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Vegan Jack in the Box Tacos

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Let’s VEGANIZE the ICONIC Jack in the Box Tacos! Crunchy, Beefy, Cheesy and Greasy! This is a late night CLASSIC and it’s better VEGAN!

Next to Carl’s Jr. and Del Taco, Jack in the Box was one of my favorite fast food places. It was cheap, they were open late and they catered to dirtbags like me. I ordered these tacos all the time and devoured them with abandon.

It didn’t matter what I ordered, I would always get these at the end, no questions asked! I mean it was 99¢ for two tacos! What’s hilarious is these tacos are equally disgusting and irresistible. I don’t know what it is, but I’m not alone!

But like I say about a lot of fast food, this is great idea, poor execution. Fried beef tacos should be good no matter what, and these are proof that they are. But we can do a whole lot better! So let’s make some Vegan Jack in the Box Tacos!

ingredients for vegan jack in the box tacos

the meat

There was some rumors going for a while that the originals from Jack in the Box were accidentally vegan because they used TVP, but they actually also have beef and chicken. So I went ahead and made them just using TVP instead and they were so freaking amazing! Better than the original!

I’ve also made these with just plant-based meat and half TVP / Plant-Based Meat! All are good options!

You’ll either want to do a 1 1/3 cup of dried TVP and rehydrate it in equal amounts of beefless or veggie broth or a pound of plant based meat like Impossible or Beyond.

You can make batches and freeze them, then reheat for later too!

The Cheese

They just slap a piece of American cheese on these, and it kinda melts. But that doesn’t really work with Vegan American cheese. I suggest adding half a slice into your taco before frying.

frying

Speaking of frying, I’ve tried frying these in minimal oil, and then shallow frying in a thick layer of oil. Both work, but the more oil you use, the faster these cook. Don’t overcrowd the pan either. I would suggest doing no more than 4 in a 12 inch skillet.

how to make vegan jack in the box tacos

If you are using TVP, you’ll need to rehydrate it in some broth.

Then whip up a flavorful taco marinade sauce.

Next we’ll combine our vegan meat / TVP with the sauce.

Then we just need to add 2 – 3 Tbsp worth of the taco meat to a tortilla over medium heat in some oil

I like to add a slice of cheese here as well. Then fold it up, and fry it.

The cheese should get nice and melty!

Once they are cool enough to handle, push down the meat and cheese, and add some lettuce and hot sauce, and dig in!

can i air fry these tacos?

Yes! Spray them with some cooking oil and Air Fry at 380° F. Flip every 5 minutes until golden brown to your liking!

can i freeze these tacos?

Yes! Freeze them on a baking sheet for about 1 hour. Then you can store them in a freezer safe bag or tupperware. To heat them up, spray them with some cooking oil and Air Fry at 380° F. Flip every 5 minutes until golden brown to your liking!

storage / reheating

You can store these in the fridge for a few days as well. Just leave out the lettuce and hot sauce. Then reheat in the Air Fryer at 380° F for about 5 minutes or until heated through and crispy again.

MORE JACK IN THE BOX RECIPES!

Recreate my old late night Jack in the Box order! I always got a 99¢ Chicken Sandwich and a Jr. Bacon Cheeseburger as well.

Sometimes I would splurge and get a Sourdough Jack too!

You can also recreate the 99¢ Chick’n Sandwich fairly easily! Just make some Tofu Fried Chick’n or Seitan Fried Chick’n, serve it on a bun with some lettuce and Vegan Mayo!

To make a Jr. Bacon Cheeseburger, just make a smaller cheeseburger and use some Rice Paper Bacon and BBQ Sauce!

Or you can make this same recipe as TINY TACOS!

Other Recipes You’ll Dig

Here’s an (older) handy dandy video!

Recommendations for Kitchen Gear, Spices & Pantry Items, Photos and Videos, can be found on my AMAZON Storefront!

If you made and enjoyed this recipe, please leave a rating & review! It really helps out the blog and it makes my day, thank you!

Vegan Jack in the Box Tacos

Thee Burger Dude
4.70 from 20 votes

Ingredients
  

  • 8 corn tortillas
  • Iceberg lettuce chopped
  • 4 slices vegan cheese cut in half
  • ⁣Oil for frying⁣

Meat

  • 1 1/3 cup dried TVP or 1 pound vegan meat like Impossible or Beyond or a mixture of both.
  • 1 1/3 cup beefless broth or veggie broth only needed if using TVP.

Taco Sauce

  • 1 cup vegan beef or veggie broth
  • 1 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1 Tbsp onion powder
  • 1 Tbsp cumin
  • 1 Tbsp smoked paprika
  • 1 Tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 Tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 tsp MSG optional
  • 1 Tbsp masa harina or flour
  • 1 tsp vegan Worcestershire
  • 1 – 2 Tbsp. diced chipotle in adobo
  • Salt & pepper to taste

Hot Sauce

  • 2/3 cup water
  • 2 Tbsp. chili sauce or ketchup
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp. white vinegar
  • 2 tsp cornstarch + 1 Tbsp. water combined for cornstarch slurry
  • 1 tsp cayenne or to taste
  • 1/2 tsp MSG or Salt
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp white pepper
  • 1/2 tsp vegan Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika

Instructions
 

hot sauce

  • To make the hot sauce, combine all the ingredients except the cornstarch slurry in a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a simmer then add cornstarch slurry.
  • Bring to light boil and whisk constantly for one minute. Then remove from heat and add to the refrigerator.

taco meat

  • If using TVP, rehydrate for about 10 minutes in 1 1/3 cup of the beefless or veggie broth.
  • In a bowl combine all the ingredients for the Taco Sauce and whisk thoroughly.
  • If using plant based meat, cook over medium high heat until browned to your liking, breaking up the meat into a small mince.
  • If using TVP too, stir that in to combine after meat is browned. If using only TVP, simply add to a pan over medium heat. Cook for 3 – 4 minutes.
  • Add the taco sauce to the pan and stir to combine. Reduce to desired consistency if needed, mine was thick enough right away. Cook for 3 – 4 minutes or until heated through.
  • Taste and adjust seasoning to your liking. Remove from the pan. Add to a baking sheet to cool.

Taco Frying & Assembly

  • Heat up a pan with some oil and warm the tortillas so they are pliable. Don't cook them too long, you don't want them to get crispy, just heated through so they will bend without cracking.
  • Alternatively, you can also steam the tortillas in a microwave. Add them to a plate and cover with a damp paper towel and microwave for about 30 seconds.
  • Fill each tortilla with 2-3 heaping tablespoons of taco filling. Add half a slice of vegan cheese. Carefully fold and gently press so that the filling "glues" the taco closed. Place each taco on a parchment lined baking sheet.
  • If tacos are unfolding, place another piece of parchment paper on top, followed by another baking sheet. This will keep the tacos from unfolding.
  • Heat up about a 1/2 inch of oil in a big skillet. Fry each taco, for about 2-3 minutes per side or until golden brown. Let them cool on a rack.
  • Once tacos are cool enough to handle (but still relatively hot) gently open them up, then using your finger, squish down the meat a little. Top with some shredded lettuce and hot sauce and ENJOY!
Keyword vegan jack in the box, vegan tacos
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8 Comments

  1. These are a huge hit! My partner, who works form home, came wandering out of his office to the smell of the taco sauce asking what it was and when he could eat it. When I told him we were doing vegan Jack and the Box tacos, he jumped for joy. These were really easy to pull off at home for a workday lunch and I’m so glad I have a ton of that sauce left. I’m going to use it on some Thee Burger Dude breakfast burritos next.

    1. Oh wow, I love this comment so much! I’m glad you both liked it so much, I can relate to your husbands reaction lol!

  2. These were the BOMB!! I loved them, the seasoning was just right even without the vegan vegan Worcestershire and the chipotle in adobo!! Next time I run to the grocery store I’ll grab some so I can add them. So savory and hit the fast food craving lol. One of my favorite TVP recipes!

  3. Wow! 😋 we have been missing these tacos from Jack in the box so I decided to try this recipe. These were perfect and I’m so glad we actually know the ingredients. Thank you so much for this recipe and I’m looking forward to making your other recipes.

  4. im a vegetarian living in europe and i honestly missed jack n the box tacos, these hit the spot perfectly—one of the best and most approachable vegan fast food recipes i’ve ever tried + simple easy to source ingredients
    10/10

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