When Anubis and Ramses Avalos decided to eschew all meat in favor of a vegan diet more than two years ago, it didn’t cause much of a stir in their family. What did surprise people was when the brothers, both musicians, decided to share their plant-based culinary lifestyle more widely by making a business out of it.

The pair owns the Chile de Árbol food truck headquartered at the Broken Sprocket food truck park and touts the all-vegan menu as the first of its kind in Brownsville. The brothers serve up tacos, burgers and Indian-inspired bowls — all without meat, eggs or dairy. Everything is made from scratch, down to the soy sauce, and the prices top out at $5.50.

“People think you have to break that bank to be healthy. That’s caused by restaurants selling a little salad for $12 or $15,” said Anubis Avalos, 30, a guitar teacher at Porter Early College High School. “We want to make it affordable for everyone.”

The most popular menu items have been the tacos, said Ramses Avalos, 25, made with the wheat- and soy-based meat alternatives seitan and tempeh. Entrees also include tempeh and black bean burgers, as well as Indian-inspired curry and dahl bowls.

The brothers said they were introduced to veganism by a college professor, but they didn’t embrace it until watching a documentary that explored the environmental impact of animal agriculture. Dining out came to present a problem, and they learned to cook vegan cuisine for themselves.

“We realized there weren’t any options other than (the) rice and bean taco at Taco Palenque or Taco Bell,” Anubis Avalos said, adding that part the Chile de Árbol concept was to give other vegans a break from cooking at home. “We thought of ourselves as a healthy cafeteria.”

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