Vegan Carnitas Tacos

VEGAN JACKFRUIT CARNITAS TACOS

I used to visit Mexico every year when I was younger and carnita Sundays were tradition. We actually had them for brunch every Sunday morning with fresh corn tortillas, just carnitas and tortillas — that’s it!

When I went vegan I refused to let go of my favorite foods, and so far I think I’ve “veganized” all the essentials. This carnitas recipe is one of my vegan Mexican recipes that I am most proud of. 

These crispy jackfruit carnitas are savory, tender, versatile and so easy to make! This is one of the easiest recipes on the blog because it only requires 7 ingredients. You’ll want to make this recipe every singe well for taco Tuesday.

VEGAN JACKFRUIT CARNITAS TACOS RECIPE
VEGAN JACKFRUIT CARNITAS TACOS

Substitutes

Jackfruit:
Jackfruit is typically found in cans called “jackfruit in brine”. This is the easiest way to get your jackfruit because it can take an entire hour to remove seeds/cut open a fresh jackfruit.

If you’re not a fan of jackfruit, I highly recommend using shredded king oyster mushrooms instead. It is actually super meaty and amazing in this recipe! It can also be harder to find as most stores don’t usually carry it. I like to get it at an asian market in the east bay area. 

Liquid smoke:
This is not absolutely necessary for this recipe but it adds a hint of meat-like smokiness which is a nice touch. It’s nice to have on hand as I also use it for my vegan seitan recipe and I’ve also heard it makes great vegan bacon!

Oil:
You can use any neutral oil in this recipe such as vegetable oil, canola oil (no it’s not bad for you *eye roll in dietitian*) or even olive oil. Adding the oil is important as pork/carnitas are high in fat. So if you are looking for an authentic carnitas recipe I recommend adding the oil.

VEGAN JACKFRUIT TACOS

Tips

  • For extra crispy jackfruit I recommend using an air fryer or oven. Air fry at 375 F for 8-12 minutes depending on the desired texture.
  • Make sure that you drain and rinse jackfruit well to get rid of the brine flavor. Pat dry after rinsing with a kitchen towel or a paper towel.
  • For best results, marinate for a minimum of 30 minutes.
  • Add jackfruit carnitas to burritos bowls, tacos, burritos, nachos or a plate of rice and beans!
VEGAN JACKFRUIT CARNITAS TACOS
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Vegan Carnitas Tacos


  • Author: Anna Rios
  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 15
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

The easiest jackfruit carnitas that are delicious and super quick to prepare. Eat in form of tacos, nachos, burritos, bowls and more. Make these vegan carnitas on taco Tuesday or everyday!


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 large can of jackfruit

For sauce:

  • 1/2  tsp garlic powder or minced garlic
  • 2 tbsp liquid aminos, tamari or soy sauce
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tbsp avocado oil
  • 1/8 tsp liquid smoke
  • 1/2 tbsp maple syrup

For tacos:

  • 810 corn tortillas
  • 1/2 small onion
  • Cilantro
  • Salsa of choice
  • Lime wedges

Instructions

Cook option:

  1. Open can of jackfruit, drain and rinse well. Shred jackfruit and dry with kitchen towel or paper towels.
  2. Add all sauce ingredients to a mixing bowl and whisk together until well combined.
  3. Add shredded jackfruit to mixing bowl and mix in until it’s evenly coated in sauce. Let sit for at least 30 minutes is possible. If not, 10 minutes is okay.
  4. Turn a pan on medium-high heat and add jackfruit to pan once it’s hot. Cook for 12-15 minutes until golden brown, only stirring occasionally.
  5. Warm up tortillas on a skillet, dice onions and assemble your tacos.

Air Fryer option:

1. Follow steps 1-2 from above. Air fry for 8-12 minutes on 390 F until desired texture is achieved.

No cook option:

  1. Open can of jackfruit, drain and rinse. Shred jackfruit and dry with paper towels.
  2. Add all sauce ingredients to mixing bowl and whisk until well incorporated.
  3. Add jackfruit to sauce. Marinate jackfruit for at least 1 hour or overnight for best results. Warm-up jackfruit in microwave for at least 1 minute before serving.
  4. Warm-up tortillas in microwave for 15 seconds on each side and add jackfruit, cilantro and salsa.
  • Category: Dinner
  • Cuisine: Mexican

Keywords: Vegan, Mexican, Plant-based, jackfruit, tacos, vegan tacos, easy vegan recipe, weeknight dinner, jackfruit tacos, jackfruit carnitas

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