These Pinto Pecan Lettuce Boats are for when you need tacos, but crave something a little lighter. A pecan and pinto bean “meat” forms the base of these lettuce boats, which are topped with salsa, sunflower seed sour cream, and avocado for a delicious and healthy vegan lunch or light dinner.
I have long admired Jackie Sobon’s food blog, Vegan Yack Attack. Her inventive recipes, bright and colourful food photography, and authentic voice won over my heart long ago. So naturally, when the opportunity arose to share a recipe from her third cookbook, Vegan Yack Attack’s Plant-Based Meal Prep, I jumped at it.
Vegan Yack Attack’s Plant-Based Meal Prep is brilliant in concept, layout, and content. It is broken down into four parts:
- Making Meal Prepping Easy
- Weekly Meal Prep For One
- Mix And Match For All
- Basics And Bonuses
Part one includes tips on organizing, essential meal prep equipment, helpful ingredients to stock, and definitions of the recipe labels in the book.
Part two guides you through meal prepping for one, and features six full weekly menus accompanied by grocery lists. You read that right: your grocery list is already written for you! You’ll never get bored of your meals with such delicious recipes as Baked Berry Oatmeal, Fajita Pita Pockets, Smoky Sweet Potato Soup, and Breakfast Sandwiches.
Part three is your section if you are meal prepping for more than one: think couples, families, or, as Jackie writes, “veggie-enthusiast roommates!”
Finally, part four is dedicated to basics and bonuses: all of the vegan sauces, dips, dressings, snacks, and sweet treats you’ve ever dreamed of. Everything from Lemon Quinoa Bites to Spinach-Onion Sour Cream Dip can be found in this section.
Beyond the mouthwatering recipes, I think what I appreciate the most about this cookbook is that it helps to answer a question that many folks have: “How do I prepare a week of plant-based meals?” A typical cookbook is a collection of recipes, but Vegan Yack Attack’s Plant-Based Meal Prep is much more than that. It’s a valuable resource for all: whether you are in the process of switching to a plant-based diet, or you are already vegan but want some meal prep inspiration, this is the book for you!
It was no easy feat to decide on a recipe to share from the book, let me tell you. Some of the recipes that I’m dying to try include:
- Overnight Chai Chia Pudding
- Curried Tofu Wraps
- Lemon-Rosemary Chickpea Pasta Casserole
- Creamy Avocado Tahini Zoodles
- Peanut Butter Pancake Sandwiches
- Kimchi Mac and Cheese
- Grilled Chimichurri Seitan Salad
- Springtime Sheet Pat Polenta Pizza
- Apples with Tahini Caramel
… and many, many more!
I was absolutely awestruck (though not surprised, given Jackie’s talent) by the number of recipes and menus. There really is something for everyone.
Alas, I settled on the Pinto Pecan Lettuce Boats because as you all know, this gal loves her tacos. I whipped them up for lunch a few days ago and found them to be completely satisfying. Better yet, they are SO quick and easy to make. They came together in under 15 minutes. You can even make the pinto pecan ‘meat’ and sunflower sour cream ahead of time so that all you need to do is assemble them when hunger strikes.
how to make the pinto pecan lettuce boats:
Pulse together pecans, chopped red onion, chili powder, cumin, sea salt, coriander, cayenne, and pinto beans in a food processor until chunky.
Warm a couple teaspoons of oil in a large cast iron skillet. Cook the pinto pecan “meat” for 3-5 minutes.
Meanwhile, arrange 8-12 romaine lettuce leaves and get your toppings handy: salsa, sunflower sour cream, avocado, limes, and cilantro.
Assemble the taco boats by spooning the pinto pecan mixture onto the lettuce leaves. Top with sunflower sour cream, salsa, avocado, lime juice, and cilantro.
Of course, if you prefer a heartier dish, then by all means make them into tacos instead of lettuce boats!
I hope that you love this recipe and the cookbook! If you make it, leave a comment and a review below. We would be so grateful to hear how you liked it. And share a photo to Instagram and tag both @upbeet.kitchen and @veganyackattack!
Healthy vegan pinto bean and pecan lettuce ‘tacos.’ These babies are perfect for when you want to enjoy Mexican flavours, but want something a little lighter than a taco.
Reprinted with permission from Jackie Sobon and Fair Winds Press, an imprint of Quarto Publishing Group USA Inc. © 2020
- 1 ½ cups raw pecans
- ¾ cup chopped red onion
- 1 tbsp chili powder
- 1 ½ tsp cumin
- ½–¾ teaspoon salt
- ½ tsp ground coriander
- Pinch cayenne pepper
- 2 (15 oz) cans pinto beans, drained and rinsed
- 2 tsp sunflower oil
- 8 large or 12 smaller romaine lettuce leaves
- 1 ripe avocado, diced
- ½ cup salsa
- ¼ cup sunflower sour cream (recipe follows)
- 2 tbsp cilantro, chopped
- 1 lime, sliced into quarters (my addition)
SUNFLOWER SOUR CREAM
- 1 cup raw sunflower seeds (do not use roasted and salted)
- ¾ cup water
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tsp white vinegar
- ½ tsp salt
In a food processor equipped with an S-blade, pulse the pecans, onion, chili powder, cumin, salt, coriander, and cayenne until the pecans are broken into pea-size pieces. Add the pinto beans and pulse a couple of times until they have broken down to roughly one-quarter of their original size.
- Heat the oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add the pecan-pinto mixture and cook, stirring occasionally and breaking up the big chunks, until there is some browning on the crumbles, 3 to 5 minutes.
- To serve right away, divide the filling between the romaine lettuce leaves, then top each one with avocado, salsa, Sunflower Sour Cream, if using, and cilantro. If prepping for later, store the lettuce leaves, filling, and toppings separately in the refrigerator for up to 7 days. Reheat the filling before serving if desired.
- Make the Sunflower Sour Cream: Place the sunflower seeds in a small pot and cover them with water. Cover and bring to a boil, then adjust the heat to medium-low and simmer for 5 minutes. Strain the water from the seeds and transfer the seeds to a blender. Add the water, lemon juice, olive oil, white vinegar, and salt and puree until completely smooth, scraping down the sides a few times. (If you are using a blender, you may need to add more water, 1 tablespoon (15 ml) at a time.) Store in the refrigerator for up to 10 days.
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Cook Time: 5 minutes
- Category: Lunch, Supper
- Cuisine: Vegan
Keywords: vegan bean and nut taco meat, vegan pinto pecan lettuce boats, vegan yack attack’s plant-based meal prep, vegan lettuce boats
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