Vegan Loaded Baked Potato!

Baked potatoes have always been one of my go to’s for easy food, bung them in the oven and forget about them for a bit and then throw on some butter or cheese and you’re good to go! Going vegan though, I suddenly had a dilemma. What was I supposed to put on my potatoes that didn’t include meat or dairy?! As I’m finding out though, just about anything can be veganised and it tends to end up better than the original anyway, so here’s my loaded baked potato, with cashew nut cream cheese!

To start off, I rub a little bit of coconut oil on the potato, sprinkle some salt on to help crisp up the skin, then just throw it in the oven and leave it until a knife goes through it easily, usually just over an hour. I then throw my cashews in a pan and leave at a super low heat until just before the potatoes are done.

Soaking them over night is recommended, but I never remember and it is possible to do the same in about an hour if its warm/hot water! Once they’re soft and the potatoes are done, I turn off the oven but leave the potatoes in there. I’ve recently gotten a food processor and I use it for almost every meal, so I throw my nuts in there with a splash of almond milk (you can use any plant based milk, almond is just what I usually buy) and blend the hell out of it. It’s not quite as smooth as cream cheese but it gives a similar enough effect.

With the cheese and potatoes sorted, only the other toppings are left! I throw half a tin of ‘Mexican Mix’ beans, a tiny bit of chopped up fresh chilli and a diced clove of garlic into a frying pan with a touch of coconut oil, then cook at a medium heat stirring occasionally for around ten minutes, then pour in some BBQ sauce, mix it all together and turn off the heat.

The final step is just assembly. I like to fluff up the inside of my potato with a fork, press it down and then just pour in the filling. Top with the cashew cream cheese, some sliced olives and roughly cut chives and you have a meal fit for a queen!

It’s super filling, pretty low in calories and really delicious so I definitely recommend everyone gives this a go whether you’re vegan or not!

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-Dana

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