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Taco Tuesday: Carnitas without Cruelty!

Taco Tuesday: Carnitas without Cruelty!

Tracy uses the magic of mushrooms to create great texture!

#LunchBreakLIVE #LIVE with the talented health and cooking coach Tracy Childs, chef for Joel Fuhrman, M.D.‘s Eat to Live Retreat in San Diego, California. Tracy is also a PCRM Food for Food For Life Nutrition and Cooking Instructor, as well as Director of Veg-Appeal plus Co-Leader for PlantDiego. Watch and learn now while she makes Vegan Mushroom “Carnita” Tacos with two types of taco shells and an amazing simple dessert recipe she recently perfected for retreat guests, Spiced Chia Pudding! 

These mushrooms are ready to be spiced up and baked!

Tracy has been having a great time “cheffing” and she is here today to share a delicious vegan carnitas recipe with us. Tracy explains that you can Google any recipe and make a vegan version of whatever you are looking to eat. Tracy found this recipe on the Veggies Don’t Bite Website. She starts by tearing apart the portabella mushrooms. Mushrooms are super healthy. They are one of the best foods to prevent cancer. They have a great texture for use in place of meat.

The filling ready to go. No meat zone!

Next, Tracy adds some orange juice and spices to the mix. She always adds turmeric because it is anti-inflammatory. While Tracy bakes the mushroom taco filling, she preps the toppings for the tacos. She also makes dessert, a chia seed pudding. Chia pudding is very good for you because it has the nutritional benefits of chia seeds like omega 3 fatty acids. She uses hempseeds to make her plant-based milk and cardamom spice for flavor. You can also substitute this spice for cinnamon as well. Tracy adds pitted dates for natural sweetness and even more health benefits. She uses shredded coconut, but warns to not to eat too much coconut oil or products because they have a high amount of saturated fat. After adding the chia seeds, she blends it all up. Let it sit overnight for the best result and it is ready for an optional toasted coconut and berry topping.

Use the traditional corn tortillas or make them with collard greens for a healthy twist!

Tracy gets back to the tacos and toasts the tortillas on directly on the burner. What a technique! Tracy does her Mexican hat dance to entertain us while we wait. Hilarious! Tracy shows us how to make taco shells with a collard green tortilla alternative! Tracy also recommends eating beans every day because they are full of protein and they cleanse your system. Have your own cruelty-free Taco Tuesday at home with the recipe below!

Tracy poses with her delicious tacos!

Visit the Veg-Appeal Website and use PROMO Code “PLANTS” for 10% Off Classes in San Diego! 

Visit the Veggies Don’t Bite Website.


Tracy Childs reporting for Jane Unchained News Network.

Photos courtesy of Tracy Childs.

Video Work by Steve Sarnoff.

Report edited by Ellen Dent.

The healthy ingredients used in her yummy chia seed pudding.
We don’t know about you, but we want to eat this picture!


Portobello Vegan Carnitas Tacos

Adapted from Veggiesdontbite.com

4 Portobello mushrooms, gills removed with a spoon if desired.

1 white onion, chopped

4 cloves garlic finely chopped or 1 teaspoon garlic powder

¼ cup orange juice

2 tablespoons dried oregano

4 teaspoons cumin

½ teaspoons turmeric powder

1 teaspoon chili powder or more to taste

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

½ teaspoon salt

chopped green chilis crushed red pepper flakes, optional  & to tastefor added spice (see note)

Taco Shells – corn, collards (stemmed and cut into 1/4s), Ezekiel

Topping ideas: shredded cabbage, Tofu-Cashew Mayo, sliced avocados, mango salsa, chopped tomatoes, lime wedges

See Also

  1. Preheat oven to 400 F/ 205 C
  2. Remove the stems of the mushrooms. Using a fork, scrape the stems until you have shredded them into thin pieces. Follow by doing the same with the mushroom caps, the caps will both shred and crumble but continue to use the fork to make the pieces. It works well if you face the caps gill side down, hold the top with your hand and scrape downwards with the fork. Same for the stems.
  3. Put the shredded mushrooms into a colander. Add the sea salt and mix around well. Allow to sit while you clean up and get out the rest of the ingredients, about 5 minutes.
  4. Squeeze out any excess water from the shredded mushrooms, and put it in a large bowl. You will have a little over 2 cups.
  5. Add the rest of the carnitas ingredients and mix well.
  6. Spread on a parchment lined cookie sheet and bake for 30 minutes. The edges will begin to crisp a bit and it will not be watery.
  7. Make your tacos with desired toppings.

Spiced Chia Pudding

Adapted by Tracy Childs from www.DrFuhrman.com

This exotic-tasting pudding is so easy to make and is ready to eat, the same day, unlike most chia puddings that require overnight to set.

Serves: 4 ½ cup servings


2 cups water

¼ cup coconut flakes, unsweetened

2 tablespoons hemp seeds

4 medjool dates

½ teaspoon cardamom

½ teaspoon vanilla powder

½ cup chia seeds, divide use


  1. Blend until smooth: the water, coconut, hemp seeds, dates, cardamom and vanilla powder with ¼ cup of the chia seeds.
  2. Add the chia seeds and gently pulse to blend them into the mixture.
  3. Transfer to a bowl and chill for at least 45 minutes to overnight until the chia seeds have expanded and softened, and the pudding has chilled.
  4. Serve topped with a few raisins, fresh berries and lightly toasted coconut for an exotic treat.
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