21 Best Vegan Mexican Recipes – How To Make Plant-Based Mexican Food – Delish

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Going plant-based doesn’t have to mean giving up your Mexican faves!
Cutting out meat, dairy, and eggs doesn’t have to mean cutting out flavor, particularly when it comes to a cuisine that’s as known for its spice as traditional Mexican food is. Whether you’re a lifelong vegan, a curious omnivore, or just looking for healthy recipes, these vegan ideas are great for a Cinco de Mayo party, Taco Tuesday, or dinner anytime. We bet you won’t miss the meat and cheese (much!).
It’s true, meat and cheese are staples in a lot of our favorite Mexican dishes. The trick isn’t to try and replace them with fakes (though there’s definitely a time and a place for things like Impossible burgers or vegan cheeses too), and instead work with whole ingredients that can be a good alternative to the original, rather than a replacement. Our chipotle vegan queso or vegan chipotle lentil tacos might not taste exactly like queso fundido or cheesy beefy tacos, but they’re still every bit as satisfying. Our air fryer cauliflower tacos are pretty much the vegan version of our fish tacos—you might find yourself craving them over the OG version. While traditional tortilla soup usually contains chicken, we’ve swapped ours out for beans for a thicker stew that’s a little bit vegan tortilla soup, a little bit vegan chili. Yum! Pair all these recipes with naturally vegan guacamole, pico de gallo, salsa verde, or red salsa for best results. And don’t forget the baked tortilla chips!
We’ve also included a few drinks and sweets here to round out your meal. Margaritas are a classic, and we love an upscale Cadillac one—if you’re already checking to make sure your tequila is vegan, you might as well go for the good reposado too. Don’t skip our mangonada sorbet—it’s got salty-sweet chamoy in it, which is just weird enough to work.
Check out our lists of more plant-based and vegan food recipes too.
This side dish is addictively delicious enough for us to eat for breakfast (maybe alongside some tofu scramble?), lunch (stuffed in our vegan crunchwrap), and dinner (tucked into homemade flour tortillas with our favorite meatless meat).
Get the Mexican Rice recipe.
To get extra crispy “fried” cauliflower, you gotta use your air fryer. This recipe is basically the vegan version of our favorite fish tacos. The finishing touch? A quick and easy pickled slaw for a bite of freshness and a spicy mayo for a touch of heat.
Get the Air Fryer Cauliflower Tacos recipe.
We updated our favorite Taco Bell copycat crunchwrap supreme to be totally vegan and completely irresistible. Creamy vegan queso dip and meaty lentils make a satisfying filling while a quick trip in a hot skillet adds crunch to every bite
Get the Vegan Crunchwraps recipe.
Chipotle lends earthy color, smokey flavor, and spice, but it isn’t the only chile that works here. You can swap the chipotle with red salsa of your desired spice level, stir in the Texas classic Ro-tel, or spice it up with harissa, a North African chile paste.
Get the Chipotle Vegan Queso recipe.
Tofu is so much more than a meat substitute, it’s a protein source that stands on it’s own, and the perfect base to soak up tasty sauces, like this chipotle and guajillo chili marinade inspired by a popular Mexican street food, tacos al pastor. Serve the skewers as an appetizer or make it dinner by de-skewering the chile-spiced tofu and charred pineapple right into tortillas for taco night.
Get the Chipotle Tofu & Pineapple Skewers recipe.
Tamales aren’t just fun to eat, they’re a great solo or group project for anyone who loves to cook. Make it a party by involving your friends, enlist your partner or spouse for a different kind of date night, or get the whole family involved. Tamale making is a joy, and tamales are a great canvas for different kinds of fillings.
Get the Tamales recipe.
A Cadillac margarita is one made with a high quality tequila (typically a reposado) along with grand marnier. Reposado tequila will have notes of oak and vanilla, making this margarita really stand out. Make sure your guarantee your tequila is vegan too!
Get the Cadillac Margarita recipe.
Everyone has opinions about Mexico’s most famous avocado-based dip: guacamole. Some, like us, keep it simple. We prefer to let the flavor of our avos shine. Others like to go crazy on the mix-ins: spices, tomatoes, garlic, etc. If that’s your thing, this guacamole is the perfect jumping off point. Add whatever you like!
Get the Best-Ever Guacamole recipe.
These vegan tacos are loaded with bright flavors and a variety of textures—just like any good taco should be! Serve them up with some frozen margaritas and homemade guacamole for the full Taco Tuesday experience.
Get the Vegan Chipotle Lentil Tacos recipe.
Our version of Sikil p’ak, which in Mayan means “pumpkin seed” and “tomato” respectively, is inspired by the Yucatecan version that uses ground unhulled pumpkin seeds and red tomatoes. Our riff uses hulled pepitas and charred tomatillos, and its subtle smokiness keeps us coming back for more.
Get the Sikil P’ak (Pumpkin Seed Salsa) recipe.
Get the Mangonada Sorbet recipe.
Our favorite taco salad got a vegan makeover. Filled with grains and two different types of beans, it’s a filling salad worthy of your dinner table. The spicy dressing brings tons of flavor and is our favorite part of the salad. Top it will all of your favorites like cherry tomatoes and tortilla chips for a little crunch!
Get the Vegan Taco Salad recipe.
We’re piling on the flavor here, because “vegan” doesn’t mean missing out on any of the fun! There’s three kinds of chili peppers, three kinds of canned tomatoes, hominy for chew, creamy black beans for protein, a medley of spices, all topped with a wondrous assortment of toppings: fried tortillas for crunch, raw onions and radish slices for freshness, rich avocado, and a squidge of lime juice to brighten it all up a notch.
Get the Vegan Tortilla Soup recipe.
A good, simple salsa is easy to make at home. To make ours the most flavorful salsa ever, we use both cherry tomatoes and fresh off-the-vine tomatoes. We also roast some of the ingredients to intensify their flavors and make this salsa POP!
Get the Homemade Salsa recipe.
Don’t confuse this colorful salad with guac—there’s way more depth of flavor and variety of texture, which makes it one of our favorite summer sides of all time. But the real beauty? You’re totally welcome to still eat it with tortilla chips. (Just know it tastes amazing without ’em.)
Get the Avocado Tomato Salad recipe.
This classic Mexican drink is made by soaking rice and almonds with cinnamon and blending everything together with milk and sweetener. You can easily make it vegan by sticking with water or a nut milk, and if you want to make it a more decadent treat, add more sugar!
Get the Horchata de Arroz recipe.
We don’t mind using the canned stuff for cooking, but homemade is always better. Plus, if you’re serving it straight-up, like with baked tortilla chips, making it fresh makes all the difference.
Get the Salsa Verde recipe.
Churros take a LOT of effort, and often contain non vegan-friendly butter. Make these addicting almonds instead when you want a cinnamon-sugar fix. Just make sure to use vegan white chocolate for the drizzle, or swap it for your favorite dark chocolate.
Get the Churro Almonds recipe.
Though it may seem surprising, homemade flour tortillas are extremely easy to make at home. And they can be ready in under an hour! You’ll need: flour, salt, baking powder, cold vegetable shortening, and water. That’s it! Prefer corn tortillas? We got you too.
Get the Homemade Flour Tortillas recipe.
This veggie-packed paella comes together in under an hour, and, even better, most of the cooking happens in the oven. Briefly returning the skillet to the stovetop after baking is the key to achieving a crispy rice crust on the bottom, often referred to as socarrat (meaning “burnt” in Catalan).
Get the Veggie Paella (Paella Verdura) recipe.
Need a quick snack for cocktail hour? A last-minute appetizer for a potluck? A topping for your vegan nachos when there’s no store-bought salsa to be found? Pico de gallo is here to save the day. Be sure to taste your hot peppers before adding to your salsa, and adjust the amount according to your spice preferences.
Get the Classic Pico De Gallo recipe.

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