Kids in the Kitchen: Customized Nachos for Dinner

  • I absolutely love when my kids want to cook or help me cook. I’ve learned, though, that they get the most out of it when I let them be in charge (not easy for a somewhat controlling chef to do!). My goal for my kids in the kitchen is for them to learn about food and how to prepare it, and mostly to have fun! So I give them as much freedom as I can.  


    My eleven-year-old son loves nachos, but not just any nachos. The cheese is only the beginning for him, as he adds a small list of his favorite foods on top. When he has friends over who might not like his particular list, I let them choose their own. It’s super fun, and everyone gets exactly what they like.

    My son calls this particular customized nachos recipe Nachos 2.5—just because it sounds cool.

    Custom Nachos

    If your kids are having a sleepover, this custom nachos recipe will be a major hit.

    Prep Time:
    Servings: 1 to 2


    • salted tortilla chips: 2½ cups
    • your favorite marinara sauce: ½ cup
    • cooked bacon, crumbled: 2 strips
    • grated cheddar cheese: 1 cup
    • fresh tomato, seeded and diced: ⅓ cup
    • avocado, diced: ⅓ cup


    Step 1: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F, and add the chips to a square (approximately 8 x 8 inch) baking dish.

    nachos-tortilla chips

    Step 2: Drizzle the marinara sauce over the chips.

    tortilla chips-nachos-red-tomato sauce

    Step 3: Use the chips to incorporate the sauce. 

    tortilla chips-nachos-red-tomato sauce-hands

    Step 4: Pour the cheese on top.

    tortilla chips-nachos-red-tomato sauce-hand-cheddar cheese-red-orange

    Step 5: And then the bacon.

    tortilla chips-nachos-red-tomato sauce-bacon

    Step 6: Mix everything together and place in the preheated 375 degree F oven until the cheese melts, about 5 minutes.

    tortilla chips-nachos-red-tomato sauce-bacon-hands

    Step 7: Top with the tomatoes and avocado, and serve!

    red-green-ceramic bowl-neaches-tomatoes avocado

    *Your kids can use any chips, any sauce, and any other ingredients and toppings they like. Whatever suits them!

    More Nachos Recipes: