Torchy’s Tacos launches a vegan cowboy style beyond the beef taco
In 2006, chef Mike Rypka bought a food trailer and a red Vespa and drove around Austin, Texas, handing out delicious, inexpensive tacos to lure people to his food trailer, Torchy’s Tacos. Now, Torchy’s has nearly 100 locations in 11 states and thousands of fans nationwide, but plant-based customers have found its vegan options to be limited. Hearing their concerns, the regional chain has just launched two new plant-based options on its permanent menu.
Torchy’s Taco has partnered with Beyond Meat to bring vegan tacos and Tex-Mex specialties to customers nationwide. New menu items include the MoFaux Taco and Grande Burrito Bowl, which can be made vegan when ordered without cheese, refried beans and sour cream. Both new vegan options aim to appeal to vegan customers, but the fast-casual taco chain guarantees that all of its diehards will enjoy them.
The MoFaux is the company’s first true plant-based menu item, featuring Cowboy-Style Beyond Beef, grilled corn, green chiles, peppadew peppers, cilantro and avocado. The vegan taco will also be served on a fresh corn tortilla and topped with the company’s signature Diablo sauce. The Beyond Beef specialty is flavored to match the taco chain’s Tex-Mex cuisine palette. The plant-based taco will be available in all stores starting February 9.
“Torchy’s is all about innovating to ensure we offer the tastiest and most unique offerings in the game, and these new menu items hit the mark by offering a little something for everyone, whether you’re plant-based , whether you have a sweet tooth, or just love Damn Good tacos,” Rypka said. “Our culinary team has been hard at work perfecting these new items, and we can’t wait to see the reactions from our fans.”
While the plant-based menu is kept short, Torchy’s new vegan protein will allow customers to customize their orders. The company revealed that Cowboy-Style Beyond Beef will be available as a replacement for its Grande Burrito and Airstream Salad as well as the new Grande Burrito Bowl.
Torchy released the MoFaux taco nationwide after its successful trial in Austin and Columbus, Ohio. Now Torchy fans can find the new vegan taco in Indiana, Arkansas, Texas, Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma, Tennessee, North Carolina, Louisiana and Virginia.
The plant-based taco will also support the fast-casual chain’s commitments to sustainability. Although current menu offerings rely on meat and dairy, the company strives to reduce its carbon footprint by only stocking napkins, cutlery and cups made from 100% renewable resources. Torchy’s also donates all of its excess cooking oil to companies that reuse it for biodiesel. Now, the development of plant-based menus will help the company reduce its environmental impact even further.
Plant-based fast food goes vegan
Prior to the past few years, vegan food was mostly confined to home cooking and grocery shopping, but now restaurants are looking to shift to plant-based eating. Plant-based meat is currently appearing on the menu 1,320% more than at the start of the pandemic. Local restaurants have contributed to this change in the restaurant industry, but the biggest change has been fast food’s new interest in vegan options.
Vegan fast food is becoming extremely popular as people nationwide become more concerned about sustainability, sourcing, and health issues related to meat and dairy production. The vegan fast food market is currently expected to reach $40 billion by 2028, signifying a sea change in consumer behavior over the next decade. While Torchy’s new vegan taco is a big deal for regional fans, fast-food giants like McDonald’s and Taco Bell have already led the way, introducing new vegan menu items like McPlant’s New Vegan Protein and Taco Bell.
Austin’s thriving vegan scene
There’s no city like Austin. Buried in the heart of Texas, the state capital is known for its vibrant music scene, Southern hospitality, and general eccentricity that locals hope to preserve more than anything. It’s no surprise, then, that the Electric City’s food scene is just as inventive and exciting as the rest of the city.
Torchy’s is just the latest in Austin’s dining scene to embrace plant-based Tex-Mex, so check it out Beet list of the best vegan and plant-based dishes in Austin to see which restaurants have paved the way for the beloved Austin-based chain.
The 6 best fast food chains with plant-based options on the menu
Fast food restaurants have finally gotten the message that their customers don’t just come for a burger, fried chicken or beef taco. Many now have plant-based foods and come up with creative and delicious ways to add more greens to the menu. Here are the 6 best fast food chains with plant-based options on the menu.