Cheese Nachos

Cheese Nachos
Cheese Nachos Header

Cheese Nachos with Tortilla Chips & Nacho Cheese Dip. This is a simple Nacho Cheese made from Cheese Whiz Sauce and seasoned with Taco Seasoning ingredients. It’s not hard to just keep going at the plate and still want more. That Nacho Cheese Sauce is just really good. Although, it is uniquely different.

Tostitos Nacho Cheese Ingredients

Probably one of the most popular Nacho Cheese Dipping Sauce or Salsa Con Queso is made by Tostitos and their ingredients are;

Water, Nonfat Milk, Monterey Jack Cheese (Cultured Milk, Salt, Enzymes), Corn Oil, Modified Food Starch, Diced Tomatoes in Tomato Juice, Jalapeno Peppers, Chili Peppers, Red Bell Peppers, Maltodextrin, Natural Flavors, Salt, Sodium Hexametaphosphate, Monosodium Glutamate, Sodium Citrate, DATEM, Sodium Phosphate, Artificial Colors (Yellow 5, Yellow 6), Spice, and Soy Lecithin.

Nacho Cheese

This recipe is based on the Cheese Whiz Sauce. With a few Spices added that are the typical ingredients found in Taco Seasoning. In fact, you can even add a bit of Taco Seasoning instead to taste. Just keep in mind that Taco Seasoning usually has a thickener in it as well, so you may have to adjust the consistency a bit.

I opt to add in shredded Cheddar Cheese or a blend of Cheddar & Monterey Jack if I have it. But this can be made without it just as well.

Nacho Cheese without Cheddar Cheese

Nacho Cheese Dip

  • 1/4 C Cream 10 %
  • 3/4 C Water
  • 1/2 C Cheese Whiz
  • 1 Tbl Neutral Oil or Butter
  • 4 tsp Arrowroot
  • 1/2 tsp Sea Salt
  • 1/4 tsp Cumin, Paprika, Chili Powder, Onion Powder, Garlic Powder, Ancho Powder, Cream of Tartar
  • 1/8 tsp Citric Acid & White Pepper
  • 1/2 C or more of Shredded Cheddar Cheese – optional

Nacho Cheese Seasoning

The main seasoning in this Nacho Cheese is seasoned with Cumin, Paprika, Chili Powder, Onion Powder, Garlic Powder, Ancho Powder, Cream of Tartar.

The Cream of Tartar & Citric Acid creates a nice texture and slight tang that is very pleasing. The Chili Powder, Ancho and White Pepper contribute the heat level. Add more or less to suit your taste. A bit of MSG can be added for more Umami flavors.

Together, these ingredients create a really good Nacho Cheese Sauce that is served heated.

Nacho Cheese Heat level

This Nacho Cheese Sauce has a medium amount of heat, it has some good kick to it. If you wish to reduce the heat, then omit or reduce the White Pepper and/or reduce the Ancho Powder to 1/8 tsp for a Mild Nacho Cheese.

If you want it spicier, then increase these amounts or add in a minced Jalapeño for a hot or Spicy Nacho Cheese or add a few dashes of Hot Sauce, Cayenne Pepper or even some shredded Monterey Jack Cheese.

You may have to experiment to find the right heat. But all of these heat sources can be adjusted to suit your preference.

Nacho Cheese Consistency

With this recipe, you get that Nacho Cheese Flavor, but not so thick that it’s all you taste. Instead, the Saltiness of the Chips comes through with a very pleasing blend of the Nacho Cheese with some kick. Man, this stuff is good!

Either way you like it, the Nacho Cheese can be thickened even more to the desired consistency simply by adding in more Arrowroot and/or shredded Cheese depending on how thick you like it. If you find you have gone too thick with it, just add a bit of liquid and heat while mixing.


Most recipes will call for a roux (equal amounts of Fat and Flour). This however, creates a gravy type sauce. Where Arrowroot creates a texture that is more inline with a liquid Cheese Sauce, with the glue like consistency. Cornstarch or Potato Starch won’t work the same either. They create a thickened Sauce but lacks that glue like texture.

This can be remedied or improved upon when using a roux or a starch other than Arrowroot with the addition of shredded Cheese to melt into the Sauce. Since Arrowroot already does this on its own to an extent, it’s the preferred thickener for this type of Sauce.

Shredded Cheese

Shredded Cheddar Cheese added to the Sauce boosts the Cheese flavor and assists in creating the texture of the Cheese Sauce. Add shredded Cheddar Cheese once the Sauce has thickened and is hot. Take the pot off the heat and add the shredded Cheese mixing well. The residual heat should be adequate to melt the Cheese. If not, place it back on the heat for a bit, just until melted into the Cheese Sauce.

Cheddar Cheese Old Fort

Cheddar Cheese

Add about 1/2 C or more of shredded Cheddar Cheese. This can also be mixed with a bit of Monterey jack Cheese which will add some heat. In that case, you will want to reduce or omit the White Pepper.

The more Cheese you add, the more of a Cheese texture you get and the thicker it is.

Tortilla Chips

Use your Favorite type of Tortilla Chips. The Tortilla Chips can just be plated and served with the Hot Nacho Cheese in a small bowl for dipping, or placed on a baking sheet with Shredded Cheese on top and baked at 350 F for a double Cheese Nacho Platter. You can also just shred some Cheese on the Nachos and microwave until melted and then serve with the bowl of Hot Nacho Cheese.

Tostitos Rounds


Reheating Nacho Cheese

The Nacho Cheese is supposed to be served warm. As the Nacho Cheese cools, it will thicken up quite a bit. To reheat, just place into a pot over medium heat while stirring to reheat the Nacho Cheese or Microwave the Cheese until hot and mix well before serving.

Cheese Nacho Platters

Cheese Nachos With Salsa

Cheese Nachos with Salsa

Dipping bowl of Salsa with the Nacho Cheese Sauce drizzled over the Chips.

Cheese Nachos with Cheddar Cheese Powder

Cheese Nachos

A plate of Tortilla Chips with Hot Nacho Cheese Sauce to dip into.

Double Cheese Nachos

Double Cheese Nachos

A plate of microwave heated Tortilla Chips covered with Cheddar Cheese and Hot Nacho Cheese Sauce to dip into.

Cheese Nachos Pin

Cheese Nachos

Tortillas Chips & Nacho Cheese Sauce for a can't get enough Cheese Nachos. Add some Shredded Cheese to both the Sauce and Chips. Serve the Nacho Cheese Hot.
Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time5 minutes
Servings: 4 portions


  • 1 Saucepot
  • 1 Whisk
  • 4 Small Dipping Bowl


  • 1 bag Tortillas Chips

Nacho Cheese

  • 3/4 C Water
  • 1/4 C Cream 10%
  • 1/2 C Cheese Whiz
  • 4 tsp Arrowroot
  • 1 Tbl Neutral Oil - or Butter
  • 1/2 tsp Sea Salt
  • 1/4 tsp Onion powder, Garlic powder, Turmeric, Cumin, Smoked Paprika, Chili Powder, Ancho powder, and Cream of Tartar. - each
  • 1/8 tsp Citric Acid & White Pepper - each
  • 1/2 C Shredded Cheddar Cheese - optional, adds thickness and more cheese flavor about 1/2 C or more


  • Combine all Ingredients together into a sauce pot (except the shredded cheddar cheese if adding) and mix really well. Ensure that the Arrowroot is completely dissolved.
  • Bring to boil while mixing often until the Cheese Whiz dissolves and the Cheese Sauce is thickened.
  • Remove from heat as soon as it thickens. Add shredded Cheese If using and mix well until melted into the sauce.
    Pour into small serving bowls to serve with a plate of Tortilla Chips.
    Optionally place the Tortilla Chips on a baking sheet and top with Shredded Cheese and bake at 350 F until the Cheese is melted or Microwave the Chips with shredded Cheese on top. Then serve with the Nacho Cheese.


This Nacho Cheese Sauce is a medium heat which can be adjusted to suit your taste. 
Mild Cheese Nachos: Omit or reduce the White Pepper and optionally reduce the Ancho powder by half. 
Hot or Spicy Cheese Nachos: Increase the Ancho & White Pepper or add minced Jalapeños, Hot Sauce or Cayenne Pepper. 
Course: Appetizer, Snack
Cuisine: Mexican
Keywords: Cheese Nacho Sauce, Cheese Nachos, Hot Cheese Nachos, Nacho Cheese, Nacho Cheese Sauce, Nachos with Cheese
Author: JAH
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