InDependent Community Highlight: Ft. Leavenworth, KS


InDependent Community Highlight:  Ft. Leavenworth, KSInDependent is a great online resource offering daily articles on the blog and tips on social media to help you thrive as a military spouse.  But, did you know that we’re building communities to take InDependent to you live at your military installation?

Emira recently joined our team as the Community Director.  She was a good sport and tackled the artichokes food challenge as the very first piece she wrote for us.  But, her main job is to build communities where military spouses can support each other in person and online in a location specific space.  This space is currently under construction because something really fantastic is coming soon – keep an eye on our Facebook page and the Community page for InDependent for announcements on our upcoming launch. In the meantime, if you’re interested in being an ambassador to lead a group in your area, please email Emira so she can get your community up and running.

The activities of each community will vary depending on the interests of the individuals in that community.   As an example, the community at Ft. Leavenworth has done the following over the last several months:

  • November – Dinner out at Füd in Kansas City.
  • December – Cooking demo featuring dates, potluck, and fitness-themed gift exchange.
  • January – Vinyasa/Restorative yoga class and potluck.
  • March – Movie/Healthy Nachos night – Watched Hungry for Change and learned how to make cashew cheese for healthy nachos.  Recipe follows!
  • Coming up in April – Dinner out at Café Gratitude in Kansas City.

Check out Instagram for photos of these events and more.

We’ve had a great time getting to know each other better and trying new things.  I’m PCSing this summer so if you’re at or coming to Ft. Leavenworth and want to take over this group, please let Emira know.

Healthy Nachos with Cashew Cheese
Healthy Nachos with Cashew Cheese

InDependent Original

The secret to healthy nachos is to load up on the veggies, keep the chips to an appropriate serving size, and add healthy fats from avocados, olives, and in this case, cashews.  A few of us had tried the cashew cheese at Café Gratitude and we quizzed our waiter for the ingredients.  I then went home and came up with my own version to demonstrate at our next meet-up.  Everyone was pleased with the recipe!  For this meet-up, everyone brought some toppings, and Christie the hostess provided drinks and a healthy treat.  Super easy!

Topping Ideas

  • Salad greens
  • Tortilla chips
  • Vegetarian refried beans
  • Avocado/Guacamole
  • Tomatoes
  • Salsa
  • Cilantro
  • Olives
  • Cashew cheese

Cashew Cheese

Raw cashews can be hard to find in the commissary or regular grocery store.  I ordered mine online this last time because it was snowing when I needed them and I didn’t want to drive to the health food store in Kansas City to get them.

If you don’t have a high-speed blender like a Vitamix, soak cashews in water for several hours before blending.


  • 1 cup cashews
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne (or to taste, tends to get spicier after refrigeration)
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • ¼ cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 clove garlic, pressed


Blend all ingredients together in a high-speed blender.  Store in the refrigerator in a sealed container.  Just after blending, the consistency will be liquid like a dressing.  After refrigeration, it holds its shape more so it’s more like sour cream or cream cheese.

What are your favorite toppings for healthy nachos?