It goes without saying that tacos are ubiquitous in Dallas. What isn’t as ubiquitous, however, are vegetarian taco options. Most taco joints offer at least one vegetarian taco, though most often, it’s an uninspiring vegetable option slapped on the menu with little thought or care. But there are some places around town that are doing more creative things with their vegetarian taco offerings. These are taquerias in Dallas where you can find original and plentiful vegetarian and vegan taco options.
Taco Ocho, with locations in Flower Mound, Frisco and Richardson, has four vegan and one vegetarian taco options on its menu. The Ocho Maya has zucchini, corn, red onions, poblanos, red bell peppers and Oaxaca cheese. Their most popular vegan taco is the Rico Ocho, with black beans, plantains, potatoes, chili sauce, onions, jicama, cabbage and cilantro. For $10.99, you can try two tacos, which are served with chips, salsa, rice and beans.
In Lake Highlands, head to Resident Taqueria, where they have a board full of vegetarian specials. The day we visited, they had a fried eggplant taco with cabbage, avocado salsa and pico de gallo; a charred cebollitas taco with queso panela, avocado salsa and poblano; and a shishito con queso taco with pickled red onion and cotija cheese, among others. Though the specific lineup of vegetarian tacos rotates, they do always offer a variety of inventive options. They also have two vegetarian tacos on the permanent menu — caramelized cauliflower and slow-cooked mushroom. All vegetarian tacos are $3.
Velvet Taco, a “unique and funky fast-casual” concept, has three vegetarian choices on their menu. There's a Nashville hot tofu taco ($3.50) with crispy tofu, Napa slaw, ranch crema and house-brined pickles. The falafel taco ($3.75) is served in a lettuce wrap, rather than tortilla, and is stuffed with tahini crema, arugula, tomato, pickled Fresno chilis, pickled red onion and pea tendrils. Their fried paneer taco ($3.75) includes tomato chutney, tikka sauce, raita crema and Thai basil.
Tacodeli is an import from Austin, now with four locations in Dallas. They offer four vegetarian tacos and one vegan option on their lunch menu, things like the Heather ($3.75), filled with grilled queso fresco, organic refried black beans, guacamole, lettuce and tomato. The papadulce ($3.25) includes roasted sweet potato, grilled corn, roasted peppers, caramelized onion, toasted pepitas and a chipotle-camote sauce. They also have seven vegetarian breakfast tacos and one vegan option: the freakin’ vegan ($2.85), with organic refried black beans, avocado and pico de gallo. Alternatively, you can build your own vegetarian or vegan taco using their list of 15 vegetarian or vegan fillings.
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El Palote Panadería is Dallas’ only vegan Mexican restaurant. At El Palote, their fillings are soy-based meat alternatives. Choose from vegan chicharrón con salsa, chicharrón crispy, carne guisada, al pastor, carnitas and bistec. You can order a plate of four tacos plus rice and beans for $10.50. In addition to their vegan tacos, they have vegan burritos, flautas, tortas, enchiladas, menudo and tamales.
At Torchy’s Tacos, you can find four vegetarian tacos on their breakfast menu and two on their regular menu. The dirty Sanchez breakfast taco ($3.75) has scrambled eggs with a fried poblano chile, guacamole, escabeche carrots, cheddar cheese and poblano sauce. For lunch, try the fried avocado taco ($3.75) with refried beans, pico de gallo, lettuce, cheddar cheese and hand-battered fried avocados. All of their vegetarian menu items are noted on the menu and also include sides like street corn ($4.75), refried beans ($2.25) and rice ($2.25).