Loaded Bell Pepper Nachos

Nachos are great, there is no denying that! They are that perfect bite every bite kind of snack or meal that are great when watching sports – at least that’s when I love eating them! That crispy chip, the flavorful protein (chicken, beef, pork, beans….the possibilities are endless), the cheese – THE CHEESE! and then all of the toppings! These are nachos with a twist – same indulgence with some healthier substitutes!

Let’s be honest, a crispy corn tortilla is the perfect vessel to load up all the amazing toppings. It’s going to be hard to match the texture and the durability of a corn tortilla chip, trust me! BUT with a little engineering and proper cook times there is one substitute that holds up and passes the vessel test! Bell Peppers to the rescue! When cut into “chip like” pieces, these are a great and healthy alternative to the corn tortilla chip! I used green and red because they have different flavors – but can imagine yellow and orange would be quite tasty! Then the fun begins – the building!! Like I said before, the possibilities are endless here and this is your time to get creative!

I am focusing on balance in my life. I think balance looks a little different for everyone and I think that’s an amazing thing. Balance for me is making sure I am filling my body with real foods but also enjoying that glass of wine as I relax at the end of a busy week. When I make more intuitive choices in my diet (picking the real food option over maybe the processed option) I tend to feel fuller and more fulfilled. But hey, it’s balance and like I said it looks different for everyone! A few other ways to make these even healthier loaded nachos:

-Use ground chicken or ground turkey (leaner cuts of meat) and add on the seasonings! I love to season with cumin, chili powder, salt & pepper!
-Cumin baked beans or refried beans are insane and would pair with this amazingly!
-Yogurt based sauces – it’s so easy to make a flavorful sauce that tastes just as good as sour cream.

LOADED BELL PEPPER NACHOS

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 bell peppers
  • 5 oz ground chicken or ground turkey
  • 1/4 cup black beans
  • 1/4 cup shredded low skim mozzarella
  • 1/2 cup tomato
  • 1/4 cup red onion
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 1/2 cup non -fat greek yogurt
  • Cilantro, handful
  • 2 limes

Cilantro Lime Yogurt Sauce

mix together the non-fat greek yogurt with 1 TBSP of cilantro and juice of 1 lime. Mix together until a creamy dressing forms. Add water to create a thinner style sauce.

Quick Tomato Salsa

combine tomato, red onion, cilantro to a food processor and pulse together. You can add jalapeno if you like it a little more spicy!

Nacho Assembly

Preheat oven to 375. Cut bell peppers into ‘chip’ sized pieces. Place on a line baking sheet and place in oven. Cook for 5-8 minutes until they are soft but still hard. Cook ground chicken or ground turkey and add any seasoning you would like (a little cumin, chipotle powder, salt & pepper works well). Drain and rinse black beans. Remove bell peppers from the oven and layer on the ground turkey, black beans and mozzarella cheese. Place back in the oven until cheese is nice and melted (5ish more minutes). Remove from the oven. Remove parchment paper from the pan by grabbing the corners carefully and place on a large plate. Now we will top! Add the Quick Tomato Salsa, Cilantro Lime Yogurt Sauce, pickled red onions, avocado and finish with more cilantro and a squeeze of lime juice! Enjoy!