Dinner Recipes

Tempura Mushroom Tacos With Napa Slaw

If there is a savory food more adorable than tempura mushrooms, we don’t know what it is! Adorable and luxe, these tacos belong in the red-lacquered compartments of a bento box. Even so, this is actually a quick meal to throw together. The Napa slaw requires a little knife work, but you can make it ahead. (In fact, you should: let those flavors meld.) And the mushroom tempura is in and out of the frying oil in minutes.

Tempura veggies are lovely in a taco. In part, that’s down to the batter, which stays super light and crisp in the oil, adding a bunch of crunch but almost no weight. The batter is a simple affair: just flour, cornstarch, and soda water. In the test kitchen, we’ve found that a cold tempura batter will fry up lighter, more delicate, so we chill all the ingredients prior to whisking it up — even the flour.

We use mushrooms and jalapeños here, and we love how fresh and juicy they stay in their golden brown tempura coats. They taste amazing with the Napa slaw, a bright yet richly savory combo of veggies tossed in rice vinegar, tamari, sesame oil, and plenty of cilantro.

Tempura mushroom tacos are so nice and light and yet so satisfying. They’d make fantastic happy hour fare paired with your favorite beer or a sparkling wine. And, not surprisingly, they’re a family fave — even with the mushrooms. Our kiddos nibbled on the crispy bits of tempura batter and soon found themselves happily shoving whole mushrooms in their mouths and murmuring purr-like yums.

Tempura Mushroom Tacos With Napa Slaw



Tempura Mushroom Tacos With Napa Slaw

Serves: 12


For the Napa slaw:

4 cups finely shredded Napa cabbage
¼ cup thinly sliced green onions, light green parts only
⅓ cup grated carrot
¼ cup grated daikon radish
¼ cup chopped cilantro leaves and tender stems, plus more for garnish
¼ cup julienned red onion
1 tsp sesame seeds, toasted
1 ½ tsp sesame oil
1 Tbsp rice vinegar
1 Tbsp Gelson’s 100% California extra virgin olive oil
2 tsp tamari
1 tsp freshly squeezed lime juice
¼ tsp granulated sugar
Kosher salt, to taste

For the tempura vegetables:

Vegetable oil, for frying
1 ½ cups soda water, chilled
1 cup Gelson’s organic all-purpose flour, chilled
1 Tbsp cornstarch, chilled
8 oz shiitake mushrooms, stems removed, halved lengthwise
2 jalapeños, sliced into ¼”-thick rings
Kosher salt, to taste
12 white corn tortillas
Chopped Gelson’s fresh organic cilantro, for garnish
Lime wedges, for serving
Hot sauce or chile oil, for serving
Special equipment: Candy thermometer


  1. To make the slaw: In a large bowl, combine the Napa cabbage, green onion, carrot, daikon, cilantro, and red onion.

  2. In a small bowl, whisk together sesame seeds, sesame oil, rice vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, tamari, lime juice, sugar, and salt. Pour the vinaigrette over the vegetables and lightly toss to combine. Cover and let rest at room temperature.

  3. To make the tempura vegetables: Fill a medium, heavy-bottomed pot halfway with vegetable oil and fit the pot with a candy thermometer. Heat over medium heat until the oil reaches 350º. Adjust the heat as needed to maintain this oil temperature.

  4. In a large bowl, whisk together the soda water, all-purpose flour, and cornstarch until smooth.

  5. Line a large plate with a paper towel. Working in batches and using tongs, dip the shiitake mushrooms and jalapeños into the batter to fully coat, then place them in the hot oil. Fry, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking, for 3 to 5 minutes, or until golden brown. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the veggies to the plate. Season with salt.

  6. Repeat step 5 with the remaining vegetables and batter.

  7. In a grill pan set over medium-high heat, warm the tortillas for 1 minute per side, or until they’re nicely charred. Transfer to a large plate and set aside.

  8. To serve: Fill the warm tortillas with the tempura vegetables and top them with the Napa slaw. Garnish with chopped cilantro leaves and serve warm with lime wedges and your favorite hot sauce or chile oil.

Recipe source: Ingredient

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