Nachos are delicious and they’re always welcome, it doesn’t have to be a game night. So, what do you do if you’ve got this big, delicious plate of nachos all set up and half of it turns into leftovers ? Can you even reheat nachos ? Will they taste the same ? Won’t they get soggy ?
We’re here to help and clear things up, because nachos are simply too good to let go to waste like that. So let’s see how we can save leftover nachos.
Can you reheat nachos ?
Yes, you can reheat leftover nachos and you need to remove as much of the toppings and sauce as you can. The best way to reheat nachos is in a preheated oven, preferably a low oven because this way you won’t burn the tortilla chips.
Once your tortilla chips are hot and at least dry (if not crispy) you can add the toppings back on and enjoy your nachos again.
Reheat nachos in the oven or toaster oven
The oven is the best place to reheat nachos, and anything else that needs to be crispy. When dealing with nachos, remember that these have layers. You need to remove as much of the sauce and toppings as you can, set those aside.
Preheat your oven to its medium-low temperature, and spread your tortilla chips on a baking sheet. The better spread the chips are, the easier they will dry and the better they will be when you re-construct the nacho platter.
Once the oven is hot, you can pop in the chips. How long you leave them in depends on how you want them and how soggy they are. If they need a lot of drying they may have to sit there for 20 minutes. If they’re mostly dry to begin with and they only need to heat through they’re fine in 6 minutes.
Read also: Tortilla Chips Substitute
Be sure to check on them every few minutes. You don’t have to pull them out, you can usually tell just by looking at them if they’re dry and crispy. In the meantime prepare the shredded cheese, toppings, and sauces.
Once they’re done, remove them from the oven, and let them cool a little before adding everything else back. This method also works with toaster ovens, the logic behind it is the same.
Reheat nachos in the air fryer
The air fryer is also a great way to reheat nachos, and how you go about it depends on what kid you’ve got. If your air fryer is just a very small convection oven, then follow the same steps we’ve discussed above.
If your air fryer looks more like a rice cooker, you’ll have to open it every few minutes to check on the tortilla chips. Just like before, you need to remove the toppings and sauce as best you can, and then pop the tortilla chips into the pre-heated air fryer.
Don’t crowd the fryer, or you’ll get very poor results. If you have to cook these in batches that’s fine, better to have room-temp crispy nachos than hot, soggy ones.
Once the tortilla chips are done, just like in a regular oven, take them out and allow them to cool a little. If you’ve made two batches be sure to mix the cooler one with the hot one, to get an even temperature.
If all else fails and you have neither an oven nor an air fryer, you can always use a skillet. All you have to do is arrange the tortilla chips (sans toppings and sauce) on the skillet and lightly toast them.
Never reheat nachos in the microwave
Reheating nachos in the microwave may sound like a good idea, and it’s indeed very easy to do. But the results are disappointing, and here’s why.
The way a microwave works is that it makes all the molecules of food shake and vibrate, and it relies on the moisture in the food to convey heat. Tortilla chips are sometimes soggy, sometimes dry, and you often get an unsavory mix of hot and soggy or cold and crispy chips.
If you leave the chips uncovered they won’t heat through properly (very little moisture) and may eventually burn at the edges. If you cover the chips you’re getting soggy tortilla chips. No one is happy here.
You’re better off getting fresh tortilla chips, at least you know those are crispy.
How do you store leftover nachos ?
The best way to store nachos is to disassemble them first. remove as much of the sauce and toppings as you can. If you don’t the chips will get soggy as they sit in the fridge. Set the toppings and sauce aside, in separate containers if you can.
The chips should be in a different container, an airtight one. Something like a plastic container will do just fine.
You can keep the machos on the chips and the sauce and toppings in the fridge, and when you reheat them the next day make sure the nachos are as dry and hot as you can get them.
Don’t keep leftover nachos more than 24 hours, even in the fridge. The texture will suffer a lot, and you’re better off getting a new round of chips.
Tips on how to build the perfect nacho platter
When you’re building your macho platter, you’re likely tempted to pile everything on there. And you’d be right, if you were to make a small platter that you had all for yourself. But the truth is, often there are other people involved and the platter is large and it’s going to sit there for a while.
This means it has ample time to get soggy and the sauce will pool at the bottom. So we’re going to walk you through the main point to follow when you’re building your nacho platter, and you can even apply these to a smaller, one-person platter.
Always heat your nachos before building
You can use nachos as they come, from the bag, but they’re only half as fun as warmed nachos. If you’ve always warmed your tortilla chips you already know how magical they are But if you haven’t seriously do yourself a favor and pop these in a low oven for 5-10 minutes.
Warm (or hot) nachos also make the melty cheese extra melty, so you’ve got some nice texture going
Layer cheese and toppings evenly
When you’re layering the platter, be sure to add fair amounts of cheese and a few toppings throughout the entire platter. If you skimp on these the bottom parts won’t really have anything nice through them.
If you’re worried about the platter getting too high, get a deeper one or simply make two platters. You usually don’t need more than 3 layer anyway.
Only put a dollop of sauce on top
The sauce is what usually kill nachos. Don’t get us wrong, the sauce/dip is half the fun in a plate of nachos. But piling it all on top will only invite it to ooze to the bottom of the plate and soak every chip along the way. That’s how you get a soggy plate of nachos.
The solution ? Only use a small amount of sauce, like a tablespoon or so on top. Decorate that with some toppings, and you’re done. The rest of the sauce should be present in a ramekin or several, so everyone can get their share.
Don’t get the thinnest tortilla chips
When it comes to structural integrity, tortilla chips are a bit lacking. You can get them too thin, so they easily break. Or you can get them too thick, so you’re eating cereals.
Your best met is to go for a mid-thickness chip, and never the very thin ones. The thin tortilla chips sound like a good idea but they’ll break under the weight of cheese, sauce, and toppings when you pick one up. And no one likes a pile of broken tortilla chips.