Beef Nacho Bake Recipe


Beef Nacho Bake is a hearty and delicious casserole that combines all the flavors of your favorite nachos into a convenient, baked dish. Perfect for family dinners, game nights, or potlucks, this dish layers seasoned ground beef, black beans, tomatoes, olives, and plenty of cheese over a bed of crispy tortilla chips. It’s finished with fresh green onions and cilantro for a burst of freshness. Let’s dive into this satisfying recipe that’s sure to become a household favorite.

Overview of the Recipe

Beef Nacho Bake takes the beloved components of nachos and transforms them into a baked casserole that’s easy to prepare and serve. Ground beef is cooked with taco seasoning, combined with black beans, tomatoes, and olives, then layered with tortilla chips and cheese. Baked until bubbly and golden, this dish is garnished with fresh herbs and served with sour cream and salsa.

History and Origin

The origin of nachos dates back to the 1940s in Piedras Negras, Mexico, where a chef named Ignacio “Nacho” Anaya created the dish using leftover tortillas and cheese for a quick snack. Since then, nachos have evolved, incorporating various toppings and flavors. The Beef Nacho Bake is a modern twist, combining the convenience of a casserole with the flavors of traditional nachos.


  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 packet taco seasoning mix
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1 can (15 oz) black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can (10 oz) diced tomatoes with green chilies, drained
  • 1 can (4 oz) sliced black olives, drained
  • 3 cups tortilla chips, slightly crushed
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
  • 1/4 cup sliced green onions
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • Sour cream, for serving
  • Salsa, for serving


Step 1: Preheat the Oven

  1. Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C).

Step 2: Cook the Beef

  1. In a large skillet, cook 1 pound of ground beef over medium heat until browned.
  2. Drain any excess fat from the skillet.

Step 3: Add Seasoning

  1. Stir in 1 packet of taco seasoning mix and 3/4 cup of water.
  2. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for about 5 minutes, or until the mixture thickens.

Step 4: Combine Ingredients

  1. Add 1 can of drained and rinsed black beans, 1 can of drained diced tomatoes with green chilies, and 1 can of drained sliced black olives to the skillet.
  2. Stir to combine all the ingredients evenly.

Step 5: Layer the Casserole

  1. In a 9×13-inch baking dish, layer half of the slightly crushed tortilla chips.
  2. Add half of the beef mixture on top of the chips.
  3. Sprinkle half of the shredded cheddar and Monterey Jack cheeses over the beef mixture.
  4. Repeat the layers with the remaining chips, beef mixture, and cheeses.

Step 6: Bake

  1. Bake the casserole in the preheated oven for about 20 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.

Step 7: Garnish and Serve

  1. Remove the casserole from the oven.
  2. Top with 1/4 cup of sliced green onions and 1/4 cup of chopped fresh cilantro.
  3. Serve hot with sour cream and salsa on the side.


Beef Nacho Bake is best served hot and fresh out of the oven. It’s a perfect dish for casual gatherings, family dinners, or a fun addition to a party spread. Pair it with classic sides like guacamole, extra salsa, and a simple salad to complete the meal.

Pairing and Serving Suggestions

  • Guacamole: Serve alongside fresh guacamole for an added creamy texture.
  • Mexican Rice: A side of Mexican rice complements the flavors of the casserole.
  • Fresh Salad: A light, crisp salad provides a refreshing contrast to the rich, cheesy bake.

Variations of the Recipe

  • Chicken Nacho Bake: Substitute ground beef with cooked, shredded chicken for a different protein option.
  • Vegetarian Version: Use a plant-based ground meat substitute and add extra beans and veggies for a vegetarian-friendly dish.
  • Spicy Version: Add diced jalapeños or use spicy taco seasoning to give the dish an extra kick.

Health Benefits Notes

While Beef Nacho Bake is a comforting and indulgent dish, there are ways to make it a bit healthier:

  • Lean Ground Beef: Use lean ground beef to reduce fat content.
  • Reduced-Fat Cheese: Opt for reduced-fat cheese to cut down on calories and fat.
  • Extra Veggies: Add extra vegetables such as bell peppers, corn, or zucchini to increase the nutritional value.


Q: Can I prepare this dish ahead of time?

A: Yes, you can assemble the casserole up to a day in advance. Cover and refrigerate it, then bake just before serving.

Q: Can I freeze Beef Nacho Bake?

A: Yes, you can freeze it. Allow the casserole to cool completely, then cover tightly and freeze for up to 3 months. Reheat in the oven before serving.

Q: What can I use if I don’t have taco seasoning?

A: You can make your own by combining chili powder, cumin, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, and a pinch of salt.

Q: How can I make this dish gluten-free?

A: Ensure all ingredients, especially the tortilla chips and taco seasoning, are certified gluten-free.


Beef Nacho Bake is a delightful and easy-to-make casserole that brings the flavors of nachos to your dinner table in a convenient, baked form. This versatile dish is perfect for any occasion and can be customized to suit different tastes and dietary preferences. With its layers of seasoned beef, beans, tomatoes, olives, and melted cheese, topped with fresh herbs, it’s sure to be a hit with family and friends. Enjoy creating and sharing this delicious recipe!

Leave a Comment