As much as I try to keep the processed foods in our house to a minimum, somehow Grace manages to bring more in than I care to admit. It’s not that I’m a food snob or anything, it’s just I have seen first hand what a diet high in processed foods can do to a person. It affects your weight, your health, and your physical energy and ability. That is why I have made it my life’s work (or at least in part) to make as many of the processed foods that the family might crave at home in a healthier, more economical way.
Grace loves Chili Con Queso and bought many a jar of it from our local grocery stores — that is, until I started making this quick and easy “real” nacho cheese sauce.
Obviously using a processed cheese like Velveeta was an option, however that would only be reinventing the processed wheel. A “Real” Nacho Cheese Sauce was the goal, so hand-shredded, real cheese was the only choice. Note I said “hand shredded.” This is because store-bought shredded cheese contains additives that cause your sauce to coagulate. Real cheese doesn’t do that on its own, so if you want it as unprocessed as possible, go that extra mile and shred it yourself.
Quick & Easy Real Nacho Cheese Sauce
- 2 Tbsp. Unsalted Butter
- 2 Tbsp. All-Purpose Flour
- ½ Cup Whole Milk
- ½ Cup Half & Half
- ¼ tsp. Garlic Powder
- ¼ tsp. Onion Powder
- ¼ tsp. Smoked Paprika
- 1 – 4 oz. Can Diced Jalapenos
- 2 Cups Shredded Cheddar Cheese (Mild to Sharp, whatever your preference)
- 1 Cup Colby Cheese
- Kosher Salt and Freshly Ground Pepper to taste
- Melt butter in saucepan over medium heat.
- Whisk in flour until lightly browned.
- Slowly whisk in milk. Cook 1-2 minutes.
- Stir in half and half, garlic powder, onion powder, and paprika.
- Cook, stirring constantly, until slightly thickened.
- Stir in jalapenos and cheeses. Cook 1 – 2 minutes until cheese is melted.
- If mixture is too thick, add more milk.
- Season with salt & pepper.
- Keep warm in small crock pot or serve immediately.
What I like best about this sauce is how quick it comes together. The fact that it is made with ‘real’ cheese rather than processed Velveeta-type cheese is an added bonus.
Serve with chips or as a topping for any Mexican meal — it’s awesome on Nacho Towers (recipe coming soon)!
Not only does this cheese satisfy the families craving for nacho cheese sauce with tortilla chips, but it is an excellent addition to any Mexican dish — and for this I am — Simply Grateful.