Mexican Nachos With Cotija Cheese

Nachos in Mexico don’t look like our roadhouse platters adorned with meat, salsa, cheese etc.

I recall a small bowl of deep fried tortilla wedges and a fresh pico de gallo dipping sauce. And there were on a restaurant table like our bread basket as a precursor to a meal.

There is beauty in the simplicity of it. My version falls somewhere in between. I have use corn tortillas that are very lightly salted like Organic Que Pasa ones (from Costco and Loblaws); a small amount of Cotija cheese, an authentic, salty, fresh Mexican cheese; Mexican Crema instead of the side sour cream, fairly authentic store bought salsa which is fresh and has natural juices like Garden Fresh Organic Jack’s Cantina Salsa (from Costco) instead of the tomato pasty sauce; and jalapeno peppers.

Platter of tortilla chips with cheese, salsa and cream toppings.

I have only seen Cotija cheese in Latin groceries. If you can’t find it I would look for fresh, salty, white curds and grate them. Cotija doesn’t melt into a creamy, runny topping like Monterey Jack. It softens just enough to cling to the nacho chips but not coat them.

If you are going for the more Mexican experience I suspect you will be on your own for making Mexican Cream. It isn’t hard but you need to start, at least 3 hours and preferably the day ahead to give it time to thicken. Sour cream cut with lime juice could stand in if need be.

Close up of a package of Cotija cheese with some grated on the side.

Don’t use so much of any of them so they don’t get soggy.

Jalapeno peppers can be fresh, chopped or pickled chopped – your choice but I like the vinegar aspect of pickled.

Platter of tortilla chips with cheese, salsa and cream toppings.

Mexican Nachos

Add some authentic Mexican flavour to your nachos with Cotija cheese and Mexican Lime Crema.
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Course: Snack
Cuisine: Mexican
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 3 mins
Total Time: 13 mins
Servings: 4 servings


  • 175 grams Corn Tortilla chips enough to make a few layers on an 11" platter
  • 1/2 cup Cotija Cheese or substitute grated, fresh, white cheese curds
  • 1/2 cup Mexican Crema or sub sour cream with a Tbsp or 2 of fresh lime juice.
  • 1/2 cup Salsa I use Organic Jack's Cantina Salsa
  • 1/4 cup pickled jalapenos, chopped


  • Layer tortilla chips on a microwaveable platter.
  • Sprinkle cheese, then salsa, then jalapenos evenly over the chips.
  • Drizzle with Mexican Crema.
  • Microwave on high 2-3 minutes. Enough to warm the tortillas and toppings. Cheese will be slightly melted.


Note:  Ingredient quantities are all variable to taste.
Nutrition assumes 4 servings.


Calories: 328kcal | Carbohydrates: 34g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 32mg | Sodium: 886mg | Potassium: 215mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 514IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 227mg | Iron: 1mg

Mexican Nachos With Cotija Cheese

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