Settlers of the Noms: Personalized Nacho Board

Settlers of the Nachos

There are nearly 200 recipes in Wood for Sheep: The Unauthorized Settlers Cookbook, but this is my favorite of the easy edible boards. If you’re barely comfortable in that room with the hot box, the cold box, and the sharp objects, you can still host a kick ass game night that’ll impress all your friends, because this barely requires any cooking.

The hardest part is finding the ocean of hex shaped blue corn chips from the brand Food Should Taste Good. My regular grocer doesn’t stock them, but they’re a staple at health food and/or schmancy food stores. While they cost a little more than your average blue corn chips, the hex-tastic shape makes them well worth it for the sake of Settlers Nachos.

Let’s be honest. Gamers are both notoriously picky eaters with an uncanny ability to roll a critical hit for every food allergy known to man. That’s a big part of the inspiration behind a Settlers of Catan themed cookbook. Whenever I get people together for an afternoon of gaming, there’s an awkward moment when one generous person offers to buy pizza. Whoops. Somebody at the table says that’s really nice, but they’ll have to bow out because they’re lactose intolerant and they’re not about to inflict a cheeseless pizza on the whole group. Another person says that’s okay, they have a nitrate allergy and can’t eat processed meats, so no pizza for them, either. A third pops up and says they didn’t want to make a big deal about it, but they’ve stopped eating gluten for the sake of their health. You can’t get four nerds together without discovering five things wrong with their digestive systems.

The Settlers of the Nacho Bar is my answer to to the simple struggle of trying to buy a pizza for your friends who are allergic to everything. It’s dirt simple to make this into something your gluten free, lactose intolerant, vegetarian friends can all eat. It’s simple to make (the only thing you need to cook is the taco meat for the mountains), super customizable, and looks awesome.

For those of you who can’t wait for the cookbook, here are the quick and dirty steps to making sure all your friends can eat together.

  • Make sure you have gluten free blue corn tortilla chips (might as well get that ocean color in there) and this board works great for Celiac or wheat allergic players.
  • Lactose intolerant players can make theirs without cheese, or you can generously pick up some soy/almond/rice fake cheese.
  • Since the meat is in its own separate dish, vegetarians can easily leave it off entirely when assembling their nachos. Heck, if you’ve got vegans coming over, pick up the vegan sausage crumbles in your frozen food aisle and a bag of cheese alternative (which they can share with any lactose intolerant players) and designate a special mountain and field just for them.
  • Grab some grain-free all-nut cracker alternatives and you’ll even have something your Paleo friends can enjoy!

I hope this makes it easier to enjoy game nights with ALL your friends!

Home made nachos

To assemble the nachos, just throw a hearty handful of chips in the bottom of whatever spare pans you have around. (I use 9 inch round cake pans, but square baking dishes or cookie sheets also work just fine.) Pile on your toppings (meat first, cheese last works best) and throw them under the broiler for 2-3 minutes. There’s a fine line between melty cheese goodness and horrifying burnt dairy, so keep an eye on the nachos as they cook. That last 15 seconds makes all the difference.

A nacho bar is cheaper than pizza, easy to customize, and best of all, comes in convenient hex shapes while representing all the colors of a Catan board. What more could you want for a Sunday afternoon gaming snack?


Covet those hex shaped dishes?

Kitchen Overlord Settlers of Catan Southern Cuisine Map

Find those and more in our post on 7 Tasty Ways to Level Up Your Catan Night


Need more Catan-Tastic Goodness?

You can find recipes for much more complicated theme food in Wood for Sheep: The Unauthorized Settlers Cookbook.

Meanwhile, check out more cookbook preview posts:
Settlers of Catan Breakfast Bar
Settlers of the Mediterranean (Map)
Settlers of the Quick Breads
Welcome to South Catan Y’all
Settlers of the Cold Salad
All-American Meatloaf Map
Personalized Settlers Nacho Bar
Settlers of Catan City Pot Pies
Settlement of Catan Basil and Mozzarella Bites

Wood for Sheep: The Unauthorized Settlers Cookbook Cover

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  • Where do you find those fantastic hex dishes?

    • Chris-Rachael Oseland

      Amazon.com. The manufacturer is “Scientific Equipment of Houston.” You can get them here:

      http://www.amazon.com/Plastic-Hexagonal-Weigh-Boats-Medium/dp/B001AE6GXK/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1376588593&sr=8-2&keywords=hex+weigh+boats

      The “small” size is only about 2 inches across. I use it for condiments. You can see it in the Biscuit board on early posts about Wood for Sheep: The Unauthorized Settlers Cookbook. Everything else is served in the “medium” sized boats. Be warned – they’re pretty flimsy since they’re meant to be single-use disposable items, but they make up for it by being super cheap – about $20 for 100 of them, including shipping.

      You can buy actual hex shaped stoneware serving dishes, but they’re super expensive. The cheapest I could find online was around $12 each. You need 19 dishes to make a Settlers of Catan map. For that kind of money, you could buy the gorgeous boxed set. I prefer the disposable weigh boats because they’re accessible to gamers who aren’t made of money. Plus, easy cleanup.

      One more note of caution – the medium boats look small, but they actually fit about 2 cups of food. Each. They use the same crazy volumetric magic as the bottomless little silver dishes at good Indian restaurants. Each of those boards represents a hearty meal for 6 (assuming you have the expansion pack for extra players) plus some leftovers for everyone to take home. Honest.

  • This is so cool! I may just have to do this for my husband’s birthday, he loves Settlers!

    • Chris-Rachael Oseland

      If his birthday is after Labor Day, you can also get him Wood for Sheep: The Unauthorized Settlers Cookbook. It’s chock full of maps and over 100 recipes.

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  • That’s really cool. The funny thing is that those hex dishes made your photo look like a bad photoshop the way they cut off the chip edges, but it’s just the angle of the dishes that cause it! I had to look several times to convince myself that it was real!

    • Chris-Rachael Oseland

      The top-down photos in the book are a lot clearer. 🙂 The wide angle side-view is more blog-friendly, since the front page likes to trim photos into narrow little rectangles.

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