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Vegan Green Chili & Lentil Tamales


Looking for a great vegan recipe? Try these healthy and delicious Green Chili and Lentil Tamales. Who says you need lard!

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Rate this recipe 4.3/5 (27 Votes)


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1/2 small onion, diced fine
  • 1 (15-ounce) can lentils, drained
  • 1 vegan "beef" bouillon cube
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 (16-ounce) green chili (I love the stuff from
  • 1/2 cup frozen sweet corn
  • 4 cups masa
  • 2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 3 vegan "beef" bouillon cubes dissolved into 3 cups of water
  • 1 (16-ounce) package dried corn husks


Servings 24
Preparation time 30mins
Cooking time 90mins
Adapted from


Step 1

Soak the corn husks in a large bowl of warm water while preparing to cook the tamales.

Heat the oven to 400°F.

In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium high heat. Toss the garlic into the hot oil, then add the onion and cook for about a minute. Toss int he lentils, bouillon cube and cumin. Stir to mix well. Add the green chili and corn. Remove from the heat and set aside.

In a large bowl, mix the masa, baking soda, and salt together. Add the coconut oil. Stir well. Add the bouillon flavored water to the mix. Add more water, if needed, to make the masa a soft, spongy dough.

Smooth the masa onto your largest corn husks until about 1/4- to 1/2-inch thick. You want it to cover about a 3-inch square of the husk, if possible. Place 1 to 2 tablespoons of the lentil filling into the center of the masa dough. Fold the sides of the corn, then fold the top and bottom of each husk down. Set the tamale bottom-side-down in a large roaster pan, fitted with the rack on the bottom of the pan. (If you need to wrap the tamales rolled in smaller corn husks with a second or third husk, or even tie some of them together with a small piece of husk, go for it! This is an imperfect science!)

Once all of your tamales are ready, pour approximately 2 cups of water into the bottom of your roasting dish. Make sure the water doesn't touch the tamales, they should be propped safely on the rack. Cover the pan tightly with several sheets of aluminum foil, then place in your preheated oven and cook 35-45 minutes, or until the tamale dough appears to have cooked. Remove the tamales from the oven and allow them to set untouched for 15-20 minutes before serving.

Serve with pan-sautéed zucchini and enjoy!

Pile wrapped tamales in a crockpot, cover and cook on high 5-6 hours, or until the tamale dough is set. Remove the lid 15 minutes before serving, unplug the crockpot and allow them to cool and set before feeding your masses.

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