The Perfect Vegetarian Taco

Mj 618_348_tk kale taco
Melissa Hom

Even though beans, cheese, and lettuce are usually instrumental ingredients when you tell somebody you're making tacos, they probably expect some sort of meat. Pork, chicken, or steak tend to be the stars of the show, while all the other things in the tortilla are relegated to secondary status. 

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These roasted mushroom and grilled kale tacos from Bodega Negra Chef Michael Armstrong throw all of that out the window. The veggies are the main attraction, and let the peppers, garlic, and lime shine in a way that meat might end up overpowering. These tacos are so flavorful, that it only takes a few minor substitutions that could even make these a perfect option if you have some vegans coming over for dinner and need something to serve them. 

Roasted Mushroom and Grilled Kale Tacos Bodega Negra Recipe by Chef Michael Armstrong 


  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 oz shimeji mushrooms (brown or white), bottom stems removed, separated
  • 4 oz cremini mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, sliced thin
  • 1 shallot, sliced thin
  • 1 jalapeno, cut in half, seeds and veins removed, and sliced thin
  • 1 poblano chili pepper, roasted, peeled, deseeded, and sliced thin
  • 1 tbsp wheat-free tamari soy sauce
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 large bunch organic kale
  • 2 limes, juiced
  • 4 corn tortillas, 4–5 inch
  • 4 oz Queso Oaxaca, grated (can substitute jack or white cheddar)
  • 4 tbsp fresh pico de gallo 


  1. In a large sauté pan melt butter with one tbsp olive oil, add mushrooms and cook, tossing well for one to two minutes.
  2. Add garlic, shallot, jalapeño, and poblano and cook together on low heat, stirring occasionally, for 8-10 minutes, until mushrooms are lightly caramelized.
  3. Remove from heat and add soy sauce and toss together, adjust seasoning with salt and pepper. Set aside and hold warm.
  4. Take the kale and cut off the bottom, tougher stems, toss in a large bowl with 2 tablespoons olive oil and lime juice and season with salt and pepper.
  5. Cook on a hot grill or under a broiler until wilted and lightly charred. Remove from heat and let cool slightly. Chop kale in large pieces, removing some of the larger, tougher stem pieces.
  6. On a flat-top griddle, toss mushrooms and kale together to reheat.
  7. Lightly toast tortillas until soft, fill each tortilla with an equal amount of the mushroom and kale mix, top with grated cheese and pico de gallo. Serve immediately with fresh lime and chilled tequila!


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