I have one more week of my 52 week cooking challenge, and I am really starting to feel more comfortable in the kitchen and working with new ingredients. Trying out Whole30 and Paleo have also helped with this, as you have to find alternatives to common ingredients. Sometimes the dish work, and sometimes it doesn’t.
This week I made an alternative to the common corn or flour taco shell. This recipe showed me how to make cauliflower taco shells. The soft taco shell had great flavor, and is a great substitute if you are on Paleo or Whole30. Would I pick this over a delicious crispy corn shell… maybe not… but I would definitely make these again and scarf them down!
The Process to make these shells is pretty easy, but since the ingredients are replacements, you may not already have them in your pantry. To make your taco shells, you will need:
- 16 oz cauliflower, grated
- 2 tbsp coconut flour
- 2 tbsp tapioca flour
- 4 large eggs
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
Prepare the Batter
To start, you need to grate your cauliflower. Either buy a bag of riced cauliflower or a whole head of cauliflower and use a food processor to grate it finely. I bought a bag of cauliflower rice, but I used my food processor to grate it even finer.
Once it is finely grated, I heated my cauliflower up in the microwave for about 2 minutes. Let the Cauliflower cool a little, then use a cheesecloth to squeeze out any extra water.
Then Place the cauliflower in a mixing bowl and add your coconut flour, tapioca flour, eggs, salt and pepper. Mix everything well and it should look like the image below.
Make the Taco shells
Heat up a skillet and put some coconut oil, olive oil or avocado oil in it. I used a coconut oil spray, as that was easiest for me.
Then, place about a half cup of the cauliflower mix in the skillet. Gently use a spatula to smooth out the batter to form a shell.
After about 2-3 minutes, you should see the edges start to look dry and cooked, and at that time you can flip your shell so the other side can cook. Some of mine turned out beautiful like the picture below, and some looked a little more cooked. Both are totally fine!
After about 2 minutes on the other side, feel free to move the shell onto a baking sheet and place them in the oven at about 200-250 degrees. This will just keep the shells warm while you make the rest of them.
Before you start the next shell, spray or add some more cooking oil to the skillet and then you can pour your next cauliflower shell.
The batter yielded about 6 shells for me, 4 normal size and 2 small ones. If you need more shells, then double the recipe.
Make the Beef
To make the beef, you will need:
- 1 lb of ground beef
- 1/2 red onion
- 2 tsp chili powder
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- 2 tbsp olive oil
You want to start by mixing together the dry ingredients of the Taco Seasoning (chili powder, cumin, salt, garlic powder and pepper), and then set it aside.
Then you will dice and sauté the red onion for about 2 minutes on medium heat in a little olive oil.
Finally, it is time to add the meat to the onions. Mix the ground beef up and make sure it is fully cooked. This should take about 5 to 10 minutes and then you can throw in the dry taco seasoning and add the 2 Tbsp of olive oil. Mix until everything is fully coated and then turn the heat to low.
Build your Taco
With your Taco shells done, and your beef ready to go, it’s time to prepare your toppings. My toppings were shredded lettuce, diced tomatoes and avocado.
If you want, you can use paleo mayo as a substitute for sour cream, and you can also put olives and paleo compliant cheese on top!
In general, I just layered all my toppings on top of the cauliflower crust- lettuce, then tomato, beef and topped with avocado!
Then roll up the sides and enjoy you new and healthy taco!
Just a little disclaimer, I over stuffed mine and they completely fell apart, like a true corn hard shell taco! If you don’t want to eat it in the form of a salad, then don’t over stuff your shells!