Over the course of last year, binge-watching – a concept that was alien to me before the pandemic – has become a (substantially large) part of my daily routine. And with binge-watching comes the munchies – ideally designed to be eaten bite after bite as things on-screen get boring or interesting. As a (now) seasoned binge-watcher, I’ve tried various binge-watching snacks from kimchi fries to pasta chips. But my go-to favorite remains beef chili nachos.
The last time I looked at a plate of these homemade chili cheese nachos, I realized how far I had come from my dorm days of microwaved cheese-on-Dorito nachos. Now, I’m painstakingly finicky about my nachos. To begin with, it should have a base of homemade tortilla chips. Homemade tortilla chips are thick, sturdy, and have a rich corn flavor which makes them ideal for scooping up generous amounts of voluptuous beef chili, melty cheese, jalapenos, tomatoes, and other toppings.
Another golden rule I now follow while making nachos is spreading them out evenly. While a huge pile of nachos does look appetizing, when you dig deeper, you discover that the layers underneath, are either plain and dry or have become soggy under the weight of the top layer. A key to truly munchable nachos is laying them out in one or max two layers and making sure to evenly top each chip with beef chili, cheese, and other toppings so that each bite is spicy, savory, melty cheesy, and tart.
Making Beef Chili Nachos:
Prepare Beef Chili:
Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add chopped onions and saute for 2 to 3 minutes, till soft. Add ground beef. Mix and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or till the beef loses its pink rawness. Then add chopped tomatoes, tomato puree. Season with salt, paprika, black pepper, and crushed red chili. Add black beans and finely chopped fresh cilantro. Once chili starts bubbling, reduce the heat and simmer for 5 to 6 minutes.
Assemble Beef Chili Nachos:
Take nachos in a serving bowl or plate. If laying out nachos in layers, make sure not to have more than two layers on the plate. Add a generous serving of beef chili on top. Sprinkle grated cheese and chopped cilantro on top. Add a dollop of sour cream (optional) and serve.
1 ½ lb ground beef
1 onion, finely chopped
2 tbsp. vegetable oil
1 Roma tomato, diced
1 tbsp. crushed red chili
2 garlic cloves, minced
½ tbsp paprika
2 tsp salt, or to taste
½ tbsp freshly ground black peppercorns
1 lb. black beans, washed and dried
100gms homemade tortilla chips
1 cup cheddar, grated
½ cup tomato puree
3 sprigs of cilantro
1 cup sour cream, to serve(optional)
- Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat.
- Add chopped onions and sauté till softened.
- Add ground beef and cook for 8 to 10 minutes till the beef loses its pink rawness.
- Then add chopped tomatoes, tomato puree, salt, paprika, ground pepper, chili powder, cilantro, and black beans. Mix and cook for a few minutes, till the mixture is well combined and starts bubbling.
- Arrange the nachos on a serving plate or bowl.
- Generously spread the beef mix on top. Sprinkle over grated cheese, chopped cilantro, drizzle a dollop of sour cream and serve!