When I started Keto, I was actually able to easily say goodbye to lots of high carb foods like pasta and bread. But when it came to nachos, I was pretty devastated they were on the no eat list. I could finish a plate of nachos like nobody’s business. So I had to find a way to get my nachos without the carbs. This recipe has a Korean flair including lots of kimchi. If you haven’t tried kimchi, I really recommend it. Kimchi is a side dish made from fermented veggies, usually cabbage, along with Korean spices. It can be spicy but you can definitely find mild versions. But wifey likes spice so I always look for that version. Because kimchi is fermented, it has probiotics are really great for your gut health.
Now gather your ingredients and get ready for the yum!
1/2 head cauliflower
1 lb pork belly, cut into 2 inch pieces
1 tbsp. avocado oil, plus 1 tsp
3/4 cup kimchi, diced, juices reserved
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. ginger, minced
1 tsp. liquid aminos
1 tsp lime juice
1 tsp swerve or other sugar alternative
1 tsp. gochugaru Korean chili power (optional)
1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
1/4 red onion, chopped
Toppings (all optional):
1/2 cup sour cream
1 tsp sesame seeds
1 scallion, sliced
2 jalapeno peppers, thinly sliced
1 plum tomato, chopped
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Let’s begin with the cauliflower. Slice the cauliflower across in long sections and then into chip sized pieces. Layer them on a baking sheet in a single layer. Drizzle 1 tsp of olive oil, salt and pepper and toss carefully so you don’t break apart the pieces. Place in oven and bake about 15 to 20 min until crispy and browned. You can see below how they are almost to the point of being too brown but that is what I was going for so that they are nice and crispy.
Cut the pork belly into two inch pieces. Try to cut them the same size. Also, don’t worry if some of the pieces are mostly fat, pork belly is super fatty and those little fat nuggets are a piece of heaven. Heat 1 tbsp. of avocado oil on medium high heat in a cast iron skillet or heavy bottomed, oven-safe pan. For this recipe, I like to use avocado oil because of it’s neutral flavor but you could use sesame oil or olive oil as well. Cook for about 5 minutes until all sides are browned.
Add 1/4 cup of chopped kimchi, ginger and minced garlic. Cook one minute, stirring often. Add the liquid aminos, swerve, Korean chili powder and lime juice and saute for another minute until all ingredients are mixed well. Turn off the heat, remove the pork from the pan and set aside.
Time to make the nachos!! Woot Woot!
There will be some oil left in the bottom of the pan from when we cooked the pork belly so pour most of that out. Then, layer half of the roasted cauliflower along the bottom in a single layer. Top it with half of the pork belly. Add half of the grated cheese. I’m using sharp yellow cheddar and gruyere white cheddar. Then top with half of the chopped red onions and half of the chopped kimchi.
Repeat the layering with the second half of the ingredients: cauliflower, pork belly, cheese, onions, kimchi. Then just stick the pan in the oven, uncovered, for 10 minutes.
While that is cooking, grab a small pan and drizzle in a little avocado oil. Add in the sliced jalapenos and sauté over medium heat until crispy. I let mine go a little too long so they were almost burnt but they were actually still really good. Just keep an eye on them because they will cook pretty fast. This step is totally optional if you don’t want the added spiciness.
Take a small bowl and add the sour cream and reserved juices from the kimchi. The amount you use will be up to you. Just add a tablespoon or two, stir and taste. I ended up adding prob about 1/4 cup because I freaking love the taste of kimchi.
When the “nachos” are done, remove the pan from the oven. Behold how yummy and cheesey they look.
Top with jalapenos, kimchi sour cream, scallions, sesame seeds and tomatoes. You could also top with some sliced black olives, avocado, or chopped lettuce or kale. And even if you don’t add any toppings, these nachos will still be fantastic!!!
My husband and I put the pan in the middle of the table and ate straight out of the pan with forks. You could get fancy and use plates. I won’t judge.