Whoooooaa It’s like non-allergenic soy sauce!!!!”). Ninety-eight percent of my wardrobe can be described as “flow-y.” I talk about vibes a lot.

All of that is just silly superficial stuff though. I find summertime is when my good habits kind of slip a bit. There are all the obvious reasons and occasions. My entire being is about a million times more in the moment in a general sense. I’ve never been much of a calorie counter, but I’ve never been one to say no to a patio beer and a salty snack once the sun starts setting either. Anyway, a lot of moment-vibing (there it is again) has had me feeling kind of tired if I’m being honest. I seem to be craving coffee with a touch more sincerity in the mornings, which is a mighty tip-off that things are out of balance for me. Not so temple-like.

So when I get to a point like this, I make myself a really deluxe + mostly raw meal as a bit of a “reset” maneuver. Just everything fresh on a plate, lots of chewing and savouring. I’ll feel full and light at the same time, which is always ideal.

Giving tacos the raw treatment isn’t anything new. Almost any raw restaurant will have a version on its menu, and I will ALWAYS order it. So good. Whether they make a dehydrated tortilla to encase the goodness in or it’s just a simple lettuce wrap job, the combination is fierce. There’s some nuts ground into a chunky mixture with spices, some kind of salsa, an avocado component, cashew sour cream, other veg sometimes, lots of lime and flavour. If you have a food processor/blender, it couldn’t be easier to replicate at home either. I decided to make a corn ceviche-ish salsa for mine just to shake things up a bit and add a little sweetness. Don’t regret that move one bit. Also, my measurements are kind of ambiguous in this recipe because hey, it’s summer and you gotta keep it so vibe-y.

raw tacos w/ spicy nut crumble + sweet corn ceviche salsa
serves: 4-6
notes: You could probably swing the cashew sour cream in a food processor instead of a blender. Just might be a touch more chunky–still so tasty though.

sweet corn ceviche salsa ingredients:
2 cobs of corn, kernels removed
juice of 1-2 limes
salt and pepper
1/4 cup diced red onion
1/2 pint grape tomatoes, quartered
small handful chopped cilantro

spicy nut + seed crumble ingredients:

1 heaped cup of mixed, raw nuts + seeds (I used walnuts, almonds + sunflower seeds)
sea salt + pepper
ground spices you like (chili powder, cumin, coriander, or taco seasoning if you freaky)
little splash of grapeseed oil
little splash of coconut aminos (or tamari, nama shoyu, soy sauce etc)

cashew sour cream ingredients:
3/4 cup raw cashews, soaked for 3 hours or more
juice of 1/2 a lemon
tiny splash of apple cider vinegar
fat pinch of sea salt
2-3 tbsp of filtered water

to serve:
1 cabbage, leaves removed and cut into respectable taco shells
6-8 swiss chard leaves, de-veined and cut into palm-size pieces
1 ripe avocado, cut into slices
lime wedges
extra chili powder
extra chopped cilantro

Make the corn salsa: in a medium bowl, combine the corn kernels, lime juice, salt + pepper and red onion. Toss to combine. Let this sit for a while, about 15 minutes, stirring here and there. Add the tomatoes and cilantro and stir to combine. Check the mixture for seasoning and set aside.

Make the spicy nut + seed crumble: throw all of the ingredients in a food processor and pulse the mixture until a chunky paste forms. Season it to your liking, scrape into a bowl and set aside.

Make the cashew sour cream: drain the cashews and place them in a blender pitcher. Add all of the other ingredients and blend on high until a smooth paste is achieved. You may have to scrape down the sides a couple times and add some extra water. Once the mixture is smooth and tasting creamy + sour, store it in a bowl or squeeze bottle in the fridge.

To serve: lay the cabbage leaves on a platter. Line them with the swiss chard pieces. Divide the spicy nut + seed mixture among the shells. Then, scoop some corn salsa into each shell as well (there will probably be extra). Garnish each taco with some sliced avocado, cashew sour cream, a little dusting of chili and some extra cilantro. Enjoy!

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Emma25/07/2013 - 7:07 am

I love raw tacos! I’ve only made them with a walnut meat before but like the idea of using a combination of nuts. The raw corn salsa sounds a delicious addition too.

Harriet25/07/2013 - 8:16 am

These photos have me salivating – beautiful photography. And these tacos – I can taste the freshness and feel the crunch. I love all the components and all the possibilities.

Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar25/07/2013 - 8:19 am

Raw tacos are so fun…and this particular recipe is super colourful! Love!

Ashley25/07/2013 - 8:34 am

Coconut aminos are so good!! I have a feeling after the next week and a half of being in limbo between 3 houses we are going to need a meal just like this. Feeling lucky the huz also enjoys this type of deliciousness. The last sentence in this post is my fav [and so are you!]. XO!

Lauren @ La Dolce Pita25/07/2013 - 8:37 am

I’m not usually into raw but these look awesome.

Also, your post made me laugh :)

Jo25/07/2013 - 8:40 am

This is totally my kind of summer food. Fresh, light and full of flavour! I’ll defiantly be making these. I adore raw corn so much and your combo of ingredients sounds sooo good! Thank you.. I love your orange table cloth too!

Beck25/07/2013 - 11:01 am

Dude, this looks INCREDIBLE. Also, your intro made me laugh out loud.

sara forte25/07/2013 - 11:28 am

you are so wonderful. love your hippie self. By the pic, I thought that was tempeh, I am liking the nut mixture. Brilliant, you.

Golubka25/07/2013 - 12:33 pm

Your writing is so fun and the photos are tempting. Thank you for reminding me of raw tacos, so yummy and I think I have pretty much everything to make them tonight. Love raw corn!

Jennifer25/07/2013 - 12:50 pm

What a great read! I too am a “summer slipper” and a raw taco fiend. And that has to be the most beautiful, pillowy, inviting photo of a head of cabbage I’ve ever seen.

Christine Cummings25/07/2013 - 4:28 pm

You are so funny! I feel lifted by your vibes. And the tacos are beautiful.

sarah25/07/2013 - 4:43 pm

Love this! Although, I am sitting here sipping on iced coffee. But I love all your vibes. ;)

Emma Galloway25/07/2013 - 10:44 pm

This post made me laugh, I’ve been accused of having those same hippy ‘vibes’, which I’m cool with :-)
These look and sound amazing, another one to bookmark for our summer xx

Shanna25/07/2013 - 11:24 pm

Ha! I can sound pretty vibey, too, I guess, and I am so with you on craving raw things when my body needs a reset. Laura, these pictures are so good! Adding these to my to-make list soon.

Kayla26/07/2013 - 10:13 am

I can’t get enough of your recipes and writing! Absolutely love it, and can’t wait to try this one out.

carey26/07/2013 - 7:52 pm

So I avoided lettuce cups in place of taco shells for the. longest. time. I don’t know why — I guess I just imagined they wouldn’t be as good, or they’d make me feel like a weenie. I finally gave them a go this summer, and I realized that (a) they’re delicious and (b) they allow me to eat MORE TACOS. Duh. (:

Annika27/07/2013 - 12:11 pm

Looks amazing!

Another great healthy idea.

Julia28/07/2013 - 9:10 pm

WANT :)

Claire (Eat Well. Party Hard.)29/07/2013 - 8:54 am

Okay, if there at any point comes a time when we are in the same country, could we, maybe, you know–hang out? Because the whole joking-but-mostly-serious hippie BS + patio beers combo has me thinking that’d be SO much fun.

I’ll bring the beer, you bring the tacos.

Laura Wright29/07/2013 - 8:58 am

Claire, YESSSSSS! I KNOW, without any doubt in my hippie BS-loving heart, that we would vibe :)))

These tacos sound like such a treat, and perfectly light for a nice summer dinner. I plan on having company over this weekend I think these will be on the menu!

Maria | Pink Patisserie31/07/2013 - 12:11 am

This is perfect, lush summer food. I’ve yet to try a raw taco but I’m going to fix that stat. Gorgeous photos!

Elen31/07/2013 - 11:20 am

Made these last night and OMG they were so delicious. Full of flavor, but left us feeling light and satisfied when were done.
This was my first experience with your recipes, but certainly not my last.
Thank you

hungryandfrozen31/07/2013 - 3:14 pm

loving the double-green layers of the wraps! Also your relaxed attitude. Um, I mean, vibes. I’ve still got half a jar of recently-made taco pickles sitting in the fridge so will keep this in mind next time I want a vegetable onslaught.

Dervla @ the curator31/07/2013 - 4:02 pm

i’ve totally been craving caffeine in the worst way lately. That morning cappuccino gets me all revved up and then a few hours later I’ll notice a tight rushed feeling in my body, like i’m being wound up like a spring. I’m on day 3 of no caffeine, and i’m totally making these raw tacos this weekend to feel “light and full at the same time” Love it!!

PS: we were both on So, How was Your Day?! Fun :)

Courtney West01/08/2013 - 3:22 pm

I need these raw tacos in my life! I made a version recently using chard as a sort of “tortilla” but the cabbage looks a lot sturdier and easier to deal with. It gives it more of a taco vibe :)

Alanna03/08/2013 - 10:30 pm

These look absolutely DELICIOUS, especially the the nut and seed crumble. I would totally eat these and not feel deprived in the slightest. After all, my body is a temple. Now for a gin and tonic. ;)

Rose07/08/2013 - 2:33 am

Words cannot actually describe how good these look right now!!! I’m on exchange and my host family doesn’t go in for raw vegan food much (hardly surprising, I’m in northern France!) and so I must wait for another 2 months until I can get home to try them…luckily it will be spring in Australia by then!

Kristina09/08/2013 - 7:23 pm

I just made these, and they were great. I used iceberg lettuce for the shells because it was all they had at Trader Joe’s – still good, but I felt a little less healthy. The nut crumbles were AWESOME. Thanks for the recipe!

Lately | Charlotte au Chocolat12/08/2013 - 3:44 am

[…] How stunning are these raw tacos?! […]

Jeanette12/08/2013 - 6:17 pm

Goodness Yum! I am prepping these right now and the “meat” is delicious. I cannot wait to serve them tonight to my friends. Thank you for such a wonderful recipe and beautiful inspiring photos

Lauren15/08/2013 - 2:44 pm

Laura, these photos are gorgeous! I’m so inspired by your thoughtfulness in your photography, and also the FOOD. Amazing! I live in LA and eat relatively clean and these tacos totally fit the bill. I cannot wait to give them a try. So glad to have found your blog! XO, Lauren

Teresa03/10/2013 - 1:12 pm

Holy YUM!! Thank you so much for these recipes! I will be sharing the link in my blog post today (www.eatdrinkandbeskinny.com) with a few other healthy taco recipes to celebrate national taco day tomorrow. These look amazing!

Elizabeth Clarke17/10/2013 - 9:58 pm

I just shared these on my facebook page. We are having them for lunch tomorrow. YUM!

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YoungOldMe16/05/2014 - 11:38 pm

Made these for an appetizer party with 7 women. They were the best! Everybody ate them and liked them. I was surprised how many ate the cabbage leaves. I had some nice savoy cabbage leaves. Followed the recipe fairly closely. Everyone liked the nut mix part the best – I used cumin and chili powder. Thanks!

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