Satisfy the kid in you with vegan chili cheese tater tots. So messy & delicious, it ticks all the pleasure sensors! Serve it as an appetizer or a full meal on its own. Vegan & gluten-free.
After the long holidays, it’s time to ease back into regular life. Christmas is one of my favorite times of year, but the cooking, traveling, wrapping, and tying can wear a person out.
After cookie and pot pie making, it’s nice to settle into normal again with something easy like vegan chili cheese tater tots. Plus, it’s a great way to repurpose leftovers in the most mouthwatering of ways.
As is our tradition, we kept it casual on New Year’s Eve and had a couple of friends over for food and games.
(Does anyone really do that When Harry Met Sally, formal New Year’s Eve thing in real life? I haven’t done it yet, but maybe someday.)
The next day I had plenty of chili left over since my chili dog pizza recipe only requires a cup of three bean chili for each pizza.
(By the way, my three bean chili was the most popular recipe on my blog last year! So if you’re a chili fan, check it out.)
Leftover chili works especially well on these tots, because it thickens as it sets. No one wants a soggy tot! (Words to live by.)
As I mentioned in my last post, I am looking for any excuse these days to fire up the new air fryer I got for Christmas. So I thought I’d give the remaining tots another spin with these vegan chili cheese tater tots.
(Don’t have an air fryer? Of course, you can make your tots in the oven or a traditional fryer instead. No tots on hand? Make oven baked french fries instead!)
By the way, while I call them tater tots, the name on the bag of the kind I use is organic spud puppies. Apparently tater tots is a brand name like Kleenex or Xerox.
The final layer on the tots is creamy cashew queso. This cashew queso is my go-to recipe whenever I’m making nachos. (You can see it in action on these breakfast nachos.)
Even if you don’t have chili on hand, the queso is great on its own for dunking tots or chips on your next Taco Tuesday.
When I was a kid, I hate, hate, hated leftovers. If you have anyone in your house who is generally opposed to leftovers like I was, this should cure that problem.
I mean, who could be sad about this?
A layer of tots,
A ladle full of chili,
Creamy cashew queso,
A sprinkling of green onions,
And a few dashes of hot sauce would not go amiss. (Here are my three top hot sauces!)
I recommend serving each person her/his own portion, because this messy dish definitely requires a fork for optimum scooping.
These chili cheese tater tots are a serious crowd pleaser. The crisp exterior of the tots with the spicy chili and creamy queso melds in the most beautiful way.
Vegan chili cheese tater tots
- Make tater tots according to package directions.**
- While the tater tots are cooking, make the cashew queso. Using a blender, blend raw cashews, water, half of a vegetable bouillon cube, nutritional yeast, white miso paste, cumin, ancho chili powder, and salt. Blend until totally smooth, stopping to scrape down the sides if necessary.
- Transfer the cashew mixture to a small pot. Bring the pot to a medium heat, stirring constantly. Continue stirring for about 10 minutes. If it begins to simmer, lower the heat. Continue stirring and cooking until the cashew mixture has reduced and thickened, making a velvety smooth queso. Remove from heat.
- On a large platter or four personal-sized plates, put a layer of tater tots, a cup of chili per person, queso, and a sprinkling of sliced green onions. Serve right away.