Do you want to know what my favorite joke of all time is? Of course you do.
Q: “What do you call cheese that’s not yours?” A: Nacho Cheese. Best. Joke. Ever. I made a Paleo version for you because I make you a Paleo version of everything.
Q: What do you call cheese that’s not yours? A: Paleo. Get it? Get it? Cause you can’t have cheese on a strict Paleo diet, get it?! Good thing I’m not too strict because I did allow two not strict paleo food items into today’s recipe and one of them is a cheese. They are both completely omittable and definitely won’t change the recipe much. I’ve been eating some cheese lately in small doses. I’m not really sensitive to dairy, so every once in awhile I’ll throw in decadent high quality cheese or dairy source. In this week’s recipe I used a tiny amount of Goat Cheese and some Crème Fraîche. If the Paleo Police come to arrest me so be it. I have read a few articles however saying that some lactose intolerant people find they aren’t as sensitive to goat cheese. Any L.I. peeps out there find this is the case at all? Just curious. It’s crazy how different all of our bodies are and how difficult it can be to fine tune everything we eat! One could get exhausted doing it. Or just start a blog.

The real inspiration for this blog post comes from Baseball. I went to a Baseball game this week! I’m a long time San Francisco Giants fan, which all my friends and family hate because I’m a San Diego native. I lived in the Bay Area for 11 years though after high school and that was where I fell in love with Baseball and the SF Giants. It was in the spring of 2002. I got to watch a team play through an entire season and at the end of it go to the World Series. They lost to the Angels in Game 7 and I’m still upset about it despite our 2010 & 2012 World Championships. Anyway the Giants were in town this weekend playing the Padres so I had to go! Can we say No-Hitter?! Okay okay back to the blog so anyway after walking around the ballpark trying to decide what to eat and drink, I ran into, get this, a Gluten-Free section! It was so awesome! They had Gluten-Free beer, hot dogs, hamburgers and fruit available for sale. Even with all those amazing choices I still wanted Nachos. I settled for some wine and went back to my seat. Then the Nacho desire set in and I knew what had to be done. After making this recipe I realized why they used to trade things for spices in like the 1400’s. When I was a kid in history class I couldn’t fathom why they would trade pretty jewels and gold coins for spices. Getting it. Mega getting it.


Paleo Nachos
*Makes 2 servings

1 pound of ground grass-fed beef
1/2 teaspoon of cumin
1/2 teaspoon of chili powder
1/2 teaspoon of paprika
1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon of onion powder
dash of sea salt
dash of pepper
4 cups of plantain chips
1 jalepeno, chopped
1 tomato diced
1/4 of a white onion, diced
1 tablespoon of crème fraîche (optional)
1 tablespoon of fresh salsa
black olives (optional)
cilantro for garnish
sliced jalepeno for garnish
guacamole (recipe below)
nacho cheese sauce (recipe below)

1. In a large pan cook the grass-fed beef over medium-high heat. While the meat is cooking add the 1/2 teaspoon of cumin, chili powder, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper. Continue to stir and crumble with a spatula until the meat is cooked through, taste test and add more spices as needed to personal preference.

2. On a large plate lay out your plantain chips, then drizzle the nacho cheese sauce on top. Continue garnishing with desired amounts of guacamole, tomatoes, onions, salsa, black olives, cilantro and jalepenos. Enjoy!

6 ripe avocados
1 small tomato, diced
1/2 bunch of cilantro, chopped
1/4 of a red onion, diced
1 & 1/2 teaspoons of garlic salt

1. Cut your produce. Then cut the avocados in half and remove the pits and skin.

2. In a large bowl combine the avocados, tomatoes, cilantro, onions, and garlic salt. Use a large metal utensil of your choice (I use a stainless steel pasta stirrer) to mash and stir the avocado and ingredients together until well combined.

3. Depending on how much you use on your nachos, you will have quite a bit of guacamole left over. When has left over guacamole ever been a bad thing?

Nacho Cheese Sauce
1 cup of cashews (soaked overnight or for at least 4 hours)
6 tablespoons of coconut water (I use Zico for cooking, I find it’s not as sweet)
1/4 cup goat cheese (optional)
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 jalepeno, chopped
1 teaspoon of chili powder
1/2 teaspoon of paprika
a few shakes of garlic salt
a few shakes of sea salt
a few shakes of onion powder

1. In a high powered blender combine all the ingredients and blend until creamy. You can also use a food processor for this but I find a blender works best. I did blend for about 7 minutes to get the creamy consistency I wanted. If it’s too thick try adding another tablespoon of coconut water. If you aren’t using the goat cheese you could try a coconut milk sub to make the cheese sauce creamy. I would start with 2 tablespoons and taste test from there. Maybe even try some adobo sauce or serrano chilies, feel free to make it your own!

2. When you are ready to use, heat the nacho sauce in the microwave or on the stove in a sauce pan over low heat until warm.

As I mentioned above, to make these nachos true Paleo and for those with dairy limitations please omit the goat cheese and crème fraîche if so desired. According to Wikipedia, Crème fraîche is a sourced cream containing 30-45% butterfat. It is also sourced with bacterial culture and is slightly less sour than American sour cream. It’s available in most health food stores and is a great sub for sour cream because most American sour cream has a handful of not so great ingredients like: Modified Food Starch, Locust Bean Gum, Guar Gum, Caarrageenan, Dextrose, Potassium Sorbate, and Sodium Citrate. The only ingredient in crème fraîche is, you guessed it, cream. It goes really good with desserts and strawberries. Just saying. #sorryimnotsorry


These nachos were a home run! I scarfed these bad boys down, they barely made it through photographing. Brad was so happy that I made real food and not something sweet that he scarfed them down as well. He said they were really good but he likes tortilla chips better than plantain chips. I feel like we need more objective in depth recipe reviewing here on the blog, no? Tortilla chips or not these hit the spot for me. Does that mean I get to make sweets next week? So much food to make Paleo, such little time! What’s your vote, sweet or savory?! Drop me a line and let me know!

13 Comments on Nachos

  1. julie
    July 15, 2013 at 12:02 pm (10 years ago)

    Great recipe! I’m one of those lactose-intolerant people who can eat “alternative” dairy, like anything made from sheep milk or goat milk. I spent years not eating any dairy at all, and the discovery that my body didn’t hate me if I ate goat cheese or sheep yogurt has made my life so much better!

    • cleaneatingwithadirtymind
      July 15, 2013 at 12:40 pm (10 years ago)

      Hi Julie! Thanks for sharing, that’s so awesome to know and I’m excited that you can still indulge in dairy from goat and sheep! Definitely make this recipe, the nacho cheese sauce with the goat cheese came out great!

  2. Andrs
    July 18, 2013 at 5:02 pm (10 years ago)

    Did you make your own plantain chips?

  3. grokgrub
    July 20, 2013 at 2:42 pm (10 years ago)

    This looks amazing, great ides with the plantain chips!

  4. Donna
    September 4, 2013 at 7:50 pm (10 years ago)

    I’ve never even heard of plantain chips. I’ll have to see if I can find them. 🙂

    • Vanessa Barajas
      September 4, 2013 at 8:43 pm (10 years ago)

      Hey Donna! Check any local health food stores like Whole Foods. Even farmers markets. You can also make your own if you’re crafty! They are such a great replacement for chips!

  5. Sarah
    September 22, 2013 at 5:20 pm (10 years ago)

    Made these for dinner tonight, and they were really good! Being vegetarian I skipped the meat and my husband used chicken instead. Made a few other modifications- one being ditched the black olives and added chopped red peppers. Wasn’t the hugest fan of the replacement cheese, but it was ok. It’s definitely borderline Paleo since the plantain chips had vegetable oil in them, which is a Paleo no no in some people’s book. I’m going to keep my eyes peeled for a non-oiled version. Thanks for the recipe! Will be making it again sometime!

  6. Travis Peterson
    November 23, 2013 at 8:49 am (10 years ago)

    Awesome looking recipe, going to have to try it. I love the giants too, and I still really hate that damn rally monkey from 2002 as we’ll even after two championships since. I know I’m wearing an A’s hat in my picture, but I grew up in The Bay and support them both now on the east coast. Anyway just stumbled across your blog and can’t wait to try some of your recipes.


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