A photo showing a tray of the best loaded vegetarian nachos.

Loaded Vegetarian Nachos Recipe

Loaded Vegetarian Nachos

These vegetarian nachos are topped with plant-based taco meat, black beans, jalapenos, pico de gallo, avocado, sour cream, melted cheddar, and nacho cheese.

When I make nachos, I like to go all out with the toppings and really load them up — then just let everyone attack them. It sort of reminds me of these viral Tiktok videos where people just dump everything on a table and eat without plates like they’re some kind of animal. This is about as close as I’ll get to doing that.


If you ask me, the best nachos use a mix of shredded cheese and nacho cheese sauce and are loaded with your favorite toppings. Why both kinds of cheese, you ask? Well, the melted cheddar cheese adds a nice texture and a melted cheese pull while the nacho cheese sauce adds that classic creamy nacho cheese experience. The combination of the two just tantalizes your taste buds and tickles your tummy. The whole tray of these nachos is gonna get demolished. They’re perfect for family movie nights or just a get-together with your friends.

What Toppings Do You Put On Nachos?

  • Shredded cheddar
  • Nacho cheese sauce
  • Pico de gallo or salsa
  • Seasoned taco meat
  • Sliced jalapenos
  • Black beans
  • Sour cream
  • Avocado
  • Cilantro
  • Squeeze of lime

Tips For Making The Best Nachos

Bake them just long enough to melt the cheese. This heats and melts the cheese but doesn’t bake them too long where the nacho cheese sauce sogs the chip. Use fresh pico de gallo salsa, either homemade or from the refrigerated section of the grocery store, or your favorite salsa. Get the good chips, the authentic Mexican ones — those are the best. Shred the cheese yourself from a block if possible. Drain as much water from the toppings as possible: pat the jalapenos dry, and use a fork to scoop pico de gallo.

How To Make Plant-Based Taco Meat

Use about half a pound of plant-based beef and cook it in a pan over medium heat until no longer pink, then season it to taste with homemade taco seasoning. I used about a tablespoon. You can also use the taco seasoning that comes in a packet from the store, just add as much seasoning as you like. Then, add about half of a cup of crushed tomatoes, you can also use salsa, and cook this a few minutes until the liquid evaporates and the flavors combine.


How To Make The Nacho Cheese

You can use either canned or homemade nacho cheese sauce for these vegetarian nachos. Making nacho cheese sauce it’s actually very simple. You just heat a twelve-ounce can of evaporated milk in a pan until simmering, then add six ounces of shredded cheddar cheese. To thicken it, mix half a tablespoon of cornstarch with a tablespoon of water and whisk it into the cheese sauce. Then add salt to taste, and it’s done!

How To Make Pico de Gallo

You can use store-bought pico de gallo or salsa, but nothing ever beats homemade. Pico de gallo is really simple to make, and you can even just throw all the ingredients together in a food processor and pulse a few times if you’re feeling lazy. All you need are a few chopped tomatoes, a bit of diced onion, a diced jalapeno or two, finely chopped cilantro, lime juice, ground cumin, salt and pepper, and a squeeze of lime.


How To Get The Most Juice From A Lemon or Lime

If you’re squeezing fresh limes to make pico de gallo or just for serving with the nachos, use the palm of your hand and apply weight while rolling the lime on the counter first. This softens the lime and breaks the pulp, making them easier to squeeze and get all the juice from.

For The Vegetarians: Read The Ingredients

You’re probably already used to doing this if you’re a vegetarian. However, for any new vegetarians that may be unaware, sometimes tortilla chips and canned beans contain lard, which isn’t vegetarian. Just make sure to check the labels and grab the ones without.

At A Minimum, You’ll Need:

A 13″ x 18″ sheet pan or cookie sheet, lined with parchment paper or silicone liners.

A pan, preferably non-stick, to cook the taco meat.


How To Make Vegetarian Nachos

The first thing you should always do for any recipe is gather everything you need. To make these vegetarian nachos, you’ll need tortilla chips, nacho cheese sauce, shredded cheddar cheese, plant-based beef, taco seasoning, pico de gallo, sour cream, sliced jalapenos from a jar or quick-pickled, one large or two small cubed avocados, and lime wedges.

An image showing the steps to making vegetarian taco meat for nachos.

Prepare the vegetarian taco meat. In a pan over medium heat, cook the plant-based beef until no longer pink, then add the seasoning and crushed tomatoes or salsa. Continue cooking for a few minutes until the extra moisture from the tomatoes is absorbed and the taco meat is seasoned to your liking.

A photo showing before and after baking the nachos.

Pour the chips onto a lined 13″ x 18″ tray, then top with cheddar cheese, nacho cheese sauce, taco meat, black beans, and sliced jalapenos. Bake at 375°F for eight to ten minutes or just until the cheese in the center is melted, then remove it from the oven.

A photo showing a tray of finished vegetarian nachos.

Add any additional toppings: the pico de gallo, the cubed avocado, the sour cream, and anything else you’d like. Then serve with lime wedges, garnish with more cilantro if desired, and enjoy!



Vegetarian Nachos Recipe


  • 10 oz tortilla chips
  • 10 oz nacho cheese sauce, homemade or store-bought
  • 4 oz cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1/2 cup pico de gallo, homemade or store-bought
  • 1/2 cup sliced jalapenos
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup canned black beans, drained and rinsed
  • lime wedges, for serving
  • chopped cilantro, for garnish

For The Taco Meat

  • 8 oz plant-based beef
  • 2-3 teaspoons taco seasoning, homemade or store-bought
  • 1/2 cup crushed tomatoes



Preheat the oven to 375°F or 190°C.


While waiting for the oven to preheat, prepare the taco meat. In a non-stick pan over medium heat, add the plant-based beef. Cook, stirring occasionally, until no longer pink. Add the taco seasoning and crushed tomatoes. Cook until the extra liquid from the crushed tomatoes gets absorbed and the flavors combine nicely.


Spread the chips out over a lined 13″ x 18″ sheet pan. Top with shredded cheese, nacho cheese sauce, black beans, jalapenos, and prepared taco meat. Bake for 8-10 minutes or just until the cheese in the center is nicely melted.


Add the rest of the toppings. Garnish with more cilantro if desired, then serve with lime wedges and enjoy.

If you enjoyed this recipe it would mean a great deal to me, and be the biggest compliment, if you shared the link with your friends or social groups. It really helps me out so much when you do.


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