Updated: Jan 20
Green or Red leaf lettuce
Plain Yogurt or Dairy-Free Sour Cream
Local Bounti - Hamilton
Amaltheia Organic Produce - Belgrade
Hot Mama's Salsa - Bozeman
Trevino's Tortillas - Billings
"Straight From the" Farm Fresh Eggs - Manhattan
Kalispell Kreamery - Kalispell / WayFare - MT, NE
Stovetop Refried Beans for Tacos or Huevos Rancheros
Any number of things can be used to fill and top tacos - that's what makes them so great. And it never hurts to have a quick recipe you can put together from some pantry items in a pinch. Homemade refried beans are quick, simple, and better than canned (in my opinion). Recipe from Kathryne Taylor, makes ~5 servings.
1 Tbs oil - whatever you prefer to cook with
1/2 C red onion, diced small - or any color onion
1/4 tsp salt, plus more to taste
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
Chile peppers, diced, canned or fresh (optional, for extra heat)
1/2 tsp each chili powder and ground cumin
2 15-oz cans black or pinto beans, drained, or ~3 C fully cooked beans
1/2 C water
1 Tbs lime juice
1-2 Tbs chopped cilantro (optional)
Heat a saucepan over medium heat, then add the oil. As soon as it's hot and shimmering, add the onions and salt. Stir occasionally until the onions are soft and translucent, ~5-8 minutes.
Add the garlic, hot peppers if using, and other seasonings. Stir constantly for ~30 seconds, then add the drained beans and water. Mix well and put a lid on the pan for ~5 minutes.
Uncover and reduce heat, then mash with a potato masher or other utensil, smashing at least half the beans or as much as you like. (A food processor will get them very smooth, if that's your preference.)
Once to your liking, remove saucepan from heat and stir in lime juice and cilantro, if using. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed. Mix in a tiny bit more water if they're too dry. Keep warm until you're ready to eat.
Easy Vegetarian Tacos
Use the refried beans as a filling for tacos topped with any number of your favorite fillings, such as: Salsa and/or hot sauce, Sour cream or plain greek yogurt, Shredded cheddar, jack, or crumbled queso fresco, Chopped cilantro, Thinly sliced lettuce and/or cabbage, Sliced avocado or guacamole, Fresh lime juice, Sliced bell pepper or jalapeño, raw or pickled red onions (recipe below), etc.
Pickled Red Onion
1 medium red onion or 2 small onions, very thinly sliced
1/2 C water
1/2 C vinegar/s - a combo of white and apple cider vinegar work well, or use any except balsamic.
1 1/2 Tbs honey, maple syrup, or other sweetener
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (optional, for heat)
Put the thinly sliced onions in a pint jar or heat-safe bowl. In a small saucepan, combine the water, vinegar, honey, salt, and pepper flakes if using. Bring the mixture to a gentle simmer over medium heat, then carefully pour the hot mixture over the onions. Stir to submerge all the onion slices, then let cool to room temperature (~20-30 minutes). Eat once cooled, or store tightly covered in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
Don't forget to heat your tortillas! They'll be rubbery, dry, and prone to cracking if you don't. To get a little more color and flavor, you can heat them one at a time over the flame of a gas burner (using tongs), or in a hot, dry cast iron skillet. A few seconds per side should be plenty. If heated too long on lower heat, they'll dry out and get tough (but still delicious). Or, you can wrap them in foil or use a tortilla warmer to heat them in the oven at 375ºF for 8-10 minutes. Wrap warm tortillas in a clean, slightly damp kitchen towel or use your tortilla warmer to keep them pliable until you're ready to eat.
Use the refried beans, corn tortillas, eggs, salsa, pickled onions, and yogurt/sour cream for a delicious breakfast (or dinner). Top with cheese, avocado, cilantro, hot sauce, or any other taco toppings you like:
Heat ~12 oz of the salsa in a medium saucepan over medium heat until simmering, stirring occasionally, to reduce slightly. Keep warm until ready to use.
In a dry, hot skillet, heat the tortillas, flipping once, 1 per serving. Note: some people prefer to heat in a little oil for huevos rancheros - do whatever sounds good to you!
Spread refried beans on each warmed tortilla and set on plates. Top with shredded cheese, if using.
Fry an egg for each tortilla, cooked to your liking (or make whatever kind of eggs you prefer) and put on top of the beans and cheese.
Finally, top the eggs with warm salsa, sour cream/yogurt, and any other taco toppings you like and dig in. They'll be messy and scrumptious!
Additional Recipes & Suggestions
Here's some taco salad inspiration for all those yummy ingredients, including making your own tortilla strips!
Make your own tortilla chips for your next chips & salsa session