Nachos are to the Super Bowl as turkey is to Thanksgiving. Like candy to Halloween. Champagne to New Year’s Eve. So, yeah, there’s a lot of pressure on those triangular chips. Your nacho recipe could make or break your Super Bowl party. The good news is nachos are super easy to get right.
Here are the keys to a successful nacho situation:
A sharp cheese that melts well, like cheddar or Monterey Jack
Shredded or pulled meat (unless vegetarian, of course) combined with beans
Fresh, acidic and spicy components: cilantro, jalapeños, salsa, guacamole and sour cream
An even structure: Layer all your components, starting with a layer of chips, on a baking sheet, then meat and beans, then lots (LOTS!) of cheese, then repeat until it’s a few layers high. After baking, top with your “fresh” components.
But if you want to go beyond basic, really deck ’em out, we’ve rounded up a bunch of our favorite nacho recipes that your Super Bowl party guests will likely devour in minutes — possibly seconds. So make sure you enforce proper nacho etiquette!
Loaded Potato Skin Nachos by Rhoda Boone, Epicurious
With bacon, potato skins and two types of cheese, could you really ask for anything more?
Pulled Pork Nachos by Jet Tila
This recipe proves you can have a great version of pulled pork without a smoker. The juicy, shredded pork makes the perfect topping for cheesy nachos.
Tailgate Nacho Packets by Casey Barber
These nacho packets cook directly on a grill for melty, cheesy, crispy goodness on the go — topped with all the fixings you crave.
Vegan Loaded Potato Nachos by Henry Firth & Ian Theasby
This vegan version of nachos is just as satisfying, with crispy potato slices (which can be subbed with butternut squash, parsnip or sweet potato), loaded with fresh-tasting toppings like salsa, cashew sour cream and, of course, guacamole.
Grilled Beer Can Chicken Nachos by Siri Daly and Carson Daly
“In the summer and fall, Carson seems to make a beer can chicken once every few weeks,” says Siri Daly. “They are juicy, smoky and beyond flavorful. We use the tender meat in just about everything (salads, quesadillas, pastas, etc.). While the chicken is delicious on its own, our favorite way to enjoy it is as a topper on a plate of loaded nachos during football season. As we like to say, even if our team loses, we always win the tailgate.”
Lightened-Up Chilaquiles (Breakfast Nachos) by Casey Barber
This one-pot meal of tortillas simmered in salsa makes everyone happy — especially since you can use whatever your favorite salsa happens to be to make this meal your own. It’s the ultimate Mexican comfort food.
Chili Cheese Tater Tot Nachos by Christan Willis
Chili is the ultimate topping when it comes to game-day food; you can put it on everything from hot dogs to burgers to nachos. Take your nachos to the next level by using Tater Tots instead of tortilla chips — it makes this delicious dish even more comforting, perfect for the cold weather and watching the game.
Lobster Nachos, Corn Salsa, Heirloom Tomato & Avocado by Matt Jennings
With lobster, caramelized onions, tomatoes and avocado, it won’t just be a party in your mouth — it’ll be a really fancy party.
Sheet-Pan Breakfast Nachos by Frances Largeman-Roth, RDN
Using a sheet pan is the key to making sure that every chip is properly loaded with all of the delicious toppings. Made with gluten-free chips, these tasty nachos can also be made vegan by swapping out the bacon, cheese and crème fraiche with plant-based alternatives.
Pig Skin Nachos by Elizabeth Heiskell
Nachos are always amazing but swapping tortilla chips with crunchy pork skins takes them to another level! Bonus: These are a dream for those following the keto diet.
Vegan Chili Cheese Nachos by Angela Liddon
You won’t believe how decadent tasting — yet wholesome — the cheese sauce is, and how satisfying the smoky lentil and kidney bean chili is.
Chicken Chili Verde Nachos by Billy Dec
Warm chicken chili verde is delicious on its own, but load it on top of nachos with gooey, warm queso fundido and you’ve got an irresistible Super Bowl dish.
Ina Garten’s Fresh Crab Nachos by Ina Garten
Ina Garten’s crab nachos are seriously good — layers of chips, fresh crab, chiles, cheddar, pickled jalapeños, avocados and tomatoes. They’re crunchy, spicy and cheesy and perfect for sharing.
Joy Bauer’s Loaded Sweet Potato Nachos by Joy Bauer
In Joy’s lightened-up version of nachos, she subs in thin and crispy sweet potato slices for your typical tortilla chips. Add your favorite toppers for one fantastic fiesta — no utensils required.
Skillet Nachos with Pulled Pork by Matt Moore
This recipe calls for slow-roasting a pork butt on the grill to make up a batch of ultimate nachos — but truth be told, you can still use this skillet-on-the-grill technique to whip up any type of nachos.