Vegan chicken tacos are an easy, flavor-packed weeknight meal. These tasty soy curl tacos come together in about 20 minutes!
I love cooking with soy curls! They work great in sticky sauces, like my BBQ soy curls recipe, but they're also delightful with a dry seasoning in these vegan chicken tacos.
Soy curl tacos are:
- quick and easy to make
- packed with protein
- super flavorful
Ingredients and substitutions
- soy curls - These are the base for your tacos. You can make these with pressed and sliced tofu instead, if you'd rather, though the texture will be different.
- spices - Chili powder, garlic and onion powders, cumin, and coriander bring deep flavor to your soy curls.
- corn starch - This helps the seasonings adhere to the soy curls. You can use potato starch or tapioca starch, if you prefer.
- lemon pepper - This is widely available in the U.S., but I wasn't sure if it was as common overseas, so I wanted to talk about it quickly. It's a mixture of black pepper, lemon zest, and salt. Use ¼ teaspoon black pepper and another pinch of salt, if you can't find this at the store. Squeeze some lemon or lime over the tacos to make up for the acidity.
- oil - This is to sauté your soy curls.
- small flour tortillas - Use your favorite tortillas for tacos! Whole wheat, gluten-free, or corn tortillas are all fine subs.
- limes - A squeeze of lime juice brightens up the flavors of soy curl "chicken".
- toppings - Use your favorite taco toppings, like guacamole, lettuce, tomato, onion, vegan cheddar shreds, cilantro, and vegan sour cream or garlic cashew cream sauce.
How to make soy curl tacos
Start by soaking and draining your soy curls. Soak them in hot water or vegetable broth for 10 minutes, then drain and wring them out.
When you wring them out, make sure you really squeeze and get that water out! You don't want them too wet.
While the soy curls soak, prepare your spice mix and toppings.
After draining the soy curls, toss them together with some lime juice and all of the spices, plus a little corn starch and salt. When they're well coated, you're ready to pan fry.
Heat some oil in a skillet on medium-high heat, and cook the soy curls, stirring frequently, until they start to turn golden on the edges.
Now, it's time to assemble your vegan chicken tacos! Spoon some of the soy curl chicken into one of your tortillas, and top with your favorite taco toppings. Repeat to make as many tacos as you like.
- Make sure that you wring out those soy curls well! You want them rehydrated, but they shouldn't be too wet.
- Toss the soy curls with the seasoning either in a high-sided bowl or in a large, zip top bag, shake-and-bake style!
- Make sure you're really cooking those soy curls until they're nice and crisp for the best results.
Store any leftover soy curl taco filling and toppings separately from the tortillas and from each other.
The soy curl chicken will keep for three to four days in the fridge. Reheat in the microwave or in a frying pan before assembling your tacos.
Frequently asked questions
They are! Soy curls are minimally processed and made from whole, non-GMO soybeans.
Soy curls have an even more neutral flavor than tofu, after cooking. And that's saying something! They also have a very different texture.
This recipe can easily be made gluten-free! Just use gluten-free tortillas and toppings, and you're good to go.
More vegan taco recipes
Vegan Chicken Tacos (Soy Curl Tacos)
- 2 cups soy curls
- 2 cups warm water or use broth for even more flavor
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon corn starch or potato starch
- ½ teaspoon ground coriander
- ½ teaspoon lemon pepper or use ¼ teaspoon black pepper and another pinch of salt
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 8 small flour tortillas or corn tortillas
- lettuce, tomato, onion, vegan cheddar shreds, cilantro, vegan sour cream for topping - optional - use your favorite chicken taco toppings!
- Place the soy curls into a bowl and pour on enough boiling water to cover them completely. Let them soak for 10 minutes, then drain them. When the soy curls are cool enough to handle, squeeze out the excess water and transfer them to a high-sided bowl or a large, zip top bag.
- Add the lime juice to the soy curls, tossing to coat well. In a separate small bowl, combine the salt and all of the spices and cornstarch. Add the spices to the bowl or bag of soy curls, and toss to coat the soy curls really well in all of that seasoning.
- Heat the oil in a pan on medium-high heat and add the soy curls. Cook, stirring frequently, for 7-10 minutes, until the soy curls start to brown and turn crispy.
- Divide the vegan chicken mixture between your tortillas, and add toppings of your choice. Serve immediately.