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Keto Nachos (with Pork Rinds)

Keto Nachos (with Pork Rinds)

I think if we were ever to make a list of foods Keto dieters had the most trouble cutting out – nachos would be right up there along with pizza and pasta. 

Here’s the thing though: funnily enough, I found the nachos recipe to be the easiest to Keto-fy.

I’ve talked about this before: no matter what the internet tells you, zoodles won’t start tasting like real Italian pasta, and neither will a cauliflower crust. 

Will they be tasty? Yes. Absolutely (well, if you don’t dislike zucchini and cauliflower, to begin with). But they won’t taste like the classic. They just won’t. They’ll quench your cravings but in our heart of hearts we’ll still know that the original was better.

(Some will say that this is a negative outlook. I’m calling it a truthful one. Lying to yourself that what you’re eating tastes just like a childhood favorite can only work for so long. Welcoming it as something completely new, on the other hand, doesn’t encourage any unreasonable expectations. Enjoying the substitutes as completely new meals in their own rights instead of… well… substitutes,  works much better. At least in my experience.)

Now I’m not one of those people who call pasta just a ‘vehicle for transferring the sauce’. That’s why no faux-pasta will ever be as good in my books as quality Italian fettuccine.

Nachos on the other hand?

Nacho chips really are a vehicle for toppings first and foremost. Some of the best nachos I’ve ever had were accompanied by some of the blandest chips ever. So bland, in fact, that I’d never have more than a few without the toppings. 

But that was the point, I think. I love me some Doritos, (dear lord, do I love me some Doritos) but when I could have them, using them in nachos seemed… wasteful. Doritos are tasty on their own – what they need is a good sauce, not extra toppings.

Nacho chips, on the other hand, shouldn’t have any flavorings. They should be fresh, crispy and slightly salty. That’s it. The rest should come from toppings.

This is what makes the nachos easy to adapt to Keto. In my books at least.

Because we (the Keto dieters, I mean) may not be allowed to eat corn chips, but the toppings? The absolute majority of them? Perfectly Keto. Keto staples, even. Cheese, sour cream, guacamole, meat – they’re all usually a pretty big part of the Keto diet.

So all they need when together in a bowl? A good vehicle to transfer to your mouth.

And while corn chips are now forbidden territory for us, they’re not the only tasty crunchy treat around. 

Seriously, pork rinds should be a part of your Keto diet. Stop avoiding them. If only to enjoy nachos again. Make them yourself at home, or get a big bag at the nearest shop that sells them. And get down to business. With a worthy substitute for corn chips, you’re all set.

A tip for you: get plain pork rinds, if you’re not making them at home yourself. Just like with chips, plain ones work best with nachos.

Have a dinner party? This is a banger of an appetizer. Enjoying a movie or game night with friends? This is a priceless snack everyone will enjoy.

Just want a quick and tasty dinner? This is it. Yes, I’ve had these nachos as a main course for dinner before and I’m definitely not ashamed to admit it. 

Nachos really are a versatile treasure.

Keto Nachos

Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Course: Appetizer, Snack

Equipment

  • A pan/skillet
  • A baking dish
  • A stove
  • An oven

Ingredients

  • 5 oz pork rinds
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • Garlic powder (to taste)
  • Smoked paprika (to taste)
  • Chili powder (to taste)
  • Salt and black pepper (to taste)
  • Olive oil
  • Jalapeno slices (to top off)
  • Sour cream (to top off)
  • Guacamole (to top off)

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 400°F.
  • Heat some olive oil in a pan/skillet over medium heat. Add the ground beef to the pan. Cook, until no longer raw, occasionally stirring to break up the meat. It should take about 6-8 minutes.
  • Take the pan off the heat and drain the beef. Return to the heat for a couple of more minutes. Stir in garlic powder, chili powder, smoked paprika, salt, and black pepper.
  • Lightly grease your casserole dish with olive oil (both the bottom and the sides). Spread the pork rinds on the bottom of the prepared casserole dish. Top off with a layer of cooked ground beef. Top the ground beef layer with a layer of cheddar cheese.
  • Put the casserole dish in the oven and bake the nachos until the cheese fully melts – about 5-7 minutes.
  • Top off the baked nachos with jalapeno slices, and generous dollops of guac and sour cream. Serve while still hot.

Notes

While the nachos can last in the fridge for about 3 days, the pork rinds will definitely become soggy overnight. So it’s best to polish the nachos off while they’re still fresh!
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