Vegetarian Taco Bowls

These tasty vegetarian taco bowls are one of our go-to dinners! Each bowl features fluffy yellow rice, a delicious homemade cauliflower walnut taco meat, fresh salsa, guacamole, and veggies!

Vegetarian Taco Bowls

Ready for a crazy versatile, totally customizable, and utterly tasty taco bowl recipe?

Y’all better have said yes because I have some serious deliciousness in store for you today!

These vegetarian taco bowls are filled with all your favorite taco toppings and ready to rock your Taco Tuesday. You can make everything from scratch or utilize your favorite store-bought shortcuts to have these on the table in record time.

Even better? They’re a breeze to prep in advance, making them a rockin’ meal prep item that’s also great for heat and eat lunches that can be enjoyed in just minutes.

meal prep taco bowl tips

I’ll frequently make my taco meat, rice, black bean salsa and pico de gallo all in advance, then use them for multiple meals throughout the week.

We’ll have tacos one night, taco bowls another night, and even some easy cheesy quesadillas or nachos if we’re feeling fancy.

For meal prep taco bowls, I like to store the elements that are best enjoyed warm (the rice, taco filling, and optional cheese) in one container and the cold toppings in another. This way you can heat up one container and then just dump all the chilled toppings on top and dig in!

Pico de Gallo and Vegetarian Taco Meat

Feeling Extra? Make an edible tortilla taco bowl!

You can use a handy dandy ruffled Tortilla Pan to make your own edible taco bowls. I have a set of these and they’re amazing.

It’s hands-down one of the most fun foodie gifts I’ve received! and you should totally gift these to all your kitchen-savvy friends.  Or just run out and buy one for yourself.

Microwave a large flour tortilla for 10 seconds to soften. Rub or spray with a little bit of your favorite healthy oil and place it in the non-stick tortilla pan shell. Bake at 350 F for 6-10 minutes. Now you have a crispy tortilla to fill with all your favorite taco bowl or taco salad ingredients!

They also work with corn tortillas so feel free to snag a few of those if you’d like to make gluten-free taco bowls. Easy peasy!

Vegetarian Taco Bowls with Fresh Salsa

special diets and swaps

The ingredient combo below can 100% be used as a basic blueprint for creating your ideal taco bowls. For this vegetarian recipe, I used a tasty cauliflower walnut taco meat as my protein.

If you’re feeling a T-Rex vibe, by all means feel free to use seasoned ground beef, ground turkey, or shredded chicken here.

If you’re paleo, keto, low-carb or following whole30 you can skip the beans/corn and nix the rice in favor of cauliflower rice or, since the veggie taco meat is loaded with riced cauliflower, serve it taco salad style!

As written the recipe is totally vegan, but if you’re vegetarian and craving some cheese, go for it!

Vegetarian Taco Bowls

Vegetarian Taco Bowls

Vegetarian Taco Bowls

These tasty vegetarian taco bowls are one of our go-to dinners! We start with a bed of fluffy yellow rice topped with a tasty seasoned taco meat (that's totally vegetarian - whoo!) plus fresh pico de gallo, veggies, and more!
5 from 12 votes
Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: Tex-Mex, Vegetarian
Keyword: Taco Bowls
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 2 servings
Author: Jenn Laughlin - Peas and Crayons


  • 1 cup uncooked yellow rice
  • 2-3 cups shredded lettuce
  • 1-2 cups pico de gallo
  • 1/4-1/2 cup corn (canned, steamed, etc...)
  • 1/4-1/2 cup black beans (cooked or canned)
  • fresh chopped cilantro to taste
  • fresh guacamole to taste

Cauliflower Walnut Taco Meat

  • 6 oz cauliflower florets or 1.5 cups riced cauliflower
  • 1 cup unsalted walnut pieces
  • ½ TBSP chili powder
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • ¼ tsp garlic powder
  • ¼ tsp salt plus extra to taste
  • tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1 tsp hot sauce
  • 1-2 TBSP enchilada sauce or taco sauce


  • First let's make the faux taco meat! Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  • If using cauliflower rice, just set aside 1 + 1/2 cups and pulse your walnuts in a food processor until it resembles fine crumbles. Using florets? Add both walnuts and cauli to the food processor and blend into crumbles together. There's a photo in the blog post for size reference, if needed.
  • Season cauli-walnut mxiture with chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, salt, and optional cayenne pepper. Mix well and spread on a greased baking sheet in a thin layer. Roast for 30 minutes, stirring at the 15-minute mark for even browning. Once done, add hot sauce enchilada/taco sauce and mix it up. 
  • While your cauliflower mixture roasts, cook the yellow rice via package instructions, approx. 20 minutes.
  • While everything cooks, prep your veggies and toppings. Once the rice and seasoned cauliflower mixture are ready, layer them both at the bottom of two bowls and top with your choice of toppings. Enjoy!


Feel free to add any extras your heart desires. Chopped avocado works just as great as guac, sour cream for a tasty + tangy topping, lime wedges for an added burst of citrus, etc... Have fun with it!
Don't forget to check out the blog post for tips on making edible taco bowls, extra toppings and swaps, plus some awesome meal prep tips for this recipe!


Calories: 447kcal, Carbohydrates: 101g, Protein: 10g, Fat: 1g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 810mg, Potassium: 326mg, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 13g, Vitamin A: 944IU, Vitamin C: 10mg, Calcium: 45mg, Iron: 1mg

Cauliflower taco meat adapted from Pinch of Yum

Vegetarian Taco Bowls with Cheese Sauce

If you get a chance to try this taco bowl recipe, let me know! Leave some love in the comment form below or tag your photos with @peasandcrayons on Instagram so I can happy dance over your creation! I can’t wait to see what you whip up!

more taco night favorites

If you’re a fan of seafood you have goooooot to try my Spicy Sriracha Shrimp Tacos with Cilantro Lime Slaw <– they’re one of the most popular recipes on my blog!

You can also get your vegan on with some tasty Roasted Cauliflower Tacos. I absolutely LOVE these!

Looking for a delish dip? Try my Cilantro Lime Edamame Dip (vegan) or Skillet Black Bean Queso.

Jenn Laughlin Headshot Photo - About the Author
About The Author:

Jenn Laughlin

Jenn Laughlin created Peas and Crayons in 2009 after graduating with B.S. in Dietetics from Florida State University while working as a Nutrition Educator for WIC. The goal was simple: create and share delicious tested and perfected recipes with vegetables as the star!

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Recipe Rating

Questions & Reviews

  1. 5 stars
    OMG, we made this today, leaving out the taco sauce, and adding sour cream instead of guac. It is to die for and already saved to make it over and over again. Perfect for the summer. I even want to try it as a breakfast bowl with a fried egg on top.

  2. 5 stars
    so good!!!! caution with the rice, little bit on the salty side. i loved the cauliflower and walnut idea! i didnt miss the greasy beef at all honestly, or even sour cream because i made my salsas from scratch, which makes all the difference!

  3. 5 stars
    Made this for the first time tonight and it was easier and faster than I expected! My 8-year-old said it’s now in her top 3 favorites. Win win.

  4. These taco bowls look so tasty! I love having this type of meal when it’s warm out 🙂

  5. 5 stars
    These are so tasty! The whole family loved them, we will definitely be making these again!