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Vegan Birria Taco Recipe

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  • Author: Chuck Underwood
  • Prep Time: 60 min
  • Cook Time: 30 min
  • Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Yield: 6-8 servings 1x
  • Category: Main Course
  • Method: Stovetop, Blender
  • Cuisine: Mexican
  • Diet: Vegan


Be still my heart! A fan requested these Vegan Birria Tacos and they may be my new favorite thing. Juicy, "meaty" soy curl tacos with an out-of-this-world consommé to dip them in. Oh man, they are good. 


Units Scale


  • 8 oz bag of Butler Soy Curls


  • 8 guajillo chiles
  • 4 ancho chiles
  • 1 chile de arbol (optional)
  • 1 white onion
  • 6 cloves garlic
  • 1 (15 oz can) fire-roasted tomatoes
  • 1 tsp chipotle in adobo
  • 1 small stick of Mexican cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp black peppercorns
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp Mexican oregano
  • 3 whole cloves
  • 2 allspice berries
  • 4 cups water
  • 4 tsp Better Than Bouillon vegetable base
  • 3 Tbs apple cider vinegar
  • 1 Tbs balsamic vinegar
  • 1 Tbs mushroom powder
  • 1 tsp low-sodium tamari (or soy sauce)
  • 1 tsp vegan Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp marmite yeast extract


  • 12 corn tortillas
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1/2 cup diced white onions
  • lime wedges


  1. Prep chiles by removing the stems, seeds, and veins.  Toast in a 250°F oven for 10 minutes then add to a pot and cover with enough hot water to submerge.  
  2. In a small skillet, toast the cumin, allspice, cloves, bay leaves, peppercorns, and cinnamon until fragrant.  Add the oregano and grind into a fine powder using a mortar & pestle or coffee grinder.  Set aside. 
  3. Sauté the rough-chopped onion and garlic until softened.  Then add the tomatoes, chipotle, and ground spices.  Mix well and simmer until bubbly. 
  4. Add the tomato/onion mixture to a high-speed blender along with the rehydrated chiles and 1 cup of the chile water and process until smooth.
  5. Transfer the sauce to a large dutch oven and add the mushroom powder, water, bouillon, vinegar, tamari, Worcestershire, and marmite. Simmer until bubbly.   
  6. While the sauce is simmering, rehydrate the soy curls.  Add them to a large bowl and cover with hot water.  When they are soft, squeeze out as much moisture as you can.
  7. Add your soy curls to the sauce and mix well. Cover the pot and simmer over low heat for at least 30 minutes for all of those wonderful flavors to meld.  When they are finished, use a slotted spoon to transfer the "meat" to another bowl. 
  8. To make traditional Birria Tacos:  Whisk 1/4 cup of the broth with 1 tsp oil and use a pastry brush to paint both sides of a corn tortilla.  Place the tortilla into a hot cast-iron skillet, wait a few seconds, then flip the tortilla.  Place your desired amount of soy curls onto half of the tortilla along with some diced onion and cilantro.  Carefully fold the other side over forming a taco.  
  9. To make an OIL-FREE taco, hang a few corn tortillas from the upper rack in your oven so they drape down.  Bake at 375° F for 5 minutes or so until they are crispy.  Fill with your desired amount of meat, onions, and cilantro. 
  10. Serve tacos with a bowl of the consommé for dipping.