20 Minutes To The Table: Mexican Black Bean Corn Tacos & Costa Rican Cabbage Salad Video

by on July 21, 2013

20 Minutes To The Table: Mexican Black Bean Corn Tacos & Costa Rican Cabbage Salad

Hi everyone! I had an idea the other day of putting together quick delicious meals for those of you short on time. This recipe is a great midweek recipe, if you can open a can and use a knife you can make this recipe very easily! I’ll start off by showing you how to make the raw Costa Rican Cabbage Salad recipe, and then the Mexican Black Bean Corn Tacos (this is a variation on my recipe in Vegan Comfort Foods From Around The World.)

If you’d like order one of my cooking aprons or my cookbook my store is here:Β http://lowfatveganchef.storenvy.com

I’d like to point out that I used canned ingredients in my first video to show how anyone, no matter where you are, can make this recipe. You can also use home cooked beans and fresh corn (or frozen) if desired and using organic foods is your choice as well. This new series is going to show easy plant based recipes that absolutely everyone can make with ease, when pressed for time. That’s why I list the short cuts. Most of the time I cook from scratch, but I know this is not feasible for everyone, especially on a week night after work. Please of course feel free to use fresh cooked beans, organic fresh corn and your own homemade corn tortillas if you are a scratch cooker, but of course this will add to the prep time and take much longer than 20 minutes. Enjoy πŸ™‚

Recipes follow below.

Raw Vegan Costa Rican Cabbage Salad

Serves 4


1/2 green cabbage shredded (or 5 cups bagged slaw mix)
1 medium (ripe) tomato, diced
1/2 white onion, chopped
1 glove garlic, pressed or minced
1 handful fresh cilantro/coriander roughly chopped (or to taste)
1 – 1 1/2 large limes juiced (use your discretion to balance with salt)
1/4-1/2 tsp Herbamare or salt (use your discretion to balance with the lime)
1/4 tsp fresh ground pepper (or to taste)


1. Toss ingredients into a large salad bowl (mine was a little small but I used it as it was clear to show you) and massage well for a minute or two, scrunching the cabbage to help soften it.

2. Adjust lime, salt and pepper to your tastes. If it’s perfectly seasoned it should taste neither of just salt or lime, but a nice mix between the two.

3. Place in refrigerate to marinate until needed.

To spice things up: Add a sliced fresh jalapeno or chili pepper.

Based on my recipe in Vegan Comfort Foods From Around The World

Vegan Mexican Black Bean & Corn Tacos

Serves 2-4 (depending how ravenous you are!)


19 oz. can no sodium black beans or pinto beans (or 2 1/3 cups cooked fresh)
12 oz. can no sodium/no sugar corn or 1.5 cups frozen or fresh cut
4 cloves of garlic, pressed or minced
3/4 tbsp maple syrup, maple sugar or honey – I don’t use agave (*optional to add flavor to the unsalted beans)
1.5 tsp roasted cumin (or regular, but roasted is much more flavorful)
1/4-1/2 tsp Herbamare or salt (or to taste)
Pinch of fresh ground pepper
1/4-1/2 lime juiced (or to taste)
8-12 corn tortillas (depends how full you load your tacos)
Salsa of choice (I always look for the lowest sodium on the shelves, you’d be surprised how much sodium is in salsa)


1. Heat a pot over medium heat. Drain the corn (if applicable), add some black bean juice to the pot and the garlic and cook for 3-4 minutes.

2. Add the black beans, corn and seasonings (leave the lime juice until the end) and heat for 5-7 minutes to let the flavors meld together.

3. Meanwhile heat your corn tortillas over medium heat in a crepe pan, griddle or frying pan just until warm and place in a tortilla warmer, tinfoil or tea towel to insulate. Alternatively you can heat them over a gas flame until slightly charred or microwave just at the end all together for 30 seconds. (Any longer and it won’t be good…)

4. Add the lime juice to the beans and corn and taste test. Adjust seasonings to taste.

5. Assemble tacos, starting with a layer of black beans and corn, some salsa and then top with your marinated Costa Rican Cabbage Salad. Sometimes I like to add some fresh guacamole for variety as well.

6. Enjoy!

Make it spicy: add some chipotle chili powder, cayenne or a sliced jalapeno to the black bean and corns. Use your discretion.

Corn tortillas are fairly common in the USA and easy to find at most grocery stores and health food stores. I use corn tortillas because they usually have only 3-4 ingredients (but read the label to make sure there is no oil or lard) and are lower calorie than wheat tortillas. Wheat tortillas are more for burritos. If you’re in Canada check your health food store or google mexican/latin groceries in your area. I found several in my city of Calgary that had homemade corn tortillas. I will post a video later on show you how to make your own corn tortillas with masa (corn flour).

This makes a fairly light meal, if you’re family or dinner guests are ravenous I would recommend serving some fresh seasoned rice on the side to round it out, or double wrapping your tacos (use 2 tortillas) and load them up with beans and corn. πŸ™‚

I hope you enjoyed my first episode of 20 minutes To The Table. I filmed this in my kitchen with a camera, a tripod and a lot of books lol. Β Let me know what you think by posting below!

{ 50 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Alice August 17, 2013 at 7:55 AM

Hi Veronica,

I made these the other night and they were a HUGE hit!! We loved the flavors. Even better the next day as left overs at work. My husband and I started the Eat to Live diet 6 weeks ago (hubby has lost 20 pounds this first 6 weeks), and I am so glad that I have found your site to help us along the way.

Keep up the great work. Thank you for using easy to assemble, easy to attain items for busy cooks. Your mission to help others who can not spend as much time in the kitchen making absolutely everything from scratch, is truly a blessing!!!


2 Low Fat Vegan Chef Veronica September 3, 2013 at 10:54 PM

I’m so glad you enjoyed them Alice. Thanks for letting me know. Happy to help!


3 Tami July 31, 2013 at 11:04 AM

These were on the menu for last night. Since I’m sick I asked DH to make them. He was not particularly thrilled with my dinner pick but obliged. I just wanted to let you know that in the end he enjoyed them! He said there was so much more flavor than he thought. Silly guy. When will he learn? πŸ™‚


4 Low Fat Vegan Chef Veronica July 31, 2013 at 1:36 PM

Aww yay! Yes my bf and my mom’s husband love these tacos too. Honestly anything you put in a tortilla and top with delicious salsa, guacamole or cabbage salad these guys will eat. I feed these tacos to everyone plant based or not and they love them!


5 Barbara Lowell July 29, 2013 at 12:53 PM

Hi Veronica, in my off the cuff way, I did not mean to be rude, I was just very concerned with you very first presentation because canned and packaged goods are allowed, by law, to contain food enhancers and all forms of msg, chemicals, etc. that they are not required to be listed on the label. These very additives make us addicted, so now instead of Taco Bell, we can get addicted to making fast food at home because we are using these packaged products we think are ok. Yes they are better, but there is a price. So I was merely saying that they should come with the urging that you ARE sacrificing health for convenience and to try not to wherever possible. I see many routes being taken by businesses jumping on the vegan bandwagon, and I have always been a purist so I reacted to this emotionally. I am not accusing you to be of that ilk, but I was throwing a red flag lest you fall into the mainstream pitfalls when you are so well meaning to pull people out of them. In our innocence we don’t realize that foods made in big vats have to have additives and preservatives in order to be palatable and have shelf life, and if we become addicted to them we can land up back where we started all the while thinking its us doing something wrong. Also, I meant the comment for your eyes, and did not expect it to show up here because I thought that bloggers had the option to remove comments they didn’t want. I admire and respect your work, I love the camera work and how conscientious you are about giving helpful hints on exactly what and how you did things, and I have commented so positively on numerous occasions as well. We can all use feedback and an occasional wake up call once in a while. I did not mean to insult you but I did want to make a point. Thank you for all you do. I apologize for not realizing how this might be taken in written word. Hope you can distill it into useful feedback and not kill the messenger. I am a stand up person for the Vegan Local Organic Raw and Living Foods movement and feel protective because I know how much it has helped me once I became fully informed on some of the pitfalls. I respectfully submit this to you for clarification, not an attack but in the spirit of goodness and respect for you and all viewers. None of us are perfect but a work in progress.


6 Low Fat Vegan Chef Veronica July 29, 2013 at 8:14 PM

Anyone who has already written a comment on the blog and been approved before, has their next comments auto approved so they go up.

Everyone can make their own choice. I will have to say though, there is no way I am addicted to canned foods or craving them. Absolutely not. They don’t have much flavour and I always buy the oil free salt free kind. I prefer to cook my own but even I don’t have time all the time.

If getting people to eat less meat and less dairy means using some canned foods, I really don’t see this as a problem. We’re looking at the bigger picture here, trying to get people eating more plant based, more wholes foods and more oil free. Focusing only on minor additives in food instead of the previous three things I mentioned can mislead and confuse newbies trying to find a new way to eat. Even Dr. McDougall and Jeff Novick don’t promote organic only, gmo free and no canned foods. Oil free, whole food and plant based is the main focus. Get it fresh and do your best.


7 Barbara Lowell July 30, 2013 at 11:28 AM

Thank you for a very well stated, articulate response … I don’t think I initially caught that this was aimed at a more inclusive viewership. I repeat: I respect and appreciate all you do, and am grateful.


8 Jane July 27, 2013 at 4:44 PM

Just made these – they are SO good! I wrote the salad recipe underneath the taco recipe in my Comfort Foods cookbook. Yum!


9 Low Fat Vegan Chef Veronica July 31, 2013 at 1:38 PM



10 Sheree July 24, 2013 at 7:23 PM

Love this recipe. I have been plant based for many years, but I have a friend who is just now trying. I love being able to share your recipes with her. They are easy and use everyday ingredients without all the specialty and must be organic items. We all know here in the US that GMO is rampant, but I would rather have everyone begin eating a plant based diet with non organic (I too can not afford all organic) foods than a SAD diet. The rule in our house is do the best you can when it comes to healthy eating. Thank you again for your awesome show and recipes!


11 Low Fat Vegan Chef Veronica July 31, 2013 at 1:40 PM

I whole heartidly agree. I really don’t think I can afford all organic at this time being a small start up, but of course if you can afford to grow it all yourself and have the space or live somewhere less expensive to afford all organic that’s an option. Where I live it’s very expensive for rent and utilities so I do my best and keep it whole foods and plant based.


12 Tami July 24, 2013 at 5:24 PM

Loved this video!!! You should have your own show on the Cooking Channel or the Food Network. I’d watch for sure. It’s so nice to get recipes for things that have good, healthy ingredients. Thank you!


13 Low Fat Vegan Chef Veronica July 31, 2013 at 1:40 PM

Aww thanks Tami. I’m not as skilled as TV chefs but I know how to cook from scratch and season to taste. πŸ™‚ Working on it!


14 Kelly S July 23, 2013 at 4:30 PM

Just made these for dinner – delicious! And quick! Thank you Veronica, can’t wait to try out more of of your recipes.


15 Low Fat Vegan Chef Veronica July 23, 2013 at 7:29 PM

Awesome! Thanks Kelly. Glad you enjoyed it πŸ™‚


16 Jacqui Pappas July 23, 2013 at 2:54 PM

I really enjoyed both the cooking beans video, & this one with the tacos! Keep up the good work. I eagerly await your email’s to see what new recipes you come up with.


17 Samantha July 23, 2013 at 11:24 AM

Loved the video. found the background music a bit distracting. It was too loud and hard to hear you. I had to turn up the volume to hear you and of course the music got louder. Otherwise, the video was great!


18 Low Fat Vegan Chef Veronica July 23, 2013 at 7:31 PM

Hi Samantha, the next videos will have music a little quieter. Without it, it wouldn’t be as entertaining to watch as all tv shows use music these days.


19 Jane July 22, 2013 at 5:07 PM

Love your recipes! So nice to see you cook. Looking forward to making these!


20 SuiYee Fenwick July 22, 2013 at 3:53 PM

Hi Veronica,
We loved your video, are preparing the tacos for dinner this evening….Looking forward to more of your wonderful recipes!!


21 Low Fat Vegan Chef Veronica July 22, 2013 at 5:01 PM

Thanks SuiYee! Enjoy πŸ™‚


22 steven July 22, 2013 at 12:21 PM

To Barbara…..there are plenty of sites to express awareness of gmo vs Organic and there are polite ways to do it on a site such as this with tact and a helpful fashion we people are not the enemy certain corporations so be a help and share……….


23 steven July 22, 2013 at 12:12 PM

Being a diabetic that pressure cooker for bean looks simple,easy and is very convenient
and would take a few steps out of all the things i need to do in my daily routine……


24 Low Fat Vegan Chef Veronica July 22, 2013 at 12:17 PM

I think you meant to post this on my Easy Bean Cooker post!


25 Christine July 22, 2013 at 11:14 AM

Wonderful video Veronica! I am so glad you used common ingredients that are on store shelves everywhere. I wish I could financially have the choice to buy organic non GMO all the time but I can’t so it is wonderful that you did not come off as pretentious about these things. And I hope in future videos you continue to keep in mind the financial levels of all people so that no one feels that they can’t eat healthy.


26 Low Fat Vegan Chef Veronica July 22, 2013 at 12:11 PM

Exactly Christine. I have no intention on using expensive or hard to find ingredients for this specific recipe show. We need to make plant based recipes accessible to everyone. I spend SOOOOOO much money on food because I make such a wide variety of recipes to share with you guys each week and I don’t just eat the same old things every week (which I would do to save money if I didn’t have this business!) I can’t afford to buy all organic and I don’t want anyone else to feel like they “should” do this or that. Most of my readers are newbies and need help and encouragement making new plant based recipes that are simple. So in this video series I want to make accessible recipes to everyone. And none of the other recipes I filmed so far have canned foods in them, so it’s disappointing to get such harsh criticism from one video.


27 Kendra July 22, 2013 at 11:03 AM

Dear Veronica,
Congrats on your FIRST video! Well done. You are inspiring me to teach.

One comment: I do agree that if you make a simple, clear statement regarding the personal choice of GMO/organic/fresh/frozen, etc… would be good, just so people like Marge who can’t focus on the value of your work because she’s got issues with cans or whatever.

You could even do it in a printed form (so you don’t have to say it at the beginning of each video).

Keep it up! I look forward to more videos! Would love to see some blender soups and dressings.



28 Low Fat Vegan Chef Veronica July 22, 2013 at 12:07 PM

Hi Kendra, I did underneath the video on this post, explain that people are free to use organic and fresh made beans if they desire instead of cans. I didn’t want to have in the first video telling people they had to cook their own beans and corn first and make corn tortillas before they could make the recipe. So this is a different approach for the masses versus my made from scratch recipes on the blog and in my books that take a little bit more time to make.


29 Jo July 22, 2013 at 10:36 AM

Guess what we will be making next time we are home! looks fun and delicious, and I forgot how good they are until I saw you demonstrating them again! Thanks for the inspiration!


30 Carol July 22, 2013 at 10:34 AM

Great video…keep up the good work!!!


31 Tami @Nutmeg Notebook July 22, 2013 at 10:30 AM

Great job on the video! It just goes to show that eating a plant based diet doesn’t have to be complicated. Bravo!


32 Low Fat Vegan Chef Veronica July 22, 2013 at 10:40 AM

Thanks Tami!


33 Traci July 22, 2013 at 10:25 AM

Love the video! You are right…sometimes considering a plant-based meal can be intimidating for omnivores. Your recipes and videos help make it easier and less daunting for a general audience. Thank you for your continued efforts in making healthy cooking and eating friendlier for everyone, Veronica!


34 Low Fat Vegan Chef Veronica July 22, 2013 at 10:38 AM

Thank you Traci, I appreciate it πŸ™‚


35 Chrissie Forbes July 22, 2013 at 10:05 AM

Hi Veronica,
Loved the video and the recipes looks perfect. Can’t wait to try them out.
Thank you for the creative recipes and inspiration.


36 Marge July 22, 2013 at 10:00 AM

Hi Veronica,
I loved the video and am looking forward to more!
Everything you make just looks so delicious and healthy.
You should have your own show on the Food Network! They really need some shows with healthy food.


37 Low Fat Vegan Chef Veronica July 22, 2013 at 10:18 AM

Aww thanks Marge. I still have to practice! It’s very new to me to be talking to the camera by myself, but I want to get better at it so I can help more people. πŸ™‚


38 Lorraine July 22, 2013 at 9:54 AM

I thought you did a great job of showing how modern rushed parents can whip up a healthy meal for the family in 20 minutes. I especially enjoyed the Canadian products. There is always the option of using the much more expensive health food store products that are low or no sodium and non GMO, but not all families can afford the extra cost.
Thanks for keeping it real.


39 Low Fat Vegan Chef Veronica July 22, 2013 at 10:09 AM

Exactly! Nowhere did I say people have to choose organic non GMO foods, because that is a personal choice. I don’t want to make people feel bad that they aren’t doing “good enough” with their plant based choices. The majority of my readers are on very low incomes and have many health challenges and they are simply trying to find a way to eat better that is low cost that will help them lose weight and get back on track. I can’t even afford to spend $3 a can on organic no sodium beans here in Canada, it’s just crazy how much more expensive these items are. So yes the first video showed using cans, but later on I show how to make your own and use fresh cooked beans in another recipe. I use what I have on hand too and I want people to focus on getting sugar free, oil free, salt free ingredients to use in recipes. Telling people to exclusively use organic and non gmo makes many items too expensive for the average person to afford. I don’t want anyone to feel alienated. So everyone can use their judgement and do the best that they can.


40 Janabeth Taylor July 22, 2013 at 9:46 AM

Great video! thanks


41 Barbara July 22, 2013 at 9:45 AM

Hi Veronica,
I’ve talked to you a few times via email but it was great to see you in person. I loved the video and will be making your tacos soon! Just can’t wait to see what you’re making next!


42 Low Fat Vegan Chef Veronica July 22, 2013 at 10:06 AM

Thanks Barbara, the next episode will be next Monday! So count on it πŸ™‚


43 Rachel July 22, 2013 at 9:27 AM

I love this! A good trick to soften your cabbage, this is good for me since I have difficulty chewing because of TMJ. Thank you.


44 Low Fat Vegan Chef Veronica July 22, 2013 at 10:05 AM

You’re welcome Rachel.


45 Barbara Lowell July 22, 2013 at 9:15 AM

oh no … you can pretty much count on all corn products esp the commercial ones you show to be GMO since 90% of all corn is. Short on time = canned foods? You should clearly state on canned food to be organic non GMO. Basically this is package food except for the garlic and the salad. what happened to the “real” veronica? as your virgin episode, this dead food taco sets a very bad example even though you are always wonderful, this is not.


46 Low Fat Vegan Chef Veronica July 22, 2013 at 10:05 AM

Hi Barbara,

Although I’ve talked to you many times, I find your comment extremely rude. This is totally unnecessary as I have MANY MANY new people coming to this site from a straight SAD diet and they really need help preparing plant based foods and need to learn how to use what they have on hand. In Canada we do not have tons of GMO foods, it is not a main issue and it is certainly not the focus of anyone’s health discussions on a regular basis. I understand it is far more intense in California and Florida because I’ve been there but there is more awareness there. I ALWAYS put how much fresh or frozen people can use instead of canned foods as that’s an option but I wanted to start out my first video with canned showing what most people would probably use. Not everyone can afford to buy 100% organic, even I can’t. I am very disappointed with your harsh criticisms of me when I am only trying to help. I have already shown how to make beans from scratch in pressure cookers and in future I will show how to make corn tortillas. Even in the written recipe I’ve put how much fresh beans and fresh or frozen corn one can use instead of canned.


47 Tya July 22, 2013 at 11:05 AM

Barbara – if you’re not happy with the information on this site, why don’t you go and find one that you are happy with, or open your own site? I am very happy with the recipes and information I find here – it has literally changed my life! – and I find your negative attacks very overboard. If you want to make a comment, do it politely, or leave.

Keep up the great work, Veronica!


48 Low Fat Vegan Chef Veronica July 22, 2013 at 12:07 PM

Thanks Tya. So happy to help πŸ™‚


49 Kim September 1, 2013 at 6:32 PM

I think your comment Barbara was very rude! I always thought all vegans were kind, given the life choice they make and the reasons they make them. It appears I was incorrect. When you have your own site then you can cook the way you think. I was recently diagnosed with Diabetes and was terrified. Doing research I found this way of eating can reverse my diagnosis. I have grown up on fast food and SAD diet. I am not a good cook. I am older and it is a huge change for me. Veronica is always very informative and instructional. I would never have even tried to cook vegan if not for Veronica’s help and her kind and unpretentous manner. Since I was diagnoses with Diabetes this way of eating is more important then ever. and the encouragement Veronica gives has helped me so much. I guess I was incorrect. Veronice I do thank you for the changes I am seeing in my health and diet through your website. Please do not stop. We all need you. I appreciate all the work and time you put into this site and your video’s. Blessed be to you Ms. Veronica.


50 Low Fat Vegan Chef Veronica September 3, 2013 at 10:56 PM

Thanks Kim happy to help in your journey. πŸ™‚


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