Tips for the Best Low Carb Tacos and Burritos
If you’re a fan of the big, bold flavour of Mexican cuisine, then you’ll be glad to learn how easy it is to fit Mexican food in to a low carb diet, including burritos, tacos, and all your other favourites. Fortunately, Mexican cuisine starts off with a heavy emphasis on meats and vegetables, which is exactly the kind of base ingredients that works so well with a low carb diet. From there, most Mexican dishes are then easily customized for the individual tastes of each person, and that includes substituting or subtracting any ingredients that may be higher in carbs.
Let’s take a look at the different kinds of ingredients that are typically found in two of the most common Mexican dishes. Tacos and burritos have a lot of similarities, but there are also some key differences to be aware of, and making sure that your meal stays low carb hinges on a couple of handy tricks that we are going to share with you. Let’s get started with the essentials!
Essential Low Carb Taco and Burrito Ingredients
Low Carb Tortillas
The basis of any taco or burrito recipe is a good quality tortilla. Since most tortillas are made with wheat flour or corn flour, this is where a bit of research really pays off for low carb dieters. Regular tortilla shells should be substituted right from the start with a low carb version, such as these amazing tortilla shells form Mama Lupe’s. These are one of our customers’ all-time favourite products, and they are absolutely perfect for a huge variety of Mexican recipes.
The key characteristics of a good tortilla are that you want one that is soft, and a little bit flexible, so that they don’t rip or tear easily when you wrap them up. Also, the size of a tortilla shell is critical as well, since you want to make sure the one you use is going to be big enough to hold all your fillings with enough room so that it doesn’t explode all over you. You’ll also want to avoid choosing a shell that’s way bigger than necessary, or else you’ll end up with a taco or burrito that is more shell than anything else.
Once you’ve chosen your tortillas, the next ingredient to look for is a seasoning that suits your taste, and the type of meat you intend to cook up.
Low Carb Taco and Burrito Seasonings
There is a wide variety of different dishes to choose from in Mexican cuisine, however the vast majority of them rely on a small but key set of spices and seasonings in different arrangements to give them their own unique tastes. Virtually every Mexican recipe will require some combination of garlic, oregano, cumin, and some variety of chili pepper powder. The type of pepper used will determine how ‘hot’ the food is, and many of them have distinct flavours, too. For example, the most standard chili pepper powder used is Cayenne, but if you’re interested in slightly milder heat and smokier flavour, you may want to choose Chipotle pepper powder instead. We recommend trying a few different types of chili pepper powder to find the ones that suit your tastes best, and deliver just the right amount of heat that you’re looking for.
To keep things fast and easy, many people will go for a packet of pre-mixed Mexican seasonings. There are seasonings available for every kind of dish that you can think of, including tacos, burritos, enchiladas, chili, and more. Be sure you choose a seasoning that doesn’t have any high-carb ingredients added. We recommend checking out products such as this taco seasoning from Mayacamas, or this enchilada sauce from Frontera Mexican Gourmet. They help simplify your Mexican meals with great tastes and low carb counts.
Other Taco and Burrito Ingredients
As far as meat goes, you can pretty much choose anything you’d like. Beef, chicken, and pork are all perfect fits, and most Mexican dishes are commonly served with any of those meats. Seafood is also fair game, and fish tacos or shrimp burritos are a great way to change up the typical recipes with a new twist to try.
Vegetables commonly found in Mexican recipes include bell peppers, onions, corn, tomatoes, and avocados. For low carb dieters, you may want to skip the corn as it does tend to have a higher carb count than some other vegetables. Pile on a few more peppers or tomatoes instead.
Burritos traditionally come with rice as one of their basic ingredients, but low carb dieters should find an alternative, or skip the rice altogether. Refried beans are also a common side dish with many Mexican foods, but are not something that should be included in a low carb meal. Instead, try some fresh salsa and sour cream on the side, or go for an extra serving of guacamole to keep the carbs down.
More Low Carb Mexican Ideas
For even more inspiration on low carb tacos and burritos, check out this great collection of 11 low carb taco recipes from Rozelle over at LivingChirpy.com. There’s lots of different flavour combos to choose from, and these recipes really keep the carb counts low. Give some of these a try and we’re sure that you’ll be making taco night part of your regular meal plan.
Although at first glance Mexican foods might look high in carbs, you can see just how easy they are to fit in to a low carb diet. Many of them are already low in carbs, and the others just require a few small, but simple, substitutions and adjustments to bring the carbs under control. Tacos and burritos are great additions to any low carb diet, and are a fantastic way to work in some exciting new flavours to your weekly meal plan that your family will just love. We hope that you find these ideas helpful, and that you’re inspired to give them a try!