Baked Tortilla Chips with Homemade Nacho Cheese Sauce

8th June, 2015

I love the cheese loaded Nacho chips in street fairs and festival. I always top it off with extra jalapenos and enjoy the warm cheesy tortilla chips. My boys reach for the crispy chips whereas I go for the soggy ones. We usually buy the cheese sauce from stores, but often not finish the whole thing and it just sits in the refrigerator to be forgotten.

When we had the theme of making 3 tortilla dishes, I wanted to try my hands on baking my own chips. I have to admit these chips are a big shout away from the store bought salty chips. You might not even like it when you try it for the first time as the texture of the baked ones are very different from the deep fried ones. But they are totally transformed to this cheesy goodness, the minute you drizzle the homemade warm cheese sauce over them and top it off with pickled jalapenos.

I kept my chips simple with just salt as seasoning, but you can go ahead and try any seasoning on them. Also the cheese sauce was such a simple one to make and has no additives. Make sure you buy the good quality cheddar cheese to make a tasty sauce.

Preparation time – 5 minutes for the chips and 5 minutes for the sauce
Cooking time – about 7-8 minutes for the chips and 10 minutes for the sauce
Difficulty level – easy

Ingredients –

For the Tortilla chips – (makes about 32 chips)

  • Corn tortilla (small) – 8
  • Cooking oil spray
  • Salt or seasoning – as needed
For the Nacho Cheese Sauce – (makes about 1 ½ cups)
  • Butter – 1 tbsp
  • Flour – 1 tbsp (I used All Purpose flour)
  • Milk – ½ cup (I used 2 % milk)
  • Salt – ¼ tsp
  • Chili powder – ½ tsp
  • Cheddar cheese (grated) – 1 cup / 4 oz
  • Pickled jalapenos – to serve
Procedure –

To make the chips –

  • I used corn tortilla to make the chips, but you could try with flour as well. Make sure that the tortilla you choose is of thinner variety as they cook quickly and evenly.
  • Preheat the oven to 400 F.
  • Spray some cooking oil spray on the baking sheet and keep it ready.
  • Layer 4 tortilla one on top of another and cut them into quarters.
  • Place the quarters on the baking sheet and spray some oil on them. Sprinkle salt and seasoning if using and bake for about 6 – 7 minutes. Start keeping an eye from about 5 minutes as some might cook quicker.
  • Remove from the oven when the edge curls up and starts to become crispy. Let them cool down outside and the chips will continue to crisp up when cooling.
  • Do keep in mind that the texture of these chips is different from the deep fried ones. These are a little bit on the chewier side, but they work great when drizzled with the cheese sauce.
To make the Cheese Sauce –
  • Heat the butter in a sauce pan in medium heat. Add the flour to the butter and whisk it well. Let the flour cook for about a minute in the butter. You will see it all bubbling up.
  • Now add the milk and keep whisking. Let the milk come to a gentle boil. At this stage the mixture will begin to thicken up as well.
  • Add salt and chili powder and whisk well. 
  • Reduce the heat to low and add the grated cheddar cheese. Whisk well until there are no lumps and all the cheese has melted and is smooth. Add a little more milk if the sauce is too thick.
  • Serve on side or drizzle over the chips. Top with pickled jalapenos and enjoy!

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