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Vegan “Frito” Pie

Vegan Frito Pie
Client:Brandi Doming


Brandi is the creator of the blog The Vegan 8. She has been a passionate cook for years, but it was her husband’s painful disease with gout that led her to choose a vegan lifestyle. She chose a healthier way of eating for her family that ignited a passion to create unique and delicious recipes that also happen to be vegan, gluten-free and oil-free. Her blog has become very popular, as it focuses on 8 ingredients or less, so anybody can make them with ease. Brandi believes in using nature’s powerful whole foods to nourish and promote a healthier body and a healthier mind. She enjoys creating food that everybody loves, whether vegan or not. Brandi’s belief is that food can be easy, use minimal ingredients, yet still be shockingly delicious.

This recipe creates a healthy, vegan version of the classic American “Frito” Pie by combining baked tortilla strips with a red kidney bean chili and a easy-to-make “cheese whiz” sauce. Top it with sliced avocado or jalapenos for a delicious comfort dish. Enjoy!


For the Bean Chili

  • 4 cans red kidney beans, drained and rinsed well (I used organic, low sodium)
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon chili powder (add more to make it more spicy)
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons fine sea salt (depending on the can of beans, this made need adjustment)
  • 1 cup water

For the “Cheez Whiz” Sauce

  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • 3/4 cup water 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  1. First, preheat your oven to 400 degrees and line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
  2. Stack the tortillas and cut them into small rectangular frito shapes. Spread out evenly (don’t overlap) on a sheet pan, sprinkle salt all over them and bake for 5-7 minutes or until very golden brown. (Depending on the type of tortilla, the time may need to be adjusted. Set aside, they will crisp up as they cool.)
  3. While the tortillas are baking, prepare the beans by draining and rinsing them well.
  4. Add all of the “bean chili” ingredients to a medium pot and stir well.
  5. Bring to a boil and once boiling, cover and turn to medium-low and cook for 10-15 minutes, until the sauce has thickened, but not completely evaporated. (You still want some sauce left, so it’s pourable over the chips. Turn the heat off.)
  6. While the beans are cooking, prepare the 5 minute cheez whiz sauce by adding all of the ingredients to a blender or food processor and blending on high for approximately 30 seconds or until thoroughly smooth.
  7. To serve, add some beans to individual serving bowls, layer on chips, then drizzle the cheez whiz all over the top and mix up. Top with avocado, jalapenos, tomatoes or whatever desired. Add more seasonings, if desired.
  8. Enjoy!


*Vegan, oil-free, nut-free, gluten-free (depending on the tortillas you use)


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