Let’s do dinner!

20-Minute Turkey Taco Nachos I howsweeteats.com

This is, like, the easiest thing in the universe and will take you less than half an hour to throw together. And even less time than that if you can be all domestic and prepared and have some chicken or ground turkey or beef prepped ahead of time.

Look at you. Just like Martha.

So. This is one of my favorite meals. I’m sure it comes as no surprise since I love all things nacho-y, but this is so simple, so customizable, so complex in flavor but so easy at the same time. It’s so easy, I hate it.

20-Minute Turkey Taco Nachos I howsweeteats.com

And yeah. I realize this is in the same… flavor family (?) as those burritos on Monday, but who doesn’t love a super quick, delicious meal on the weeknights? Or as I still refer to them… on school nights. I didn’t want to wait another second to share. PLUS. Maybe you have some leftovers or something from that meal… and they can work here. Or vice versa. Or you can plan your week and include both of these meals a few days apart and already have all the goods.

Wow. I need to take my own advice.

20-Minute Turkey Taco Nachos I howsweeteats.com

I’ve gone on and on about how one of my go-to snacks as a kid was tortilla chips microwaved (yes, mi.cro.waved.) with shredded cheese on top. Well – who are we kidding –  it’s still a snack I sometimes nostalgically frequent. It’s just that now I add more sophisticated ingredients on top, like crumbled gorgonzola or bone suckin’ bbq sauce. But anyway, when I came home from school it was often the microwaved chips or a little quesadilla. Then I’d settle in to watch one of those wacky after school specials (please tell me you remember those) that would freak me out and make me so nervous about something that I wouldn’t be able to sleep for days.

Seriously. I can’t imagine the freaking out I’d be doing these days if I watched what is currently on television. I’d need to be either permanently sedated or locked out of most cable channels.

Occasionally though, way back when, I’d find some leftover taco meat in the fridge and add it to those makeshift nachos. So clever.

The love for that stuff stuck.

20-Minute Turkey Taco Nachos I howsweeteats.com

I know. I know. Cilantro haters, advert your eyes.

I, however, adore it… in all it’s delicious, soapy glory. In fact, I could probably just bite a few leaves off a bunch and eat them like that.

How grossed out are you right now? Heart you.

20-Minute Turkey Taco Nachos I howsweeteats.com


20-Minute Turkey Taco Nachos

Yield: serves 2-4

Total Time: 20 minutes


1/2 sweet onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 pound 94% lean ground turkey (or whatever you choose)
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/3 cup low-sodium chicken stock
1 (8 ounce) bag of your favorite tortilla chips
1 cup black beans (if canned, then drained and rinsed)
6 ounces white cheddar cheese, freshly grated

4 green onions, sliced
2 tomatoes, chopped
2 cups lettuce, shredded
1 avocado, chopped
1/2 cup freshly torn cilantro
2 tablespoons snipped chives
plain greek yogurt or sour cream for serving


Heat a large skillet over medium heat and add olive oil. Add onions and garlic, stirring well and cook for 2 minutes. Add in ground turkey, breaking up with a large wooden spoon. Cook until browned, about 6-8 minutes.

While turkey is cooking, line a baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper and spread tortilla chips out. You can also chop the tomatoes, lettuce, onions and avocado at this time. In a small bowl, combine chili powder, cumin, paprika, onion powder, cayenne, salt and pepper. Add it to the turkey and stir well (continuing to break up the pieces of turkey with the spoon) until combined, then stir in chicken stock. Toss well to combine.

Heat the broiler on your oven. Add half of the cheese over top of the chips. Evenly spread turkey over the cheese and chips, then cover with the black beans and remaining cheese. Place under the broiler for 1-2 minutes, just until cheese is melty and gooey and the chips are warm. Remove from the oven and immediately cover with tomatoes, lettuce, onions, avocado and cilantro. Serve with yogurt/sour cream and chives. (AND BEER.)

20-Minute Turkey Taco Nachos I howsweeteats.com

PS: I wrote this at 10PM and had to immediately go microwave some nachos. Not even kidding.

share:    Pin It    

113 Responses to “20-Minute Turkey Taco Nachos.”

  1. #
    natalie@thesweetslife — April 18, 2013 @ 9:30 pm

    if you’ve seen my instagrammed pics of microwaved nachos, you know i’m right there with you! of course, i go a step further and add salsa before microwaving because i adore the soggy chips that emerge drenched in melted cheese and salsa. weird, but so awesome! try it!!


  2. #
    Kristy @ Sweet Treats & More — April 18, 2013 @ 9:58 pm

    We do nachos like this almost every Sunday. LOOOOVE them. Not sure they’ve ever looked as pretty as yours though;)


  3. #
    dervla @ The Curator — April 18, 2013 @ 11:29 pm

    I love that you frequently show your recipes with a beer – i think you and i should have every meal together that way.


  4. #
    J Lynn — April 19, 2013 @ 12:18 am

    i totally microwaved me some tortilla chips with shredded cheese as well! i liked when the cheese would stick to the plate and you’d have to scrape it off to eat it! :) another favorite childhood snack: vanilla ice cream sandwiched between two Eggo waffles! delicious!!


  5. #
    Christine — April 19, 2013 @ 5:52 am

    You rock! I totally love it. Will make it these eve. Thank you so much


  6. #
    Alyssa — April 19, 2013 @ 6:49 am

    i LOVE NACHOS! Probably my biggest craving of all time :-)


  7. #
    Katie — April 19, 2013 @ 7:45 am

    Last time I made nachos I nearly burned my house down, had to call the fire department and everything, and I’ve yet to get back on the (nacho) horse. I think these would be a good way to jump back into nacho making.

    (also, huge cilantro lover. I always take a bite before I start cooking with it.)


  8. #
    Meg — April 19, 2013 @ 9:09 am

    Fast, easy, and delicious! The way I like it!!!!


  9. #
    Amanda — April 19, 2013 @ 9:18 am

    How do you transfer the nachos from the foil/parchment paper to a plate so neatly??


    • Jessica — April 19th, 2013 @ 10:01 am

      i just used my hands! i was actually also surprised they turned out in such a nice pile… haha, i really just got lucky.


  10. #
    Marcie @ Flavor the Moments — April 19, 2013 @ 10:11 am

    These look so good! The rest of my family may not get any.


  11. #
    Shea @ Dixie Chik Cooks — April 19, 2013 @ 10:12 am

    LOVE nachos! I want these now…


  12. #
    Nutmeg Nanny — April 19, 2013 @ 10:29 am

    These nachos are to die for! Wow, they look they’re topped sky high and scrumptious :)


  13. #
    betty — April 19, 2013 @ 12:36 pm

    this is the first time something has made me sick to my stomach from your blog.. and its not because of those nachos. its that terrible comment about eating cilantro straight. bleck. ughhhh makes me wanna vom. these look amazing though, dish soap included.


    • Sera — April 21st, 2013 @ 2:48 pm

      baha I thought the same ;)


  14. #
    ann @ acbcdesign — April 19, 2013 @ 1:39 pm

    I seriously L-O-V-E nachos! These look amazing – great pics! I think I know what I’m having for lunch today.


  15. #
    Larry — April 19, 2013 @ 1:50 pm

    You are literally trying to kill me with this. KILLING ME SOFTLY! omg these look so good I just want to faceplant in them right now and forget all my troubles.


  16. #
    Meagan @ Scarletta Bakes — April 19, 2013 @ 2:08 pm

    I am SUCH a serious nacho person, it’s sort of unnatural actually. These are just amazing. Pretty and loaded in all the right ways. YES.


  17. #
    Ainsley — April 19, 2013 @ 10:48 pm

    Actually did you know there’s a specific gene that either makes people not tast cilantro at all/not really minding OR despise it and think it’s the grossest thing ever


    • Courtney — April 21st, 2013 @ 1:17 am

      Wow, I didn’t know about people not being able to taste it at all? That would explain why I have no idea if I like cilantro or not. I’ve eaten countless things that visibly had cilantro on them, but I’ve never detected a flavor from it.


  18. #
    Zoya — April 20, 2013 @ 10:30 pm

    I LOVE THOSE ALMONDS TOO! I’ll be mentioning them in my Trader Joe’s post that you have now inspired me to write.


  19. #
    Nikki — April 23, 2013 @ 1:15 pm

    It’s been said, oh, about 77 times now, but I was a fellow microwaver of chips and cheese, anytime we had leftovers or I could manage to get my hands on cheese. To this day, and I’m over 30 years old, I demand either nachos or tacos weekly and could really eat them every day and be happy about it, were I not trying to accommodate my poor husband, who I don’t think has ever voluntarily consumed nachos (or tacos) in his life. The amount of complaining he does over the combination of food items that he admits are all acceptable on their own… Well, it’s like me being faced with peas or mayonnaise or fish – you know, foods that are truly disgusting.

    You have managed to make your nachos look and sound very appealing despite your use of turkey and yogurt, which may be healthier but are the foulest sorts of heresy!


  20. #
    Karen — April 29, 2013 @ 3:24 pm

    WOW! I make turkey tacos myself but your look perfect!! I love how you added avocado! I just stumbled across your blog and I must say, I lovee it! :)


  21. #
    Jenny — September 2, 2013 @ 5:22 pm

    I just wanted to say thank you for posting this recipe. I’ve made it a couple of times since you posted it and it’s become a favourite in my house. I’ve served it as nachos and as chilli with rice and we loved it. I’m sure I’ll be making it many many more times. Thanks!


  22. #
    Emily @ Life on Food — February 10, 2015 @ 5:42 am

    Printing for dinner tonight!!


  23. #
    John — February 24, 2015 @ 4:21 pm

    Absolutely amazing, thank you for sharing this recipe!



Leave a Comment

Current ye@r *