Chris Rios: The Tex-Mex Pioneer

July 27, 2020

When Chris Rios told his family he wanted to open a vegan taco truck, they told him he was crazy.

An East Austin native, Rios had been raised on Tex-Mex and BBQ. With a big, tight knit family, home-cooked dinners and potlucks were a staple, filled with huevos rancheros, homemade tortillas and his mom’s specialty–enchiladas.

Rios got into veganism after his mom passed away in 2008. They’d been really close, and the loss made him rethink his health and his diet. Wanting to make a change for both himself and the environment, he decided to go vegan. 

After living as a vegan for a few years, Rios realized how limited his choices were when eating out and how expensive vegan dishes were. He wanted to make veganism more approachable, delicious and affordable for his neighbors and community. And with that dream, The Vegan Nom was born.

Since opening The Vegan Nom, Rios has been relentlessly experimenting with ingredients, recreating the dishes he loved growing up with a healthier vegan twist. To learn more about his story, challenges and unique approach to Tex-Mex, check out the premiere episode of VICE and MUNCHIES’ new show, Off the Truck.

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