Today I am bringing you one of my favorite dishes to date: Nachos with Homemade Taco Meat and Sriracha Cheese Sauce! Usually when I make nachos (which is fairly regularly), I just sprinkle shredded cheese over the top and bake until melted. On the day I made these, I was in the mood for something different. I wanted something reminiscent of the concession stand nachos that come with a little sidecar of orange “cheese” for dipping, but I wanted it to be made from real ingredients.
This is actually two recipes, but they go so well together that I didn’t want to split up the pair. You could use this homemade taco meat recipe on its own for tacos, burritos, or Mexican dip. (Skip the taco seasoning packet!) The sriracha cheese sauce would be delicious drizzled over french fries, broccoli, baked potatoes… Why am I even providing a list here? What doesn’t taste better covered with cheese sauce?!
You might think chicken broth is an odd addition to nacho cheese sauce, but I’ll tell you why it’s in there. I actually made this twice, the first time with all milk, and it turned out a little sweet. I wanted to use the same amount of liquid without all the sweetness from the milk, and the chicken broth worked perfectly. The version I’m sharing here was SO GOOD! Of course you can adjust the sriracha (a hot sauce found in the Asian section of your grocery store) to taste or eliminate it completely if you are looking for something more mild.
I should let you know that this cheese sauce thickens up quickly once it cools, which is not a problem once it’s on your chips, but it wouldn’t be a great choice for serving in an unheated bowl for dipping at a party. It is meant to be eaten right away, which will not be a problem. This cheesy goodness doesn’t last long!
- 1 lb. ground beef
- ½ onion, finely diced
- 1 tsp. chili powder
- ½ tsp. ground cumin
- ½ tsp. kosher salt
- ½ tsp. garlic powder
- 1 tsp. dried oregano
- cayenne pepper to taste
- 1 tbsp. butter
- 1 tbsp. flour
- ¾ c. cold milk
- ¼ c. chicken broth
- 1 tsp. sriracha hot sauce (or adjust to taste)
- ½ tsp. kosher salt
- ½ tsp. chili powder
- 1 c. shredded Mexican cheese
- corn tortilla chips
- guacamole, salsa, sour cream, or any other toppings you like
- For the taco meat, spray a medium skillet with cooking spray and heat over medium-high heat. Add onions, and saute for 3 minutes. Add beef and seasoning, and brown and crumble meat until cooked through. Drain very well.
- For the cheese sauce, heat a skillet over medium heat. Add butter, and whisk in flour as soon as the butter is melted, stirring until a smooth paste forms.
- Very slowly stir in cold milk, about ¼ c. at a time, whisking constantly to keep mixture smooth. If you see a few tiny lumps, don't worry about it. Break up any lumps larger than a pea with the whisk or the back of a fork before adding more liquid.
- Once all the milk is added and you have a smooth mixture, whisk in chicken broth and spices. Bring to a simmer, whisking frequently, and simmer until bubbly and thickened. Turn heat to medium-low, and stir in cheese. Stir continuously until cheese is melted, which will only take about a minute.
- Fill a bowl or plate with an even layer of tortilla chips, pile on some taco meat, drizzle cheese sauce over that, and top with extras like guacamole and salsa. Dig in!