These chili cheese fries are my new obsession. With a gooey, cheesy sauce and hearty baked fries, this is the perfect comfort food.
The idea for these vegan chili cheese fries came about after a trip to Veggie Grill. I ordered my usual, mac and cheese with a side of Yukon gold fries. But on this occasion, my mac and cheese was extra cheesy. Once I finished it, there was still a bunch of cheese sauce left in the bowl. So I began dipping my fries in it which prompted Thomas to come up with a new recipe idea.
Besides sounding delicious which was enough of a selling point. This recipe also gave us a chance to use our mandolin. Thomas loves using the mandolin and was happy to whip up fries using it. After cutting them into steak fry shapes, we parboiled them so they would be soft on the inside and crispy on the outside.
While homemade fries are delicious and fun to make, it may not be realistic for you to have the time to do so. You can speed up the cook time of this recipe by buying frozen fries. Whole Foods 365 brand has steak fries that are vegan which would hold up with these hearty toppings.
The chili in this recipe is quick to make and easy since the cheese sauce requires quite a bit of work. I simply sauteed onion and then added pinto beans, tomato paste, and spices. The result was a flavorful chili topping.
This comforting, hearty dish is certain to become your new favorite.
Vegan Chili Cheese Fries
For the fries:
2 russet potatoes
½ tablespoon safflower oil
1 teaspoon sea salt
For the cheese:
1 cup peeled white potatoes, chopped
½ cup peeled carrots, chopped
¼ cup sunflower oil
¼ cup unsweetened almond milk
½ lemon, juiced
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
1 tablespoon tomato paste
2 teaspoons arrowroot powder
1 teaspoon sea salt
¼ teaspoon onion powder
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
For the chili:
1 yellow onion, finely chopped
1 can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 tablespoons filtered water
1 teaspoon chili powder
½ teaspoon cumin
½ teaspoon paprika
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper of a baking mat. Using a mandoline, slice russet potatoes into fries. Add to baking sheet and drizzle with oil and season with sea salt. Bake for 20 minutes, toss, and then bake for 15 more minutes or until fries are lightly golden.
Bring a large pot of water to boil. Add the potatoes and carrots and boil for 10 minutes. Drain. Meanwhile, add the rest of the cheese sauce ingredients to a high-speed blender. Add the boiled potatoes and carrots. Blend on high for about 2 minutes, until completely smooth. If the cheese is too thick, add water 1 tablespoon at a time until desired consistency is reached.
Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and saute until lightly browned, about 6 minutes. Add the pinto beans, tomato paste, water, and spices. Stir until well mixed and heated through.
Top fries with cheese sauce, chili, cilantro, and green onions. Serve immediately and enjoy!