Nachos are amazing. Who doesn’t love a big pile of melty cheese and chips topped with delicious things like salsa? Nachos have always been a guilty pleasure of mine. They are just so damn good I find myself wanting to order them all the time, and actually ordering them quite often, but it’s sometimes difficult for me to reconcile my love of nachos with my passion for eating healthy and living well. That’s what these incredible Loaded Sweet Potato Nachos are for!
When you break it down, nachos don’t have to be really unhealthy. Sure you have the chips and cheese as the base but then you can add all sorts of delicious and healthy toppings. If you swap out those chips for sweet potatoes, you end up with a dish that is actually fairly nutritious. For this recipe, we will make our nachos with a base of thinly sliced sweet potatoes, black beans, and olives, I top that with a little bit of mozzarella and cheddar and then after baking I top it with plain Greek yogurt and pico de gallo. Yum!
For those of you who don’t know, sweet potatoes are considered a superfood and are widely recognized as one of the most nutritious foods around. They also happen to be incredibly delicious and can pretty much take the place of regular potatoes in any recipe. I highly encourage everyone to eat more sweet potatoes and to start using them in place of regular potatoes as much as possible and here’s why:
- They are one of the best natural sources of beta-carotene (A natural antioxidant which the body turns into Vitamin A). Natural sources of beta-carotene are superior to supplements because excess levels of Vitamin A can be toxic but when consumed in foods the body will only convert as much as it needs (this means that you cannot over consume beta-carotene from food). Vitamin A helps the body maintain its skin, immune system, and eye health.
- They are a good source of natural anti-inflammatory nutrients. In animal studies, reduced inflammation following sweet potato consumption has been shown in brain tissue and nerve tissue throughout the body. This has huge potential health benefits for people with brain or other nerve tissue injuries, like me, and reduced inflammation in the brain has been linked to an improvement in symptoms like lethargy and depression.
- They may actually help regulate blood-sugar levels, even in people with type 2 diabetes. This effect is increased by the large amount of dietary fiber found in sweet potatoes that helps steady the pace of digestion.
- They contain high amounts of Vitamin C and other essential vitamins and minerals.
- They’re delicious!
And there are even more potential health benefits from sweet potatoes that haven’t been fully researched yet! They may also act as a natural antibacterial and antifungal. So get out there and eat some sweet potatoes! For nacho lovers, you can start here. These are so good that I didn’t even miss the tortilla chips and it could be a good way to sneak some sweet potatoes, and other veggies, into someone’s meal who might not eat them otherwise ( I know children can be especially picky). As always, feel free to Chef Around and make these with whatever toppings you like or want and I highly recommend revisiting some of your other recipes to see if you can sub in sweet potatoes as well!