Nachos on the barbecue grill are a family favorite here. They are easy and super quick to make on the grill. Grilled Nachos can be dressed up or down and loaded to suit any member of your group. And, nachos can be grilled as an appetizer as your gas grill heats up or served as the main dish when fully loaded with toppings.

I first thought about making nachos on the grill many years ago when the boys were little. They were hungry, and the chicken was going to take quite a while to smoke. I saw the chips in the cabinet and thought that it might work to do them on the BBQ grill. That first batch was just chips and cheese for the little guys, and they loved them. The nacho chips only took a couple of minutes on the heated grill, so I made a couple of pans to tide them over until the chicken was grilled.

Your ingredients for Grilled Nachos are super simple:

  • Tortilla Chips
  • Cheese

Of course, grilled chips are pretty bland with just chips and cheese, so I add various toppings. Whatever you like on nachos works fine.

Some of my favorite grilled nacho toppings:

  • Ground beef or turkey seasoned with taco seasoning (cooked and grease drained off)
  • Smoked pulled pork
  • Jalapeno peppers
  • Banana peppers
  • Black olives
  • Tomatoes
  • Garlic
  • Onions

I’m sure you have other favorite toppings. Feel free to comment and share your ideas for grilled nacho toppings. I’m always looking for new ideas.

How to Get Your Barbecue Grill and Nacho Chips Ready

You first want to get your charcoal fire going and the coals down to a glow or gas up to at least low heat. It takes longer with charcoal, because you do not want to put the nacho chips on with the fire flaming.

While your grill is heating up, put together your nachos. You can buy a dark-colored grill topper which you can use over and over or the toss away aluminum pans. In either case, layer the bottom with nacho chips and then add toppings and cheese. You may want to put a few toppings on top of the cheese for visual appeal.

I have a large grill pan for family servings and loaded chips. When I tailgate, I sometimes get the small aluminum pans and let everyone build their own nacho chip appetizer. Family and friends can just rotate on the grill.

Grilling Your Nacho Chips

All grills heat at different levels, so grilling times vary. Overall, nacho chips are ready in just minutes. When the cheese is melted, the nacho chips are ready, since everything is pre-cooked. You’re really just heating and getting a quick smoke flavor in the dish.

If the grill has a lid, put the lid down to hold the heat. Listen for a cheese sizzle and check after a minute or so. An open style grill will also work. It just takes a little longer (but not much). With an open lid, you can keep an eye out and see when the cheese is melted. With this grilled dish, pay close attention and take that bathroom break before and not while your chips are on the grill. Nachos grill amazingly fast!

What are your favorite nacho toppers?



Cyndi Allison is a Grilling is Happiness sponsored writer.