I first ever made these vegan rainbow lentil nachos for a quick dinner trying to use up leftovers I had in the fridge, but they turned out so delicious that I had to remake them and share them with you all! They are topped with lime-marinated watermelon radishes, colorful heirloom tomatoes, corn, guacamole, and an addicting chipotle nacho cheese.
If you choose to use premade tortilla chips and have cooked lentils handy, they are pretty easy and quick to throw together because cooking the lentils is what takes the most time. I prefer to bake my own tortilla chips because I always seem to have corn tortillas handy and they are so easy to make!
I like to marinate the sliced watermelon radishes in lime juice to make them less bitter (and because I love lime and lemon juice on everything!) You can cut them into smaller slices if you want them to be more of a topping, or if you leave them as large slices you can use them like a chip to scoop up all of the delicious toppings.
The juicy pomegranate seeds on top add a fresh flavor and pop of color. And heirloom tomatoes are my favorite! I never liked any other raw tomatoes until I went vegan, and I don't know if it's just their cute shape but I love the yellow squash-looking ones the most. These nachos are the perfect serving size for two people (or just me hehe) as a fun lunch or filling afternoon snack.
Let me know if you try this recipe in the comments below or pin it for later! And don't forget to share your recreations on Instagram @zenandzaatar!
- 8-10 small corn tortillas
- ½ tsp sea salt
- ½ tsp cumin
- ¼ tsp chili powder
- Oil spray (optional)
- ¾ cup cashews (soaked overnight if you don't have a high speed blender)
- ¼ cup + 2 tbsp water
- 2 tbsp lemon or lime juice
- 2 cloves garlic
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1 tbsp chipotle in adobo sauce (or adobo "juice" from a can or jar of chipotle in adobo)
- 1 tbsp tomato paste (optional, for orange color and added flavor)
- 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
- ½ cup green or brown lentils, dry
- ½ small onion, finely diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tbsp oil
- 1 ½ cups vegetable broth
- ½ tsp cumin
- ¼ tsp chipotle chili powder
- 1 large watermelon radish
- 1 heaping cup mini heirloom tomatoes, halved
- ½ cup cooked corn
- ½ cup cilantro leaves, chopped
- 1 avocado
- 2 limes
- ½ tsp sea salt
- Pomegranate seeds for topping (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- Prepare the lentil "meat." Sauté minced garlic and chopped onion in oil in a saucepan over medium high heat until fragrant. Rinse and drain dry lentils and add them to the saucepan along with the vegetable broth, cumin, and chili powder. Cover and simmer until cooked, about 30 mins. Season with salt and pepper to taste when done.
- Meanwhile, prepare the chips. Spray both sides of corn tortillas with oil. Quarter corn tortillas so they are cut into chip-size wedges. Toss them with the salt, cumin, and chili powder, and place them on a baking sheet, making sure they don't overlap. Bake for 20-25 mins, until crispy.
- Meanwhile, marinate the watermelon radish if desired. Slice the radish into very thin rounds and marinate in a shallow bowl with the juice of one lime while you prepare the other toppings.
- Blend all ingredients for chipotle queso in a high speed blender for about 1 minute, until smooth, and set aside.
- Mash the avocado and mix in the juice of ½ a lime, ½ tsp sea salt, and half of the chopped cilantro. Set aside.
- Assemble your nachos! Layer the chips and marinated radishes with the lentil taco meat. Top with heirloom tomatoes, prepared guacamole, and corn. Drizzle with a generous amount of nacho cheese. Sprinkle with chopped cilantro and pomegranate seeds and enjoy!
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