Nachos inspired by The Good Place (plus Naco Redemption)

Nachos inspired by The Good Place (plus Naco Redemption)

Spoiler alerts generally aren't an issue with single-camera sitcoms, but in the case of The Good Place, my video description will be understandably sparse. If you haven't already, just go watch it - if you have, join me this week as we come up with an excuse to celebrate national nacho day (which is in November for some reason)!



Homemade Tortilla Chips

  • Corn tortillas

  • 1 gallon canola oil

  • Kosher salt


  • 3 small ripe avocados

  • 1 clove fresh garlic

  • ½ small red onion, minced

  • 1 lime

  • 1 tsp toasted and freshly ground cumin

  • Kosher salt

  • Freshly ground pepper

  • ½ jalapeño , finely choped

  • 2 Tbsp cilantro, finely chopped

Pickled Jalapeños

  • 8 jalapeños

  • 2 cups white vinegar

  • 2 cups water

  • 4 smashed garlic cloves

  • 3 Tbsp kosher salt 

  • ½ cup plain white sugar

Taco Beef

  • 1 lb ground beef

  • ½ onion, finely chopped

  • ½ cup chicken stock

  • Kosher salt

  • Freshly ground pepper

Taco Seasoning

  • 1 ½ Tbsp chili powder

  • ½ tsp ground cumin

  • ½ tsp ground coriander

  • ½ tsp ground garlic

  • ½ tsp dried oregano

  • ¼ tsp cayenne pepper


  • 2 lbs sharp cheddar cheese, grated

  • 2 lbs pepper jack cheese, grated

  • 2 Tbsp butter

  • 2 Tbsp flour

  • 1 ½ cups cold milk

  • 8 ounces sharp cheddar cheese

  • ½ can Rotel tomatoes and chiles

The Nachos

  • Homemade tortilla chips

  • Hand-shredded cheese

  • Taco beef

  • Homemade queso 

  • Black beans 

  • Chopped white onion

  • Chopped tomato

  • Homemade pickled jalapeños

  • Homemade guacamole

  • Sour cream

The Naco Redemption

  • 8 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, grated

  • 1 Tbsp corn starch

  • 1 cup evaporated milk

  • ½ cup pickled jalapeno brine

  • Tortilla chips

  • Tortilla

  • Taco beef


Homemade Tortilla Chips

  1. Carefully cut the corn tortillas into tortilla chip shapes. 

  2. Dry the tortillas in a 200°F oven for about 10 minutes. After 5 minutes has passed, take the tortillas out of the oven and flip each tortilla for maximum dryness. Alternatively, let the tortillas sit out out overnight until they are thoroughly stale. 

  3. Once dry, place the chips into one gallon of canola oil at 350°F on the stovetop for 1 to 2 minutes. The chips will continue to darken after cooking. While the chips are still hot, season them with kosher salt. Repeat this step with the remaining tortillas. Then, drain the chips on paper towel lined baking sheets.


  1. In a medium bowl, combine 3 small ripe avocados, 1 clove of crushed garlic, ½ of a small minced red onion, the juice from 1 lime, 1 teaspoon of toasted and freshly ground cumin, a pinch of kosher salt, a few twists of freshly ground pepper, ½ of a finely chopped jalapeño, and 2 finely chopped tablespoons of cilantro.  

  2. Using a fork, mash the combination together until it is relatively smooth. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and cover with plastic wrap, making sure to press it down directly onto the surface to prevent browning. Place in the refrigerator for later.

Pickled Jalapeños

  1. Cut 8 jalapeños into thick slices. For a quick pickling brine, into a medium saucepan, combine 2 cups of plain white vinegar, 2 cups of water, 4 smashed cloves of garlic, 3 tablespoons of kosher salt, and ¼ cup of plain white sugar. 

  2. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat and whisk until the sugar and salt are dissolved. Add the jalapeños, turn off the stove, and give the mix a stir. If you happen to see any garlic cloves that have turned blue, don’t fret because it is totally normal. Set aside and allow the jalapeños to cool.

Taco Beef

  1. In a sauté pan, brown 1 pound of ground beef until it is barely pink in the center. Let the fat pool on one side of the pan and add ½ of a small finely chopped onion into the fat. Sweat the onions for about 2 minutes prior to tossing with the beef and seasoning it (see seasoning method below). 

  2. Allow the spices to mix for about 1 minute before pouring in ½ cup of chicken stock. Season generously with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper. Let it reduce for another 2 to 3 minutes until it is thick.

Taco Seasoning

  1. On top of the beef, add 1 ½ tablespoons of chili powder, ½ teaspoon of ground cumin, ½ teaspoon of ground coriander, ½ teaspoon of ground garlic, ½ teaspoon of dried oregano, and ¼ teaspoon of cayenne pepper.


  1. In a large bowl, hand shred 2 pounds of sharp cheddar cheese and 2 pounds of pepper jack cheese. Avoid using pre shredded cheese because it will prevent maximum melting.

  2. To make a roux, in a large saucepan on low-medium heat, add 2 tablespoons of butter and 2 tablespoons of flour once the butter is foamy. Whisk and cook together for about 1 minute before slowly starting to stream in 1-1 ½ cups of cold milk to prevent lumps.  

  3. Once it has cooked for about 2 minutes and it is a thick consistency, add 8 ounces of sharp cheddar cheese and whisk until melted. Drain a can of Rotel tomatoes and chilies and then add ½ of the can to the mixture for some color as well as a nice kick. Season generously with kosher salt and make sure the mixture is melted and smooth.

The Nachos

  1. On top of the first layer of chips, add a generous sprinkling of your hand-shredded cheeses, a cautious sprinkling of your taco meat, and a drizzle of your queso. Then, add a sprinkling of black beans, chopped white onion, chopped tomato, and a few of your homemade pickled jalapeños. Repeat this step three times on top of each layer of chips. 

  2. Place your plate of nachos onto a rimmed baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes at 350°F. Once 20 minutes has passed, top everything off with sour cream and your homemade guacamole. 

The Naco Redemption

  1. In a separate bowl, combine 8 ounces of hand-shredded sharp cheddar cheese with 1 tablespoon of corn starch.

  2. Then, to a small saucepan, add 1 cup of evaporated milk and ½ cup of pickled jalapeño brine. Stir constantly over medium heat until the cheese is melted and starts to resemble a thick nacho cheese. It may look a bit lumpy at first, but just keep stirring and it will eventually smooth out. Note that the cheese will coagulate quickly, so move as fast as possible.

  3. Place a few broken tortilla chips on top of a tortilla. Cover the broken chips with cheese sauce, taco beef, and more cheese sauce.

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