We turned to Kate McMillan, author of Fan Fare: Game-Day Recipes for Delicious Finger Foods, Drinks and More, for tips on tackling two versions of a Super Bowl party must-have, nachos.

Toppings are the stars of the nacho game, but the best piles start with good chips—like the heavenly fresh version shown here. For ultimate sophistication, finish yours off with homemade cheese sauce and replace ground meat with succulent spiced shrimp.

Illustration: Lauren Tamaki

Serves 4 to 6


  • 1 pound shrimp

  • 1 Tbsp. vegetable oil

  • 1 1/2 tsp. chili powder

  • 1/4 tsp. kosher salt

  • 1 Tbsp. lime juice

  • 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter

  • 2 Tbsp. flour

  • 2 cups whole milk

  • 2 1/2 cups shredded cheddar

  • Tortilla chips

  • 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed

  • 2 tomatoes, chopped

  • 1/4 red onion, diced

  • 1/3 cup sliced jalapeños

  • Sour cream

  • Salsa

  • Guacamole

  • Lime wedges

    Total time: 25 minutes

    In a medium bowl, toss shrimp with vegetable oil, chili powder and salt. In a large skillet over high heat, cook shrimp, stirring occasionally, until bright pink, about 4 minutes. Stir in lime juice and turn off heat. Meanwhile, in a saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. Add 2 Tbsp. flour and whisk constantly for 2 minutes. Slowly whisk in milk. When it starts to bubble, add cheddar, a handful at a time, stirring constantly. Remove sauce from heat and season to taste with salt. Arrange tortilla chips in a shallow serving dish and pour sauce over chips. Top with shrimp, beans, tomatoes, onion and jalapeños. Serve with sour cream, salsa, guacamole and lime wedges.

    Illustration: Lauren Tamaki

    Note: Short on time or energy? Open a bag of chips, sub 2 1/2 cups of store-bought rotisserie chicken chunks for the shrimp, and use shredded cheese (1 cup cheddar, 1 cup Monterey Jack) instead of sauce (broil nachos until cheese melts). Siete's grain-free tortilla chips ($5), melt-in-your-mouth salt-kissed vessels, have big fans on the O staff.

    Beer is the classic accompaniment for nachos, but wine fans will love seeing The Drop's well-balanced canned vinos ($20 for four). Nondrinkers will appreciate the touch of real fruit in Spindrift's sparkling waters ($36 for 24).

    Next Story