Nacho Cheese Sauce is so simple and quick (5 ingredients and 5 minutes!). Watch our video for how to make nacho cheese at home for game day. This Homemade Nacho Cheese Recipe is better than you can buy and so easy and fool-proof. A must make for the Super Bowl, game day, Cinco de Mayo, and beyond!
This homemade nacho cheese sauce recipe is a lifesaver. It’s SO cheesy, and it only takes 5 minutes to make. Make this easy cheese dip ANY time, for parties, taco night, and more.
This easy cheese sauce is great for parties, but it’s even better for those times when you’re at home alone and need something to dip your tortilla chips in. It’s like ballpark nachos, but better!
Nacho cheese dip is so creamy and delicious, with a little hint of heat from the hot sauce. So perfect! It’s great for chips and cheese style nachos, but you can really use it on anything.
Why You’ll Love this Nacho Cheese Sauce Recipe:
- CHEESY: This hot, melty, liquidy cheese sauce is the definition of cheesy! It’s so delicious, rich, and flavorful.
- QUICK & EASY: This recipe is so easy to make. You only need 4 or 5 ingredients, and about 5 minutes to fully melt the cheese. Have it ready in minutes!
- ANY TIME DIP: It’s perfect for snacks, appetizers, parties, game day, Cinco de Mayo, Taco Night, or absolutely any time you need something quick.
I originally made it for this Cheesy Pretzel Crust Pizza, but now I’m using it for all my dipping needs. This easy Nacho Cheese Sauce recipe can be made in just 5 minutes, so it will be ready for dipping in a flash!
Homemade Nacho Cheese Recipe
I’ve always been a fan of those nachos you get at the ballpark or movie theaters. Sure, you can get nachos baked and covered with all kinds of toppings, but sometimes I’m a simple gal, who just wants to dip some tortilla chips in a bowl of hot cheese dip.
This homemade nacho cheese recipe is the perfect EASY cheese dip to make for simple nachos. Just whip it up on the stove top, and you’ve got a hot and cheesy dip ready in no time. It gets so thick and bubbly, and it’s just perfect with classic tortilla chips. Everyone LOVES this dip on game day.
- Shredded Cheese: Shredded cheese is easy to melt evenly. I recommend using sharp cheddar cheese, and pepper jack for a little bit of spice.
- Evaporated Milk: Evaporated milk is thick and creamy, which lends to the perfect texture for our cheese sauce. Note that this is UNSWEETENED condensed milk–do not use a sweetened version.
- Cornstarch: Cornstarch is used here as a thickening agent. I prefer it over flour since cornstarch simply has more thickening power.
- Hot Sauce: Use any hot sauce you like. Something classic like Frank’s works great. You can leave this out if you don’t want any heat.
How to Make Nacho Cheese
Be sure to see the recipe card below for full ingredients & instructions!
- First, combine all cheese and cornstarch in a saucepan over low heat.
- Then add in the evaporated milk and hot sauce, and whisk constantly until the cheese melts.
- Keep whisking for about 5 minutes, until the cheese sauce gets nice and thick, and a little bubbly.
- Pour in a little more evaporated milk if the sauce gets TOO thick. That will thin it out a bit.
Once you get your nacho cheese sauce to the perfect consistency, it’s ready to go! Serve it while it’s hot with some fresh tortilla chips (make your own with my homemade tortilla chips recipe).
Cheddar cheese is the best option for that classic nacho cheese flavor and it melts well. You could use monterey jack or colby instead. And the pepper jack adds a little bit more spice, which I love!
You need to make sure all ingredients are mixing and melting evenly to avoid clumping, so it’s important to whisk constantly until everything is fully combined and melted.
You can store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 2 days. To reheat, put it over low heat, add more milk, and stir until fully heated through.
As soon as the cheese starts to cool, it will harden and change texture. You can keep it over low heat and continue stirring regularly. But you may need to stir in more milk once it’s started to harden, to give it it’s creamy texture.
Nacho Cheese Sauce in under 5 Minutes
Making this easy nacho cheese sauce is a breeze. All you have to do is whisk those ingredients (you only need 5!) together in a saucepan, and you’ll have the best cheese dip ever!
It’s a mix of sharp cheddar cheese and pepper jack cheese, plus hot sauce for a little spice.
Below in the recipe card you’ll find steps as well as tips and tricks for how to make nacho cheese sauce at home. It’s one of my favorite cheesy recipes!
- You can use different types of cheese here if you prefer. Or you can leave out the pepper jack if you don’t want that hint of spice.
- You can substitute flour in place of the cornstarch if you need to, but you will likely need more of it to achieve the same result. So slowly add more in and stir until you get the desired consistency.
- If the sauce is too thick, add more evaporated milk. If it’s too thin, add more cornstarch.
- Be sure to use low heat so that you don’t burn, scorch, or curdle the cheese as it melts.
- Whisk consistently to make sure the cheese melts evenly.
- It’s best to eat this nacho cheese right away, while hot. But if you do have leftovers, you can store in the fridge for 2 days and reheat.
How can I use this cheese sauce?
There are so many ways to use this quick and easy cheese sauce! Of course it’s ideal for nachos, but that’s not where it ends.
This cheese sauce is great for more of a dipping nacho. But you can certainly pour it over tortilla chips and add more toppings to make the perfect nachos. There’s something about sliced jalapenos and black olives on top that makes a simple yet delicious snack!
You’ll find so many ways to use this, it’ll be your new go-to!
All the Queso
17+ Cheese Dip Recipes (Queso Guide)
Is it cheese dip you crave? We’ve got you covered!
This homemade nacho cheese sauce recipe is about to blow you away! Make this easy cheese dip for game day, for any party, or for a quick little snack.
More Cheese Dips We Love
- White Restaurant-Style Queso
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- Queso Fundido
- Fried Chili Cheese Dip
If you make this recipe be sure to upload a photo in the comment section below or leave a rating. Enjoy!