Last updated on May 25th, 2021 at 05:29 pm
What’s better than a hot plate of cheesy nachos? A hot plate of smoky, cheesy nachos cooked on and enjoyed by the campfire. Follow our simple nacho recipe below to make your own!
Campfire cooking isn’t just limited to hotdogs and marshmallows — with the help of a few simple cooking tools, you can make more complex dishes without any hassle.
We invested in a campfire Dutch oven a few years ago, and it was one of the best additions to our camping trips. You can make campfire enchiladas, pizza, and even bake bread over the campfire.
Today, we’re sharing our recipe for ooey, gooey, campfire nachos that are ready from start to finish in 20 minutes flat. We added a Monterey Jack cheese blend, black olives, green onions, and jalapeños for a spicy kick. You can easily adjust this recipe to include all of your favorite nacho toppings!
Keep reading, and follow our simple recipe to take your next backyard barbeque or camping feast to the next level!
The Best Tools For Campfire Cooking
Campfire cooking is relatively simple, but it requires a few unique tools you may not already own.
Here’s our campfire cooking checklist to make these tasty nachos:
- Cast-iron Dutch oven or a cast-iron skillet with a lid or aluminum foil to cover
- Heavy-duty campfire grill grate
- Heavy-duty BBQ gloves
- Log grabber
- Long-handled metal tongs
- Plenty of napkins for messy hands
If you use a lidded campfire Dutch oven, you can place it directly in the fire or over the grate, and place coals or embers directly under the oven and on top of the lid for even heating. If you’re using a cast-iron skillet instead, you’ll want to use a grate instead of placing the skillet directly into the fire.
Always wear heavy-duty barbeque gloves when cooking over the campfire at high heat, and use long-handled tongs to remove the nachos from the Dutch oven and put them on your serving plates. Though the nachos look beautiful in the Dutch oven, it’s not a great idea to serve them straight out of the pot — the cast-iron will be far too hot to reach in and grab some chips with your hands.
Why Nachos Are Great for Camping
This simple recipe isn’t exactly traditional campfire food, but nachos make the perfect camping snack!
They’re easy to build, don’t require complicated ingredients, and make an easy meal to share among a group. You can chop your nacho toppings yourself or buy pre-sliced olives, grated cheese blends, and sliced, pickled jalapeños if you want to skip the prep-work. Because you can endlessly customize nachos, it’s a convenient way to use up any leftovers kicking around in your camping cooler.
You can serve them as appetizers, or add some cooked chicken, seasoned ground beef, or refried beans for protein to make this recipe an entree suited for two!
The Ultimate Nacho-Building Secret: Layers!
You may notice our recipe piles several layers of chips, cheese, and toppings on top of each other. While layering isn’t necessary, they’re way better that way!
Without layering, the top tortillas end up loaded with almost too many toppings, and you’ll have half a plate of bare chips to finish at the end. Layer your nacho recipe to get the perfect balance of cheese and toppings throughout the entire dish.
How to Make Campfire Nachos
These campfire nachos are delicous, and they’re easy to make. You can try our homemade tortilla chips in place of store-bought chips for an even better taste!
- 1 large bag of tortilla chips or use our homemade tortilla chips
- ½ c. black olives pitted and sliced
- ¼ c. green onions sliced
- 2 c. Monterey Jack or another shredded cheese blend
- 2 jalapeños seeds removed and sliced
- Fresh cilantro to garnish
- Salsa, sour cream, and avocado or guacamole, to serve
Build your campfire, placing a steel grate above the coals.
Layer 1/3 of your tortilla chips on the bottom of a medium-sized cast-iron skillet or camping Dutch oven.
Add 1/3 of the cheese blend, 1/2 of the olives, and 1/2 of the green onions on top of the chips.
Build another chip layer with 1/3 of the tortilla chips and 1/3 of the cheese blend.
Build your final layer with the remaining chips, cheese, olives, and green onion. Sprinkle the sliced jalapeños on top.
Cover your Dutch oven with its lid, or the skillet loosely with a sheet of aluminum foil.
Place the Dutch oven on the fire or grill over medium heat. Cook the nachos covered until the cheese is melted, 10-15 minutes.
Remove the Dutch oven from the heat, add fresh cilantro as a garnish, and serve with salsa, guacamole, and sour cream.
Final Notes on Campfire Nachos
Once you get started cooking in cast iron over the campfire, the fun doesn’t have to stop at nachos. Experiment making campfire chili, apple cobbler, pizza, breakfast hash, and banana bread in a cast-iron Dutch oven!
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