Hearty Nacho Bake (vegan & gluten-free)

Image shows Hearty Nacho Bake decorated with vegan cheese shreds and jalapenos. The bake is surrounded by cilantro and scattered Que Pasa Salted Tortilla Chips, and is made with their Mexicana Mild Salsa.


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This Hearty Nacho Bake is a paid partnership with Que Pasa Foods. However, all views and opinions expressed are my own.

I don’t usually get into Super Bowl, but this year I really wanted to make some drool-worthy vegan comfort food in time for it. There’s something so fun about enjoying game-day food, even if you have zero intention of watching sport while eating it!

Given this fact, I decided to create something that’s both easy to make and encourages people to dig in. This delicious Hearty Nacho Bake is full of flavour, colour and texture, and is perfect for tucking into while watching the game or hanging out with friends. Think of it as a pumped-up version of regular nachos. You’ve got cheese, salsa, tortilla chips and veggies, as well as extra beans and brown rice to turn it into a filling meal.

I’ve used my favourite Que Pasa Salted Tortilla Chips here as they’re extra crunchy and add the perfect texture to this bake. In addition, I’ve used their Mexicana Mild Salsa which is a favourite of mine.

In my opinion, using salsa in this bake instead of just canned crushed tomatoes makes all the difference because it adds way more flavour and spices to the dish. (As an aside, I’m also a huge fan of Que Pasa products as they’re all completely organic, vegan, non-GMO and made from high quality natural ingredients – always a winner for me.)

The Recipe: Hearty Nacho Bake


This recipe is a pretty simple one to make. It may look like it contains lots of ingredients, but they require very little preparation and are basically just thrown together to create one delicious oven bake.

The cheesy sauce is the most complicated part of the recipe, but only because you need to stir it regularly to stop it from burning. It may look watery at first but have patience, as it will gradually thicken and develop a smooth consistency.

If you’re not a fan of black beans then feel free to use a different type – you could use pinto beans instead. And finally, PLEASE remember to wear gloves when slicing the jalapeño. I can promise you that your hands will regret it within about 20 minutes if you don’t. 🙂

Hearty Nacho Bake (vegan & gluten-free)

This Hearty Nacho Bake is the perfect comfort food. Rice, beans, salsa and cheesy sauce topped with tortilla chips turn this traditional snack into a tasty meal!
Prep Time25 mins
Cook Time35 mins
Total Time1 hr
Course: Main Course, Snack
Cuisine: American, comfort food, gluten-free, Mexican, vegan, vegetarian
Servings: 4 people

Ingredients

Cheesy Sauce

  • 2 tbsp brown rice flour
  • 1-2 tbsp nutritional yeast (depending on your taste)
  • 2 tbsp oil (avocado or olive oil work well)
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • tbsp Bragg's soy seasoning (if using soy sauce instead, use ½-1 tbsp depending on taste)
  • ¼ tsp turmeric powder (optional - for colour)
  • ¾ cup water

For the Bake

  • 2 cups cooked long grain brown rice
  • cups black beans (drained and rinsed if from a can)
  • 2 420ml jars Que Pasa Mild or Medium Salsa
  • ½ cup diced red onion
  • ½ cup diced red pepper
  • ½ cup sweet corn kernels
  • 1 350g bag Que Pasa Salted Tortilla Chips (you'll probably use about half the bag)
  • cups vegan cheese shreds
  • 1 small jalapeño, thinly sliced (remember to wear gloves when doing this!)

Instructions

  • Preheat your oven to 350°F/175°C.
  • To make the cheesy sauce, add all ingredients to a saucepan and cook on a low heat for 15-20 minutes, stirring frequently.
  • Then, when the sauce has thickened (it should have a similar consistency to a queso dip), remove from the heat. Set aside.
  • To make the bake, pour the cooked brown rice into a large oven-proof dish with high sides.
  • Spread the rice in an even layer, then add the black beans on top in the same way, creating a second layer.
  • Empty the jars of salsa into a large bowl, then stir ⅓ cup each of the diced red onion, red pepper and sweet corn into it.
  • Spread the mixture over the beans and rice in an even layer.
  • In overlapping rows, spread tortilla chips over the tomato mixture, ensuring that virtually all the salsa is covered (you'll likely use about half the bag for this).
  • Dollop the cheesy sauce over the tortilla chips. This will likely get a bit messy and uneven but that's ok!
  • Finally, sprinkle your remaining diced red onion, red pepper and corn kernels over the tortilla chips, and then sprinkle the vegan cheese shreds and jalapeño slices on top.
  • Bake in the oven for about 15 minutes, or until cheese has melted and tortilla chips are turning golden.
  • Scoop hearty portions of the bake onto warm plates and eat immediately!

Looking for more food that’s great to share with friends? If so, why not try my Ultimate Vegan Cheese Board, my 4-Layer Dip or my Vegan Cheesy Popcorn.

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