Plant Based Recipes

NEW Taco Salad with Healthy Cauliflower Meat Crumble

This healthy taco salad with cauliflower meat crumble is a whole foods, plant-based recipe! Using cauliflower meat to replace the ground beef and a cashew-based sour cream means you get to enjoy all of the delicious creamy flavors of a traditional taco salad, without added cholesterol and unhealthy fats.

Taco Salad shown in a white bowl with cauliflower meat crumble

Ingredients for Taco Salad with Cauliflower Meat Crumble

This is a really easy and simple meal that can be thrown together on a weekday. Perfect for meatless mondays!

To make this Taco Salad with Cauliflower Meat Crumble you will need:

  • Lettuce. I used iceberg lettuce because I love the crisp crunch!
  • Cauliflower. You can use a regular head of cauliflower and chop it yourself, or to save time you can grab a fresh or frozen bag of “cauliflower rice”.
  • Beans. I used red kidney beans for my salad, but you can swap out black beans or pinto beans as well! You’ll need 1 can for this recipe (about 2 cups).
  • Corn. I used frozen corn kernels for my recipe, but if you have canned or fresh corn, that works too.
  • Green Pepper. I sliced up a green pepper for this recipe, but feel free to swap this with any type of pepper.
  • Salsa. Here I’m using a jarred, mild salsa. Use your favorite brand, or make your own!
  • Cashew Sour Cream. I used my homemade dairy-free cashew sour cream recipe here. You can swap this for another dairy-free sour cream substitute like Tofutti if you like.
  • Spices. I used garlic, oregano, smoked paprika, and cumin, but you could just add a taco spice mix or swap and trade spices to suit your tastes.
  • Toppings. I topped my salad with hot sauce and green onions. Any traditional taco toppings would be really good here: tomato, dairy-free cheese, olives, etc.

How to Make Cauliflower Meat

Making the cauliflower meat substitute is dead simple. I chose to keep this recipe oil-free, and you can too!

Just heat a non-stick skillet over medium heat and add your finely diced cauliflower.

Sprikle the spices over the cauliflower and mix to combine.

I let my cauliflower cook down for about 20-30 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes or so.

This gave the cauliflower a delicious dark colour and created crispy edges that were so good in this salad!

Taco Salad shown in a white bowl with cauliflower meat crumble

More Meatless Mains

Try these other healthy vegan recipes next:

Benefits of Cauliflower Meat

I wanted to show you guys an easy meat free alternative here using cauliflower because it’s health benefits are incredible!

Cauliflower is a cruciferous vegetable, meaning it’s one of the healthiest vegetables you can eat.

It contains many nutritents our bodies need to thrive, plus added fiber.

It’s also really low in calories, so if you are trying to lose a little weight its a great alternative.

Here are even more ideas for tacos instead of meat:

Some other delicious plant-based, vegan meat alternatives that would be really good in tacos are:

  • Lentils
  • Walnut meat
  • Seitan (store-bought veggie crumbles)
  • Textured Vegetable Protein (TVP), like this one (affliliate) from Bob’s Red Mill

Taco Salad with Cauliflower Crumble

This healthy taco salad is a whole foods, plant based recipe! Using cauliflower to replace the ground beef and a cashew based sour cream means you get to enjoy all of the delicious creamy flavors of a traditional taco salad without added cholesterol and unhealthy fats.

Course Main Course
Cuisine Vegan, American
Keyword Cauliflower meat, Taco Salad
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 230 kcal
Author Megan Kerry


  • 4 cups cauliflower, finely diced about 1/2 a head
  • 1 can black beans, kidney beans or pinto beans about 2 cups
  • 2 cups corn kernels
  • 1 green pepper, sliced
  • 1 head lettuce of your choice, chopped and washed
  • 1 cup salsa, divided
  • 1/2 cup cashew sour cream or other non-dairy sour cream
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • salt to taste
  • cayanne pepper to taste **optional

To Top Your Salad

  • diced green onion
  • olives
  • hot sauce


  1. Heat a non-stick skillet over medium heat.

  2. Add the finely diced cauliflower to the skillet and sprinkle with the spices.

  3. Dry saute the cauliflower for 20-30 minutes, stirring occassionally. The cauliflower should be deply browned with crispy edges when it's done cooking.

  4. In a separate pot or pan add an inch of water and the sliced green pepper.

  5. Water saute the green pepper over medium heat for 5 minutes, until just tender.

  6. Open the can of beans and rinse under hot running water.

Assemble the Salad

  1. Divide the lettuce, cauliflower, beans, corn, and green pepper evenly between 4 bowls.

  2. Top the salads with 1/2 cup salsa, 1/4 cup cashew sour cream, fresh green onion , olives and hot sauce.

Recipe Notes

**Calorie and nutritional information is an estimate only.

Taco Salad shown in a white bowl with cauliflower meat crumble

Need more calories?

This taco salad comes in on the lighter side at only around 230 calories for 1/4 of the recipe.

This has a lot to do with the fact that we’ve taken out a traditional protein that has a lot of calories and fat and swapped it for a vegetable.

This is a great option for people who are looking to lose weight or who need a lighter meal that day.

But for those of you who need more calories to maintain your weight, or who have a very active lifestyle, here are two ways you can bulk this recipe up:

  1. Add cooked grains, like brown rice to the salad to increase the carbs and calories
  2. Include more cashew cream for additional fat and calories

Sharing is caring…

I hope you guys liked this easy alternative for a quick meatless monday meal.

Please share this post with a friend! It helps my blog grow!

Pin it!

Here is a pin I’ve created for your board so you can come back to this recipe when you’re ready to give it a try!

pinterest pin for Healthy Taco Salad with NEW Cauliflower crumble

Looking to try vegan?

If you’re brand new to plant-based eating and you want to take it a step further, then let me help you go vegan!

Zero to VeganI’ve totally revamped my Zero to Vegan program. It has all of the information you need and walks you through creating your very own vegan meal plan using easy plant-based principals.

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Read This Next….

Vegan Meat Substitutes Explained (Tofu, Tempeh, TVP, Seitan)

Megan Kerry

Megan Kerry is a Vegan Lifestyle Educator and Licensed Practical Nurse. Her content focuses on vegan recipes and ethical living. She is a mom of four children, a long time vegan, and an even longer time foodie. She loves veganizing any and all dishes and sharing her recipes and lifestyle tips with all of you!

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