Nachos Recipe

Nachos with toppings

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Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 5 mins
Total: 20 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
327 Calories
16g Fat
35g Carbs
13g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 327
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 16g 21%
Saturated Fat 7g 33%
Cholesterol 29mg 10%
Sodium 205mg 9%
Total Carbohydrate 35g 13%
Dietary Fiber 7g 27%
Protein 13g
Calcium 238mg 18%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Although they are not traditional in Mexico, many people outside of that country still identify nachos as Mexican fare—much like pizza is considered Italian food.

According to the frequently repeated story, nachos were invented in the 1940s by a man named Ignacio (note: the common nickname for a man of that name is Nacho) working at a restaurant in Piedras Negras, a Mexican city just over the border from Texas. When some regular customers arrived after closing time, Ignacio made a snack for them with what little he had left in the kitchen: fried corn tortilla pieces, cheese, and chopped jalapeño peppers.

The dish was a success with those diners and eventually caught on in the southwestern United States. Its popularity absolutely exploded when, in the 1970s, the cheese was replaced with a cheddar cheese sauce and nachos began selling at sports events.

After that, there was no looking back. Nachos became mainstream Mexican-American fare, and new versions are invented all the time. Nowadays we can choose from the “original” version of just tortilla chips, cheese, and chiles or enjoy additional elements such as guacamole, olives, chicken or meat. There are no hard and fast rules, so enjoy this crunchy, cheesy snack with any and all of your favorite toppings.


  • 3 ounces/85 grams fried or baked tortilla chips (about 2 large handfuls)
  • 2/3 cup shredded cheese—cheddar, mozzarella (or any other variety that melts easily)
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup guacamole (or diced avocado)
  • 1/2 cup refried beans or whole black beans (drained of liquid)
  • 1 small tomato (seeded and diced)
  • 1/2 cup green onions (chopped)
  • Optional: sliced olives (black or green)
  • Optional: white or red onions (diced)
  • Optional: jalapeno peppers (chopped)
  • Optional: carne asada, cooked and shredded chicken, or meat (such as carnitas)

Steps to Make It

  1. Turn your broiler on high to pre-heat. Heat the beans in a small saucepan over low heat until bubbly. Remove from heat.

  2. Set half of the chips in a single layer on an ovenproof pie plate and cover with half of the shredded cheese. Carefully place the rest of the chips over this base layer and top them with the remaining cheese.

  3. Place your pie plate under the broiler for about minutes until cheese is melted. Carefully remove the dish from broiler and drizzle the beans on top of the cheesy chips. Add any of the optional ingredients, if using, at this point.

  4. Drop spoonfuls of guacamole over your nachos or sprinkle on the diced avocado. Add the sour cream in small dollops, and sprinkle on the diced tomatoes.

  5. Serve your delicious nachos in the same baking pan in which they were heated. Each person will serve himself, pulling off the cheesy chips to eat with his hands.

Glass Bakeware Warning

Do not use glass bakeware when broiling or when a recipe calls to add liquid to a hot pan, as glass may explode. Even if it states oven-safe or heat resistant, tempered glass products can, and do, break occasionally.


  • If you are using meat, freshly cooked is the best option. Otherwise, re-heat pre-cooked meat until piping hot. Add to the nachos right after the beans layer.

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