Chicken Tinga Nachos Recipe

J. Kenji López-Alt

Why It Works

  • It's juicy, flavorful chicken on a crispy, deep-fried chip, covered in melted cheese and guacamole. Do I really need to explain this?

As much as I love tacos, there are only so many I can eat before I want to move on to the next thing. With batch after batch of leftovers from working on my chicken tinga recipe, I looked for as many ways as possible to use them up. Tostadas were an obvious choice, topped with chicken, crumbled cotija cheese, and avocado. It also makes a great enchilada filling. All these things are delicious, but they also require utensils, or, at the very least, two hands and some awkward head-tilting, to eat. Not the ideal party or game-day food. Nachos, on the other hand, are where it's at.

Recipe Facts

Active: 15 mins
Total: 20 mins
Serves: 3 to 4 servings

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  • 2 to 3 cups (500 to 750ml) canola or peanut oil
  • 6 small corn tortillas, cut into quarters
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 cups (about 1/2 recipe) Easy Chicken Tinga
  • 6 ounces (170g) grated jack or pepper jack cheese
  • 1 cup guacamole
  • 1 radish, thinly sliced


  1. Preheat oven to 425°F. Heat oil in a 12-inch cast iron skillet, Dutch oven, or wok over medium-high heat until it registers 375°F on an instant-read thermometer. Adjust flame to maintain temperature. Working in 3 batches, add quartered tortillas and fry, agitating with a metal spider, until edges just start to brown. Flip chips over and continue to cook until crisp and light golden brown. Transfer chips to a paper towel–lined tray, sprinkle with salt to taste, and let sit for 2 to 3 minutes to drain. Repeat with remaining batches.

  2. Arrange chips in a single layer on a foil-lined baking sheet. Top each chip with approximately 1 tablespoon shredded chicken and 1 tablespoon cheese. Place in oven and bake until cheese is melted, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from oven. Add a small dollop of guacamole to each chip and top with a radish slice. Serve immediately.

Special equipment

12-inch cast iron skillet, Dutch oven, or wok; instant-read thermometer; metal spider; rimmed baking sheet

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