Take your nachos up to the next level with this Homemade Nacho Cheese Sauce Recipe. Yes, it’s a little more work than sprinkling on a handful of shredded cheese or opening a jar, but it turns your bland pile of tortilla chips into a gastronomic tribute to the power of melty cheese!
One thing about my house: we always have tortillas on hand for quesadillas and wraps. Tortilla chips, though? Not so much. My teenaged son tears through entire bags of them, ignoring all of the healthy snacks in the house, so I’ve given up buying them.
Now if the need for nachos hits me, I whip up a batch of homemade tortilla chips or strips myself. Of course, you’re welcome to swap a bag of your favorite tortilla chips for the homemade ones. I’m just cheap that way.
Making tortilla chips or strips is a matter of cutting flour tortillas into the shape you want, misting them with cooking spray or lightly brushing them with oil, then baking them for 5-8 minutes in a preheated 350° / 177°C oven. Be sure to watch them very carefully because they go from perfect to burned rather quickly. Oh, and give them a sprinkle of salt as soon as they’re out of the oven.
Homemade Nacho Cheese Sauce
While the chips cool, go ahead and make the homemade nacho cheese sauce recipe below. For topping suggestions, consider:
- Chopped, cooked chicken or cooked ground beef seasoned with homemade taco mix
- Jalapeno slices
- Sliced black olives
- Chopped green onions
- Diced tomatoes or salsa
- Refried or black beans
- Sour cream
Nacho Cheese Sauce
- 4 tablespoons butter no substitutions
- 1 onion diced
- 4 tablespoons all-purpose white flour
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon chili powder or to taste
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne or to taste
- 2 cups milk
- 1 lb cheddar cheese grated (or ½ lb. cheddar and ½ lb. pepper jack for more zing)
- Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add onions and cook until translucent, about 4 minutes.
- Sprinkle the flour and spices over the onions and cook, stirring constantly, for one minute.
- Slowly add the milk, whisking constantly to prevent lumps.
- Stir in the cheese until just melted. Remove from heat and adjust seasonings to taste. Serve immediately.
This sauce can be refrigerated but will need to be reheated and stirred well before serving.
More of my recipes: