I sat in a corner looking around to see if anyone was judging me. Having just finished a full plate of these Chorizo and Egg Breakfast Nachos, I was feeling a wee-bit scandalous. These things are on the verge of being slutty- they’re so indulgent. I think what I wanted to feel was guilt, but that didn’t happen. After all, I have no shame when it comes to my love of food.
My guide to nachos
I make nachos at least twice a month. Usually, nachos are dinner on the nights we go grocery shopping. I have been known to drop a couple-hundred bucks on groceries, only to turn around and order a pizza on the way home. Nachos help me avoid feeling like a complete Dave Ramsey failure.
To up the “fiscally responsibility ante” even more, I make the tortilla chips, as well. Bagged tortilla chips- while they do serve a purpose- just don’t do it for me when it comes to these chorizo nachos. To be completely honest, bagged tortillas chips don’t do it for me when it comes to any nachos. As a result, I make my own tortilla chips. Home-fried tortilla chips are thicker, they taste fresher, and they hold a heavier amount of toppings than those bagged deals.
Chorizo and egg breakfast nachos are just the tip of the iceberg lettuce. LOL!! You see what I did there? There are a multitude of ways you can switch up your meat selection. Instead of the chorizo, use:
- shredded chicken
- breakfast sausage
- shredded brisket (ooooh!)
- crumbled fried bacon
Eggs are kind of a must in this dish, but most of the other ingredients are changeable. The toppings, the cheeses, the beans- all of them can be altered to suit your tastes.
Fry your tortilla chips
It’s too easy to make your own tortilla chips. Now, I will concede that it’s not as easy as ripping open a cellophane bag, but it’s still insanely simple. I use 10″ yellow corn tortillas as the base for my nachos. You can use smaller (or larger) tortillas; you can even use white or blue corn tortillas. Cut the tortillas into triangles using your chef’s knife. Just quarter the tortillas if you have anything up to-and including- a 10″ tortilla. If you’re using tortillas larger than 10″, you may need to cut them into sixths or eights. I genuinely have never seen a corn tortilla larger than 10″, but there are new things popping up everyday, so I could be wrong.
Bring a quart of vegetable oil to 350°F over medium-high heat in my frying pan. Whenever you’re frying, having an accurate thermometer is essential. No kitchen should lack one, seriously. A precise reading of your oil’s temp will not only save you time, but could save you money. Attempting to fry your tortillas before the oil is hot will cause the chips to take longer to cook, and letting them swim around in that oil (instead of frying) means they’ll come out oil-logged and soggy. On the other hand, if you have oil that’s too hot, you’re sure to burn them to a crisp even before you’ve had a chance to get them all into the oil.
It only takes 3 minutes- tops- to fry one batch of chips. Put a handful of the tortilla wedges into the oil and gently stir them around (try not to splash the oil) with a spider, or a slotted spoon. Once the cooking time has elapsed, remove the tortillas from the oil to a strainer or colander. You could also transfer them to a paper-towel lined pan.
Salt the fried chips
The reason why I prefer (and recommend) draining the fried chips in a colander set over a larger bowl is to avoid over-salting the chips. The use of a colander allows the salt you sprinkle onto each batch of chips to sift down into to the bowl underneath. If you didn’t use the colander, the salt would hang out on the paper towels and adhere to each subsequent batch of chips. Because of that, if you do prefer the paper towel-method, switch the papers towels out after every other batch to prevent your chips from being excessively salty.
Once all of the tortillas have been fried and salted you’re ready to make your chorizo and egg nachos OR you can bag the chips and save them for another day! The chips are good for 3 days once you’ve fried them. Pop them into a 350°F oven for a few minutes to bring them back to life if do you choose to store them, though.
Prepare the pico de gallo
I’ll most likely write a separate post for this pico de gallo (and the guacamole which follows) at a later date. But, since these chorizo and egg breakfast nachos are made even greater with the “boff” of them, I need to include them here. The literal translation of pico de gallo is “rooster’s beak”. I want to say the reason why it’s named so is because it’s made with jalapeños, so it tends to have a bit of bite. But, then I get to thinking, “If that’s the case, it should be called mordida de gallo,‘” and that just makes me feel like the world is a lie. Not that any of this matters as it relates to the recipe; I just try to drop seeds of knowledge wherever I roam.
For the pico de gallo you’ll need cilantro, vine-ripened tomatoes, jalapeños, garlic, red onion, fresh lime juice, and salt- to taste.
Dice the tomatoes and the red onions and add them to your mixing bowl. Thinly slice the fresh garlic and add them to the bowl, as well. Chop a 1/4 cup of cilantro leaves and throw them in!
Mince the jalapeños. These are optional; omit them if you’re not a fan.
Add the peppers and the lime juice you extracted from the limes using your citrus juicer to the bowl.
Give the whole lot a stir. Taste the pico de gallo and season, if needed, with a few pinches of salt. Cover the bowl and store the pico in the fridge for up to one week, or let it sit for at least 30 minutes before eating.
Mix the guacamole
My family and I could eat guacamole everyday with every meal. Errrr’day. The only thing that stops us from doing so is the fact that avocados cost so damned much here.
To make my guacamole, start by creating a garlic paste. There’s quite a bit of garlic in my guac, so leaving it in chunks is not recommended. After mincing the garlic cloves, add a teaspoon of salt to the pile.
Turn your knife’s blade onto its side and press and drag the blade into the minced garlic. This movement crushes the garlic and blends it with the salt to create a paste. Since this will be the only salt we’ll use to season the guac, you don’t need to stress out that it’s too much. Finely chop a tomato, and cut a 1/4 of a red onion into a small dice. Also, chop a 1/4 cup of cilantro leaves.
Finely mince the jalapeño. This is only half of a large jalapeño. If you don’t like spice, just leave it out. Juice 1 large lime and set the juice to the side.
How to pick the PERFECT avocado
Now, I don’t mean to brag, but I have NEVER picked a bad avocado. I actually pride myself on knowing how to pick them. Tip #1 is to always choose an avocado that still has its nubby stem attached to it. To me, it’s the avocado’s umbilical cord, which- without it- causes it to “die” faster. That may, or may not, be the case, but it makes me sound pretty wise either way.
Tip #2 is to gently prod the avocado. A perfect avocado should feel like it wants to give way to the pressure of your thumb, but only slightly. You want your avocado to be like I was when Héctor was trying to woo me. I’d smile at him coyly, but tell him he’d better keep his hands to himself. You want an avocado who plays hard to get. If your thumb presses into the peel easily, it’s a harlot. An avocado that doesn’t budge when you press it is going to run off and join a convent, so don’t even bother. You want a nice, wholesome avocado-next-door.
See? I told you I know how to pick ’em.
Back to making the guac
Remove the avocado’s pits after you’ve cut them in half. Scoop the flesh into your mixing bowl and mash the avocado with a fork or a potato masher. I prefer my guacamole to be chunky, so I don’t go wild with the mashing. If you want a smoother guac, go crazy.
Once the avocado is mashed to your heart’s content, add the diced tomatoes, the minced red onion and jalapeño, as well as the cilantro and the lime juice to the bowl. Stir everything together and press a piece of plastic wrap against the surface of the guacamole. Store the guac in the fridge while you prepare the chorizo and egg mixture.
If you haven’t already realized this, I’d like to comfort you by letting you know that you can totally buy your pico de gallo and guacamole already made. I’m not into making you feel bad for maintaining your sanity in the kitchen. Do I hope that one day you will attempt the scratch-made versions? Absolutely. Will I judge you if you sometimes use store-bought? Nope. I’m not built like that.
Preheat the Chips
Preheating (or toasting) the tortilla chips helps them to toughen up for the task ahead. Melting cheese on them- before adding the other toppings- creates a barrier against the wet ingredients, which tend to make the chips soggy.
Grab a sheet pan and toss your chips onto it. The general rule is: one quadrant of a half-sheet pan serves each person. This recipe could very well serve six, but my greedy family and I eat an entire half-sheet pan. Downsize to a quarter-sheet pan if you’re a smallish family. Just arrange the chips in an even layer on whichever pan works for you.
You’re going to top the unbaked chips with shredded Oaxaca cheese and, later, with cotija. Oaxaca cheese is the mozzarella of Mexico. It’s crazy gooey, squeaky when chewed, and stringy when it melts, so it’s perfect for this recipe. Pull the Oaxaca apart and sprinkle strings of it all over the chips. Put the chips into the oven and allow that Oaxaca to start melting- this should take about 10 minutes.
Make the Chorizo, Egg, and Bean mixture
This recipe is protein-upon-protein-upon-protein…and that’s even before we get to the cheese(S)!
Crack a dozen eggs into a bowl and whisk them together until no globs of egg remain. I allot 3 eggs per family member, so that’s where the dozen comes from. If you are a smaller (or larger) family- use the same ratio. Three eggs per person.
Chorizo has a casing that needs to be removed prior to sautéing. Some brands’ chorizo can be squeezed out of the casing, while others need to be cut. Whichever one your chorizo requires, just make sure you remove and discard the casing prior to cooking.
In a cast iron skillet, over medium heat, cook the chorizo until browned, taking time to break the meat up into crumbles. The chorizo cooks in about 9-10 minutes.
Once the chorizo has cooked pour the eggs into the pan. Scramble the eggs while they cook to your preferred doneness. I’m a fan of fully-cooked (non-runny) eggs, so mine usually take 8 minutes to cook.
After the eggs are firm, stir in a can of refried beans. The beans are purely optional, but they make this a breakfast that will truly satisfy you. You can use any type of refried beans, too. I’m using refried pinto beans, but refried black beans would be great in this. Once you add the beans, stir everything together until the beans are smooth.
Top the chips
No, it’s not pretty. But it’s good, so it doesn’t need to be pretty.
The chips have already been pulled from the oven, so all you need to do now is top them with the chorizo-egg-bean mixture.
Then top them with more of the Oaxaca. Return the pan to the oven to melt that cheese. That should only take about 5-6 minutes.
Go for it!
This is when I wet my pants a little in anticipation. Seriously. I got heart palpitations and everything. Once the nachos come out of the oven, top them with the pico de gallo…
…the guacamole, and copious amounts of crumbled cotija cheese. Copious, I said!
Sprinkle a handful of chopped cilantro and drizzle liberally with the crema from this recipe, or some sour cream.
Add sliced jalapeños if you’d like and a bunch of lime wedges and you’re ready to serve.
There’s nothing more satisfying on a weekend morning than pulling this sheet pan of nachos out of the oven.
Well, I mean, eating them is the only thing that’s more satisfying, actually.
Nevertheless, be sure to pin and share this recipe. It’s indulgent, to say the least.
**This post contains affiliate links. To find out what that means to you, please read my disclosure page**
Chorizo and Egg Breakfast Nachos
Make your own tortilla chips, pico de gallo and guacamole from scratch, or use store-bought toppings for a faster prep time.
Fresh Tortilla Chips
- vegetable oil, for frying
- 20 10" corn tortillas, cut in quarters
- kosher salt, to taste
Pice de Gallo
- 4 vine-ripened or roma tomatoes, diced
- 1/2 diced red onion (1 cup)
- 3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
- 1 small jalapeño, minced, optional
- 2 medium limes, juiced (about 1/4 cup)
- kosher salt, to taste
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 4 ripe Hass avocados
- 1 diced vine-ripened tomato
- 1/4 cup minced red onion
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
- 1/2 jalapeño, minced (optional)
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 1 pound Oaxaca cheese, pulled into shreds, divided
- 12 ounces chorizo, casings removed
- 12 large eggs, beaten
- 1 16 ounce can refried beans (optional)
- pico de gallo
- 2 cups crumbled cotija cheese
- chopped cilantro
- Crema Schmear, link in post (or sour cream)
- thinly sliced jalapeño peppers
- lime wedges
- Mexican hot sauce
Fry the Tortilla Chips
Heat a quart of vegetable oil to 350°F over medium-high heat in a deep frying pan.
Add a half a stack of tortilla triangles and fry for 2-3 minutes, or until the chips are golden and rise to the top of the oil's surface. Stir the chips as they fry to prevent them from sticking together.
When you remove one, it should be hard and crispy. Once the chips are finished frying, transfer them from the oil to drain in a colander set over a bowl (or to a sheet pan lined with paper towels).
Salt the chips with kosher salt.
Continue frying and salting the remaining chips this way. Once all of the tortillas have been fried and salted, set them aside or store them in a plastic bag until ready to eat.
Prepare the Pico de Gallo (optional)
In a large mixing bowl, combine the tomatoes, red onion, thinly sliced garlic, cilantro, and minced jalapeños.
Pour the lime juice into the bowl and stir the ingredients together. Taste the pico de gallo and adjust the seasoning with a pinch (or two) of salt.
Cover the bowl and refrigerate the pico for at least 30 minutes.
Make the Guacamole
Mince the garlic cloves, then add the salt to it. Turn your knife's blade onto its side and press and drag the blade through the minced garlic to form a paste.
Scoop the avocado's flesh into a mixing bowl and mash until slightly chunky.
Add the diced tomato, red onion, cilantro, jalapeño, and lime juice and stir to combine.
Press a piece of plastic wrap against the surface of the guacamole and refrigerate while you prepare the chorizo and egg mixture.
Prepare the Chorizo, Egg, and Bean Mixture
Preheat your oven to 350°F.
Arrange the tortilla chips in a single layer on a half-sheet pan and top with half of the Oaxaca cheese shreds. Put the chips into the oven for 10 minutes.
While the chips are heating, brown the chorizo in a large skillet over medium-high heat for 9-10 minutes, using a spoon to break the chorizo into crumbles.
Once the chorizo has cooked pour the beaten eggs into the pan. Scramble the eggs and cook for 8 minutes.
Add the refried beans to the skillet and stir them into the mixture until they are warmed through and smooth.
Assemble the Nachos
Remove the chips from the oven and spread the chorizo-egg mixture over them. Top the chorizo mixture with the remaining Oaxaca and return the pan to the oven to melt the cheese, about 5-6 minutes.
Remove the nachos from the oven and top them with the pico de gallo, guacamole, and the crumbled cotija cheese. Top with cilantro and drizzle with crema or sour cream.
Garnish the nachos with sliced jalapeños, lime wedges, salsa, and/or Mexican hot sauce.
Enjoy immediately after assembling.
The tortilla chips are good for 3 days after you've fried them. Warm them in a 350°F oven for a few minutes for the best taste.
Prepared pico de gallo can be stored in the refrigerator for up to one week.
The assembled nachos are best enjoyed immediately after preparation.
For convenient dining, serve the nachos on small (individual) quarter sheet pans.
Try my other Mexican favorites: