Jessica is the creator behind How Sweet It Is, a website devoted to balancing food, fitness, and the trials and tribulations of being a newlywed. You can also find her on Twitter and Facebook.
Since I was young, one of my most favorite snacks has been tortilla chips with melted cheese.
No, not queso dip.
Cheese that is literally melted on top of the tortilla chips in the microwave.
Gross? That is subjective.
Sure, over the years my tastes have refined a bit. I have gone from boring, white tortilla chips and bagged cheddar cheese to organic blue corn chips with gouda, gruyere and fontina. My husband’s tastebuds? Not so much.
His idea of a gourmet meal is some plain, stinky egg whites mixed with plain ground turkey. Do we see a theme here? Plain.
Thank goodness I came along. Had I not rescued him from a life so plain, he would still be sitting in his bachelor shack, surrounded by decorative Crosby and Malkin bobbleheads, autographed, framed pictures of WWF wrestlers hanging on the walls, and 600 Nascar toy cars.
Did that sink in? Framed pictures of wrestlers HANGING on his walls. Let’s just say. . . how sweet it wasn’t.
Don’t worry, I gave him his own room to hoard all of his precious keepsakes once we got married.
It’s called the garage.
I would be lying if I said delicious dinners didn’t keep us together. After all, a girl can only take so many Conway Twitty cassette tapes and 10 x 20 Scarface posters.
For my sake, and his, I had to come up with a healthy, yet manly plate of slop-pile nachos.
Complete with homemade salty, baked tortilla chips – that are easy to make – these nachos are stacked with beans, cheese, and salsa. Oh, and we can’t forget the meat. At least, I can’t forget the meat. Because if I serve a meal in this house without meat, that-person-I-live-with might spontaneously combust. Or start to grow horns. Or throw himself on the floor and pitch a tantrum so great, only a toddler could compete.
Pray for me.
The nachos come out protein-packed and heart-healthy, keeping me much fuller than the 3 or 4 plates of chips with microwave-melted cheese that I like to snack on.
I suppose you could also add more vegetables. You know, if you’re into that kind of thing.
Healthy Loaded Nachos
4 whole grain tortillas
5 oz shredded chicken breast
1/4 cup black beans
2 tablespoons enchilada sauce
1/4 cup low-fat, shredded monterey jack cheese
2 tablespoons chunky salsa
2 tablespoons plain greek yogurt
2 tablespoons low-fat refried beans
2 slices avocado, chopped
Preheat oven to 375.
Cut tortillas into triangles, spritz with olive oil, sprinkle with sea salt, and bake for 10-15 minutes until crispy. Let cool.
Top with chicken, cheese, black beans, enchilada sauce, and salsa. Add a scoop of refried beans and greek yogurt. Top with avocado. Season with salt and pepper if necessary.
Nachos that are delicious and waist-line friendly? Sign me up. And someone, please, sign up my husband for Introduction to Husbanding: Happy Wife = Happy Life.
Jessica Merchant is WHIRL’s current featured blogger. You can visit her blog at www.howsweeteats.com.