Taco Pasta Salad | Veganize It!

To veganize a recipe is to take non-vegan foods (meat, eggs, dairy, etc) and replace them with a plant-based alternative.

This is the perfect time of year for a simple and delicious pasta salad. This quick and easy recipe doesn't require a lot of cooking, has awesome flavor and plenty of delicious vegetables.

This pic is from the first time I made the recipe and the updated recipe (below) doesn't include avocado

This pic is from the first time I made the recipe and the updated recipe (below) doesn't include avocado

I got this recipe from Divas Can Cook last year, but didn't make it until yesterday for the boys' lunch.

How did I veganize it?


It was super simple to veganize this recipe because everything was already vegan expect for the cheese. I used Follow Your Heart vegan cheese and grated a little on top before serving. You can also skip vegan cheese and this recipe will be just as good.

The Verdict

I loved it.

Eric loved it (he ate the leftovers at dinner).

Bran loved it.

Elijah and Jason said it was "okay".

Majority rules in our house, so I'll definitely make it again!

All 3 kids asked that I use more pasta and less vegetables the next time around. Ha!

The original recipe has 8 different vegetables, so I called myself trying to "sneak them in" by chopping them into tiny pieces. I guess that wasn't good enough for my 3...this time. lol I even forgot to put in the corn, so yeah, I guess there were too vegetables for them.

I reduced the vegetables down to 5 and re-wrote the recipe based on the fam's feedback below.

Veganize this delicious recipe today!

Taco Pasta Salad

by Brown Vegan & DivasCanCook

Keywords: entree vegan

Ingredients (Serves 5)

  • 8 oz rotini pasta, dry
  • ¾ cup salsa (can add more)
  • 2 teaspoons taco seasoning (can add more)
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • ½ cup black olives, sliced
  • 1 small red onion, diced
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • 15 oz can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 cup vegan cheddar cheese, shredded (optional)
  • 1/3 cup cilantro, to garnish (optional)


Cook pasta according to package until al dente.

Drain pasta, rinse with cold water and set aside.

In a large bowl, toss pasta with salsa and taco seasoning.

Add in bell pepper, black olives, onion, cherry tomatoes, & black beans.

When ready to serve, top with optional vegan cheese & cilantro

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My Sister's Summer Pasta Salad-Veganize It!

My sister is usually in charge of making both the pasta & fruit salads at every family event. Since her pasta salad contains cheese and ham/turkey, I haven't enjoyed it since becoming a vegan. The other day, I figured what the heck?  Let me just veganize this recipe and make it just as delicious without the animal products.


This recipe is super simple and delicious! I made a video about it below.

Update: You can add any other vegetable you choose. These days, I also add in a cucumber. 

Print and share the full recipe at the end of this post. 

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What do you like in your pasta salad? Leave a comment below?

Simple Pasta Salad

by Brown Vegan

Ingredients (Feeds 7)

  • 1 lb rotini pasta
  • 1/2 cup red onion, chopped
  • 2 Roma tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/3 cup black olives
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cup Italian dressing


Bring a pot of salted water to a boil and cook pasta according to the directions on the label. Drain and rinse the pasta and place to the side.

In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients , mixing everything until pasta is evenly coated.

Chill in the fridge for at least an hour.

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Jalapeno & Mushroom Quesadilla Recipe-Veganize It

Even after three years, I still get nervous sometimes when I offer the boys a new recipe.

Kids can be picky when it comes to food, so when I saw jalapeno & mushrooms in this recipe, I wasn't sure they would like it.

I got this recipe from The Pioneer Woman's blog.


Even though there aren't any vegan recipes on her blog, it wasn't hard to make a few changes to make this one vegan-friendly.

I used Daiya vegan cheese....a little vegan cheese goes a long way. Also, instead of conventional butter I used Earth Balance vegan margarine.

I removed the seeds from the jalapenos for the kids so it wouldn't be spicy

I removed the seeds from the jalapenos for the kids so it wouldn't be spicy

I skipped the salt & pepper and seasoned my mushrooms with cumin instead.

Dinner was served without any complaints! 


Make this recipe vegan today! Use vegan cheese, vegan margarine (or oil) instead of conventional butter and cheese.

Let me know if you try this recipe. :-) 

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What's for Dinner? Creamy Vegan Sausage & Kale Pasta

It's been way too long since I've made a cooking video on my YouTube channel.  I finally got motivated to film yesterday and plan to get back into the full swing in the coming weeks.


I pulled together an awesome skillet meal heavily inspired by this creamy pasta recipe from Divas Can Cook.  Instead of using heavy cream and cheese I opted for canned coconut to give the pasta a delicious and creamy texture. You don't have to worry about an overwhelming coconut flavor in this recipe. I also used vegan sausage to make this meal completely plant-based, simple and delicious.


Why eat Hamburger Helper when you can put together a healthier skillet meal in less time?

My family approved of this meal and I know yours will too. Send me a picture on Twitter or Instagram when you make this dish. :-) 

Vegan Sausage & Kale Pasta

by Brown Vegan

Ingredients (Serves 6)

  • 3 cups mini bow-tie pasta, uncooked
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil (for sautéing)
  • ½ cup red onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 4 vegan sausage links (I use Field Roast), chopped
  • 1 large tomato, diced
  • ½ cup canned coconut milk (add more, if necessary)
  • 1 tablespoon parsley, chopped
  • 2 cups raw kale, steams removed & ripped into bite-sized pieces
  • salt & pepper to taste (I add mine at the end)


Bring 4 quarts of water to a boil, add in pasta and cook until al dente.

In a large skillet, sauté onion and garlic on medium heat until the onion is soft. Sprinkle in red pepper flakes. Next add in vegan sausage and tomato and warm together for about 3 minutes. Then stir in coconut milk and parsley and cook for 2 minutes. Mix in pasta and kale and finish cooking for 3-4 minutes medium heat.

Optional: Add in more coconut milk to make a creamier sauce

Season with salt and pepper if necessary

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