The BEST Vegan Nachos

These loaded vegan nachos are the best! These plant based, healthy nachos are so flavorful, no one will miss the meat.

Vegan nachos | Healthy nachos | Loaded gluten free nachos

Hey, nacho lovers! Looking for a plant-based spin on the classic comfort food? Here at A Couple Cooks we’re huge fans of this Tex Mex favorite. There’s our sheet pan nachos (the best ever), or grilled nachos, made on the grill in a cast iron skillet. And our Greek nachos that use pita chips as a base. There’s even tater tot nachos, made with our homemade tater tots! But our new favorite? These Amazing Vegan Nachos! They are so full of flavor and the icing on the cake is this flavor-packed vegan nacho cheese. No one will miss the meat: in fact, we like them just as much!

Video: How to make vegan nachos (2 minutes!)

How to make the best vegan nachos

Nachos is a pretty loose concept, so there’s no “perfect” way to make them. So for these healthy vegan nachos, we took this approach: load on fresh, plant-based toppings and homemade sauces made of wholesome ingredients. Making these loaded nachos is very simple once you have made up a few of the components! Here are all our secrets.

Tip 1: Start with organic corn chips.

There are actually some chips that are just a few ingredients and not too bad on the processed food scale. For these vegan nachos, we suggest looking for organic corn chips that have only 3 ingredients: corn, oil, and salt! Look on the back of the package to determine whether your chips fit this description.

Another way to get around processed chips is to make your own! Try these homemade tortilla chips: they’re incredibly good (and even better freshly made and warm from the oven).

Tip 2: Use lentils or vegan taco meat.

There are a few topping ideas for these vegan nachos, depending on your diet preferences and equipment! Here’s what to know:

  • Vegan taco meat: This walnut taco meat is made of walnuts and mushrooms and weirdly tastes and looks similar to the real thing (see below)! It’s helpful to have a food processor for this one, but you can also use a chef’s knife for chopping.
  • Smoky lentils and rice: These popular smoky lentils and rice have become a fan favorite! It makes a big pot that you can use in different ways throughout the week! We used them in our Instant Pot tacos, and vegan nachos is another great fit.
  • Lentil taco meat: Don’t have an Instant Pot? No problem! Use our Lentil Taco Meat instead. It’s just as tasty and you don’t need special equipment.
  • Refried beans: If you’re running low on time, make our Refried Black Beans recipe: they take only 15 minutes to whip up! Or you could pop some refried beans right out of a can.
Vegan Taco Meat | Walnut taco meat

Tip 3: Top with vegan nacho cheese!

This vegan nacho cheese recipe is so delicious and simple to make: and it tastes way better than the plastic store-bought nacho cheese! All you need is to blend together cashews, green chiles, and a few spices. Another option: try our Spicy Chipotle Sauce.

Other toppings you might want to try to step up these vegan nachos? Pickled Radishes or Pickled Jalapeños, which add a nice zing.

Vegan nachos | Healthy nachos | Gluten free nachos

When to serve vegan nachos

These vegan nachos are perfect for parties or a gameday appetizer for watching football: or if you’re like us, they also work as a simple dinner! You don’t even need to tell people they’re healthy or vegan, if vegan is a negative buzzword for people.

Everyone in the family can enjoy these vegan nachos regardless of their diet preferences: we promise! Vegan doesn’t have to be lofty, unattainable, or not-as-good-as-the-regular. The experience of these nachos is like any other: super satisfying and delicious! Except that it leaves your body feeling good, instead of the typical gut bomb of salt and fat. We hope you love them as much as we do!

Vegan nachos | Healthy nachos | Gluten free nachos

This vegan nachos recipe is…

Vegetarian, gluten free, vegan, plant based, refined sugar free, and naturally sweet.

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Vegan nachos | Healthy nachos | Gluten free nachos

The BEST Vegan Nachos


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (7 votes, average: 4.29 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x

Description

These loaded vegan nachos are the best! These plant based, healthy nachos are so flavorful, no one will miss the meat.


Ingredients

Scale

Instructions

  1. Make Vegan Taco Meat, Smoky Instant Pot Lentils or Lentil Taco Filling. Before serving, make sure they are warm (reheat them if made in advance).
  2. Make the Vegan Nacho Cheese.
  3. Seed and dice the tomato. Mince the red onion. Thinly slice the green onions. Chop the cilantro. (Or, make Salsa Fresca for topping.)
  4. To serve, place the chips on a plate. Top with lentils, tomato, red onion, green onion, vegan nacho cheese, cilantro, and hot sauce.

Notes

*Note: The timing for this recipe assumes that the Lentils and Rice and Nacho Cheese are made in advance.

  • Category: Main Dish, Appetizer
  • Method: Pressure Cooker
  • Cuisine: Mexican

Keywords: Nachos, Nacho Cheese, Vegan Nacho Cheese, Vegan Nachos, Lentils, Rice, Cilantro, Healthy Nachos, Gluten Free Nachos, Vegetarian, Vegan, Gluten Free

Looking for more vegan recipes?

Here are some of our favorite vegan recipes!

Last updated: January 2021

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About the Authors

Sonja Overhiser

Cookbook Author and writer

Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.

Alex Overhiser

Cookbook Author and photographer

Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.

1 Comment

  • Reply
    Ruby
    September 3, 2018 at 8:06 am

    I went through a phase in middle school where all I wanted for lunch on the weekends was a giant plate of nachos. Oh, if only I had had this healthified, even more beautiful version! Can’t wait to try this recipe! xx

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