Is there a food that you could eat unlimited amounts of? For me it’s guacamole. This creamy, spicy, salty dip is just perfection in a bowl. Adding lentils ups the protein, which seriously improves this already perfect snack.Jump to Recipe
I was seven years old when I had guacamole for the first time. (I mean real guacamole, not Taco Bell status guacamole.) I was at a restaurant called Gabrielle’s in Santa Fe, where a personal guacamole maker came to the table with the magical guacamole cart, to mix it before my very eyes. Guacamole magic was served in a giant mortar and pestle, along with fresh, hot chips. I could eat the entire bowl myself.
When I learned more about nutrition, I realized that this is not the most well-balanced snack. Sure, it’s better than a lot of other snacks, but since I could happily eat this every day, I wanted to improve the satiety and nutritional factors. This inspired me to add lentils to the guacamole for protein and complex carbs and bake my own corn chips instead of buying fried ones.
I was pleasantly surprised to find that the guacamole was just as good with the lentils. Hot chips out of the oven are also far superior to bagged chips. My perfect snack 2.0!
Begin by cooking the lentils. I used pink lentils for this recipe, but I also tried this with green lentils. It was good, but the pink lentils are much better. The green lentils left a bit of a lentil-y flavor.
Pink lentils cook SO FAST. Which is nice for this recipe, since when I want to snack on guacamole, I kind of want it immediately, not in two hours. Combine ½ cup lentils with 1 ½ cups of water in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and keep one eye on them until they are done. It takes about 10 minutes. When they are getting close, start stirring them. This will encourage them to break down and turn to mush, which is exactly what you want so you can easily combine them into the avocado.
Onto the chips.
While your lentils cook you can preheat the oven to 375.
Cut corn tortillas into strips or triangles, or whatever shape your heart desires. Arrange on a baking tray. If you have a baking rack, use it. It helps circulate the air underneath the chips, which will make your chips crisp evenly on both sides without needing to flip them. (If you don’t have one, you do not need to flip the chips half way through, but you will get a more evenly cooked chip if you do so.) Put the tray in the preheated oven.
Check on the chips after about 15 min. My chips took 20 minutes but check frequently because chips burn fast. I forgot about one batch and they went up in flames – oopsies… To see if a chip is done, try to break it in half. If it snaps, it’s a chip. If it bends in the middle, it is a chewy corn tortilla piece of sadness and you need to wait longer. You can pretend you’re on the Great British Bake Off and Mary is inspecting your biscuit’s snap.
While the chips cook, keep making the guacamole.
Combine ½ cup minced cilantro, ½ cup minced onion, 3 cloves of minced garlic, the cooked lentils, and ½ c lime juice. Add in the avocado. Mash this all together until it’s as smooth as you’d like it. Dice up ½ of a jalapeno and mix that in as well. Leave it out if you can’t handle spice. Add ¾ tsp salt, or more to taste.
Your chips should be done! Dust them with salt and start dipping.
Enjoy your well-balanced snack!
- 1 avocado
- 1 cup cooked pink lentils
- ½ cup cilantro, minced
- ½ cup minced onion
- ½ jalapeno, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- ½ cup lime juice
- 1 tsp kosher salt
If you need to cook the lentils:
- Rinse ½ cup red lentils.
- Add lentils and 1 ½ cups of water to a medium pot, keeping in mind the lentils will at least double in volume. Cover and bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat and simmer until the lentils are fully cooked. For red lentils, this is usually about 7 minutes. Drain lentils when fully cooked.
- Mix, or mash with a potato masher, until the lentils are slightly broken apart and a bit mushy. This will help them combine into the guacamole.
Baked Tortilla Chips
- Preheat the oven to 375°
- Take as many corn tortillas as you'd like and cut them into triangles or strips. I can usually fit 6 tortillas per baking tray, but depending on the size of your trays and tortillas you might be able to fit more or less.
- Place a baking rack in a baking tray, if you have one. If not, skip this step.
- Arrange the cut tortillas on the rack, or directly on the tray, so that they are not overlapping.
- Place tray in the preheated oven.
- These chips will take 20 min or less to bake, but start checking them after 10-15 minutes. Depending on how hot your oven runs, your chips could take a slightly different amount of time. You don't want to burn the chips and they burn fast!
- To test the chips try breaking one in half. If it snaps, it's done. If there is any sort of bending, stick it back in the oven.
- Optional: sprinkle with salt or seasoning, such as Tajin or the Chile Lime Seasoning from Trader Joe's.
- Mince the onion, cilantro and garlic.
- Add the onion, cilantro, garlic, lime juice, and cooked lentils to a medium bowl. Mix thoroughly, helping the lentils break down.
- Add the avocado and mash together until you have the consistency of guacamole that you prefer.
- Mix in ½ diced jalapeno (or more or less depending on how spicy you like things)
- Mix in 1 tsp kosher salt, to taste.
- Start dipping!