- The Taco Cleanse I followed involved eating vegan tacos for every meal for one week.
- At first, I had fun trying new recipes but by the end of the week, I was ready for something different.
- All in all, I learned a lot of handy meal-prepping tips and I also have a few new recipes that I plan to make again.
The Taco Cleanse is actually quite simple – it involves eating vegan tacos for every meal: breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
According to the Taco Cleanse’s official website, this cleanse was created by “dedicated Taco Scientists” in Austin, Texas. This cleanse doesn’t promise to provide you with any major health or weight-loss benefits when you follow it, but it does claim to “make your life more fun,” to help you grow a beard (if you want one), and to align your chakras into an “optimal taco pattern.”
Overall, it’s safe to say the Taco Cleanse doesn’t seem to take itself too seriously. In fact, the cleanse’s official cookbook of the same name is a best-seller in Amazon’s “Cooking Humour” category.
Even though there doesn’t seem to be much science behind this tasty-sounding Taco Cleanse, I decided to follow it for an entire week. Here’s how it went.
The day before the cleanse, I prepared some of my ingredients
The day before the Taco Cleanse officially began, I went to the grocery store and bought all of my ingredients. I had a lot of cooking staples in my home already (spices, flour, etc.), but I picked up a lot more produce than I typically consume in one week.
I decided that if I was going to eat tacos for seven days, I was going to try to switch them up as much as possible and also try to make them somewhat healthy.
After buying groceries, I made two things that I would be using a lot of this week: a batch of flour tortillas and the “Wake and Shake Scramble,” a recipe from the “Taco Cleanse” cookbook that consists of baked tofu that’s been coated in nutritional yeast and a host of spices.
Day one: I loved starting my day with a savoury breakfast taco that I made from scratch
First of all, the tofu scramble was pretty delicious. I don’t eat a lot of tofu but I could already tell this recipe was one I would be making again. Two small tacos that each contained a bit of tofu scramble and a tablespoon of tofu sour cream kept me full until about 12 p.m.
Since I spent quite a bit of time preparing tortillas and tofu scramble the night before, I didn’t have time to prepare an intricate lunch in advance. So I topped three small tortillas with spicy black beans (from a can) and some saffron rice that my partner made for me the night before. I also topped these tacos with tofu sour cream to jazz them up.
The cookbook really came through for me this evening. When I got home, I was able to follow a very simple recipe for tacos loaded with beer-battered portobello mushrooms and guacamole. I also added tomatoes.
I thought they tasted delicious. The savoury mushrooms, the cooling sauce, and the acidic tomatoes came together so well. I packed up the leftovers to bring for lunch the next day.
Day two: Trying something new paid off in a big way
When I got to work I reheated two flour tortillas and my tofu scramble. Like on the first day, I topped my tacos with tofu sour cream. It was still delicious.
For lunch, I had flour tortillas topped with the leftover beer-battered portobello mushrooms and tomatoes and I heated it up in the microwave. I feel like fried foods definitely taste better when they’re reheated in an oven but the tacos were tasty and filling nonetheless.
I typically snack throughout the day but these tacos left me feeling full until it was time for dinner.
For dinner, I tried following the recipe for plantain tortillas that could be found in the “Taco Cleanse” cookbook. I was pleasantly surprised at the results.
To make them, I just boiled one plantain and mashed it in a bowl with salt and a bit of water. This made a thick “dough” that I then formed into a tortilla shape and heated on a skillet. One plantain made four tortilla shells.
From the look and feel, I was certain these shells would crumble, but they held up better than any tortilla I’ve ever had before. I filled them with spicy black beans, roasted sweet potato, bell pepper, a homemade mango salsa, and avocado.
This was one of my favourite meals of the week. These plantain tortillas were so impressive that I definitely planned to follow this recipe again.
Day three: Only a few days in, I already had to make another batch of tortillas
For breakfast, I paired my tofu scramble with mango salsa from the night before. Unfortunately, the flavours didn’t taste super great together but the tacos still made for a decent and filling breakfast.
Lunch was a flour tortilla filled with leftovers of the spicy black beans, roasted sweet potatoes, and mango salsa. The combination of the sweet potato and mango was delicious, especially with the kick that the spicy beans added. It was another filling meal that powered me through the rest of my day at work.
As soon as I got home, I started making a new batch of flour tortillas that I hoped would last for the rest of the week. I also wanted to make something simple for dinner.
Since I always have some sort of plant-based protein in the freezer, I sauteed meatless steak with sweet onions and portobello mushrooms. I loaded that mixture onto a flour tortilla and topped it all with tofu sour cream. It was delicious.
Day four: I started to feel tired of eating tacos
By the fourth day, I didn’t really want to eat more tacos. For breakfast, I once again made a tofu scramble taco with sour cream. When I’m not following the Taco Cleanse, I typically eat the same thing for breakfast all week so I thought I wouldn’t mind eating breakfast tacos each day – but I don’t tend to eat the same food for every meal, so my taste buds were pretty tired of tacos at this point.
By the time I was ready for lunch, I felt even worse. I ate a taco filled with the last of my spicy black beans, some saffron rice, sliced bell pepper, and some avocado. Most of this food was leftover and I really didn’t want to eat any more flour tortillas.
The tacos were filling because they had a good mixture of vegetables and protein but I was really just craving a salad or pizza … just anything that wasn’t a taco.
When it came time for dinner, I felt disappointed before I even began cooking. Since day four also happened to be Valentine’s Day, all I wanted to do was share some sort of extra-cheesy pasta dish with my partner.
Instead, I whipped up more plantain tortillas and simmered some lentils on the stove, topping them with plenty of spicy seasonings. I made another batch of guacamole with extra lime juice and tomatoes.
This was a pretty delicious dinner, even if it wasn’t cheesy or a type of pasta. The acidic lime juice, the cooling avocado, and the spicy lentils went really well together. The dish did not take long for me to make even though I was cooking many of the components of it from scratch.
I will admit that, since it was Valentine’s Day, I slipped up a bit by eating some non-vegan chocolates after dinner. The taco-eating would resume in the morning.
Day five: I started to see the light at the end of the tunnel
Breakfast, once again, was a tofu scramble taco topped with tofu sour cream.
For lunch, I put leftover spicy lentils and saffron rice into a few flour tortillas. I also topped these tacos with tofu sour cream. They tasted fine but I was so tired of eating rice, tortillas, and sour cream. Fortunately, I was finally almost finished with my week-long cleanse and I was already planning all of my non-taco meals for next week.
I had planned on having tacos delivered for my next meal, but I ended up getting a migraine and I accidentally slept through dinner.
Day six: I switched things up today but I had very mixed results
I ate the last of my tofu scramble on day five so I had to make something new for breakfast on day six. According to the “Taco Cleanse” book, I can technically use waffles as a sweet taco shell, so I toasted a few frozen ones and filled them with honey and sliced bananas. I’m not sure why I didn’t think of doing this sooner.
Unfortunately, I slipped up once again when I realised the waffles I had used for my tacos weren’t actually vegan. Despite the slip-up, this breakfast was satisfying and I was so thankful to not be eating a flour tortilla.
On day six, I skipped lunch because I had a busy day and I didn’t eat again until it was time for dinner.
The “Taco Cleanse” cookbook has a few recipes for tacos that include tater tots or vegan hot dogs, so I thought for dinner I’d be creative and combine both into one dish. I put sliced vegan hot dogs, tater tots, and tofu sour cream into flour tortillas thinking it might taste OK. This ended up being a bit of a mistake on my part.
Maybe if I had topped the tacos with some vegan chilli and a vegan cheese sauce they could have been great, but this meal was simply not good. I now understand why the cookbook did not suggest combining these two taco recipes – I don’t plan on ever doing this again.
Day seven: My week ended on a positive note
By day seven, I strayed from the cookbook a bit and decided to visit a local vegan food event in my neighbourhood. Although I didn’t make a “Taco Cleanse” recipe for lunch, I did eat vegan tacos.
While at the event, I bought three tacos. I got two vegan “beef” tacos topped with lettuce, vegan cheese, and tomato. I also ordered a potato and soyrizo (a soy-based version of chorizo) taco with a cashew-based crema on top.
I rushed home to eat these and I couldn’t believe I was once again excited to eat tacos. Both of them tasted incredible.
For dinner, I was still tired of eating flour tortillas so I heated up a couple of corn tortillas that I’d had in my fridge. I also cooked some vegan “fish” fillets and bell pepper to create my taco filling.
This was a super quick dinner and it was pretty tasty, too. I think it might have tasted extra delicious because I knew it was the final meal in my Taco Cleanse.
My final thoughts: I didn’t lose weight or feel enlightened but I did learn a few things
After seven days of eating tacos morning, noon, and night, I don’t know if my chakras have been aligned into a taco pattern. But the cleanse did force me to slow down a bit and spend more time making food.
Typically I rush whenever I’m preparing meals and I hardly ever cook food from scratch – but that was not the case this week. For the cleanse, I committed to making my own tortillas and sauces as much as possible and it was actually fun. By the end of the seven-day period, I felt a little more connected to my food and I also felt like I had sharpened my cooking skills.
Although I won’t be putting vegan hot dogs and tater tots in a tortilla any time soon, when the next taco night rolls around, I feel more confident than ever in my ability to make my own tortillas and mix up my own sauces.
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