Vegan Tamales

These vegan tamales are so flavorful and delicious! WOW, they have every authentic flavor you can expect in tamales.
Vegan tamales

Vegan tamales Vegan Tamales

These vegan tamales are so flavorful and delicious! WOW, they have every authentic flavor you can expect in tamales. They have a delicious refried bean filling that you will want to eat just on it’s own.

I remember when we lived back in Philly we would go to the Italian Market which also has lots of Mexican Restaurants and stores. We would go out there to get out produce on Saturday mornings with the family and make it a whole experience.

My mom and husband would come with us, for what seemed like only one thing. The Mexican coffee which they both loved so much. Me, I’m not one for coffee so, instead I was in it for the $2 tamales. Oh, boy were they delicious. This was before I went vegan so of course I gave those up when I went vegan but I still craved tamales every Saturday because I had already trained myself that way. So, I did what I always to when I crave a non vegan dish, create it’s vegan arch nemeses! (Insert evil laugh here)

Vegan Tamales

What Makes These Vegan Tamales The Best

These tamales are flavored in every step of the way! The filling is flavored to the max, and the corn masa is also flavored fantastically. There is nothing worst then a bland tamale, but you don’t have to worry about that when it comes to this recipe.

Vegan tamales

Why You Should Make These

•EasyThese may seem intimidating to make, and I won’t lie they do take a bit of time to assemble if you are making a bunch. However, they are very easy to prepare because you really are only cooking the filling and I use the term cooking lightly because I just amp up canned refried beans for the filling. The masa you mix without cooking, then you assemble and then you steam them. That’s it!

•Storage You can make a big batch of this and use it as part of your meal prep. I make these in big batches and store them in the fridge for up to a week. They don’t usually last that long because I find myself always hunger whenever there are tamales ready to eat in the fridge.

•Delicious I think I may have mentioned that fact that these are delicious once or twice, but it’s true these are so flavorful. You will not regret making these!

Vegan tamales



    Masa Mixture

    • 1 1/2 cup instant corn masa flour
    • 1 cup red enchilada sauce
    • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
    • 1/4 tsp ground cumin
    • 3/4 cup water
    • 1 tsp salt

    Filling Mixture

    • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
    • 1/2 red onion chopped
    • 1/2 red bell pepper chopped
    • 1 cup refried beans vegan friendly (fat free is usually vegan)
    • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
    • 1/2 tsp paprika
    • 1/2 tsp oregano


    • 12 soaked corn husks (See notes)



    • Using the ingredients from the filling mixture, add in 2 tbsp of oil into a medium pan medium high heat.
    • Add in the chopped onion and pepper. Cook until the onions have slightly turned golden brown, about 4 minutes.
    • Add in the refried beans and the garlic, paprika, and oregano. Mash all ingredients together until everything is well combined. Cook for 3 minutes, to marry all the flavors and set aside.
    • Moving on to the corn masa mixture. In a large mixing bowl, mix together all the masa mixture ingredients and mix until you get a consistency that is smooth enough to spread.
    • Lay out one corn husk at a time and spread about 1/3 cup of masa onto the corn husk, to create a rectangle with the masa. Leave approximately 3/4" of empty space around the spread masa.
    • Add a heaping tablespoon of the filling mixture into the center of the masa that was previous spread on the husk.
    • Close the husk, by folding one side across to the other. Lastly fold the bottom of the husk upward about 2 inches and continue to do this until you have made all the tamales.
    • Steam all the tamales for 1 hour. Make sure the tamales are in a standing position, with the open end facing upward, or you run the risk of the soft uncooked tamales coming out of the foil while steaming.
    • Remove from steamer and allow to cool for 15 minutes. Letting the tamales cool for a few minutes once steamed will allow them to set and harden a bit. Tamales are pretty soft fresh out of the steamer.
    • Unwrap, grab a delicious bite and ENJOY!


    Recipe Notes: To soak corn husks simply fully submerge husks into water, cover and let soak overnight. Or soak in hot water for 4 hours.