This vegan taco salad with pinto beans is loaded with flavor and perfect for your next southwest inspired dinner! Made with assorted grilled vegetables and smashed beans, it’s an easy way to load up on colorful veggies with plant based protein.
The shining star of this vegan taco salad are the mashed pinto beans! Well technically they are a bit more smashed pinto than mashed but we used a potato masher to get them smashed, so we will call them mashed pinto beans.
I love this easy vegan taco salad with pinto beans recipe because it is easy yet the flavor is amazing! Mashing your beans for a taco salad takes your vegan taco salad to a whole other level of creamy deliciousness.
To make this bowl colorful and wholesome add grilled vegetables with flavorful Tex Mex spices. Serve with tortilla chips and all your favorite toppings for a plant based taco salad bowl feast!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- Wholesome: Plant based ingredients like beans and vegetables combined with simple seasonings taste amazing!
- Garnish how you like: Top with all your favorite vegan taco toppings for a feast!
- Versatile: Grill your vegetables or roast them and swap out the beans for what you have on hand!
Ingredients in Vegan Taco Salad with Pinto Beans
- Pinto beans: You will need one can of pinto beans rinsed and drained. Feel free to use cooked from scratch beans!
- Pinto bean seasonings: Jalapeño, sweet onion, minced garlic, cilantro, cumin and chili powder.
- Assorted vegetables: I used broccoli, summer squash, bell peppers, portobello mushrooms and sweet potato.
- Vegetable seasoning: Salt, pepper, garlic powder, cumin, chili powder, adobo pepper, garlic and lime juice.
How to Make Vegan Taco Salad with Pinto Beans
- Pinto bean mixture: First combine your rinsed pinto beans ingredients in a bowl along with your chopped onion, jalapeño, onion and spices.
- Mash pinto beans: Mash beans with a potato masher or the back of a large spoon.
- Grill vegetables: Chop your taco seasoned vegetables with seasonings and grill over medium heat until they are done. I always like to get mine crispy, so that takes a little time longer on the grill about 30- 40 minutes.
- Combine: While your taco salad vegetables are grilling, warm up your pinto beans on the stovetop. Combine vegetables and beans in a bowl and garnish with favorite taco toppings then enjoy!
Serving Your Taco Salad with Beans
Assemble your vegan taco salad with your grilled vegetables and smashed pinto beans over fresh lettuce greens. Choose a hearty lettuce or chopped lettuce.
This plant based taco salad is best to eat when fresh, but leftovers can make for an easy lunch or dinner on a busy day!
The pinto bean mixture could be made ahead and reheated. You will need to add additional water when reheating.
I love to make this vegan taco salad as part of my meal prep. I cut up the vegetables and toss them with the seasonings. Next, I store them in a covered dish or bag in the refrigerator. I make the beans ahead of time and also store them in the refrigerator. At dinnertime, I remove the prepped and seasoned vegetables and grill them. I reheat the beans with a small amount of water.
- Beans: Use black beans instead of pinto beans!
- Use a seasoning blend: Use your favorite seasoning blend on the vegetables instead of individual spices. Taco seasoning blend, fajita seasoning or chipotle seasoning all would be great.
- Vegetables: Use vegetables of choice! Try cauliflower, green bell pepper or whatever combination you like.
- Grains: Try some cooked brown rice or quinoa in this vegan taco salad! I love rice in this southwest rice bowl!
Must Have Toppings
I love to serve this vegan taco salad with these must have toppings in my opinion!
What is the Best Lettuce for Taco Salad?
I love to use hearty lettuces such as baby kale, spinach and chard but really any salad green will be delicious. Crisp lettuce like iceberg or romaine lettuce are favorites, too!
Should I Serve Taco Salad with Tortilla Chips or Corn Chips?
I love to serve this with homemade tortilla chips as they are baked and have less sodium but corn chips are a great option since they are smaller in size.
What Goes Well with Taco Salad?
More Vegan Taco Salad Recipes
- Sweet Potato Taco Bowl
- Vegan Quinoa Taco Lettuce Wrap
- Grilled Chipotle Cauliflower Taco Bowl with Mango Salsa
Taco Salad with Pinto Beans
Mashed Pinto Beans
- 1 15 oz can low sodium pinto beans drained and rinsed
- 1/2 jalapeño finely diced
- 1/2 cup sweet onion finely diced
- 2 garlic clove minced
- 1/4-1/2 cup cilantro chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 2-3 tablespoon water
Grilled Taco Veggies
- 1 head of broccoli broke into florets
- 1/2 jalapeno chopped
- 1 sweet pepper sliced
- 1 onion sliced
- 1 summer squash or zucchini sliced
- 2 portobello mushrooms sliced
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 adobo pepper in sauce chopped (about 1 tsp of sauce)*
- 1 garlic clove minced
- 1 teaspoon lime juice
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 cup sweet potato cooked and cubed
- If using canned beans, drain and rinse.
- In small saucepan water sauté your jalapeño and onion 3 – 5 minutes. At the end of sauté time, add garlic.
- Add your beans to pan and smash them with potato masher.
- If this mixture seems dry add a little bit of water. Add in spices, stir well, then remove from stove.
- Chop all veggies – except sweet potatoes. Add all vegetables except sweet potatoes to a bowl or large ziploc bad. Add wet and dry spices. Shake bag or stir gently.
- Grill vegetables on a grill pan over high heat until done, stir frequently for 20 – 40 minutes depending on your desired doneness. Add your cooked sweet potato to grill pan during the last 10-15 minutes of grilling.
- Add all ingredients to salad bowl with fresh salad greens and your choice of toppings! Salsa, guac, vegan sour cream or cheese.
- *Substitute all seasonings and adobe pepper in the vegetable mixture with 1 – 2 tsp of this Frontier Co-Op Chipotle Blend.
- Alternately roast your vegetables in the oven at 400 degrees F for 40 minutes