How To Make Nachos With Shredded Cheese

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How To Make Nacho Cheese Sauce With Shredded Cheese

Chicken Nachos with Shredded Cheese (and Tomatillo Salsa) | The FrugalChef

One thing to note about this silky cheese sauce, it is not cheaper than the prepared cheese sauce you’ll find at the grocery store. This isn’t a budget recipe. As Chef John explains, “You could probably get a gallon of that industrial strength stuff for the same cost as a single batch of this.” But we think you’ll discover that this cheese sauce, which includes lots of actual cheese, is far, far superior.

1. First, we’ll make a quick white sauce with butter, flour, and cold milk. Over medium heat in a sauce pan, melt 1/4 cup of butter.

2. Whisk in 3 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon of flour, cooking the flour in the butter and stirring constantly for about 3 or four minutes.

3. Slowly drizzle in 3 cups of cold milk. Start slowly, whisking constantly. After you’ve added about half the milk by slow drizzle, go ahead and pour in the rest. Simmer for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

4. Next, it’s spice time. Chef John uses four kinds of powdered chili peppers — 1/4 teaspoon each of ground dried chipotle pepper, ancho chile pepper, cayenne pepper, and paprika. Stir in salt to taste.

You’ll notice that the sauce is fairly thin. That’s intentional. As Chef John explains, “It’s a total rookie mistake to make a nacho cheese sauce too thick, since as soon as it hits the chips, the sauce tightens up considerably, and you end up with a lump of cheese, and some serious sauce-to-chip ratio issues. Even at room temp, this sauce remains fairly fluid.”

Now watch Chef John get it done:

How To Make Homemade Nacho Cheese:

Full ingredient list and detailed step by step instructions are listed in the recipe card below, but here is a summary.

  • Mix: In a small saucepan, toss the grated cheese with the corn starch. Then stir in the evaporated milk.
  • Heat: Over medium heat and whisking occasionally, within a few minutes you’ll have a warm, creamy, homemade spicy cheese sauce.
    • shredded cheese and cornstarch
    • melted with evaporated milk

    While the cheese is nice and hot, smother those tortilla chips and serve it alongside your favorite nacho fixings!

    More About Nachos With Shredded Cheese Recipes


    FromEstimated Reading Time

    • Brown ground beef in a skillet until no pink remains. Drain fat. Stir in taco seasoning, water and black beans. Simmer 5 minutes or until sauce thickens and water evaporates.
    • Meanwhile, spread tortilla chips onto a baking sheet. Top with ½ of the cheese, the beef mixture, remaining cheese, and half of the green onions.

    FromEstimated Reading Time

    • Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add in ground beef. Use a spoon to break up the meat and cook 8 to 10 minutes until beef is fully cooked through. Drain excess grease. Add in taco seasoning, stir, and cook 60-90 seconds.
    • Spread chips out onto a baking sheet .

    FromEstimated Reading Time

    • To a medium saucepan, add evaporated milk. Heat over medium heat, stirring occasionally until milk just begins to simmer.
    • Remove the milk from heat and stir in the cheese, a large handful at a time, until all the cheese has been incorporated and it has completely melted into the sauce.
    • Add hot sauce, salt, and cayenne, and then taste and add more if needed. Serve over nachos, fries, or steamed vegetables and enjoy!

    FromCategoryCuisineTotal Time




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    Best Cheese For Microwave Nachos

    Ive tried pretty much every cheese in the cheese drawer for quick microwave nacho snack plates. I think the best cheese for these is a mix of Monterey Jack and cheddar.

    Monterey Jack is the best for melting. It really melts beautifully and isnt too strong in flavor. A little cheddar gives some sharpness to the cheese mix, but if you just have Monterey Jack thats fine.

    American cheese also does okay in a pinch, but has a weird texture once it cools which is inevitable for a microwave plate of nachos.

    What Is The Best Cheese For Nacho Cheese Sauce

    How to Make Nachos Using Shredded Cheese

    I find colby jack perfect in this recipe, but if you wanted to use another cheese you totally could.

    Or, if you like spicy sauce, double the paprika in this recipe for a spicy nacho cheese or use pepper jack cheese.

    I definitely plan on making a white cheese/queso blanco sauce based on this recipe in the future.

    Heres my favorite way to serve it: drizzled oh so generously over my 30 minute sweet potato refried bean nachos.

    more mexican recipes

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    Dont: Use Fussy Cheese

    When it comes to cheese, classic is best. Its tempting to try something different and get something thats a little bit more interesting, but I think the classics are the classics for a reason and they deliver on flavor and nostalgia, Figueroa said. So its hard to go wrong with a mild cheddar. Theres an argument to be made for grating your own cheese , but if you have a bag of shredded cheese on hand its totally fine to use that.

    Good Ingredients For Microwave Nachos

    I love nacho platters that are piled to the max with toppings. Just check out my nacho archives if you need some examples there.

    But, when you are making nachos in the microwave, its actually better to have a light touch with the toppings. I prefer to use fewer toppings that have big flavors. I usually leave off meat and beans for microwave nachos because meat gets greasy in the microwave and the beans are just too much for a snack.

    Instead, I like to keep my toppings simple for microwave nachos. Things like:

    • Cheese
    • Salsa
    • Sour cream
    • Fresh cilantro

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    Sheet Pan Nachos Variations

    • Use cooked, shredded chicken instead of the beef called for in the recipe. Youll still want to mix it with the salsa so its coated well and doesnt dry out in the oven, plus it adds a ton of flavor. This also means theres no cooking involved at all!
    • Make cheesesteak nachos with thinly sliced steak, sauteed onions and bell peppers, and monterey Jack or mozzarella cheese
    • Skip the salsa and toss cooked, shredded chicken with buffalo sauce instead! Top with crumbled blue cheese, diced celery, and chopped green onion.
    • Use cauliflower instead of tortilla chips for a low-carb/keto version. These Buffalo Ranch Roasted Cauliflower Nachos are amazing!
    • Use french fries instead of tortilla chips to make nacho fries. Or tater tots to make Totchos!
    • Toss pulled pork with barbecue sauce instead of the salsa for pulled pork nachos
    • Make a smaller batch in a cast iron skillet instead of a sheet pan
    • Toss the cooked beef, sausage, or pepperoni and toss it with marinara instead of the salsa for pizza nachos
    • Use cooked shrimp and green salsa for shrimp nachos
    • Make healthy nachos so you can still indulge a little but keep the calories a bit lower

    If youre looking for more easy recipes to make alongside these nachos, check out these 3 recipes using Trader Joes pizza dough!

    The Best Toppings For Nachos

    Homemade Nacho Cheese Sauce

    Place small bowls of toppings on the table or counter and let everyone build their own plate of nacho goodness! Heres our list of fixings that are nacho supreme worthy!

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    How Do You Make A Quick Cheese Sauce

    The answer is simply: cornstarch.

    Once I realized the cornstarch trick, I make all of my cheese sauce recipes this way!

    Cornstarch is now a time saving staple in my home.

    You cant taste it, and it makes dinner time a heck of a lot easier.

    Once we first made this recipe, I had to make it three times in one week because I just could not get enough of it!

    The homemade nacho cheese just takes nacho night to the next level.

    It literally takes five minutes to make and tastes so good I really cant even prepare you for the deliciousness.

    Since first posting this recipe, I have made this countless times and even served it at a party.

    From easy dinners to party appetizers, you really cant go wrong with a batch of this cheesy goodness!

    It reminds me of going to a mexican restaurant and filling up on chips and cheese.

    I could totally do that with this recipe!

    I love this cheese sauce plain with tortilla chips, or drizzled generously over whatever mexican dish we are having that night.

    Can I Make This In Advance

    Yes. Unlike a lot of cheese sauces, this sauce reheats pretty well . It will solidify in the refrigerator but returns to its pourable state when reheated. To reheat:

    • On the stove: Transfer sauce to a small saucepan and reheat gently over medium-low heat, stirring frequently. Do not allow to come to a boil.
    • In the microwave: Microwave in a microwave-safe dish, stopping to stir sauce every 10-15 seconds as needed until just heated through. Heads up, the sauce will pop and sizzle in the microwave.

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    Prep Ahead For Easy Assembly

    On top of everything else that makes nachos greattheir versatility, their low cost, their deliciousnessnachos are quick to make. Youll spend more time preparing your toppings than baking them, which only takes about 10 minutes.

    If you want to keep the prep easy, top your nachos with store-bought ingredients . If youre not a fan of store-bought toppings, you can shred the cheese, brown the meat, or make the salsa up to three days in advance.

    The only topping I recommend making the same day is the guacamole, just to prevent it from browning excessively.

    Nacho Cheese Sauce For Parties

    Taco nachos with diced tomatoes and shredded cheese

    This recipe makes a little over 2 cups of sauce, but if you would like to make an even bigger batch, the recipe doubles with no preparation changes.

    You can transfer your prepared nacho sauce to a slow cooker and keep it set to warm for a couple of hours. Fair warning, it will do that cheese sauce thing where the top sets and gets kind of sad and ugly looking, but if you give it a quick whisk, it returns to looking smooth and beautiful.

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    Tips And Tricks For Making Microwave Nachos

    Here are some tips to remember for making the best plate of microwave nachos!

    • Careful melting the cheese! A microwave can quickly melt and scorch cheese. I recommend melting the cheese in 15-20 second bursts until its just melted but not burned at all.
    • Once your cheese is melted, add any sturdier toppings and microwave the plate again for 15 seconds. This will warm up the ingredients.
    • Add sour cream and herbs right before serving!
    • Eat microwave nachos right away! The sooner the better!

    Of course, these are no replacement for a real full-on nacho platter, but the perfect is the enemy of the good when it comes to snacks!

    I wouldnt serve these microwave nachos to guests, but Ill gladly make them for me and my wife as we binge something on TV.

    Be honest: Have you ever microwaved nachos?!

    Do: Pay Attention To How You Layer

    If youre using grated cheese instead of cheese sauce, sprinkle one to two layers of that shredded cheese on the chips. If youre using meat and refried beans, they should be heated up and go on next before popping the nachos into the oven. Cheese dip, also warmed up, goes on when the nachos come out of the oven, followed by the toppings meant to be enjoyed cold.

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    How To Make Healthy Nachos: Nutritionist Spills Her Secret Recipe For A Nutritious Spicy Mexican Bowl

    • Nutritionist and JS Health founder Jessica Sepel shared her recipe for nachos
    • She combined nutritious bowls and Mexican concepts for the meal
    • Its spicy, creamy, tangy and fresh all at the same time, plus packed with protein, she said

    A leading nutritionist has shared her favorite healthy nachos bowl as a quick and easy option for a weeknight dinner.

    Jessica Sepel, the mastermind behind the multimillion-dollar Australian vitamin empire, JS Health, combined her two favorite things Mexican and nourishing bowls together for the delicious dish.

    Its tangy, creamy, tangy and fresh all at the same time, plus packed with protein, fiber and good fats, Jessica said.

    Use plant-based substitutes for yogurt and cheese to make it vegan-friendly, or just leave them out.

    Jessica Sepel, the mastermind behind the multimillion dollar Australian vitamin empire, JS Health, combined her two favorite things Mexican and nourishing bowls together for the delicious dish

    Easy Cheesy Beef Nachos With Tostitos Chips

    Homemade cheese sauce dip for nachos

    Updated: · · This post may contain affiliate links

    This super easy cheesy beef nachos or chili beef nachos is a must try for your next party. It will be the best nachos recipe you’ve ever made. Loaded with lots of melted cheese, ground beef and served with Tostitos chips.

    Does anything get much better than an epic, easy cheesy beef nachos? I don’t think so. That is why this chili beef nachos worth a try and sure will be one of the best nachos recipes in your appetizer collection.

    Looking for a good Super Bowl snacks or a beautiful plus wonderful appetizer for your restaurant menu? This chili beef nachos is definitely your best pick.

    Why? Because they not only tastes delicious but also look super duper amazing.

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    The History Of Nachos

    I live 4 1/2 hours from the birthplace of nachos. Ignacio Nacho Anaya created the binge-worthy dish for a group of U.S. Army wives in the border town of Piedras Negras, Mexico, just across the border from Eagle Pass, Texas.

    The women loved it and Nachos especiales turned into the nachos we all know and love. As a former Army wife myself, I can just imagine sitting down to experience this Tex-Mex staple for the first time with my friends.

    What Are The Best Chips For Nachos

    While I dont know if its the perfect chip, I do believe that a corn tortilla cut into wedges and fried at home is the sturdiest. Heres how to make your own tortilla chips!

    But lets be real, many of us dont have the time or desire to fry homemade tortilla chips. Many grocery stores now sell bagged tortilla chips that were fried in-house or locally. Check out your supermarkets bakery section to see if they have them. They tend to be thicker and sturdier, which makes them great for nachos.

    If those are unavailable, regular store-bought triangular corn tortilla chips also work great for nachosjust definitely avoid the thin kind. You want thick tortilla chips so they dont break when you lift them!

    If you have younger children, or older grandparents who have trouble eating, I recommend using round tortilla chips since the pointed ends of the triangular-shaped chips can sometimes be cumbersome for those diners.

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    Tips For The Ultimate Nacho Set

    • Bake nachos on an oven-safe platter or quarter sheet-pans. I can set up the cheesy chips, top them with the beef and bean mixture and bake. This means you can go from the oven to the table and everyone can top their nachos according to their preference. The pans act as a baking dish and a plate.
    • Overlap the tortilla chips and keep it to only one layer per sheet pan. This ensures every chip has toppings on it.
    • Set out your toppings in ramekins allows everyone to customize their own pile of nachos with the least amount of mealtime stress.

    What Are The Main Ingredients Are In Nachos

    How to Make Nacho Cheese, Like a Rockstar
    • Tortilla Chips

    Tortilla Chips

    Start with your tortilla chips. Any brand you like will do.

    That said, I do recommend that you avoid using the thinner style tortilla chips. While I love the thin chips for eating with salsa, something with a bit more heft to it works well for nachos. A standard size bag fits on a standard sized cookie sheet nicely.


    Once you have your chips on your baking sheet, its time for the cheese.For the standard size bag of chips, a one pound block of cheese works nicely.

    In my opinion, the best cheese for nachos includes:

    • Cheddar
    • American
    • Mozzarella
    • A combination of any of the above

    Grate Your Own Cheese

    Buying your cheese pre-grated works, but I find it never melts as well as when I grate it myself. If you look on the ingredient list for pre-shredded cheeses, youll notice that anti-clumping agents like cellulose added. Cellulose isnt high on my list of toppings.

    Grating your own cheese really is key to getting that great, cheesy, melty thing we all love with nachos. As an added bonus, its almost always more cost effective to grate your own cheese. That said, sometimes convenience just wins. So if pre-grated cheese is what works for you, then go with it. It will be delicious, I promise!

    Liquid Cheese Sauce

    As you can tell, these are not made with the liquid style nacho cheese sauce. We prefer both the taste, and ease, of making our nachos with shredded cheese, and baking them in the oven.

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