These Loaded Sheet Pan Dairy-Free Nacho Cheese Fries are the best you’ll ever taste! No need to spend countless hours trying to come up with this easy meal that is super filling and perfect for any weeknight or weekend dish for the entire family to enjoy. These nacho fries come loaded with french fries as the base, and topped with cooked quinoa, bell peppers, jalapeños, poblano pepper, diced tomatoes, and corn; then drenched with BBQ sauce and a dairy-free 'cheese' sauce. Bursting with flavor! Gluten-Free option.
If you can't get enough of crispy potatoes, melty cheese, roasted veggies, and taco seasoning, then you're going to LOVE this Loaded Sheet Pan Dairy-Free Nacho Cheese Fries recipe. The base is a layer of crispy french fries, which are topped with filling cooked quinoa (tossed in taco seasoning), roasted veggies, BBQ sauce, and gooey dairy-free cheese made into a queso-like sauce. Definitely the perfect one pan meal that can be topped with your favorite ingredients for the most satisfying bite. They're a real crowd-pleaser! Plus, this Chipotle Chicken Sheet Pan Quesadilla [Dairy-Free] is one for the books!
Of course, when it comes to the french fries, I like to use frozen organic fries for convenience whenever I don't have the time to make my own. However, in most cases, I enjoy these nachos fries with my Seasoned Crinkle Cut Fries, Crispy Seasoned French Fries, or Crispiest Jumbo Garlic Herb Fries for a nice twist! Plus, you can totally mix and match your topping options based on your personal faves and I mention more choices further below in this post. So, if you're a fan of one pan dishes or nacho-like meals, then you'll certainly love this Dairy-Free Mexican Street Corn Nachos and Loaded Vegan Queso Skillet Nachos. Such major hits!
If I had to describe this nacho fries dish, it definitely would be: savory with a hint of sweetness, filling without meat, flavorful, easy to make, entirely dairy-free with a gluten-free option, works as a great make ahead meal, the whole family can enjoy, and works perfectly as a meal, snack, or appetizer.
Basically, nacho fries are just like traditional nachos, except the fact that the base is made with french fries as opposed to tortilla chips. The same concept of loading the base with your favorite toppings still applies along with a creamy nacho-like cheese.
This Loaded Sheet Pan Dairy-Free Nacho Cheese Fries recipe is all about layering, and don't be afraid to really load up your crispy oven-baked fries. They can handle it! Simply add your fries as the base then top with ingredients, bake until fries are crispy + the veggies are tender and roasted, then make your dairy-free cheese sauce, and spoon on top for a nice finish! Wallah!
Here's what you need to make these loaded nacho fries with quinoa:
Making homemade taco seasoning is easy! And chances are, you already have the dried spices you need to make this blend. Here's what I put into the taco seasoning for the vegetables on these loaded quinoa nacho fries:
If you like less spice, you can omit the cayenne or use less chili powder (replace it with smoked paprika or cumin). Or, for a spicier flavor, feel free to use more cayenne!
You can make a double or triple batch of the taco seasoning and store it in your spice cabinet for up to two months. Any longer, and the spices will start to lose their robust flavor.
Knowing how to roast all vegetables (in general) perfectly is definitely a learned skill. All veggies are different and they all have vast cooking times.
The most common rule of thumb is to roast thicker vegetables at a higher temperature because they can handle the heat. For example, corn, poblano peppers, potatoes or sweet potatoes can roast at a higher temp because of their thickness. Broccoli, on the other hand, lends well to a lower heat when cut into florets.
Everyone is different when it comes to nacho fries toppings in general, which is why I love using a variety of ingredients. However, for these Loaded Sheet Pan Dairy-Free Nacho Cheese Fries, I like to add ingredients that compliment the bold flavor of both the BBQ + taco seasoning.
This is a great opportunity to teach children about what they like, how much to add, and helps to develop their palate—which is what I try to do with my son. Plus, maybe they’ll try something new on their own—who knows?!
Some of the most popular nacho fries or taco toppings in my house are:
OK, so I’ve heard so many people talk about not really being a huge fan of quinoa recipes because they have no taste or the taste is so bland. Honestly, the KEY is to build flavor for every component of your dish so that together, the flavor is EXPLODING, including with your quinoa.
MY SECRET? Veggie stock or chicken stock (for non-vegan/vegetarian options). Yup. Instead of using water, I just substitute with some sort of stock, adding salt or whatever based on necessity. Trust me, your quinoa will NEVER BE THE SAME after this delicious trick.
To make your own BBQ sauce for these loaded fries is rather simple and doesn't require a lot. Here's what you'll need:
DIRECTIONS: Place all ingredients in a medium saucepan on medium-high heat and whisk together until it begins to boil. Reduce heat to low-medium and let everything simmer for about 15 minutes or so, stirring occasionally. Once thickened enough to desired consistency, remove from heat and let cool. Set aside until ready to use or store remainder in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.
You can make these Loaded Sheet Pan Dairy-Free Nacho Cheese Fries ahead of time and store it in an air-tight container in the refrigerator prior to serving by prepping the topping ingredients and storing them in separate airtight containers until ready to assemble. Also, you can make the french fries (if doing homemade) up to 2 days before and store them in the fridge.
Lastly, you can make the dairy-free cheese sauce 1-2 days prior, storing it in an airtight container in the fridge and reheating it in a saucepan when ready to use. You may need 2-3 Tbsps of milk when reheating to ensure that it's smooth and creamy.
Yup! To make this recipe gluten-free, simply ensure that any frozen fries used are GF-friendly, and ensure that all other ingredients are also GF-friendly (i.e. BBQ sauce, substitute corn with broccoli or cauliflower, etc).
These are my top tips to make sure your nacho fries are as crisp and loaded as possible in the best way:
For this recipe, I chose to season the quinoa, however, you can totally add an extra layer of seasoning by tossing the fries the in taco blend or simply just seasoning the fries instead.
If desired, you can reduce the amount of taco seasoning used slightly. Please know that this recipe is bold in flavor, so feel free to adjust based on your tastebuds.
Best if consumed within the same day. Leftovers can be stored in an air-tight container for up to 3 days. Reheat in the oven when ready to serve.
Basically, you'll air fry frozen fries as you would fries that you were making from scratch. The only difference is that the cook time will be less, but everything else remains the same. If air frying, check on the fries every 5 minutes to shake the potatoes so they do not stick.
You'll set the temperature to 400 degrees and after 5-10 mins, check for doneness every few minutes. Both the oven and the air fryer make excellent crispy potato french fries!
Not at all! You can totally substitute quinoa with taco beef or turkey, shredded chicken, mushrooms, cauliflower, jackfruit (shredded), chickpeas, etc. Although quinoa is a great gluten-free friendly ingredient that's jam-packed with fiber and protein.
Honestly, all brands aren't created equal as you know. Personally, I love how Violife's cheese shreds melt fully and becomes smooth and creamy as I need it to be. But you can definitely use your favorite brand of dairy-free cheese or make your own vegan queso like my Vegan Jalapeños Queso!
If you make this Loaded Sheet Pan Dairy-Free Nacho Cheese Fries recipe or any other recipe from us, be sure to tag us on Instagram at #Orchidsandsweettea so that we can share the love, rate, comment below, + share!
If you make this Loaded Nacho Fries or any other recipe from us, then you'll want to check out these delicious meatless options: