How To Reheat Nachos

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You can’t ever go wrong with the incredibly versatile, universally loved, guaranteed-to-please platter of nachos. Whether you’re too full halfway through a bowl of nachos or over-catered for game day, you’ll need to know how to reheat nachos to prevent them from turning into a soggy mess.

You can reheat nachos in the oven, toaster oven, broiler, air fryer, microwave, or skillet. The best method is the oven. Preheat the oven to 300°F, remove cold toppings, and spread the chips onto a tray lined with parchment paper. Reheat for 10 to 15 minutes, add toppings, and serve immediately. 

We have you covered whether you’re indulging in a leftover feast or satisfying your midnight craving. So, continue reading to discover the best ways to reheat nachos.

Can You Reheat Nachos?

Most people assume that leftover nachos aren’t salvageable. However, with these great tips and tricks, you can transform cold nachos into warm, crunchy chips with fresh toppings.

There are several knacks to reheating nachos to prevent them from losing their crispy texture and turning into a plate of soggy chips. Here are the six different ways to reheat nachos.

  1. Oven: the best method to give large portions of soggy nachos their crispiness back
  2. Toaster oven: ideal for single-portion leftovers
  3. Broiler: the fastest way to reheat nachos
  4. Air fryer: ultra crispy results in no time
  5. Microwave: okay for crunchy nachos but doesn’t work well on already soggy chips
  6. Skillet: slightly messy but effective

My all-time, almost fool-proof method is using the oven to reheat my nachos before diving in for a second round. However, I’ll cover all six ways to ensure every reader finds their perfect match.

These reheating approaches only require a few straightforward steps to transform your leftover nachos into the decadent snack they once were.

First, regardless of your chosen method, you should scrape off all the toppings that can cause the nachos to turn soggy or burn. So, shake off the fresh garnishes like onions, jalapenos, lettuce, olives, and more. Then, use a butter knife or blunt knife to scrape off any excess toppings and sauces like sour cream, guacamole, chili, salsa, and queso.

Let’s get started with warming those yummy chips!

Reheating Nachos In The Oven – Best for Large Portions

While there are several effective methods for heating nachos, the oven seems to take the winning prize! Popping your nachos in the oven will help restore soggy nachos and achieve that sought-after crunch.

The oven might be slower than some of the other methods (discussed below), but it remains the most suitable option for large portions of nachos.

Here’s how:

  1. Preheat your oven to 300°F and remove all the fresh toppings.
  2. Line your oven tray with parchment paper or aluminum foil and evenly spread the tortilla chips in a single layer on the tray. The nachos need to be fully exposed to crisp properly.
  3. You can sprinkle extra cheese over the nachos.
  4. Reheat the nachos for 5 to 15 minutes according to your preferred level of crustiness. 
  5. Remove the nachos and reassemble the fresh ingredients.
  6. Enjoy!

Note: If the nachos are very soggy, lower the oven temperature slightly (250°F). Then, leave them in for 5 to 10 minutes longer to give them enough time to dry out properly.

Reheating Nachos In The Toaster Oven – Best for Leftovers

A toaster oven is a miniature version of its full-size, conventional counterpart. However, the toaster oven takes less time to reach the desired temperature, cooks faster, and delivers more control than a standard oven.

The primary downfall of using a toaster oven is that you can only warm smaller portions. So, this method is not ideal for game-night to get-togethers. However, if you’re home alone and ready to dive into the plate of nachos for the second time, the toaster oven is an ideal go-to.

Here’s how:

  1. Preheat your oven to 225°F. While waiting, scoop off all the cold toppings and scrape off as much of the sauces from the nachos as you can.
  2. Spread the tortilla chips evenly on an oven-safe plate small enough to fit the toaster oven and cover with aluminum foil.
  3. Place the tray of nachos in the toaster oven and bake for 10 to 15 minutes until the tortilla chips are warm and the cheese has melted.
  4. Remove them from the toaster oven and reassemble the other ingredients.
  5. Dive in.

Reheating Nachos In The Broiler – Fastest Method

Broiling is also done using a conventional oven. However, it uses direct oven heat instead of the surrounding indirect hot air in the oven, like when baking.

Broiling requires quick and direct heat at 550°F for a quick sear on the surface. It’s best for thin foods or searing and adding texture to the surface of the food.

As a result, using the broiler is ideal for reheating nachos (with caution, of course). However, you’ll need to pay careful attention to prevent the nachos from burning.

Here’s how:

  1. Preheat the broiler to 400°F. While waiting, remove the toppings from the nachos.
  2. Line a pan or baking sheet with aluminum foil. 
  3. Spread the leftover tortilla chips evenly onto the pan. Ensure the nachos are spread in a single layer to prevent burnt edges and cold centers.
  4. Sprinkle some extra cheese on top if you’d like.
  5. Place the nachos under the broiler at 550°F for three to five minutes. Watch the nachos closely to prevent them from burning.
  6. Remove the nachos from the oven and allow them to chill slightly before adding some fresh toppings and digging in.

Reheating Nachos In The Air Fryer – Best for Leftovers

The popularity surge of air fryers has still not dwindled. This convenient countertop gadget promises hot, crispy food – exactly how we want to transform our soggy and cold nachos!

Air fryers heat up exceptionally fast and cook food quickly and evenly. Because of the concentrated heat source, it is an effective way to reheat leftover nachos. In addition, it will leave you with perfectly crispy chips.

Here’s how:

  1. Preheat your air fryer to 350°F. While waiting, scoop off all the cold toppings and scrape off as much of the sauces from the nachos as you can.
  2. Lightly spray the air fryer basket using oil or nonstick cooking spray.
  3. Spread the tortilla chips evenly in the air fryer basket. Aim to achieve minimal overlap.
  4. Air fry the nachos for 3 to 4 minutes until crispy.
  5. Remove the crispy nachos from the air fryer and add your favorite fresh toppings.
  6. Serve immediately.

Note: Be careful with meat or bean toppings as the air fryer can dry them out quickly.

Reheating Nachos In The Microwave – Might Be A Soggy Mess

Each of us can shamelessly relate to falling victim to late-night munchies. So, if you’re tempted to pop your leftover nachos in the microwave, I’d like to warn you that it’s almost guaranteed to turn into a soggy mess.

Nonetheless, if you can’t resist doing it anyways, here are my top tips:

  1. Line your microwave tray with paper towels to help suck up most of the moisture. This will help achieve some desired crispiness, but it won’t be as effective as the previously-mentioned methods.
  2. Remove all the cold and fresh toppings off the tortilla chips.
  3. Lay the nachos out evenly onto a microwave-safe dish and ensure they aren’t stacked on top of one another.
  4. Put the nachos in the microwave on high. Heat the nachos in 20 to 30-second increments, testing them in between intervals until they reach the desired temperature.
  5. When ready, add your favorite garnishes and toppings and enjoy.

Note: You might get away with warming fresh and crispy nachos in the microwave, but you can’t save soggy chips. In fact, a microwave will only make matters worse.

Reheating Nachos In A Skillet – Messy But Effective

The concentrated heat of the oven, toaster oven, or broiler is the best to re-crisp your leftover nachos. However, you can also reheat the tortilla chips in a skillet on the stovetop.

Reheating nachos in a skillet requires extra care to ensure that the leftover tortilla chips crisp up instead of steaming and turning soggy.

Here’s how:

  1. Ensure you get a skillet large enough to spread the nachos thinly.
  2. Preheat a skillet to medium to high heat. High heat will work best, but you’ll need to ensure the chips don’t burn.
  3. Remove all the cold and fresh toppings from the nachos.
  4. Evenly spread the tortilla chips on the skillet and cover the nachos with aluminum foil.
  5. Place the skillet’s lid on top of the foil.
  6. Reheat the nachos for around 3 to 5 minutes, checking on them in between to ensure they aren’t burning.
  7. Turn off the heat and remove the nachos from the skillet.
  8. Reassemble the toppings and enjoy.

How To Store Nachos?

To store nachos, start by separating wet toppings from the tortilla chips as soon as possible to prevent them from becoming soggy. Then, allow the chips to reach room temperature before popping the nachos into an airtight container or freezer bag.

Next, cover the tortilla chips with a paper towel before sealing the container. This will help absorb some of the excess moisture that forms in the container.

You can freeze any extra toppings in separate containers, discard the garnishes, and use fresh toppings after reheating the nachos. Nachos can keep fresh for 3 to 4 days in the fridge.

Can You Freeze Nachos?

Freezing your assembled leftover nachos isn’t the best idea. However, you can freeze the ingredients separately and throw them together once you fancy eating them again.

Freezing tortilla chips can extend their shelf life to around two to three months. However, the texture and crispiness will start suffering after several weeks.

Ensure you store the tortilla chips in an airtight container to prevent them from becoming soft and soggy. You can also put the nachos in a Ziploc bag, removing as much air as possible (without crushing the nacho chips).

Use the chips within three months. To make your nachos, defrost the toppings or prepare fresh garnishes, add them to nacho chips, and heat the dish.

How To Reheat Nacho Cheese (Queso)?

Nacho cheese is a gooey sauce amalgamation of two or more real cheeses, chili, and seasonings that is finally emulsified.

Nacho cheese has become my new favorite. Not only do I drench my homemade nachos in it, but I find ways to incorporate it into literally everything!

Fortunately, reheating nachos cheese is more straightforward than warming your bowl of leftover nachos.

Here’s how:

  • Microwave: Using a microwave-safe bowl, pop the nacho cheese in the microwave on medium to high heat for 5 minutes. Stir the cheese sauce every minute for the first three minutes of heating and every 30 seconds for the final 2 minutes.
  • The nacho cheese will transform into a warm and fresh gooey sauce with no runny texture. In addition, the flavor will be just as good as the first time you ate it!
  • Skillet: Melt a dollop of butter in a skillet to prevent the nacho cheese from sticking. Then, heat the cheese sauce on low to medium heat. Regularly stir the cheese while allowing it to bubble for around 10 minutes.
  • Small crockpot: You can reheat the nacho cheese using a small crockpot. Set the crockpot on high to reheat the cheese quickly. Remember to stir it every few minutes. However, you can also warm the nacho cheese using a low temperature. Once again, be sure to stir regularly.

Six Straightforward Ways To Reheat Nachos

You can use any of these six reheating methods to warm your leftover nachos.

The concentrated heat of an oven, toaster oven, broiler, or air fryer is the best to re-crisp your leftover nachos. However, reheating them in a skillet also works effectively. And remember that the microwave won’t salvage soggy nachos.

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