Saturday, March 17, 2012

Meatless Taco Salad

I've been in a food funk here lately. With all the talk about pink slime, as well as other research into what is *really* in the food we absentmindedly buy at the grocery store, I've gotten to the point where I wish I was adept at mass gardening and animal farming so I could know exactly where my food is coming from.

I've been so disgusted by the pink slime reports lately that since last week, I've eaten NO meat at all. I've been in this daze, walking through the grocery store as well as driving down the road past all the fast food restaurants. Much of what I see is not an option in my head anymore, as disgusted as I am at the moment.

I don't plan to fast from meat indefinitely, but I do plan to cut red meat out of our diet now. We had already cut down significantly anyway on red meat, due to its strong link to colon cancer and heart disease. I figured we could get our protein elsewhere, you know? Ground turkey is a good substitute in most cases for ground beef, and recently we've been buying ground wild turkey from Whole Foods.

Anyway, with this has come more searching for tasty meatless recipes that we can live with. My big thing is trying not to sacrifice taste in eating healthier!

So, in this, I present you with a Meatless Taco Salad! We've decided to use some of the full fat products, particularly in dairy, to eat as little added crap as possible to the food. When fat comes out, something else (usually unnatural) goes in to preserve the taste. Ive decided that I'd rather have completely natural, even if that means more calories and fat.


  • 4 whole wheat tortillas (8 inches)
  • 6 cups shredded romaine, or acceptable lettuce
  • 1/2 cup no salt added canned pinto beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 small tomato, chopped
  • 1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onions
  • 2 tablespoons sliced ripe olives, drained
  • Sliced jalapeno peppers, optional
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons ranch salad dressing
  • 1 teaspoon taco seasoning found here
  • 1/4 teaspoon hot pepper sauce, optional


  • Place four 10-oz. custard cups upside down in a shallow baking pan; set aside. Place the tortillas in a single layer on ungreased baking sheets.
  • Bake at 425° for 1 minute. Place a tortilla over each custard cup, pinching sides to form a bowl shape. Bake for 7-8 minutes or until crisp. Remove tortillas from cups to cool on wire racks.
  • In a large bowl, combine the romaine, beans, tomato, cheese, onions, olives and jalapenos if desired. In a small bowl, whisk the dressing ingredients. Pour over salad ; toss to coat. Serve in tortilla bowls.