Culture

If You Are Looking For A Vegan Taco Crawl In Los Angeles, We Just Created It For You

There might officially be more veganos than vegans in America, but nobody is really keeping track of Latino-American diets. For all the veganos out there looking for their next food-tour vacation, forget Portland. Los Angeles is where all of the best vegan tacos and Mexican food calls home.

Almost every taco truck would be able to accommodate you, and, yes, know whether their frijoles are vegan, because we’re everywhere in L.A. In such a competitive market for hungry vegan Latinos, we’ve generated a list of the top vegan tacos in Los Angeles. If you’re not hungry now, you’re about to be.

1. Cena Vegan

@grubshots / Instagram

Cena Vegan’s fame is all in their homemade vegan meats. The meats are so good that you can order them in bulk to use at home. At the truck, you can get carne asada, pollo asado, al pastor and a gluten-free carnitas meat option. Then, you add it to tacos, burritos, nacho boats, etc.

This Instagram reviewer puts it bluntly, “literally how are these vegan HOW. @cenavegan you’re magic.”

They’re a winner for obvious reasons.

@veganthisweekend / Instagram

You can try all four taco meats and get four tacos for $11, without having to worry if the beans are cooked in lard, or if the crema is really vegan. It’s all vegan and so good.

2. Vegatinos Food Truck

@vegatinos / Instagram

They love to serve up their vegan shrimp tacos. The few times we can find vegan shrimp are usually at all-vegan Asian restaurants. Shrimp tacos?! Only in Los Angeles.

At Vegatinos, you can get suadero and chicharron tacos before enjoying some vegan flan. 😭

@vegatinos / Instagram

Quintin L. had some interesting things to say about Vegatinos in his Yelp Review. “I’m so in love with these freaking rockstar tacos… it feels like cheating on someone because everything tastes so good that it feels like you’re doing something naughty.”

3. Plant Food for People

@plantfoodforppl / Instagram

PPFP isn’t making high-protein vegan meats like Cena, but they’re keeping it classic in a different way with signature jackfruit tacos made four different ways. Plus, you can also get their breakfast tacos made with tofu and potato scramble if you get there early enough.

4. Hijo De Su Madre

@vegnews / Instagram

From left to right, we have a beer-battered avocado, chipotle crema, and pepita slaw; soyrizo, potato hash, and guac; Beyond Meat cabbage, avocado, secret sauce. That’s not even all their options because Hijo is all-vegan.

5. Dear Mama LA

@dearmamala / Instagram

You definitely want to check out this Latina-owned taco spot when you are in LA. Her caption reads, “This hood inspired traditional flavor is just what summer needed. Our citrus marinated chick’n or Hood Chick’n will have you reminiscing on the days you were a kid and you had carne asadas with the family. This hood staple of yellow looking chicken was what most kids enjoyed! So I’m bringing it back to you with a whole lot of love. We marinate it to perfection with oranges and bell peppers and of course love 🥰🙆‍♀️🔥”

6. Trejo’s Tacos Fried Avocado Tacos

@trejostacos / Instagram

Danny Trejo has outdone himself with a chain of authentic Mexican tacos all around Los Angeles. Danny knows his clients well by offering the only version of an avocado toast we want to have for breakfast: Fried Avocado Tacos.

You should also check out their Cauliflower Chorizo Tacos.

@trejostacos / Instagram

Listen, his taco game is on point. Trejo’s alway has at least three vegan options on the menu. As of June 2019, he has Young Jackfruit with avocado crema, Mushroom Asada with pepita pesto, and Cauliflower with cashew cream.

7. Doomies Home Cookin’ and Doomies NextMex

@plantpoweredchica / Instagram

Doomies is best known for replicating America’s favorite meat dishes (like fried chicken, and Big Macs) but vegan. The reviews are in and Next Mex is where it’s at.

8. Gracias Madre

@gmweho / Instagram

This restaurant is reserved for those special nights out. It’s LA prices, but it’s outrageously delicious. You can expect to enjoy all your vegan favorites from sopes to pozole, flautas and tamales. Their jackfruit carnitas tacos are rico. top it off with flan or pineapple upside down cake and you’ll be happy as a vegan clam.

9. Olga’s Naturally

@olgasnaturally / Instagram

All their taco tortillas are handmade using organic blue maiz from Oaxaca. They always strive to source organic and also offer vegan chicken as a protein option, alongside vegan cheese quesadillas. Yup.

10. Sage Vegan Bistro

@thekindsage / Instagram

It isn’t a taco joint but they do have great tacos. Plus, they know to call them street tacos. These are “made w/ marinated jackfruit, garlic aioli, cilantro and onions on an organic corn tortilla are served all day on weekdays and after brunch on the weekends! 🌮”

11. Organix LA

@organixla / Instagram

They take Taco Tuesday very seriously with $2 vegan tacos and 20 percent off all vegan burritos. All their food is vegan, and you can enjoy anything from deep-fried vegan fish filet tacos to classic carne asada style grilled mushroom tacos like the ones you see above.

12. Chica’s Tacos

Charmaine L. / Yelp

Chica’s vegan tacos are made with spicy cauliflower chorizo and topped with a slice of marinated mushroom, avocado, and cilantro. You know they’re good because Chica’s stands by using only organic, never frozen ingredients to represent an authentic Méxican dish.

13. Un Solo Sol

@unsolosol / Instagram

They essentially offer a vegan version of almost everything on their menu ranging from nopalitos tacos to pinto bean pupusas. You know when you order veggie tacos at a non-vegan taquería and it’s just onions and pico de gallo? These guys load up their veggie tacos with actual veggies ricos.

14. Tacos La Tehuanita

@tacoslatehuanita / Instagram

Follow @tacoslatehuanita to get all the updates on where they’re parked tonight. “Yum! Come one, come all, come with hearty appetites,” are the types of rallying calls you can expect from them. You want to try the butternut squash tacos.

15. Taco Zone Truck

Alex V. / Yelp

Yelp reviewer Helen J. Puts it best. “VEGAN AND VEGETARIANS WELCOME HERE. The tacos are cheap but full of flavor. We came down here after the Griffith Observatory and these tacos hit the spot! Great food truck, friendly service, and fast at that.”

16. El Chato Taco Truck

@_malibudream_ / Instagram

Folks rave about how you can feast and still have a pile of money leftover at El Chatos. While reviewers aren’t posting pictures of the vegan option, there are a dozen reviews about how delicious the veggie tacos are. It can never hurt to check it out.

17. Guisados

@guisados / Instagram

Above are the two vegetarian options listed on the menu. We bet you could ask for it sin cotija, but the off-menu vegan accommodation is reportedly spicy. One Yelp reviewer said, “My friend who is vegan, was able to be accommodated at this place as well! He ended up getting the chiles correados taco. BEWARE!! It is extremely spicy ! But he really loved it !”

READ: 19 Dessert Tacos That Will Make Your Mouth Water

Los Angeles Made History After Nury Martinez Became The First Latina City Council President

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Los Angeles Made History After Nury Martinez Became The First Latina City Council President

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There was some history made this past Tuesday as Nury Martinez was unanimously elected as the first Latina president in the 110-year history of the Los Angeles City Council. With a unanimous 14-0 vote, albeit Councilman Gil Cedillo was absent, the council chose to put Martinez at the head of one of the most important positions in the city. 

With the historic vote, the San Fernando Valley Councilwoman will be succeeding outgoing Council President Herb Wesson, the first African-American to head the council. Martinez will become just the second woman ever elected to serve as LA city council president. Before Martinez, Councilwoman Pat Russell was the first and only woman elected back in 1983. 

As the daughter of Mexican immigrants, who worked as a dishwasher and a factory worker, Martinez took time to credit and thank them during a speech on Tuesday.

Her humble beginnings growing up in Pacoima, a predominantly Latino working-class community in the San Fernando Valley, taught her the importance of hard work. Martinez saw her mom and dad work tirelessly for her family so she could have a chance at success one day. That day came on Tuesday. 

“As the daughter of immigrants, as a daughter of a dishwasher and factory worker, it is incredibly, incredibly personal for me to ensure that children and families in this city become a priority for all of us, to ensure our children have a safe way to walk home every day … to ensure that our families feel safe,” Martinez said on Tuesday. “And first and foremost, to ensure that children living in motels, children that are facing homelessness, finally become a priority of our city, to ensure that we … find them permanent housing for them to grow up.”

Martinez is the product of public schools and became the first in her family to graduate from college. She began her career serving her own community as part of the City of San Fernando Council from 2003-2009 then followed that as a member of the L.A. Unified School Board from 2009-2013. 

It was her upset victory in 2013 beating out well-known Democrat Cindy Montañez, a former state assemblywoman, for a seat on the city council that put her on the LA political map. Despite trailing 19 points after the primary city election, Martinez would win in the general election by 969 votes. 

“To think, six years ago, I wasn’t even supposed to be here. I worked so hard and I was able to turn it around,” Martinez told the LA Times. “It’s not only an honor, but I really and truly feel blessed. And I just want to make everyone proud.”

Martinez has previously taken on issues like ending homelessness, installing rent control laws and supporting low-income families. She hopes to continue fighting for this and similar issues as president of the city council. 

As part of the city council, Martinez worked on behalf of the many families in the San Fernando Valley taking on issues like housing projects, rent control, and paid family leave. These issues will continue to be part of her agenda as president of the city council as well as advocating for children and families. 

“It’s monumental. She looks like the face of L.A. and she’s been elected to the highest position possible,” Jaime Regalado, professor emeritus with California State University, Los Angeles, told LAist.  “Usually people consider city council president to be a stepping stone to elsewhere — and we’ll see what the future holds.”

The significant moment wasn’t lost on many who congratulated Martinez for this historic stepping stone for Latinas everywhere. 

Another trailblazer, Gloria Molina, who was first Latina ever elected to the City Council, told the LA Times that Martinez has an incredible opportunity in front of her to bring real change and representation to the position. 

“She has a real opportunity to bring so much change,” Molina said. “She has an opportunity to create a balance. Martinez’s election is “a very significant accomplishment, not just as a Latina but as a woman. It’s still a men’s game there.”

As the council vote was officially confirmed and the motion to elect Martinez passed, there was a loud eruption of applause from those in the council chamber. The significance of the moment wasn’t lost on Martinez who said that she will use the opportunity to highlight the best that Latinos can offer. 

“I think it’s important to continue to show the rest of the country what this community is made of,” she said. “The Latinos are ready to lead and we’re very grateful to be part of this wonderful country called America.”

READ: Julian Castro Says Kamala Harris Dropped Out Because Of An Unfair Media That Covers People Of Color Differently

WATCH: Singer Cuco Is Teaching Fans How To Make Authentic Enchiladas Verdes From His Abuelita

Culture

WATCH: Singer Cuco Is Teaching Fans How To Make Authentic Enchiladas Verdes From His Abuelita

Tasty / Facebook

Cuco may have become synonymous with dreamy Spanish indie bedroom pop, but he can also make some mean enchiladas verdes just like his abuelita used to make. In a recent recipe video by Tasty, Cuco explains how he got his name. “Cuco came from my mom saying I was crazy, like “coocoo,” cause I was a goofy kid. My grandparents speak Spanish, so they would say I was el Cuco,” he tells Tasty. The 21-year-old singer wanted to show us how to make proper enchiladas verdes because it’s the food he grew up eating, thanks to his mom, and has become one of his favorite dishes.

Here’s Cuco’s recipe, and all the other Mexicanos telling him that their abuela makes it different.

Start with fresh tomatillos, serrano peppers, and garlic.

CREDIT: TASTY / FACEBOOK

I repeat. Cuco does not buy canned or jarred enchilada verde salsa. He makes them like a true abuela.

“If you want your salsa to be spicy, you can up the number of serrano peppers. If you like it more mild, I recommend using maybe like one or just like half a serrano pepper. You can also remove the seeds,” Cuco advises his Tasty viewers. “I personally like spicy, so I put serrano peppers to make it hot.”

Cuco isn’t about seedless salsa verde, y’all. He also reveals that he knows more than just how to make good enchilada verde salsa. He knows the why of it all.

“The reason we boil the tomatoes, onions, garlic, and the serrano peppers, is because we want to maintain the green color. If we were to roast the ingredients, we’d get more of a browner salsa,” he says in the video, casually blowing our uneducated minds.

After boiling everything to your liking, you just blend it all up in a blender, adding water until it becomes the consistency you want in a good enchilada salsa. Then, add the mixture to a pan and saute to bring out the flavors even more. Voila! You’ve made salsa verde. Now, add a thin layer at the bottom of your baking dish.

Don’t be lazy. Fry your tortillas for Cuco-approved enchiladas.

CREDIT: TASTY / FACEBOOK

“It’s definitely worth taking extra time to fry tortillas. A crispier tortilla is more likely to hold its shape while baking and the enchiladas will be less mushy,” Cuco sagely offers like an abuelita would. “After you finish frying your tortillas, you’ll dip them in the remaining salsa. This will make them easier to roll and ensure they won’t dry out while baking,” he added, proving tradition runs deep in this indie artist.

Once you dip the fried tortillas in the salsa, you just to add shredded rotisserie chicken (or the vegan meat of your choice) to the center of the tortilla, and roll.

“We’re using rotisserie chicken here but this recipe is also good if you have any kind of leftover chicken you’re trying to get rid of,” Cuco says, reaching full hay-comida-en-la-casa status at the mention of leftovers.

After you’ve rolled the tortillas, you’ll want to take Cuco’s advice and “be sure to arrange them seam-side down” in the baking dish, so that “they’ll continue to hold its shape and filling during baking.” Top the enchiladas with the remaining salsa verde, and heap plenty of cheese on top. “I go crazy with the cheese. It’s just fire,” Cuco confesses to the outlet. Put it in the oven and broil for 3 minutes. Top off the cooked dish with cilantro and crema to help balance the spices of the salsa verde, and you’ve got yourself Cuco-approved enchiladas verdes.

Cuco thinks its “crucial” for people to try real Mexican food.

CREDIT: TASTY / FACEBOOK

“I think it’s just really crucial to go try Mexican food if you haven’t tried it before because it expands beyond tacos,” he urged Tasty fans. “Tacos are good but there’s a lot more really good dishes in the culture – enchiladas verdes, chilaquiles, tortas, pozole. There’s good food everywhere. It’s good to know where the good food spots are at in your city.” 

Cuco has proven to be a master of both English-language and Spanish-language indie pop music, often gifting us Latino-American Spanglish speakers the gift of Spanglish love songs. We’re even more in love with you, Cuco, given the way to our collective heart is good abuelita food. “I think food really connects people. Music and food are both like art,” Cuco himself said in the Tasty video. That makes Cuco a Renaissance Abuelo.

Watch the full video below.

Enchiladas Verdes Con Pollo As Made By Cuco

Watch as Cuco teaches us how to make his family's delicious enchiladas verdes, made easy with rotisserie chicken and homemade salsa. Follow Cuco on Instagram: http://instagram.com/cucopuffs

Posted by Tasty on Tuesday, November 26, 2019

READ: The Laziest Food Hacks In All Of The Land Would Send Your Abuela To The Chancla