What Are the Vegan Options at Torchy’s Tacos? (2021)

Torchy’s Tacos isn’t going to win any prizes for being vegan-friendly anytime soon. It’s hard to even put together a real vegan taco here. That said, as a vegan with 13 years of dining experience, I can guide you through the few options you do have.

Vegan options at Torchy’s Tacos:

  • Avocado Sauce & Chips
  • Diablo Sauce & Chips
  • Pico de Gallo & Chips
  • Roja Sauce & Chips
  • Tomatillo Sauce & Chips
  • Torchy’s Mexican Rice
  • Custom Vegan Taco
  • Custom Vegan Burrito
  • Beverages

Below, I’ll share more about how to order the taco and burrito vegan, and some other menu items that are surprisingly NOT vegan. I’ll answer some common questions, and I’ll suggest other Tex-Mex restaurants that might be a better choice.

Torchy’s Tacos Vegan Menu

The following vegan menu was compiled with the help of the full menu and allergen information on the Torchy’s Tacos website, along with the help of some other posts by bloggers and former Torchy’s employees.

Restaurant menus change and often vary by location. I recommend double checking any important information with staff at your location!

1. Chips and Dip

The main attraction at Torchy’s for vegans would be the tortilla chips. They’re cooked in vegetable oil—not animal fat. Luckily, there is a decent selection of dip/sauce options, too:

  • Avocado Sauce & Chips
  • Diablo Sauce & Chips
  • Pico de Gallo & Chips
  • Roja Sauce & Chips
  • Tomatillo Sauce & Chips

Note: The Chipotle Sauce, Guacamole, and Poblano Sauce options are not vegan.

2. Torchy’s Mexican Rice

You can also get a side of rice. That may not sound very enticing… but at least it’s something you can potentially fill up on.

3. Custom Vegan Taco or Burrito (Limited Options)

I’ll be honest—the options for building your own vegan taco or burrito at Torchy’s are very limited. Hopefully they’ll add some Beyond Meat or at least vegan beans in the future.

Right now, a vegan taco or burrito at Torchy’s will basically be: Tortilla, rice, veggies, and sauce.

For the veggies, it looks like they have: Lettuce, peppers, onion, greens, avocado, and cilantro. However, avoid the deep-fried avocado—it contains a non-vegan batter (more on that below.) Just get normal avocado, if you’re getting avocado at all.

These are the vegan sauces to choose from:

  • Avocado Sauce
  • Diablo Sauce
  • Pico de Gallo
  • Roja Sauce
  • Tomatillo Sauce

4. Beverages

Thankfully there are plenty of vegan drinks:

  • Barq’s Root Beer
  • Coke
  • Diet Coke
  • Dr. Pepper
  • Fanta Orange
  • Hi-C Fruit Punch
  • Iced Tea (Sweet or Unsweet)
  • Minute Maid Lemonade or Limeade
  • Sprite
  • Vanilla Cream Soda
  • Torchy’s Pucker Up Punch
  • Dasani Bottled Water
  • Jarritos
  • Red Bull
  • Topo Chico
  • And More

Torchy’s also offers alcoholic beverages. I always recommend checking Barnivore.com to see which alcoholic drinks are vegan.

But What About…

You might think some of the following items would be vegan, too—but unfortunately they’re not:

  • The Refried Beans contain dairy (cheese), and they cannot be ordered dairy-free.
  • The Street Corn contains milk and egg.
  • The Fried Avocado contains egg in the batter.

Now let’s answer some common questions about eating vegan at Torchy’s Tacos.

Is Torchy’s Tacos Fried Avocado Vegan?

Torchy’s Deep-Fried Avocado is not vegan, as it is fried with a non-vegan batter. From what I have read, the batter contains egg, and this is consistent with Torchy’s allergen menu. A former employee of Torchy’s also said the batter contains milk.

Is Torchy’s Rice Vegan?

Torchy’s rice is vegan. It contains no dairy or other animal products.

What Does “Make It Trashy” Mean at Torchy’s Tacos?

When you say “make it trashy” with your order at Torchy’s Tacos, they cover your order with queso (cheese). Ordering anything “trashy” at Torchy’s would not be vegan!

What Cooking Oil Does Torchy’s Tacos Use?

Torchy’s Tacos apparently uses safflower oil in their deep fryers and for their tortilla chips. However, this could vary by location or change over time, so I’d check at your location if this is of major concern to you.

Whole-Food Plant-Based Options

What if you’re not just vegan but also trying to avoid processed foods? Can you get a whole-food plant-based (WFPB) meal at Torchy’s Tacos? That means no processed sugar, flour, or oil.

It’s not really possible to eat a WFPB meal at Torchy’s. The rice is white rice. The tortillas are made with white flour and oil. The chips are fried in oil.

You could theoretically get them to assemble a vegan salad for you. But the only salad on the menu (the “Airstream Salad”) is very far away from being vegan. So it would be a very custom order—not just a little tweak to the recipe.

Other Tex-Mex Restaurants to Choose Instead

Where should you go instead of Torchy’s Tacos for good vegan options? I’d recommend taking a look at these (click for a vegan menu for each):

Even Chipotle would be far better than Torchy’s for a vegan. So there should be plenty of options, no matter where you live.

Two More Recommendations for Your Vegan Journey

1. This is the best vegan multivitamin I’ve found in 13 years of being vegan. It has vitamin B12, vitamin D, omega-3—and nothing else. Translation: It only has the nutrients vegans are actually low in. Read my full review of Future Kind’s multivitamin here (with 10% discount).

2. This is the best vegan starter kit I know of. It’s a bundle of 9 beautiful e-books that help you transition to a healthy plant-based diet—the right way. The advice is spot-on, and it has print-outs and checklists that make it easy to implement. Read my full review of Nutriciously here.