Blue Corn Chicken Nachos

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Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

In the mood for some red, white, and blue? How about red, white, and blue nachos, with blue corn tortilla chips!

I’ve always loved blue corn tortilla chips. I don’t know if it’s my mind playing tricks on me, but I think they taste better than regular tortilla chips. Maybe because they’re less industrial and have more flavor than the corn we get these days?

Whatever, the chips taste great and make a delightfully blue canvas for our white cheese sauce and chicken, and (mostly) red fresh pico de gallo salsa.

Blue Corn Chicken Nachos

Taking a tip from my other favorite nacho recipe—Mexican street corn nachos—rather than baking the chips with the cheese on them, I’m making the cheese sauce separately.

This way the chips have a better chance at staying somewhat firm and crunchy when you eat the nachos. Otherwise they tend to bake into a limp mess.

Making a cheese sauce is easy to do with monterey jack cheese. Jack melts beautifully with cream and doesn’t tend to separate like cheddar can.

Happy Fourth!

Blue Corn Chicken Nachos Recipe

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  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4 to 6

If you want, you can make the cheese sauce ahead of time and reheat it in the microwave when ready to make the nachos. Just pour it into a pyrex or ceramic bowl, cover and chill to save.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast
  • 1 teaspon salt
  • 14 ounces blue corn tortilla chips
  • 1 pound pepper jack or monterey jack (or a mix), shredded
  • 1 Tbsp cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 cup fresh tomato salsa (pico de gallo)
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Method

1 Poach the chicken breast: Place chicken breast(s) in a medium saucepan and cover with 2 inches of water. Add the salt. Cover. Bring to a boil. Turn off the heat. Let sit covered for 10 minutes in the hot salted water to gently poach. Drain. Remove from pan.

2 Preheat oven to 350°F.

3 Make the cheese sauce: If you have a double boiler, use it. Otherwise put an inch of water in a small pot and place a medium metal bowl on top of it to create a double boiler effect.

red-white-blue-nachos-method-2

Put the shredded cheese in the bowl and toss to coat with the cornstarch. Pour in the heavy cream and milk.

Turn on the heat and bring the water in the pot to a boil. Slowly heat up the milk cream cheese mixture until eventually the cheese melts, stirring occasionally until smooth.

red-white-blue-nachos-method-3 red-white-blue-nachos-method-4

4 Heat tortilla chips in oven: While the cheese is heating, spread the tortilla chips out in a large baking sheet and put in the oven at 350°F. Heat for 5 minutes. Then remove from the oven.

red-white-blue-nachos-method-1

5 Cut the cooked chicken into 1/4 to 1/2-inch cubes.

6 Top tortilla chips with cheese sauce, chicken, and salsa: When the cheese sauce is melty and smooth, put the heated tortilla chips on a platter and pour the cheese sauce over it. Top with cooked chicken and pico de gallo tomato salsa.

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Blue Corn Chicken Nachos

7 Comments

  1. Cheryl

    Not quite the same as ordinary cheesey nachos

  2. Elizabeth @ Pineapples and Polka Dots

    Oh my goodness, a cheese SAUCE? Yum!! I love nachos, and these are so pretty with the blue corn, bright tomatoes, and that sauce. These are on our football snacks lists for sure!

  3. Karen M Larsen

    I adore nachos in every way shape and form. This cheese sauce is to die for!
    A trick I found for keeping chips crisp when baked with cheese is to put them on a preheated baking stone.(400 degrees F) We assemble the chips and toppings on the hot stone and bake for 10 -15 minutes then serve right on the stone(with a heavily padded breadboard underneath) Chips stay crispy and toppings hot! We have a dedicated “nacho stone” and another for all other uses.

  4. David Waterbury

    This looks very good. I strongly suggest brining the chicken breast for no more than 1 hour in a brine of 100g of salt, 100g of sugar and 1/2 gallon of water (this can be scaled down). Dissolve the salt and sugar in warm water then cool chill before adding the chicken to brine. Then bag the chicken and cook sous vide at 145ºF for at least 2 hours but not more than 4. The results will be much better than poaching.

  5. Mlmnttlkr

    I haven’t tried making nachos with a cheese sauce at home. This looks easy. Thanks!

  6. Evie Lieb

    Elise, this is one of the cleverest and most creative red, while and blue July 4th recipes I have seen. And the cheese sauce looks deliciously smooth and easy. Thank you!

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