Vegan(ish) Nachos

These nachos are vegan-ish. What does this mean? It means that we are capitalizing on the fact that a cashew based cheese sauce is a bit healthier than a mountain of cheese, but also still profiting from a bit of cheese on the nachos. This way, we get the best of both worlds, the meltiness of cheese, and the healthiness of substituting some of the cheese for a cashew based queso (which is also delicious).

In this recipe, I call for a batch of The Best Instant Pot Black Beans. You can use canned black beans, but the nachos will not be as good (I guarantee it). As always, if there are any other ingredients you love on nachos, throw them on, some other ideas could be sour cream, fresh pico de gallo or refried beans. If you want to make this recipe vegan simply omit the shredded cheese. This recipe has enough toppings for 3-4 people’s worth of nachos. Enjoy!

Active time: 25 minutes

Cook time: 10 minutes

Ingredients:

Cashew queso

  • Two medium carrots (120g)
  • Heaping ¾  cup cashews
  • 1 tbsp lime juice
  • 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp chili powder
  • ½ tsp onion powder
  • ¼ tsp garlic powder
  • ¼ cup The Best Instant Pot Black Beans (not rinsed)              
  • ⅞-1  cup water
  • ¼ cup salsa

Guacamole

  • 2 avocados
  • ¼ cup finely diced onion
  • 2 tsp lime juice
  • ¼ tsp salt + more to taste
  • ¼ cup finely chopped cilantro
  • 1 smashed garlic
  • ¼ tsp tabasco or equivalent hot sauce 

Nachos

  • Bag of preferred corn tortilla chips

Directions

  1. Optional step, required without a high powered blender. Soak the cashews in water for 8-12 hours. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap. 
  2. Preheat the oven to 400F. Heat a medium sized pot with salted water. Once boiling,  add the carrots and cook for 7-8 minutes until they are easily pierced with a fork. 
  3. Add the following ingredients to the blender: carrots, cashews (drained if they were soaked), lime juice, nutritional yeast, salt, chili powder, onion powder, garlic powder, beans and the water to the blender. Note here, if you soaked your cashews, put ⅞ cup water, if the cashews were not presoaked, put a full cup. Blend on high speed for 2-3 minutes, we want it to be very smooth. Set aside. 
  4. Make the guacamole: in a bowl mash the two avocados with a fork. Add in the onion, lime juice, salt, cilantro, garlic and hot sauce. Combine and taste, add more salt if required. 
  5. Prepare the nachos. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and add a layer of chips to it. Top with the cheese and the beans. Put them in the oven until the cheese is melted 5-6 minutes. 
  6. While the chips are in the oven, put the queso into the pot used for the carrots and heat it on medium until beginning to bubble. Once hot, stir in the quarter cup salsa and turn off the heat. 
  7. Take the chips out of the oven, top with the queso, guacamole, green onion and salsa. Dig in and enjoy!

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