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These nachos are a meal in and of themselves. You can prepare them nachos-style, or serve them like a multi-layer dip, with baked tortilla chips on the side. The recipe makes plenty of cheese sauce, so you may have leftovers; try this versatile sauce on potatoes, with raw or cooked vegetables, and added to cooked whole grains and legumes.

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plant-based nachos

Ingredients

  • 8 corn tortillas
  • CHEESE SAUCE
  • ½ cup raw cashews, soaked in warm water for at least 10 minutes and drained
  • 1 tablespoon tahini
  • 1 roasted red pepper (from the jar), roughly chopped (½ cup)
  • ¼ cup nutritional yeast flakes
  • 1 tablespoon tamari sauce (or Bragg's Liquid Aminos or low-sodium soy sauce)
  • Zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ¼ cup water
  • BEAN DIP
  • 1 (16-ounce) can oil-free refried beans or canned pinto beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup prepared salsa
  • 1½ teaspoons chili powder
  • GARNISHES (optional)
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • ½ cup prepared salsa
  • ½ cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped (parsley or lettuce can substitute)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Cut the tortillas into bite-size triangles. Place tortilla triangles on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, and bake for 10 to 15 minutes, until crisp.
  2. In a blender, combine cashews, tahini, roasted red pepper, nutritional yeast, tamari, lemon zest and juice, cayenne, and water. Blend on high until smooth, and set aside.
  3. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine the beans, salsa, and chili powder, and stir gently. Once the beans are smooth warmed through, turn off heat.
  4. To assemble nachos-style: Place the baked chips on a platter, then top each with some of the beans and cheese sauce. Garnish with avocado, salsa, and cilantro. To assemble as a layered dip: Layer the cheese sauce over the bean mixture in a shallow bowl or baking dish, and garnish with avocado, salsa, and cilantro. Serve with the baked tortilla chips for dipping.

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about the author

Julieanna Hever

Julieanna Hever, R.D., is author of The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Plant-Based Nutrition, columnist for VegNews magazine and a special consultant to Forks Over Knives. Julieanna is also a nationally sought-out speaker and was recently featured on The Dr. Oz Show. Visit PlantBasedDietitian.com for updates from Julieanna.

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