A lot of people told me that they could never go vegan because they’d miss cheese way too much and couldn’t live without it. I must admit that I was one of them until a couple of years ago. I was totally happy with vegetarian food, but no cheese?! This sounded kinda crazy to me. I mean how could you live without cheese sandwiches, cheese pizza, and creamy pasta? Well, now I know giving up cheese doesn’t mean you have to miss out on all those delicious flavors. There are so many yummy vegan cheese recipes that are even so much better and healthier than the real thing. Just the other night, we had these vegan nachos with pumpkin queso dip. As a real pumpkin addict, I try using pumpkin in everything these days and it also worked out reeeeeally great in this vegan cheese sauce. It’s super creamy, cheesy (haha! that’s what a cheese sauce is supposed to be, right?), and a little bit spicy.
The recipe for this vegan queso with pumpkin couldn’t be easier. The only thing you need is a good blender, so the cheese dip gets really creamy. I used 15 oz of butternut squash, which is about 2 cups. Of course you can also use canned pumpkin puree, but I think it’s a lot better with fresh pumpkin. To make the pumpkin cheese even creamier, I added 1/4 cup of cashews. I only soaked them for about 10 minutes, but it will make it easier for your blender if you soak them longer.
To give this vegan pumpkin queso dip its cheesy flavor, I added 1 tablespoon of white miso paste, 2 tablespoons of nutritional yeast (I could use this in literally everything!!), and a clove of garlic. I also used paprika powder, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. For those of you, who are into spicy cheese sauces, just double the amount of paprika powder or use more red pepper flakes. The nachos we had were a little bit spicy by themselves, so I didn’t go overly crazy with the red pepper flakes. But remember homemade nachos also call for jalapeños and they are spicy too.
Besides the jalapeños, I also added black olives, tomatoes, red onions, red bell pepper, tomato salsa, and of course guacamole. These homemade vegan nachos with pumpkin queso dip are perfect for lazy movie nights. Just snuggle up on the couch, turn on a great movie or even better one of your favorite TV series (I’m totally into The Big Bang Theory right now), and have a bowl of these delicious nachos. Or invite some friends over and share this vegan deliciousness. ;-)
I hope you like the recipe as much as I do. If you give it a try, let me know.
Hope you guys have a great week. Hey it’s already Thursday, so basically the weekend is almost here!!
Vegan Nachos with Pumpkin Cheese Sauce
For the vegan pumpkin cheese sauce:
- 15 oz butternut squash (about 2 cups)
- 1 tablespoon white miso paste
- 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- 1/4 cup soaked unsalted cashews I only soaked them for about 10 minutes, but soaking them longer will make it easier for your blender.
- 1 clove of garlic
- 1 teaspoon paprika powder
- black pepper
- red pepper flakes
For the nacho bowl:
- 2 green jalapeños, cut into rings
- 1/2 small red onion, chopped
- 1 small red pointed pepper, cut into rings
- 1/4 cup black olives, cut into rings
- 1/2 cup guacamole
- 1/2 tomato salsa
- 1 tomato, cut into small pieces
- vegan nachos
- Soak the cashews in water. Bring a medium pot of water to boil. Cut the butternut squash into small pieces and cook them for about 10 minutes or until they are really soft.
- Drain both the butternut squash and the cashews and place them into a blender. Add the rest of the ingredients and blend until smooth.
- Place the nachos into a big bowl and add the jalapeños, red onion, red pointed pepper, black olives, guacamole, tomato salsa, and tomatoes. In a small pan, heat the vegan pumpkin cheese sauce until it becomes really thick and creamy.
- Pour it onto the nachos until they're nicely covered. Serve immediately.