If you're anything like us, you love nachos. The crunchy chips, the ooey-gooey cheese, the crisp toppings—it's a pairing made in heaven. That said, if you're following the keto diet, you might be under the impression that nachos are off the table due to the carb-laden tortilla chips. Just one cup of these salty delights can equate to almost 50 grams of carbohydrates—not exactly what you want when living a ketogenic lifestyle! So, what's a keto dieter to do when the nacho cravings strike? We'll tell you.
In this post, we'll tell you all about the ketogenic diet and how to turn your carb-filled favorite into a keto-approved treat. Are you ready? Let's dive in!
Keto 101: The Basics
So, what exactly is keto, you ask? Short for "ketogenic," the keto diet is super high in fat (roughly 80 percent of your daily calories) and super low in carbs (less than 5 percent of your calories) with a moderate amount of protein (typically 15 to 20 percent of your calories) tossed in. This is a pretty drastic departure from the generally recommended macronutrient distribution of 45 to 65 percent carbohydrates, 20 to 35 percent protein, and 10 to 35 percent fat.
OK—How Is It Supposed To Work?
Great question! Let's zoom into your GI tract for a hot second. When you consume carbs, which are found in anything from tortilla chips to soda pop and everything in between, it's broken down into glucose. The primary role of glucose is to supply energy for all of your bodily processes. We store this glucose in a few different ways: as glycogen ( aka long chains of glucose) in the liver and muscle tissue and extra as fat in our adipose cells.
Simply put, glucose is the primary fuel for pretty much all of the cells in our body. Our central nervous system, brain, and developing red blood cells all prefer glucose over any other source. When you're working out or haven't eaten in a while, your body will break down its store of glycogen for quick energy.
So, what happens when you run out of glycogen? Well, if you don't replenish your glycogen stores, your body will break down fat for energy. The problem? Brain cells can't use it. That's where ketones come in-- your brain *loves* ketones. When there are no more carbs left to provide energy, your body will start to produce these ketone bodies, which can provide amazing energy for most types of cells. The buildup of ketones in your body is known as ketosis.
Nixing carbs in order to push your body into this fat-burning state of ketosis is the goal of the keto diet. To get into this desired state, you generally need to consume fewer than 50 carbs per day and sometimes as little as 20 carbs per day. However, the exact carb intake that will cause ketosis can vary from person to person.
What Are The Benefits Of Ketosis?
Believe it or not, there are quite a few benefits of getting into ketosis. Here are a few of them:
Benefit #1: Appetite Regulation
One of the first things keto dieters often notice when they are in ketosis is that they aren't hungry as often. In fact, research has shown that being in the state of ketosis suppresses appetite. Studies also show a decrease in the so-called "hunger hormone," ghrelin.
Benefit #2: Weight Loss
Many people automatically begin to eat less when they restrict their carb intake and have as much protein and fat as they need to feel full. Seeing as keto suppresses appetite, decreases insulin levels, and increases fat burning, it isn't really surprising that this popular eating style has been shown to outperform other diets intended for weight loss.
Benefit #3: Improved Athletic Performance
Believe it or not, ketosis may provide an extremely long-lasting energy supply during sustained exercise in both high-level and recreational athletes.
How To Make Crunchy Nachos: Keto Style
Now that you understand the keto basics, it's pretty easy to see how traditional nachos can kick your body right out of ketosis due to the carb-filled chips. As mentioned earlier, just one cup of tortilla chips equates to almost 50 grams of carbs. And since the goal is to limit your carbs to no more than 50 grams, just one measly serving is all it takes to break ketosis.
So, does this mean nachos are totally off the table when following the keto lifestyle? Yes—unless you have Uprising's Superfood Freedom Chips! These unbelievably crunchy chips are so good, you won't believe they have only two net carbs per serving. Made with nine grams of heart-healthy fiber, six grams of protein, no sugar, and absolutely nothing artificial, these mouth-watering chips are a serious game-changer. Whether you want to nosh on them as a filling afternoon snack or convert them into crunchy nachos, the possibilities are endless with what you can do with them.
The hardest part about making nachos' keto-friendly is finding the base. Once you have the base, which in this case, we have Uprising's Superfood Freedom Chips, all you need to do is pick your favorite meat and veggies, grab some cheese, and heat them up. Here are the steps:
Step 1: Gather The Ingredients
- Uprising's Superfood Freedom Chips
- Veggies of choice (onion, bell peppers, olives, lettuce, cilantro, jalapenos, tomatoes, etc.)
- Ground meat of choice (beef, chicken, turkey, etc.)
- Cheese of choice (cheddar, mozzarella, pepper jack, Colby, etc.)
- Taco seasoning (you can make your own or purchase it pre-made)
- Broth of choice (beef, chicken, turkey, etc.)
- Sour cream
Step 2: Lay Down Your Chips
Lay the chips in a pan or plate that is over-proof and that you can use to service—Preheat the oven to 425 F.
Step 3: Brown Your Meat
Brown the meat in a skillet on the stove on medium heat before draining. Add your taco seasoning and broth and bring to a boil. Simmer on medium heat for five minutes with the lid off so that the seasoning can really infuse with the ground meat. Remove the lid and continue simmering until the meat reduces and it becomes thick. You don't want it liquidy—it needs to be nice and thick.
Step 4: Top The Chips
Top the chips with your browned meat, and then add the cheese. Place it into the preheated oven and bake for five to seven minutes or until the cheese is perfectly melted and the edges of the chips are crisp.
Step 5: Chop The Veggies
As the chips are heating up in the oven, chop all your veggies.
Step 6: Remove From The Oven And Top
Finally, remove your cheesy nachos from the oven and allow them to cool for a few minutes. Once cool, toss on your veggies and all of your other toppings like sour cream and guacamole (if desired), and enjoy!
A Final Word
And there you have it—the best crunchy keto nachos recipe on the planet! Sticking to a ketogenic diet can be tough, but when you have a few tricks up your sleeve like subbing tortilla chips for Uprising's Superfood Freedom Chips, it makes the low-carb lifestyle so much easier.
Here at Uprising, we're all about making low-carb food that actually tastes good—not like cardboard. We've put in the time and research to create our unbelievably crunchy Superfood Chips and mouth-watering Superfood Cube so you can put something on the table that you can finally feel good about eating. Sometimes we’re all hit with the craving for a delicious Reuben sandwich or some delightful French toast, and with Uprising Food, you don’t have to give up either. Whether you're following the ketogenic diet or just looking for a healthier approach to some of your favorite dishes, we have what you need to stick to your goals.
Never compensate for taste again and check out Uprising Food today—trust us, you'll be glad you did!