Vegetarian Tamales


  • 2 to 3 tablespoons canola or vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup onion, minced
  • 1 teaspoon garlic, minced
  • 3/4 cup frozen edamame, thawed, shelled (whole green soybeans)
  • 3/4 cup frozen corn, thawed
  • 2/3 cup zucchini, grated
  • 1/4 cup red bell pepper, finely chopped, roasted, from a jar
  • Salt and black pepper, freshly ground, to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon parsley, dried
  • 1/4 teaspoon New Mexico chili powder, dried, or more, to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin, or more, to taste
  • Masa Harina, mixed according to package directions, enough for about 2 dozen tamales
  • 1 package dry corn husks, soaked in hot water for about 10-15 minutes


  1. Filling: In a nonstick skillet or sauté pan, heat canola or vegetable oil over medium heat. When hot, add onion and garlic and saute for 2 to 3 minutes.
  2. Add thawed, shelled edamame and cook for about 5 minutes.
  3. Add the corn, zucchini, roasted red bell pepper, salt, pepper, oregano, parsley, chili powder and cumin. Sauté about another 5 minutes, until zucchini is tender and flavors have blended.
  4. Adjust salt, chili powder and cumin to taste. Remove from heat and let cool.
  5. Meanwhile, make masa according to package directions, using vegetable shortening in place of lard.
  6. To assemble: Hold a soaked, pliable corn husk in one hand, ridge side down. Spread about 2 tablespoons of masa dough over 1/3 of the smooth side of the husk, but not to edges. Fill with about 1 tablespoon of filling down the middle of the masa. Fold the husk together lengthwise so the masa covers the filling, then fold the bottom (narrow side) of the husk up, and roll the remainder like a burrito. Leave the wide edge (top) open. You will have what looks like a small burrito with one end exposed. Stand the tamales on end, sealed end down, in a deep pot with a steamer basket (a pasta cooker with a lift-out insert works well). Cover and steam for about 90 minutes, or until masa is cooked through.

Makes about 2 cups of filling, enough for about 2 dozen tamales.

This page may contain affiliate links. Any purchases made through these links help support at no additional cost to you. Please see our Disclosure Policy.

DON'T MISS Weekly Specials
from The Prepared Pantry!