The perfect fusion of meaty plant-based protein and refreshing light garden flavors is what Vegan Tofu Taco Salad Bowl with Creamy Dressing is made of. This recipe features savory tofu crumbles seasoned with zesty taco seasoning, complemented by your choice of favorite toppings. The homemade creamy southwest dressing adds a delightful touch to this refreshing and healthy salad with no cashews needed.
In my Meal Prep Playbook, I share my formula for prepping meals without spending hours in the kitchen. By spending one hour (or less!) prepping for the week, you'll be able to make a variety of dinners easily.
The basis of my meal prep strategy requires one versatile ingredient prepped ahead so weeknight cooking is a breeze, and Tofu Ground Beef is the perfect meal prep recipe.
Our vegan ground beef recipe is used in our Tofu Stuffed Peppers, Crumbled Tofu Tacos, and the Teriyaki Rice Bowl. All offer a variety of flavors and textures, ensuring that you won't feel like you're having the same meal every night, unlike many meal prep plans.
In this post, I share the following:
- How to assemble this salad bowl to serve family-style or if having guests.
- How to make the creamy southwest dressing in under 5 minutes!
- What kitchen gadget I use most to save tons of time prepping fresh vegetables in the kitchen.
Use this section to jump to areas of interest within the post.
Packed with protein-rich tofu crumbles and vibrant garden flavors, this salad bowl is a perfect choice for a healthy and delicious meal. The toppings are both pantry friendly and fresh from the garden or produce section.
For the bowl:
- Crumbled Tofu Taco Meat - the extra-firm tofu crumbles is a great recipe to multiply and prep ahead. The tofu has a small amount of active cook time, making it an easy main ingredient to throw together when ready to eat. Tip: press your tofu for a faster cook time in the oven with the best texture.
- Romaine lettuce - chopped and crunchy!
- Toppings: chopped cilantro, creamy avocado, lime juice, tomatoes, black beans, corn kernels, and red onions or yellow onions. Get creative and use your favorite taco-style toppings.
For the southwest dressing:
- Vegan mayo - feel free to use plain vegan yogurt as the base if you prefer.
- Spices - chili powder, paprika, ground cumin, garlic powder, and salt. Optional for my spicy lovers: add a pinch of cayenne pepper!
- Maple syrup - adds a touch of sweetness and balances the flavors. You can substitute for any other sugar replacement.
- Lime - the juice of one lime is all you need to balance the acid in this dressing. I recommend you use fresh lime juice, not bottled.
See the recipe card for full quantities and instructions.
Get creative and go wild using the toppings you crave! This recipe is best in a countertop taco bar served buffet style. Add tortilla bowls for extra crunch & taco night fun!
Recommendations for other toppings:
- Crushed grain-free or corn tortilla chips or tortilla strips
- Pico de gallo
- Pinto beans
- Bell pepper
- Brown rice
- Green onions
- Cilantro sprigs
- Vegan sour cream
You can also substitute our tofu meat for any other store-bought plant-based protein. Salsa also makes a great clean salad dressing, which can be used in place of the homemade dressing shared in this post.
This taco bowl recipe is insanely simple to through together once prepped. Grab your large salad bowls and start assembling all the prepped ingredients.
Wash and dry your chopped romaine lettuce. Prep the plant-based protein into a tofu chorizo on the stovetop. Then, prep the dressing and the toppings.
Once your prep is completed, assemble the salad bowls. Start by layering the lettuce, then the vegan taco meat on top.
Add your toppings to the bowl.
Drizzle the southwest dressing and desired sauces for the best-tasting taco salad!
For this vegan recipe, you'll need a large skillet for the taco meat and a good knife to chop vegetables, or a vegetable chopper (linked above).
As with any taco dish, store all ingredients in separate airtight containers and assemble the salad when ready to eat. All ingredients will last in the fridge for up to 5 days once prepped.
Work smarter, not harder, in the kitchen, with my most used kitchen gadget, this vegetable chopper. It chops any vegetable into small or large diced pieces in seconds, saving a ton of time in the kitchen.
Can I meal prep with this recipe?
Yes, the tofu crumbles are used as the base of the taco meat and part of my meal prep series! Store all ingredients in separate containers and pull out what you'll need throughout the week.
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Vegan Tofu Taco Salad Bowl with Creamy Dressing
Vegan taco meat:
- Tofu Ground Beef (Tofu Crumbles) one serving will serve 2 people, double or multiply batch if needed
- ½ onion, diced
- 1 tablespoon Better Than Boullion: vegetable base Alternatively, use 1 cup of veggie broth and omit water
- ½ cup filtered water + more if needed to coat the bottom of the pan
- 1 teaspoon of each spice: chili powder, garlic powder, ground cumin, paprika
- 1-2 heads fresh romaine lettuce, chopped
- 15 ounce can of black beans
- 15 ounce can of corn kernels
- 3-4 red tomatoes, diced
- ½ onion, diced
- 1 avocado, chopped
- fresh cilantro sprigs, chopped
- 1 cup vegan mayo or plain vegan yogurt
- ½ teaspoon of each spice: paprika, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder, salt
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 1 lime, juiced
- filtered water
- Start by prepping the vegan taco meat. Heat a medium-sized skillet on medium-high heat and add the chopped onion with either ¼ cup of water or 1 tablespoon of olive oil to the bottom of the pan. Cook until tender and fragrant (2-3 minutes). Then, sprinkle the spice blend into the pan.
- Next, add one tablespoon of bouillon base to the pan with ½ cup of filtered water. Stir until the bullion dissipates into the water and onions. Then, add the tofu crumbles to the pan, and add more water if needed to cover the bottom of the pan. The tofu crumbles should absorb all liquid. Once golden brown and the juices have been absorbed, set the vegan meat aside.
- Prep the dressing by adding all ingredients (except the water) to a bowl and mix until smooth and creamy. Add one tablespoon of filtered water at a time until you reach your desired salad dressing consistency.
- Prep the lettuce and toppings, dice the vegetables, etc., and set aside in small serving bowls.
- Assemble the salad bowls: fill the bowl with lettuce, then taco meat, add toppings, and finally, the dressing. Sprinkle with cilantro and serve immediately!