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7 Healthy Taco Recipes That Are Too Good to Pass Up

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7 Healthy Taco Recipes That Are Too Good to Pass Up

When you want food in a hurry, there’s nothing easier to throw together than tacos – except maybe their close cousin, the sandwich. As long you have a wrap like tortillas, a filling of meat and/or veggies, and a flavorful salsa, you can create a delicious lunch or dinner that suits all your nutritional goals.

Some of these healthy taco recipes come with a paired salsa recipe too. Why bother making salsa from scratch, you might wonder?

Well, not only can you take advantage of seasonal produce, like heirloom tomatoes and ripe mangoes, but you get total control of the ingredients and calories, thereby avoiding added sugars, artificial flavors, food coloring, or even just the lackluster base that is tomato paste.

Enjoy!

 

 Easy Fish Tacos with Carrot-Cabbage Slaw

healthy-tacos

Picture courtesy of According to Elle

It’s hard to not love a good fish taco recipe, and this one is sure to please.

The interesting combination of ingredients gives you a bit of the traditional (lime, avocado, cilantro) and the eclectic (carrot, cabbage, vinegar), and the result is downright delicious.

Serves 4

Ingredients

Tacos:

1 lb. tilapia (or other white fish), filleted into one-inch strips

2 1/2 Tbsp. flour

1 egg, beaten with 1 Tbsp. water

2/3 cup Panko bread crumbs

3 Tbsp. refined sunflower oil (or grapeseed oil)

8 small corn tortillas

1/2 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt

Lime wedges (for serving)

Slaw:

1 large carrot, shredded

1/4 small red cabbage, shredded

1 Tbsp. white wine vinegar

Juice from 1/2 lime (2 Tbsp.)

1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped

1 jalapeno, minced after removing seeds

Instructions

1. Make the slaw first in a medium bowl, mixing together the shredded carrot, cabbage, white wine vinegar, lime juice, and chopped cilantro. Set aside to allow the flavors to develop for at least 15–20 minutes.

2. Batter the fish, first coating the filets in flour. Then dip them in the beaten egg-water mixture, and evenly coat with Panko breadcrumbs.

3. Heat 2 Tbsp. of oil in a large skillet. Cook the fish over medium-high heat, flipping after about 3–4 minutes. Add the remaining tablespoon of oil, and then cook the second side until the filet is evenly browned. When finished, the fish will be firm and opaque.

4. Carefully char or warm the tortillas for about 30 seconds on each side. Divide the fish among the tortillas, and top with the carrot-cabbage slaw.

5. Garnish with Greek yogurt, fresh cilantro, lime juice, and whatever else sounds tasty to you.

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 421

Protein: 31 grams

Carbs: 42 grams

Fat: 15 grams

 

Pulled Pork Tacos with Peach-Cherry Salsa

healthy-taco-recipes

Picture courtesy of Iowa Girl Eats

There are a lot of ways to use shredded meat prepared in a slow cooker, and one of the easiest and most versatile is to make tacos.

By changing the toppings, tortilla type, and flavor of salsa, you can eat a week’s worth of shredded chicken or pork without eating the same taco twice. If you’re running low on creative Mexican flavor pairings, try this peach-cherry salsa.

Serves 8

Ingredients

Pulled Pork Tacos:

4 lb. pork shoulder

1 large sweet onion

4 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (canned) + 2 Tbsp. sauce

1/2 cup BBQ sauce

2 Tbsp. brown sugar

20 oz. Dr. Pepper (or similar natural soda)

6 large flour tortillas

Salt and pepper to taste

Cherry-Peach Salsa:

1 cup chopped sweet cherries

1 cup chopped peaches (about 1 large peach)

1/4 cup chopped cilantro

1 jalapeno, minced

Salt to taste

Juice of 1 lime (about 1/4 cup)

Instructions

1. Make the salsa ahead of time, and leave in the fridge for a day or two so the flavors meld together. To prepare, simply mix the cherries, peaches, cilantro, jalapeno, salt, and lime juice together. Cover, and refrigerate.

2. Quarter the onion, and separate the layers to cover the bottom of a 5-quart (or larger) slow cooker.

3. Trim the excess fat from the pork butt (AKA pork shoulder), and cut into 4–6 large pieces. Season liberally with salt and pepper, and then add the meat to the pot with the onions.

4. Add chipotle peppers, adobo sauce, BBQ sauce, brown sugar, and Dr. Pepper to the slow cooker. Cover, and cook on low for 8 hours. Once finished, the pork will easily pull apart with a fork.

5. Remove the pork, and shred the meat. Transfer to a bowl, and set aside. Using a cheesecloth, strain the liquid from the slow cooker, and pour over the meat so it’s extra juicy and flavorful.

6. Divide the pork evenly among the tortillas, and top with peach-cherry salsa. Enjoy!

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 649

Protein: 73 grams

Carbs: 49 grams

Fat: 16 grams

 

Vampire Tacos

recipe-healthy-tacos

Picture courtesy of Vegan Heritage Press

If you want to work more plant-based proteins into your diet, you probably look to quinoa, peanuts, and other popular vegetarian proteins. But did you know you can get over 20 grams of protein from tacos – no meat required?

The Vegan Tacos cookbook has lots of suggestions for how to make this Mexican street food staple without missing classic meat fillings like carne asada, pollo, or carnitas.

Serves 4

Ingredients

2 cups cooked pinto beans

1 Tbsp. olive oil

1/2 tsp. salt

1 1/2 cups shredded Daiya vegan pepperjack cheese

2 serrano chiles, sliced very thin

8 6-inch corn tortillas

1/2 white onion, diced

1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped

Instructions

1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. In a medium bowl, drizzle the olive oil over the beans, sprinkle with salt, and toss until well coated. Place the beans in a baking dish, and roast uncovered for 15 minutes. Stir every 5 minutes so the bottom does not burn.

2. As the beans bake, lay the tortillas on the bottom rack of the oven. Toast for a couple minutes until the edges begin to harden and curl. Then, sprinkle them with cheese, and keep in the oven until the cheese melts.

3. Add the beans to the cheesy, crisp tortillas, and top with chiles, onion, and cilantro. And you can keep adding whatever you want from there on: avocado slices, salsa verde, etc.

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 507

Protein: 22 grams

Carbs: 72 grams

Fat: 14 grams

 

Shrimp Tacos with Blueberry-Avocado Salsa

healthy-taco-recipe

Picture courtesy of Driscoll’s

This ingredient combo may seem unusual, but this is one well-balanced taco in terms of both flavors and nutritional value.

The blueberries add just enough sweetness to complement the shrimp with a little acidic bite, and the avocado is smooth and creamy to make sure this healthy recipe satisfies all your flavor and texture cravings.

Serves 1

Ingredients

1 tsp. garlic powder

1/4 tsp. cumin

1/4 tsp. chili powder

1/4 tsp. paprika

1 tsp. fresh lime juice

5 oz. shrimp, peeled and deveined

1 tsp. olive oil

1/4 avocado, chopped

1/2 cup blueberries

1 Tbsp. fresh cilantro, chopped

1 tsp. fresh lime juice

Salt and pepper to taste

2 corn tortillas

1/8 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt

Instructions

1. Prepare the seasoning in a medium bowl by stirring together garlic powder, cumin, chili powder, paprika, and lime juice. Add the peeled and deveined shrimp, and toss to coat. Let sit for 10 minutes.

2. Add olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat, and once warmed, sauté the shrimp for about 5 minutes, until cooked through. Remove from the pan, and set aside.

3. To make the salsa, lightly mash the blueberries. Add avocado cubes, cilantro, lime juice, salt, and pepper. Mix gently until combined.

4. Spread 1 Tbsp. of Greek yogurt on each corn tortilla. Fill with shrimp and blueberry salsa, dividing evenly. Enjoy immediately.

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 445

Protein: 27 grams

Carbs: 44 grams

Fat: 20 grams

 

Want to know how to build muscle and lose fat eating delicious foods like these?"Dieting" doesn't have to suck. You CAN eat foods you like and have the body you want!

Turkey Taco Skillet

recipe-tacos-healthy

Picture courtesy of Yummy Healthy Easy

Craving taco flavor without the tortillas? Try this one-pot dinner that combines lean turkey, brown rice, and your favorite salsa to make a bowlful of taco-tasting goodness.

The toppings listed here are recommended, but feel free to garnish with your favorite Mexican ingredients.

Serves 6

Ingredients

1 lb. lean ground turkey

1 package taco seasoning

2 1/4 cups water

2 cups salsa, preferably thick and chunky

1 can (11 oz.) mixed corn and bell peppers

2 cups instant brown rice

1 cup shredded cheddar, or queso fresco

1/4 cup low-fat sour cream

Fresh chopped cilantro (for garnish)

Instructions

1. Heat a skillet over medium-high, and add the ground turkey. As it cooks, break up the meat with a spoon or spatula, and stir regularly so the turkey becomes evenly browned.

2. Stir in the taco seasoning, salsa, canned corn, and brown rice. Add the water, cover, and let cook for 15–20 minutes. It will be done when most of the liquid has been absorbed, making the turkey taco mixture hearty and thick.

3. Once the rice is al dente, take the lid off, and stir in the cheese and sour cream. Divide into six bowls to serve, and garnish with fresh cilantro.

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 572

Protein: 33 grams

Carbs: 71 grams

Fat: 18 grams

 

Korean BBQ Tofu Tacos

tacos-healthy-recipe

Picture courtesy of Chef de Home

Trying to work tofu into your diet, but can’t get past the feel?

With the right marinade for grilling, this tofu taco filling takes on savory flavor as well as a browned exterior that alters the texture. The tofu ends up a little crispy on the outside, chewy on the inside – similar to a carne asada.

Toss it with mixed veggies and wrap it in a soft tortilla, and your past encounters with rubbery tofu will become a distant memory.

Serves 2

Ingredients

1/2 lb. extra-firm tofu

2 wheat tortillas

1 cup mixed vegetables

3 Tbsp. brown sugar

2 tsp. sesame oil

2 tsp. fish oil

3 garlic cloves

1/2 Tbsp. ginger

3 whole green onions (white and green sections)

1 Tbsp. rice vinegar

2 – 3 Tbsp. Sriracha

1 Tbsp. sesame oil

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Fresh cilantro for garnish (optional)

Instructions

1. Drain the liquid from the block of firm tofu, and remove excess moisture by wrapping it in a paper towel to sit for 10 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, mix the marinade. In a food processor, blend soy sauce, fish sauce, brown sugar, sesame oil, rice vinegar, half the sriracha, sliced scallions, ginger, and garlic. Process until smooth.

3. Slice the tofu into cubes, and add to the mixture. Cover and let marinate in the fridge for 20 minutes.

4. Heat a heavy pan or griddle over high heat. Spray with oil, and add the tofu to the pan. The cubes will start to steam. Cook about 2–3 minutes on each side, until crispy and brown.

5. Assemble the tacos. Grill the tortillas for a minute, if desired, and fill with grilled tofu and selected veggies. Garnish with fresh cilantro, and top with remaining sriracha chili sauce.

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 547

Protein: 26 grams

Carbs: 49 grams

Fat: 32 grams

 

Kung Pao Chicken Tacos

SONY DSC

Picture courtesy of Bistro Bess

Easy-to-make recipes and information about healthy eating are becoming readily available now thanks to the internet, but that ease of access to the information necessary for a well-balanced diet doesn’t always lead to a good dinner – especially after a busy day.

Now from-scratch, good-for-you food is even easier to enjoy with convenient services like Blue Apron, which not only give you the recipe instructions but also deliver all the ingredients you need to prepare them. When everything you need to cook is right on hand, there’s no excuse not to.

 Serves 2

Ingredients

3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

3 Tbsp. peanuts, roughly chopped

1 bunch fresh cilantro, stems removed

1 red bell pepper, sliced in thin strips

1 green onion, green and white parts separated and thinly sliced

1 stalk celery, thinly sliced at an angle

2 Tbsp. soy sauce

1 Tbsp. cornstarch

1 Tbsp. honey

1 Tbsp. sambal oelek (spice blend)

1 Tbsp. sesame oil

2 tsp. rice vinegar

10 oz. ground chicken

8 6-inch corn tortillas

Instructions

1. Make the stir-fry sauce in a small bowl. Mix together the soy sauce, cornstarch, sesame oil, rice vinegar, honey, and 1/2 cup water. Slowly stir in the sambal oelek, stopping to taste for desired spice level.

2. Toast the peanuts in a large nonstick pan. Place it over medium-high heat, and add the dry peanuts for 2–4 minutes, until starting to brown and become fragrant. Shake the pan periodically as they toast, and once done, transfer to a small bowl.

3. Wipe down the pan, and use it to heat 2 tsp. oil with the stove at medium-high. Season the chicken with salt and pepper, and then add to the heated oil to cook. Break apart the ground chicken as it cooks, and stir regularly to brown all sides. Sauté chicken until cooked through, about 4–5 minutes.

4. Add another teaspoon or two of oil to the pan, along with garlic, red bell pepper, celery, and the whites of the green onion. Stir well, and season with salt and pepper. Let cook for a minute or two until the peppers start to soften, and then add the stir fry sauce. Cook, stirring frequently, for another couple minutes, until heated through and sauce is thickened. Remove from heat, and cover the pan loosely to keep the taco filling warm.

5. In a clean, dry pan – or directly on the stove burner – warm the tortillas for about 20 seconds on each side. Transfer to a plate with a paper towel until all tortillas are finished.

6. Stack two tortillas, and fill them with the chicken and vegetables, and garnish with cilantro, remaining green onion, and toasted peanuts. (Tip: To cut carbs, use one tortilla instead of two.)

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 740

Protein: 54 grams

Carbs: 71 grams

Fat: 27 grams

 

What did you think of these healthy taco recipes? Have anything else to share? Let me know in the comments below!

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