Looking for a summer salad that’s filling? My Chile Cumin Potato Vegan Taco Salad is just what you need. We make a simple sauce with dried ancho peppers, roast or air fry the mini potatoes until almost done. This can even be done a day or two before serving. Toss with the sauce and bake until crispy. Serve on a hearty salad or just eat by themselves!
This hearty recipe for a potato vegan taco salad is sponsored by the Idaho Potato Commission. You can never have too many recipes for potatoes and this is one that will really impress your summer dinner guests!
I know the idea of making a flavorful vegan taco salad is no surprise. But adding in roasted ancho cumin potatoes goes way beyond the refried bean taco salad you grew up with.
You can add some extra protein by adding in some refried black beans, air fried soy curls or tofu, leftover Slow Cooker Lentil Quinoa Taco Filling, or also drizzle some cauliflower queso for some cheesy flavor.
What Exactly Is an Ancho Chile?
You probably have eaten poblano peppers before and you eat fresh poblanos while they are green. To make dried ancho chilies, the poblanos are left to ripen longer and turn red. Then they are dried. In Mexican cuisine dried chilies have different names than fresh ones.
They are mild so your whole family should be able to enjoy them. If you can’t find ancho chile, guajillo is a great substitute.
How Do You Use Dried Chilies?
They are so easy to use. You may need to use a knife or pair of scissors to open the pepper. Remove the stem, the seeds, and any ribs that come out easily.
Next tear into pieces, put in a saucepan and cover with water. Simmer over medium heat until the chili is reconstituted. Then you can blend with other ingredients just like the ancho sauce in this recipe.
Another way I use dried chilies is to de-stem and seed them and put them in dry when I’m cooking beans from scratch. It’s so easy and adds lots of flavor.
Save the water you cook the chilies in to use as a broth or instead of water when you make homemade tortillas.
Where Can You Buy Dried Chiles?
You can always buy them on Amazon, but I love shopping at my local Hispanic market. Once you find yours you’ll be going more often to buy tomatillos, fresh and dried chilies, cilantro, and cool fruits and herbs.
There are some that even make fresh tortillas daily and they are amazing.
Are All Idaho Potatoes Russet Potatoes?
That’a a common misconception. While some of the best russet potatoes do come from Idaho, they grow all different kinds and sizes of potatoes.
I love the baby tri-color potatoes for potato salads. They brighten up any recipe.
Even though I like to use the little colorful potatoes in this recipe, any potato will work. If you use larger potatoes just peel and cut into chunks.
Also if you are using small potatoes that are not all the same size, you may need to half or quarter some of the larger ones so that they will all cook evenly.
Is It Easy to Make The Ancho Chile Sauce?
It’s ridiculously easy. Once you’ve take off the stem and removed the seeds it only gets easier. Once you reconstitute it you put it in a small blender or food processor and blend with a little sweetener and some lime juice.
If you don’t use refined sugar you could throw a soaked date in instead. We’re just trying to get the bitterness leveled out with it and that can change from pepper to pepper.
Once you start working with chilies and fall in love with the flavors, you’ll want to try some more. I suggest this mushroom mole as your next step.
How Do I Make Ancho Chile Cumin Potatoes?
For this recipes first step you want the potatoes to be mostly cooked, but not all the way. If we put them in the sauce to begin with the sauce and spice would burn.
That’s why we cook them until a fork just pierces them, then toss in the ancho chile sauce.
How Do I Finish the Potatoes?
Once you remove them from the oven the first time, you toss them in the sauce you’ll toss with some ground cumin. Then put them back in the oven for a few minutes to finish roasting them.
Then just prepare some romaine lettuce, cut up some fresh tomatoes, add some fresh corn kernels, put on the potatoes, and drizzle the dressing over it. Dinner or lunch is served!
Don’t forget you can add other veggies, cooked beans, or anything else that makes you happy.
What Kind of Dressing Goes Well on This Vegan Taco Salad?
I made a vinaigrette using some of the ancho chili sauce. The main recipe makes it the traditional way with oil, but you can use aquafaba to make it oil free. You could also just add some balsamic to the ancho chili sauce and try it that way.
Ancho Chile Sauce
- ¾ cup water
- 2 dried ancho chilies, stems removed and seeded
- 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
- ½ tablespoon brown sugar
- ½ teaspoon salt
Chile Cumin Potatoes
- 24 ounces small tri-color Idaho® potatoes quartered, unless smaller than 1/2 inch (about 4 cups chopped or halved)
- 2 tablespoon olive oil, optional leave out to make oil-free
- ½ teaspoon salt, optional leave out to make salt-free
- 1 batch ancho chile sauce
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 8 cups chopped romaine lettuce
- 4 cups chopped tomatoes
- 4 cups cooked corn kernels
Ancho Vinaigrette (Makes about 1/2 cup)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, leave out to make oil free or sub aquafaba
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1 1/2 tablespoons vegan mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon ancho chili sauce
- ½ lime, juiced (about 1 tablespoon)
- Add the water and chilies to the water and heat on the stove (or sauté in your Instant Pot) until reconstituted.
- Add to a small blender or food processor with lime juice, sugar, and salt. Blend until smooth.
- We're going to cook the potatoes about 3/4 of the way. You can do this in your Instant Pot or using the oven method.
- Oven: Preheat oven to 450° (if you have convection preheat to 400°F). Toss the potatoes with olive oil and salt. Place on a baking sheet and cook for 15 minutes, or until about ¾ of the way done. Turn oven down to 350°F.
- Instant Pot: Add the potatoes to your IP and cover with water. The cook time will vary depending on the size of the potato. I would start cooking 5 minutes on high to make sure that you don't overcook them.
- Remove potatoes from oven and place in mixing bowl. Add 3 tablespoons ancho chile sauce and the ground cumin. Toss until well combined. Put the potatoes back on the baking sheet and bake 5 minutes more. Remove from oven.
- Divide the salad ingredients between 4 plates and top each with ¼ of the Chile Cumin Potatoes.
- Place all the vinaigrette ingredients in a mason jar. Put the lid on and shake until emulsified and well blended.
- Drizzle vinaigrette over salads and serve.
You can cook the potatoes in your air fryer. Just add the raw potato to your air fryer and cook on 350 until they are 3/4 of the way done or you can just pierce with a fork.
Then toss in the sauce and cook for 5 to 7 minutes on 400 degrees, or until crispy
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Nutrition InformationYield 6 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 536Total Fat 25gSaturated Fat 4gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 19gCholesterol 28mgSodium 887mgCarbohydrates 67gFiber 9gSugar 14gProtein 17g
Nutrition information is provided from nutritionix.com as a close estimate. If you have specific health issues please put the recipe information, including the exact ingredients you use, into the nutritional calculator your Dr. recommends.