Hydroisomerization of linear paraffins to branched isomers is an important petrochemical process, which commonly uses a microporous zeolite catalyst supported with Pt metal nanoparticles. Although attempts were made in the past to find an alternative to costly Pt, replacement with low-cost metals was not successful for conventional bulk zeolites, due to the low metal dispersion resulting in poor catalytic performance. Here, we demonstrate that Ni can replace Pt when it is supported on zeolites with uniform mesopores. Ni-supported MFI-, *MRE-, and TON-type zeolites possessing mesopores showed the same or even better catalytic performance in comparison to that of Pt-supported conventional MFI, *MRE, and TON zeolites, respectively. The Ni-supported zeolites exhibited even better branched isomer yields, despite low Ni loading. This result is ascribed to the confinement or sandwiching effect of Ni nanoparticles by the mesopore walls in the zeolites, which stabilizes the highly dispersed Ni nanoparticles.