This post may contain affiliate links. We participate in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites at no extra cost to you.
Sheet Pan Nachos are a game changer in the appetizer realm! No more soggy chips at the bottom of your loaded nachos. Using a cast iron sheet pan keeps everything hot, dry, and perfect as the communal game-day app!
We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites at no extra cost to you. We also participate in similar programs with RStyle and other companies.
Taco Tuesday to Share
Listen, Taco Tuesday is sacred to me. I’m certainly not about to go sharing my personal tacos with anyone except maybe the baby. But if you’re out of soft tortillas and have a bag of tortilla chips laying around, you can whip this fun finger food up for dinner to satisfy a bunch of kids!
Even better is you can double or triple this recipe and have one sheet pan cooking while the other is being devoured. Remember, we’re a family of 8 – this is normal! I can either make a ton of individual tacos or I can set out a couple large platters and let them go to town. The platter is easier – and they think it’s fun!
As an appetizer, this could serve about 6 adults with some good salad plate sized portions.
Make-Ahead & Leftovers
Really to make this ahead of time, you’re limited to prepping the topping ingredients and cooking up the meat. Granted this can save you a lot of time on game day, but assembly will need to wait until you’re ready to serve. That way everything stay fresh, bright, cold where it’s supposed to and warm where it’s supposed to.
Leftovers are not really a thing here. My kids demolished this entire thing within a matter of 10 minutes! Plus with all the toppings piled on top, there just really isn’t a good way to store everything. I highly doubt leftovers will be a problem here.
Have Nachos – Will Travel
You can also make this in a 9×13 casserole dish (cast iron of course) with the toppings packed on the side and prior to baking. Then when you get where you’re going, 5 minutes before serving, just pop the dish in your host’s oven to melt the cheese and warm it through. Then add toppings just before serving.
Ingredients & Substitutions
Meat: Ground Beef is an easy and cheap option but you could also use shredded chicken, shredded pork, chorizo for a bit of spice, tofu or black beans.
Taco Seasoning: You can use store-bought or homemade Taco seasoning, or any other Mexican inspired seasoning such as Fajita seasoning.
Water: As is standard practice when making taco meat, you’ll need about 1/2-1 cup of water to help the seasoning bind to the meat.
Veggies: You could use any kind of vegetable. We used onions and tomatoes as a base before adding the cheese. Another option would be beans and corn.
Shredded Cheese: Whatever cheese you like best is what will work. Feel free to use a Mexican blend or a combination of Colby Jack, Cheddar, Mozzarella, Monterey Jack, or Pepper Jack for a little kick!
- Sour Cream
Tools You’ll Need
A skillet will be needed to brown the meat with the taco seasoning, but the real star of the show is the cast iron griddle sheet pan with the grooved center. You’ll want to build the nachos on the grooved side, as this helps air to circulate around everything as well as prevents anything from laying flat and creating a soggy base.
How to Make Sheet Pan Nachos
This comes together so quickly, you won’t believe it!
Start with browning your choice of meat in a 12 inch skillet. When it is about half-way cooked, add the seasoning and water. Mix and continue cooking until it becomes saucy, not watery. Shut the heat off and start to assemble the griddle pan.
Lay a nice thick layer of chips on the griddle, groove side up, and spread them out to the edge as best as you can. Top the chips with meat, again going as far to the edge as you can. Try to avoid big clumps of meat.
Top with veggies and cheese. Bake at 400F for 5 minutes or so, just to warm everything up and melt the cheese.
Set the griddle on a few heat proof pot holders to protect your counter or table and load up with toppings of choice. Holler out to everyone to come and get it, and watch them disappear.
Tips for making Sheet Pan Nachos
Chips should be traditional and sturdy. Don’t use lime tortilla chips, for example, unless you KNOW that everyone likes them. Restaurant style or authentic tortilla chips seem to hold up best under the weight of all your toppings. Feel free to choose any color or mix of colors. You’ll need about a bag total.
Nacho cheese can be used in place of the shredded cheese. In this case, I would recommend heating it up in the microwave and drizzling it on top like you do the sour cream. There’s less of a chance of big glops of cheese piling on top of the chips and making them soggy.
The baking of the nachos is really just to get everything warmed through and the cheese melted. Make sure you spread each layer of ingredients out evenly and have an extra half a layer of chips. This will ensure that each chip gets toppings without becoming soggy. And as your guests take from the top layer of chips, the toppings will just fall on the bare, warm ones underneath.
Sheet Pan Nachos with Ground Beef Recipe
- cast iron sheet pan with grooved side
- wooden spoon
- squirt bottle for drizzling sour cream
- 2 pounds ground beef 90/10
- 3 Tablespoons taco seasoning
- 1 cup water
- 11 ounces Restaurant Style Tortilla Chips 1 or 2 bags (up to 22 ounces)
- 8 ounces Mexican cheese shredded
- 1 onion diced
- 1 tomato diced
- 1 lettuce Romaine head
- 1/2 cup Cotija cheese crumbled
- 1/2 cup sour cream plus more for dipping
- 1 cup guacamole
- 1/4 cup cilantro torn and garnished
- Preheat the oven to 400F.
- To a cast iron skillet over medium heat, add the ground beef. Sauté until half-way browned. Add the seasoning and water. Stir and cook down using a wooden spoon until meat is cooked through and becomes slightly saucy.
- To a griddle pan, grooved side up, add a layer of tortilla chips. Spread out evenly to the sides of the pan. Top with ground beef, veggies, and cheese. Bake for 5 minutes until the cheese is melted.
- Top with desired toppings and serve while warm. Use oven mits to transport and hot pads until the sheet pan to protect your table.