Vegetarian loaded nachos [Recipe]


Mmm, healthy nachos that still taste gooood...

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Some vegans and vegetarians prefer to steer clear of meat substitutes, and that’s OK. But if you aren’t averse to giving the meat substitute a try, or are an omnivore who wants to prepare an easier version of nachos that are not as high in fat as their real-meat counterparts, then this is the recipe for you.

The main bonus, other than the reward of yummy nachos, is that you won’t have to worry about draining the fat from ground beef. The other bonus? This recipe also works if you’re making tacos — after all, aren’t nachos just deconstructed tacos? Think about it.



  • 5 cloves garlic, minced (2 or 3 suffice if you are not garlic crazy)

  • 1 medium white onion, diced

  • 2 medium tomatoes, diced

  • 1 bunch cilantro, finely chopped (optional, wink wink)

  • 1 package Quorn grounds

  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste

  • Oregano

  • Salt

  • 1 can low-sodium beans (don’t drain!)

  • 1 avocado, cubed

  • 2 cups cheese, shredded

  • 1 lime

  • Jalapeño (optional)

  • Light sour cream (optional)

  • Tortilla chips


Instructions for Quorn and bean mixture

Lightly coat a pan with olive oil, and place over medium heat. Add the garlic and about three-quarters of the onion. Set the rest of the onion aside (that’s for the pico). Stir occasionally until the onion is translucent, approximately 3 minutes. Add half the diced tomatoes and no more than half of the cilantro, stirring approximately 1 minute.

Add the Quorn grounds, making sure to break them up so they cook evenly, stirring occasionally. Add the tomato paste, the oregano and salt to taste, mixing thoroughly. Add the can of beans, liquid and all, stirring so the ingredients soak up the liquid. Whether you go with pinto beans, kidney beans or black beans, try to get the ones that are low-sodium.

You can add some of the cheese you shredded and let it melt in there. It helps to bind the mixture nicely. Set that flame to low and you’re ready to prepare the pico.


Instructions for pico de gallo

In a small bowl, mix the remaining tomato, onion and cilantro with the sliced jalapeño, cubed avocado and juice of 1 lime. Salt to taste. Instead of white onion, you can use scallions or red onion.


Some assembly required

Assemble the tortilla chips on a plate. Top with the Quorn and bean mixture. Scoop some pico de gallo on top of that and sprinkle shredded cheese on top. Add a dollop of light sour cream if you wish.