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Eat Well Apr. 21. 2015
Entreés

Sweet Potato Pecan Tacos

Apr. 21. 2015
Entreés
McKel Hill, MS, RDN, LDN

McKel Hill, MS, RDN, LDN

Founder

These tacos are filled with roasted sweet potato, lightly dusted with cumin and blood sugar balancing cinnamon, a Black Bean Pecan Cream that’s out of this world, chopped tomatoes, red onion, and fresh cilantro, then topped with the simplest Lime Cream topping to bring the entire dish together, all encased in an organic corn tortilla. Cheers to taco season everyone!

 

 

Talkin’, tacos

I’m guessing most of us gravitate towards tacos this time of year with Cinco de Mayo around the corner, summer picnics, being outdoors, craving spicy foods, summer pool parties, or just wanting to have a little more fun with our food. Tacos are the ultimate fun food in my book, you can make them exactly how you want just by changing toppings to match the season or what you’re in the mood for. I’m even a big fan of getting a little experimental with tacos and making them into huge taco salads, with the base being heaps of greens, or even wrapped up in nori sheets kind of like these salad wraps.

Let’s take a minute and talk about these taco components, because they deserve some serious attention. I literally whipped up this Black Bean Pecan Cream while I was in the kitchen creating this recipe, which was first called Sweet Potato Tacos, but they needed something- you know that extra something that could hold the roasted sweet potatoes in place, compliment the flavors of the toppings with the corn tortilla and Lime Cream. I knew I wanted to use black beans, but plain black beans popped on a taco wasn’t innovative or exciting enough for me so I just put them in a blender with coconut milk and a couple seasonings and found this was delicious! Too runny, but delicious, and it was missing something more grounding, hearty, and had that ‘stick to your ribs’ feel; enter in pecans. I lightly toasted pecans to enhance their flavor and pureed them with the black bean mixture and boom. This epic Black Bean Pecan Cream was born and I’m so glad it happened. I’ve been eating this cream turned dip on everything this past week aside from these tacos like on raw veggies for an afternoon snack, dolloped on salad greens, even on nori sheets!

Just as you can use the Black Bean Pecan Cream in other recipes and dishes throughout the week, you can definitely use the Lime Cream in many other ways, my favorite being just as a salad dressing with a splash of apple cider vinegar and pinch of cayenne. You can also use this as the actual dressing for the taco salad option!

The way you top your taco is completely up to you, but here are my favorites that go really well with this recipe, here’s how you can get started:

  • Fresh cilantro
  • Fresh lime juice
  • Thinly sliced jalapeno
  • Thinly sliced red onion
  • Sliced avocado
  • Diced tomatoes
  • Chopped romaine lettuce
  • Lime Cream (recipe below)
  • Hot sauce of your choice
  • Olives
  • Sliced radish
  • Ultimate Kimchi, such a delicious addition, I promise!
  • Lemon Lime Guacamole 

As much as I LOVE huge salads for an entree, I do enjoy using wraps and tortillas at times, my favorite brand for the corn tortillas are the sprouted organic corn tortillas here. You can also wrap the taco contents in a nori sheet, in a large collard green, swiss chard, or romaine lettuce leaf like a boat; all of which are equally delicious!

 

Sweet Potato Pecan Tacos
Recipe Type: supper
Author: McKel Hill, MS, RD, LDN
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4-6
A delicious gluten free, meatless taco using sweet potatoes and pecans and a creamy dressing.
Ingredients
  • 4 cups diced sweet potatoes
  • BLACK BEAN PECAN CREAM
  • 1/2 cup canned light coconut milk
  • 15 ounces (about 2 cups) cooked or canned black beans, well rinsed
  • 1 cup pecans
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground sumac
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 jalapeno
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 corn tortillas
  • LIME COCONUT CREAM
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1/2 canned light coconut milk
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • GARNISH: chopped romaine, chopped jicima, sliced radish, fresh cilantro, sliced avocado, jalapeno,
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. On a lined baking sheet, add chopped sweet potatoes and drizzle about 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil, sprinkle with sea salt, freshly ground black pepper, ground cumin, and a pinch of ground cinnamon all to taste. Bake for 35-40 minutes or until tender. Set aside.
  2. In the meantime, make the black bean pecan cream in a food processor combine coconut milk, pecans, and black beans to create a paste. Add fresh lime juice, ground cumin, garlic, jalapeno, ground sumac, sea salt and black pepper. Adjust seasonings to taste.
  3. To make the lime cream, in a small bowl pour the coconut milk and squeeze fresh lime juice and a inch of salt, stir to combine.
  4. To serve: gently warm corn tortillas in the oven (hot from roasting the sweet potatoes or on a skillet), dollop about 2-4 tablespoons of the black bean cream onto 1 corn tortilla, place roasted sweet potatoes on top, drizzle lime coconut cream and add garnishes as an option.

I highly recommend when you’re storing these taco components (i.e. toppings, Lime Cream, Black Bean Pecan Cream, etc.) that you do so separately so they all keep their texture and flavor integrity. My favorite containers have quickly become these glass ones I found after enlisting all of you on Instagram to help me pick the best of the best (you guys rock, thank you!).

Have fun trying these everyone, I can’t wait to see what your toppings include and how you make these your own! #nutritionstripped

xx McKel

p.s.

Miss out on the Spring Brunch in Nashville this past weekend? Have no fear! Tickets for the next supper club,  Summer Picnic are now on sale and I’m so excited about this one…Let’s just say there will be live bluegrass, bonfires, s’mores, healthy spins on your picnic favorites and so much more. Grab your tickets before these ones sell out quickly!

The Recipe

Serves 4-6

Print

Ingredients:

    • 4 cups diced sweet potatoes

 

    • BLACK BEAN PECAN CREAM

 

    • 1/2 cup canned light coconut milk

 

    • 15 ounces (about 2 cups) cooked or canned black beans, well rinsed

 

    • 1 cup pecans

 

    • Juice of 1 lime

 

    • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

 

    • 1/4 teaspoon ground sumac

 

    • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt

 

    • 2 garlic cloves

 

    • 1/2 jalapeno

 

    • Freshly ground black pepper

 

    • 4 corn tortillas

 

    • LIME COCONUT CREAM

 

    • Juice of 1 lime

 

    • 1/2 canned light coconut milk

 

    • Pinch of sea salt

 

    • GARNISH: chopped romaine, chopped jicima, sliced radish, fresh cilantro, sliced avocado, jalapeno,

 

Directions:

 

    1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. On a lined baking sheet, add chopped sweet potatoes and drizzle about 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil, sprinkle with sea salt, freshly ground black pepper, ground cumin, and a pinch of ground cinnamon all to taste. Bake for 35-40 minutes or until tender. Set aside.

 

    1. In the meantime, make the black bean pecan cream in a food processor combine coconut milk, pecans, and black beans to create a paste. Add fresh lime juice, ground cumin, garlic, jalapeno, ground sumac, sea salt and black pepper. Adjust seasonings to taste.

 

    1. To make the lime cream, in a small bowl pour the coconut milk and squeeze fresh lime juice and a inch of salt, stir to combine.

 

    1. To serve: gently warm corn tortillas in the oven (hot from roasting the sweet potatoes or on a skillet), dollop about 2-4 tablespoons of the black bean cream onto 1 corn tortilla, place roasted sweet potatoes on top, drizzle lime coconut cream and add garnishes as an option.

 

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Did you try it out?

Share Your Thoughts & Images

  • *Drops everything. Runs home to make black bean pecan cream.*

  • Carolann Falotico

    This looks so amazing and delicious! Going to make this ASAP. I’m allergic to nuts, is there an alternative to using the pecans so the black bean cream isn’t runny?

  • This looks awesome McKel. I can’t wait to try it. What tortillas do you recommend? I know you said “corn” but I would love to know what brand you choose.
    Thanks so much for all you do!

  • oh i love that pecan addition. what an amazing idea! Definitely correct about it being taco season, they have been high on my radar as of late. Great post as always. xo

  • Teresa

    Looks fantastic!

  • What a creative idea! I love sweet potatoes – any way I can get them in my belly is a win in my book! Pinned!

  • Yum! The pecan cream sounds super delicious 🙂

    • It really is, it’s great as a dip in other dishes as well, can’t wait for you to try it!

  • Breanna

    This is an awesome idea! I never would have thought to make a black bean and pecan taco filling like this! I love tacos, so I am totally going to make this!

  • Mandy

    These tacos were a huge hit with my love and me! I will keep that black bean pecan cream recipe handy to use as a bean dip in the future!

  • These look and sound so perfect!! I plan on giving them a try soon 🙂

  • Mason

    Wow! These look utterly amazing! Can’t wait to try this recipe!

  • This black bean pecan cream sounds like a revelation!! Also, I wanted to put my two cents in: For storing homemade dressings and such, I love these juice jars by Weck because they make pouring out of them so easy: http://www.crateandbarrel.com/weck-17.9-oz.-canning-juice-jar/s554219?b=1&a=1552

    • Can’t wait for you to try it! Yes, I use and recommend Weck jars, they’re the best 😉

  • Alyssa

    Just had these for dinner. Oh my goodness, SO delicious! Thank you!

  • Samantha

    Making these this weekend! For the lime coconut cream, is it 1/2 of a can of light coconut milk or 1/2 of a cup? Want to make sure I make it right 🙂

  • Sarah

    Tried these tonight. They were delicious!! Such a wonderful recipe. Thank you!

  • Alyssa Zak

    Holy vegan tacos! This recipe was astoundingly delicious! It’s creativity with flavors such as these in such unexpected ways (pecans in tacos!!!) that really reminds me of why I love to cook, and even more so – of why I love to eat! Thank you for a great recipe that I have already shared with many.

    • You’re so welcome Alyssa! Thank you for sharing and trying them out- they’re my favorite of all tacos!

  • Heather B.

    This sounds so delicious, and I love the fresh take on taco filler! I’m looking forward to giving this a try!

  • julia dander

    Hey McKel! Just had these tacos for lunch today and they’re amazing! Easy to make and delicious 🙂 thanks for sharing your recipes and knowledge
    lovely greetings from tirol
    Julia

    PS: all the best for your book :))

  • This recipe got me really interested on how to explore potato more. I love potato very much and potato salad was my favorite. I am wondering how this can change my mind and make it my new favorite. Great recipe! I will totally try this!

  • Cristina

    Do you need to soak the pecans first before making this cream?

  • McKel, I LOVE the bowls you used in these photos. If you don’t mind me asking, where did you get them from?

  • Ivy

    i do not have black beans right now, can i used chickpeas?

  • ivy

    so good, i didn’t have black beans, so i used chickpeas, and i didn’t have tortillas, so i just ate the sauces over the sweet potatoes with broccoli on the side. and i added the cilantro to the lime coconut sauce, amazing flavors and i put some turmeric in the lime coconut sauce too.

  • McKel!!! You have outdone yourself – this was AHMAZZZING! Going vego this week before xmas and had friends over last night for this delish dish. That pecan cream hit the spot, I added some smoked paprika to the potatoes and topped the taco with capsicum, cherry tomatoes, guac and cilantro and I finished it off with your simple coconut ice cream in my cuisinart (so much easier to make than i thought).
    Merry Christmas xx

    • Yey! I’m so happy you enjoyed this and thanks so much for sharing this on willing friends 😉 Happy Holidays to you too Michaela!

  • Caroline

    Hey McKel,
    I’m thinking of swapping this recipe in for a rotation. Can I batch cook the black bean/pecan cream and freeze half of it?

    I’m so excited to get started with the Society! Thank you so much.
    Best,
    Caroline

    • McKel Hill

      Great question! I wouldn’t freeze anything here, it’ll stay good for the week in the fridge 😉

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