Potato Nacho Bowls (vegan | plant-based)

I’m a pretty big stan for bowl-based dinners, which is the plant-based way after all. With plant-based eating, the traditional “main plus two sides” model doesn’t really cut it most of the time. It’s much better if layers of plant-powered flavor and texture are layered into a bowl and everything is eaten as one. So I turned nachos into a fork-friendly bowl situation and I seriously crave it – so much so that it’s a go-to dinner around here. As always, seasoning is key. Be sure to dress the cabbage with lime juice and salt before layering on the “queso” – and don’t be shy with the queso, it’s the best part.

Potato Nacho Bowls
serves 4


for the potatoes

3 lbs gold potatoes, cut into big bite-size pieces
olive oil
sea salt, fine grain
1 teaspoon garlic granules
1.5 teaspoons chili powder

for the queso

1/4 cup olive oil
5 cloves garlic, crushed and peeled
1/2 teaspoon chipotle powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika (optional, for a smokey flavor)
1.5 cups raw cashews, soaked/drained if desired
sea salt, fine grain
3 tablespoons nutritional yeast
1 14-oz can diced tomatoes (I like fire-roasted)*
1 4-oz can green chilies (mild or hot)*
2 cans black beans, drained/rinsed

1 small head green cabbage, shredded/finely sliced
2 limes, cut in half
2 ripe avocados, sliced or diced
chopped cilantro and/or green onions for garnish, optional

To Make

Roast potatoes. Preheat oven to 425 degrees (F). Toss cubed potatoes with 2 tablespoons olive oil, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon garlic granules and 1.5 teaspoon chili powder. Spread onto a parchment-lined baking sheet in a single layer with as much room between potatoes as possible. Bake for 45-55 minutes, flipping after the first 25-30 minutes.

Meanwhile, make the queso.

In a small saucepan, heat 1/4 cup olive oil and garlic cloves over low to medium-low heat. Cook until golden, stirring and smashing the cloves occasionally, about 6 minutes. Turn off heat and allow to cool for 5 minutes. Add chipotle powder and cumin to the warm oil. Allow to cool.

In a blender combine cashews, 1 cup water, nutritional yeast, 1.5 teaspoons salt and the garlic/spice mixture. Don’t clean out the garlic pan. Blend until super smooth, add 2-3 more tablespoons water if needed.

Add the tomatoes, green chilies and 1 teaspoon salt to the same pot. Bring to a rolling simmer and reduce to low. Simmer for 8-10 minutes, turn off heat. Add the cashew “queso” and black beans to the tomatoes, stir to combine.

To assemble bowls, add 2 large handfuls of cabbage to each of the four serving bowls. Squeeze 1/2 of a lime onto each, season with salt. Drizzle queso over cabbage. Top with potatoes and more queso. Add diced or sliced avocado, season avocado with salt. Garnish with chopped cilantro or green onions, if desired.

*instead of a can of tomatoes plus a can of green chiles, you can also use Rotel or similar, which is the tomatoes and green chiles already combined in one can

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