Sweet Potato and Black Bean Tacos Recipe - Pamela Salzman Skip to content

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Tacos Recipe

sweet potato and black bean tacos | pamela salzman

Serious question:  Is anything considered a taco if it all goes into a corn tortilla?  Because if that’s the case, I have eaten A LOT of tacos, some typical and others not so obvious.  And my son, even more than I have.  Have I ever told you my idea for a book about feeding picky children?  I would title it, “Finding Your Child’s Corn Tortilla.”  This is because my son, aka Mr. Picky, loves corn tortillas and is much more likely to eat something if it’s in or with a corn tortilla.  Eggs, steak, roasted carrots, whatever.  The kid is probably the foremost expert on cutting edge taco combinations.

sweet potato and black bean tacos | pamela salzman

I, on the other hand, love corn tortillas for the same reason I love food in bowls — I love bringing all my foods together in one complete bite.  I have been buying sprouted worn tortillas by Food For Life for many years.  Sprouted grains are more digestible and the nutrients more assimilable than non-sprouted.  The texture isn’t exactly like standard corn tortillas, but I prefer the cornier flavor.  But if I’m feeling like I need to eat a little more lightly, I will use a big lettuce leaf instead.  Although with this recipe, I have a hard time getting the sweet potatoes from the pan to my plate since I have been known to devour them straight from the baking sheet.  You can even roast these as written for a simple side dish with roasted chicken or fish or put an egg on top.

sweet potato and black bean tacos | pamela salzman

Sweet potatoes are loaded with caretenoids, fiber and Vitamin C.   I think they could be classified as a super food.  They’re much more nutrient-dense than regular potatoes.  And they pair swimmingly with protein-rich legumes, whether it’s black beans or lentils.  Here I just doctored up some cooked black beans with some tasty spices and lime juice to boost the flavor of the beans, but still kept everything quick and easy.  I personally love to add hot sauce and cilantro to this mixture and my husband likes to add cheese of some sort.  Avocado and/or radishes would also be great here.

sprouted corn tortillas

I originally taught this recipe a few years ago in my breakfast class as an alternative to typical breakfast fare.  In a few classes, I served it with scrambled eggs and lots of hot sauce.  A lot of my students have been telling me that they’ve been making breakfast for dinner lately and their kids love it.  Great idea!  In the same vein, why not make less complicated savory dishes for breakfast?

sweet potato and black bean tacos | pamela salzman

I still don’t have my super bowl menu planned out, but if I do a taco bar, I will for sure have a platter with these sweet potatoes and black beans side by side for a vegetarian option.  And I’ll stash away a little bit so I have some leftovers for a breakfast taco the next morning!

sweet potato and black bean tacos | pamela salzman

5.0 from 4 reviews
Sweet Potato and Black Bean Tacos
Serves: 6
  • 2 large sweet potatoes or 2 large russet potatoes (1 ½ - 2 lbs), peeled (if desired) and cubed
  • ¼ cup unrefined coconut oil (if using sweet potatoes) or unrefined, cold-pressed extra-virgin olive oil (if using russet potatoes)
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground chipotle powder
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon paprika
  • ¼ teaspoon chili powder
  • 3 ½ cups of cooked black beans, or 2 14.5 ounce cans black beans, drained and rinsed
  • juice of one lime
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 6 sprouted corn tortillas or tortillas of your choice
  • accompaniments: sliced avocado, fresh cilantro, hot sauce or salsa, shredded Monerey Jack or crumbled Cotija, fried egg, julienned radishes
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Scrub, peel, and cube the potatoes into 1-inch cubes.
  3. If using sweet potatoes, melt coconut oil and combine with salt, chipotle powder, garlic powder, paprika, and chili powder. If using russet potatoes, combine olive oil with same spices.
  4. Toss the potatoes with oil-spice mixture.
  5. Place on a parchment-lined baking sheet and roast for 25-30 minutes, until tender and crispy.
  6. Meanwhile, place drained black beans into a saucepan. Combine with cumin, salt, and lime juice. Heat through.
  7. Warm tortillas on both sides on a griddle or skillet over medium heat, until pliable, about 1 minute total. Keep warmed tortillas in a thin kitchen towel.
  8. Serve potatoes and black beans with warmed tortillas and desired accompaniments.


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  1. Wanted to go meatless monday and use up some tortillas we had left over from another meal. Was also looking for another meal to have the cilantro-lime slaw with, if I’m being totally honest. After a panic at the grocery store when the sweet potato bin was empty, the clerk brought out some white sweet potatoes, which worked fine. True to the commentary, I was worried there wouldn’t be enough sweet potatoes left for the tacos they were so good I was grabbing pieces off the pan while I finished up the rest of the meal. So. Very. Good. Even my own Ms. Picky was sneaking some pieces! Back to the slaw. I didn’t use a tortilla, so just added my beans, sweet potatoes, and taco toppings (radishes, avocado, cilantro, squeeze of lime) onto my slaw base. Looking forward to leftover lunch with this one!

  2. Hi, is cayenne a good sub if I don’t have chipoltle powder?

    • Hi Brett! Not really. If you don’t have chipotle, you can take an equal amount smoked paprika plus a PINCH of cayenne. Cayenne is way hotter! If you don’t have smoked paprika, sub an equal amount regular paprika plus a pinch of cayenne, but you’ll miss out on the smoked flavor.

  3. I made these this week and my husband kept stealing the potatoes off the cookie sheet. The flavor combination was addicting! I can’t wait to make these for my mom and sisters. We had enough left over for two more tacos and I ate them the next night for dinner when everyone else ate pancakes (your almond pulp recipe of course!) You are just so brilliant with putting together the right ingredients and flavors. This recipe will definitely be eaten in my house a lot. 🙂

  4. I can’t wait to make this! I have recently discovered my love for sweet potatoes. 1 question: do I have to use coconut oil with sweet potatoes? Will it make a big difference? Does it taste like coconut? Thank you!
    PS – Mr. Picky is one cool kid

    • Hi! We like him ;). You can use olive oil if you prefer. Coconut oil is more stable at higher temps, but go with the flavor you like better. I don’t think it tastes like coconut oil though.

  5. Just tried these last night. So delicious! Thank You!

    • forgot the stars 🙂

    • Thanks, Tom! Appreciate the feedback 🙂

  6. This is awesome and so delicious! Thank you Pamela. My girlfriend made this for us a month ago. Now its my turn to make it for her and my mom. Wish me luck!

    • Nice! You’re going to do great since you already know what it’s supposed to taste like. Good luck!

  7. I finally got around to making these last night! So quick, so easy, so delish! I sprinkled a little cojita and cilantro and they were perfect! Thank you Pamela for another winner!

    • Yay! Hooray for quick, easy and yummy!

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I come from a large Italian-American family with 28 first cousins (on one side of the family!) where sit-down holiday dinners for 85 people are the norm (how, you might ask – organization! But more on that later …).

Some of my fondest memories are of simple family gatherings, both large and small, with long tables of bowls and platters piled high, the laughter of my cousins echoing and the comfort of tradition warming my soul.

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