Black Bean Tacos

Quick Summary

Black Bean Tacos served in crispy taco shells with creamy avocado sauce, pickled red onions, shredded cabbage, and cheese. These restaurant style tacos are easy to make at home and a family favorite dinner!

black bean tacos with toppings

These Black Bean Tacos are one of my all-time favorite taco recipes. They are restaurant quality tacos that are EASY to make at home.

The black bean filling is made with basic ingredients, but the flavors are outstanding. We serve the black beans in crispy, crunchy, cheesy taco shells that will WOW you. We also top the tacos with creamy avocado sauce, pickled red onions, finely shredded cabbage, and whatever other toppings we have on hand.

The black bean tacos are hearty, satisfying, and perfect for an easy weeknight dinner. You can also serve them at a dinner party and let everyone customize their own tacos with lots of fun toppings. Your friends and family will love them!

black bean tacos in crispy taco shells with pickled red onions, cabbage, and avocado sauce

Black Bean Ingredients

We are jazzing up black beans with onion, garlic, spices, and more to make the BEST black bean tacos. Even meat lovers will enjoy these vegetarian tacos.

  • Olive oil or avocado oil– for sautéing the onion.
  • Onion– we use a yellow onion, but a white or red onion will work well too.
  • Garlic– garlic gives the beans great flavor!
  • Black beans– to keep things super simple, I use a 15-ounce can of black beans. Make sure you rinse and drain the beans before using.
  • Spices– cumin, chili powder, and smoked paprika
  • Oregano– dried oregano is a classic herb used in Mexican cooking.
  • Vegetable broth– to add moisture to the beans. I like to use broth for extra flavor, but water will work too.
  • Tomato paste– a little tomato paste adds a depth of flavor and makes the beans come together.
  • Lime juice– zesty and fresh!

Crispy Taco Shells

We like to make crispy taco shells for the black bean tacos. They are actually Josh’s specialty. He briefly fries corn tortillas in hot oil and then sprinkles them with salt and cotija cheese. The shells are crispy, salty, and cheesy. The perfect base for the tacos!

  • To make the crispy tortillas: Add the oil to a small skillet until it is ½ inch up the sides. Heat the oil over medium-high heat until hot (350 degrees), this will take about 5 to 7 minutes. Line a plate with paper towels and place by the skillet.
  • When the oil is hot, carefully place a tortilla in the hot oil and cook until it is blistering but still soft, about 10 to 15 seconds. Using tongs, turn tortilla over and then immediately fold to form a taco shell. Once the tortilla is holding its shape, turn until crisp and golden all over, 15 to 30 seconds longer.
  • Transfer to the prepared plate and sprinkle with cotija cheese and a little salt on the inside and outside of the taco shell. Make sure you sprinkle the cheese on when the tortillas are hot so it will stick. Continue frying the tortillas. If the oil starts to smoke, it is too hot, turn down the temperature and wait a bit.
crispy taco shells

How to Make Black Bean Tacos

  • To make the beans, heat the oil in a large skillet. Add the onion and cook until softened, stirring occasionally, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the black beans, cumin, chili powder, paprika, and oregano. Stir to coat the beans in the seasonings.
  • Add the vegetable broth (or water), tomato paste, lime juice, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine and cook for about 3 minutes, or until tomato paste dissolves and the beans thicken. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper, if necessary.
  • I like to mash the beans up a little with a spoon or fork to give them a creamier texture.
  • To assemble the tacos: Spoon the black beans into the center of the crispy tortillas. Top with your favorite toppings and serve immediately.

Taco Toppings

If you are looking for taco topping ideas, I’ve got you covered. Here are some of our favorites that go GREAT with the black bean tacos.

Serving Suggestions

Taco nights are the best nights! If you want to serve a few side dishes with the tacos, here are a few suggestions.

black bean tacos with pickled red onions, cabbage and avocado sauce

More Taco Recipes

Black Bean Tacos

Black Bean Tacos served in crispy taco shells with creamy avocado sauce, pickled red onions, shredded cabbage, and cheese. These restaurant style tacos are easy to make at home and a family favorite dinner!
5 from 1 vote

Ingredients
  

For the black beans:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil or avocado oil
  • 1/2 yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 15- ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 3/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 cup vegetable broth or water
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste

For the tacos shells:

  • 8 corn tortillas
  • Olive oil or avocado oil, for frying
  • Cotija cheese

Taco toppings:

Instructions
 

  • To make the beans, heat the oil in a large skillet. Add the onion and cook until softened, stirring occasionally, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the black beans, cumin, chili powder, paprika, and oregano. Stir to coat the beans in the seasonings.
  • Add the vegetable broth (or water), tomato paste, lime juice, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine and cook for about 3 minutes, or until tomato paste dissolves and the beans thicken. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper, if necessary. You can mash them a little with a large spoon if you want.
  • To make the crispy tortillas: Add the oil to a small skillet until it is ½ inch up the sides. Heat the oil over medium-high heat until hot (350 degrees), this will take about 5 to 7 minutes. Line a plate with paper towels and place by the skillet.
  • When the oil is hot, carefully place a tortilla in the hot oil and cook until it is blistering but still soft, about 10 to 15 seconds. Using tongs, turn tortilla over and then immediately fold to form a taco shell. Once the tortilla is holding its shape, turn until crisp and golden all over, 15 to 30 seconds longer.
  • Transfer to the prepared plate and sprinkle with cotija cheese and a little salt on the inside and outside of the taco shell. Make sure you sprinkle the cheese on when the tortillas are hot so it will stick. Continue frying the tortillas. If the oil starts to smoke, it is too hot, turn down the temperature and wait a bit.
  • To assemble the tacos: Spoon the black beans into the center of the crispy tortillas. Top with the creamy avocado sauce, cheese, shredded cabbage, pickled red onions, pico de gallo, cilantro, and a little cotija cheese (or whatever toppings you like). Serve immediately.

Nutrition

Calories: 256kcal, Carbohydrates: 44g, Protein: 10g, Fat: 6g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 3g, Sodium: 471mg, Potassium: 516mg, Fiber: 11g, Sugar: 2g, Vitamin A: 310IU, Vitamin C: 6mg, Calcium: 94mg, Iron: 3mg
Keywords vegetarian, vegetarian tacos

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Maria

I'm Maria and my husband is Josh. We share a love of cooking, baking, and entertaining. We enjoy creating recipes that are simple, fresh, and family friendly. We love sitting around the table with good food, good conversation, and good friends and family! Our kitchen is always open!
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  1. 5 stars
    Fabulous! My meat loving husband loved them too! It did take awhile to do because I made all the sides. The avocado cream was the BOMB! Also loved the pico de gallo and pickled red onions! I forgot to sprinkle the shells with cheese and salt – still delicious! I used 6 inch tortillas and could barely fit it all in. Just be prepared that this takes a lot longer than anticipated. Plan ahead!