Yes, nachos are a meal.
At least when they’re as loaded as these Triple Layer Vegetarian Nachos.
Chips and cheese are, of course, the quintessential ingredients of all nachos. But the two elements that make these vegetarian nachos filling and somewhat healthy are the beans and the rice/meatless crumbles combo.
As per my daughter’s request, we most frequently use black beans on our nacho nights. But our other favorite beans for nachos are pinto beans, whole or refried. Make your nachos with any of these. You can’t go wrong.
The combination of rice and meatless crumbles takes these vegetarian nachos to the next level. I prefer to use Morningstar Farms Veggie Grillers Crumbles, but you can use your favorite brand of meatless crumbles. Just be prepared to adjust the salt measurement. Start with less salt than the recipe calls for, and add more if needed.
And if you’re feeling adventurous, try substituting Soyrizo for the meatless crumbles.
Toppings are an important part of all nachos. Olives, tomatoes, green onion, cilantro, green chilis, jalapenos…the possibilities are endless.
With the exception of the cilantro, all of these toppings can be added to the nachos before or after baking: add them before baking if you want the juices from your toppings to infuse each layer of the nachos. Add the toppings after baking, or to each individual serving, if you want their flavors to be less incorporated into the nachos.
Make Vegetarian Nachos
It’s true there are more nutritious meals. But nachos can be a filling and somewhat healthy dinner.
Make these vegetarian nachos next time the nacho craving hits.
We always serve these nachos with hot sauce. Sriracha and Pain is Good Sambal [aff. link] are our two favorites. You can find them both in my Amazon Store here.
Triple Layer Vegetarian Nachos
For the rice/veggie crumbles:
- 12-16 oz group beef substitute, I prefer Morningstar Farms Meatless Grillers Crumbles
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 4 ½ cups rice, cooked (in my rice cooker, that's 1 ½ cups dry rice + 2 cups water)
- ½ tsp sea salt
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- ½ tsp onion powder
- 15 oz can beans of choice, drained (I recommend black beans or pinto beans, whole or refried)
- 12 oz tortilla chips, (one standard-sized bag)
- 6-8 oz cheddar cheese, freshly grated (use vegan cheese to keep these nachos vegan)
- tomato slices
- green chilis
- cilantro, minced
- hot sauce
- sour cream
- lettuce or spinach
Cook the rice
- If you haven't already, cook the rice. Let it cool for at least 15 minutes after cooking. The rice will clump and lose its texture if it's too warm when mixed with the veggie crumbles.
Make the ground beef substitute/meatless crumbles
- While the rice cooks, prepare the ground beef substitute.
- In a medium size skillet, add the ground beef substitute and the olive oil.
- Note: if using Beyond Meat, I recommend adding ¼ tsp sea salt to the skillet. Beyond Meat ground beef needs more seasoning than other brands.
- Let the meat substitute cook in the olive oil until it is warmed through and slightly browned on the outside, about 10-12 minutes.
Make the ground beef substitute/rice mixture
- Once the rice and ground beef have finished cooking, add them both to a large mixing bowl.
- Add the salt, garlic powder, and onion powder. Mix everything together until combined and evenly distributed.
Layer the nachos
- Lightly oil a 9x13 inch baking dish.
- Start by spreading out ⅓ of the bag of chips in the bottom of the baking dish.
- Top the chips with ⅓ of the rice mixture.
- Top the rice mixture with ⅓ of the black beans.
- Top the black beans with ⅓ of the cheese.
- Repeat this layering order two more times.
- Note: you can put the toppings of your choice on each layer of nachos as you compile, or you can wait and add them to the top of the nachos after baking.
Bake the nachos
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- Bake the nachos for 10-12 minutes, until warm and the cheese has melted.
Serve and enjoy!
- Add toppings, if desired, and serve these nachos with sour cream, salsa, and guacamole.
Oh, I totally agree with you about nachos as a meal! In fact, this sounds like the perfect weekend meal if you ask me. A plate full of nachos and a cold beer? That’s how I like to roll on the weekends! Thanks for sharing that hot sauce, too. I’m like you – I enjoy spicy foods, but the flavors have to complement one another. If the hot sauce overtakes the rest of the dish, then I lose interest. Great recipe, my friend!
Thank you David! For sure, hot sauce can be a wonderful pop of flavor if it works with the dish and doesn’t overpower it. If you give this one a try let me know what you think! I can’t get enough of it haha 😆😋
Ohh, these look good, Shannon! It’s always fun to have a meal that you can eat with your fingers, especially if everyone is sharing out of a big platter! We might need to introduce a Saturday taco night around here, I am sure it would be popular with everyone!
Thank you Katerina! I completely agree, family style meals like nachos and tacos are absolutely the BEST weekend dishes! Something for everyone to look forward to! 😋