Vegetarian totchos

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Are you looking for an easy vegetarian meal that can be prepared in under 45 minutes? Then this is the recipe for you! These vegetarian totchos are made with a creamy nacho cheese sauce, sour cream, and lots of fresh vegetables like avocados, tomatoes, and red onion. 

Vegetarian totchos with cheese sauce, sour cream, tomatoes, avocado, red onion, and jalapeños on them.

What are totchos?

What are totchos? Totchos are just tater tots that have been cooked until they are nice and crispy then topped with all the same toppings that you would put on loaded nachos. Some examples of toppings that might be found on totchos include cheese sauce, avocado, onion, tomato, and jalapeño. 

What is used in vegetarian totchos?

What is used in this recipe for vegetarian totchos? Here are all the main ingredients that are used in this recipe for vegetarian totchos.

  • Tater tots. The tater tots are the star of the show in this recipe for vegetarian totchos! We generally make this recipe using store bought tater tots, but you could also use homemade tater tots if you have a favorite recipe! 
  • Sour cream. These vegetarian totchos are piled high with sour cream. The smooth texture and the creamy flavor of the sour cream serves the perfect contrast to the salty, crunchy tater tots that are used in this recipe. 
  • Tomatoes. Lots of tomatoes are used in this recipe for vegetarian totchos. You can use any kind of tomatoes you prefer, but we recommend chopping the tomatoes into small pieces before putting them onto your totchos. 
  • Avocados. The avocados provide another smooth, creamy element to contrast the crispiness of the tater tots. If you prefer guacamole over plain avocados, feel free to substitute some guacamole in for the avocados. 
  • Red onions. Some diced red onions are added to give these vegetarian totchos a little bit of a bite. We recommend using red onions over white onions because the flavor of red onions is a little more mild. If the flavor of raw red onions is too strong for you, you can substitute the red onions with green onions. 
  • Jalapeños. Do you like a little bit of spice in your food? Then you should add some jalapeños to your vegetarian totchos. If you do not like spicy food then you can omit the jalapeños or replace them with a more mild pepper. 
  • Heavy cream. Heavy cream is used as the base of the cheese sauce that is used on these vegetarian totchos. The high fat content of the heavy cream helps to prevent the cheese sauce from curdling. 
  • Cheddar cheese. Cheddar cheese is the main type of cheese that is used in the cheese sauce that tops these vegetarian totchos. For best results, we recommend buying a block of cheese then grating the cheese yourself. Pre-grated cheese often comes coated in starches that help to prevent the cheese shreds from sticking together. These starches can have a negative effect on the texture of the cheese sauce. 
  • Cornstarch. Cornstarch is used to thicken the cheese sauce that is used in this recipe. Cornstarch is full of starches that help to prevent cheese sauce from curdling so it is perfect for making this nacho cheese sauce!

Tater tots laid out on a baking sheet for making vegetarian totchos.

How to make vegetarian totchos

How do you make vegetarian totchos? Here is how to make vegetarian totchos. 

  • Pre-heat your oven (if necessary). The first thing you should do when making these vegetarian totchos is check out the cooking instructions on the tater tots you purchased. It is likely that the instructions will tell you to heat the tater tots in the oven, so make sure to preheat the oven if necessary. 
  • Cook the tater tots. The tater tots should be cooked according to the instructions on the package. If your oven is not done heating, then you can start slicing your vegetables while you wait. 
  • Chop the vegetables. As your tater tots cook, you should start slicing your vegetables. The onions and tomatoes should be chopped into small pieces. The jalapeños should be sliced into thin slices and the avocados should be chopped into larger cubes. 
  • Heat the cream and cornstarch. After the vegetables have been sliced, it is time to start making the base for the cheese sauce for the vegetarian totchos. First, mix the cornstarch with equal parts cold water to make a cornstarch slurry. After that, heat the heavy cream over medium heat then add the cornstarch slurry. Continue to heat the cream until the mixture starts to thicken. 
  • Add the cheese to the cream base. After the cream has started to thicken, it is time to add the cheese to the cheese sauce. Before adding the cheese to the cream base, turn off the heat and let the cream base cool for a few minutes. If the cheese is added to the sauce when it is too hot, the sauce may curdle. Once the cheese is added to the cheese sauce, stir the sauce continuously until the cheese melts. If you have had problems with cheese sauces curdling before, check out our article on how to prevent cheese sauce from getting grainy
  • Assemble the totchos. Once you have made the cheese sauce, all that is left is to assemble the totchos. Pour the sour cream, vegetables, and cheese sauce over the tater tots and serve. 

How to store totchos

How do you store totchos? Totchos can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to a few days. 

If you like your tater tots nice and crispy then we recommend storing the ingredients that contain a lot of liquid such as the cheese sauce, sour cream, and tomatoes separately from the tater tots. If the cheese sauce and tater tots are stored together, the liquid from the liquids will soak into the tater tots and make them a little soggy. 

For best results, we recommend only cutting as many vegetables as you plan to eat on the day that you first make your totchos. Some of the vegetables such as the tomatoes and avocados can become mushy or discolored if they are chopped prior to being stored in the refrigerator for a few days. The cheese sauce and tater tots should then be stored in two separate containers. 

Vegetarian totchos with cheese sauce, sour cream, tomatoes, avocado, red onion, and jalapeños on them.

How to reheat totchos

How do you reheat totchos? For best results we recommend reheating the tater tots and cheese sauce separately then combining all of the ingredients for the totchos when you are done heating them. Of course this assumes that the tater tots and cheese sauce were stored separately. 

The tater tots can be reheated in the oven at 400 – 425 degrees for a few minutes if you want them to be nice and crispy. They can also be reheated in the microwave for a minute or two, but they will not be as crispy. 

The cheese sauce can be reheated on the stove or in the microwave. If you reheat the cheese sauce on the stove, you should heat it over the lowest heat possible. If you reheat the cheese sauce in the microwave, you should reheat it in 15 – 25 second intervals and stir the cheese sauce each time you take it out. The cheese sauce will curdle if it is heated to high temperatures, so take care not to overheat the cheese sauce. 

If you did not store the components of your totchos separately, then you are best off microwaving the totchos for a minute or two until they are heated throughout. 

 

What are some common totcho toppings?

Are you looking for more toppings that you can put on your totchos? Here are some of the most common toppings that are used on totchos. 

  • Dairy. Cheddar cheese, nacho cheese sauce, sour cream, Mexican crema. 
  • Fruits & vegetables. Tomatoes, avocados, red onion, green onion, white onion, jalapeños, shredded lettuce, corn.
  • Protein. Bacon, ground beef, pinto beans, black beans, chorizo.
  • Sauces. Salsa rojo, salsa verde, pico de gallo, guacamole. 

Vegetarian Totchos

These vegetarian totchos are cooked until they are perfectly crispy then topped with a creamy nacho cheese sauce. They are piled high with sour cream, tomatoes, jalapeño, avocados and more!
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Total Time45 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American, Mexican
Diet: Gluten Free, Vegetarian
Keyword: egg free, gluten free, nut free, vegetarian
Servings: 4 people

Ingredients

  • 32 oz frozen tater tots (one standard sized bag)
  • 2 small avocados
  • 2 large tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 jalapeño
  • hot sauce (optional)

Cheese sauce

  • 2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tsp cornstarch (plus equal parts water)
  • 1 pinch salt

Instructions

  • Cook the tater tots according to the instructions on the bag.
  • Chop the tomatoes, onions, and avocados. Slice the jalapeños into thin slices.
  • Mix the cornstarch with equal parts cold water to make a cornstarch slurry. Heat the heavy cream over medium heat then add the cornstarch slurry and salt. Continue to heat the cream and cornstarch until the sauce thickens.
  • After the sauce thickens, take the cream off of the heat and let it cool for a few minutes. After the cream base has cooled, add the shredded cheese and mix until the cheese fully melts.
  • Top the tater tots with the vegetables, sour cream, and cheese sauce then serve.

Substitutions for vegetarian totchos

  • Red onions. Do raw red onions have a little too much of a bite for you? Try substituting the red onions for green onions instead!
  • Avocados. Are you a guacamole fan? Feel free to substitute some guacamole in for the avocados. 
  • Jalapeños. Not a fan of spicy find? Feel free to omit the jalapeños from your vegetarian totchos or replace them with a less spicy pepper. 

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