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Not Your Regular Nachos: Crab Nachos


What do you get when you combine crispy, salty chips with spicy, melty cheese and fresh, flaky crab? Some amazingly delicious nachos! Between the newly-picked crab, the homemade pico de gallo, and the pepper-jack béchamel, these nachos are more gourmet than ghetto — who said Mexican food can't be high end?

The recipe calls for blue corn tortilla chips, but any tortilla chip would work. I used frozen corn — make sure it's thawed, you don't want soggy nachos — because fresh isn't in season. These nachos were incredibly tasty and I'm definitely making them again. To look at the recipe, read more.

Crab Nachos

Crab Nachos

Crab Nachos

Ingredients

4 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups milk
1 small can chopped green chiles, drained
1 1/2 cups grated Pepper Jack
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 (9-ounce) bag blue corn tortilla chips (8 to 10 cups)
1 pound lump crabmeat
1 cup cooked fresh corn kernels, from about 2 small ears of corn
2 cups grated cheddar
1/4 cup green onions, finely sliced
3/4 cup sour cream, for garnishing
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves, for garnishing
Pico de gallo, for serving, recipe follows

Directions

  1. In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium-high heat and whisk in the flour. Cook, stirring constantly, for 2 to 3 minutes. Do not allow the flour to color.

  2. While whisking constantly, add the milk in a steady stream. Add the green chiles and bring the sauce to a boil. Cook, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes, or until the sauce is thickened and bubbly.
  3. Add the pepper jack, salt, and cayenne pepper and stir until the cheese is melted and the sauce is smooth. Cover and remove from the heat.
  4. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
  5. In a large, ovenproof shallow casserole or on a large baking sheet, spread half of the tortilla chips in an even layer. Top with half of the crabmeat, half of the corn, and half of the cheddar cheese.

  6. Top with the remaining tortilla chips, crabmeat, and corn.
  7. Pour the hot cheese sauce over the crab and corn, then evenly spread the remaining grated cheddar over the top.
  8. Bake until the cheese is melted and bubbly and the nachos are heated through, 8 to 10 minutes. Garnish with the sliced green onions, sour cream, and cilantro. Serve with the pico de gallo alongside.

Serves 6.

Pico de Gallo:


3 ripe plum tomatoes (about 3/4 pound) or 1(14-ounce) can whole tomatoes, drained
1/4 cup chopped yellow onion
2 tablespoons minced cilantro leaves
1 jalapeno pepper, stem and seeds removed, finely chopped
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon red hot sauce (recommended: Emeril's Hot Sauce)
2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
1 clove garlic, minced

  1. In the bowl of a food processor, combine all ingredients and pulse until the salsa is of uniform consistency but still slightly chunky, about 7 pulses.
  2. Transfer to a bowl and set aside until ready to serve the nachos.

Makes about 1 cup.

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