If you think this chef (me) makes everything from scratch then you would be very wrong. I like cooking shortcuts and hacks just like the next person, I’m just pickier with my shortcuts because of my (mainly) plant-based diet.
This short cut recipe utilizes a can of vegan chili from Amy’s Kitchen brand. I love everything that Amy’s makes, and their chili is absolutely no exception. Utilizing a few of my staple recipes, I used a single can of chili to make these delicious chili cheese “fries.” So let’s break it down, which three of my go-to staple recipes do I use in this dish? First, hearty bed of crispy roasted potatoes tossed with paprika & garlic powder. Then the heated chili goes on. Next, my addictive cashew “cream” (I call it “crema” in this recipe because it makes more sense to me). This add richness, flavor & depth (important since these chili fries are meat & dairy free). finally a healthy serving of my ultimate guacamole goes on top, and I don’t think i need to explain that one, am I right?
So before I get into the details, I want to highlight that this may seem like a lot of work at first glance. It may not look like much of a shortcut because you’re required to roast potatoes, make cashew cream AND whip up guacamole. I get it. But here’s the thing, meal prep for plant based eaters is SO key, and I’ve learned which meal prep essentials make plant based eating super easy & satisfying for me. For instance, I make this cashew cream so often that I could do it in my sleep. Make it once a week and use it for several meals because t’s super versatile, you won’t have a problem using it up (I promise). So with that ready to go, all you need to do before meal time is roast the potatoes while heating the chili and making guacamole. Easy enough, yeah?
Short Cut Cooking: Healthy-ish Chili Fries
2 pounds baby potatoes or waxy gold potatoes
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder or granules
sea salt, fine grain
1 14-oz can chili (I use a vegan, reduced-sodium variety)
cashew “crema” (get recipe here)
guacamole (recipe follows)
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. If using larger potatoes, chop into big bite-size pieces. On a large parchment lined baking sheet, toss potatoes with 1-2 tablespoons olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon salt, paprika & garlic powder. Bake potatoes for about 25 minutes. Remove from oven and carefully flip/rearrange potatoes. Bake for another 20-ish minutes, or until golden-brown & crispy.
Meanwhile, make guacamole (recipe below) and refrigerate until ready to serve. In a small saucepan, gently simmer chili until heated through. Add salt to taste.
When potatoes are done roasting, top with heated chili, cashew crema & guacamole. Enjoy!
2 ripe a avocados (dark black skin,
easy to indent with finger but still firm)
Juice of 1 lime (2 tablespoons)
3-4 tablespoons minced red onion
1 small clove garlic, minced
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro leaves
1/4 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
Cut avocados in half, remove pits and scoop flesh into a mixing bowl. Add all other ingredients to bowl. Using a spoon or knife, cut into a avocado while mixing with other ingredients until a smooth yet textured mixture is formed.