These BBQ chicken nachos have two layers of crispy tortilla chips, fresh veggies, pulled chicken thighs, and a beaucoup of cheese. The recipe makes a huge batch that would be perfect for a game day or shindig. Or you could scale things down and have one of my favorite past times, a nachos-for-one party.
I’ve been coming up with ways to use a big batch of our new Instant Pot BBQ Pulled Chicken and Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken Thighs recipes like sandwiches, pizzas, casseroles, and more. While searching for inspiration, I stumbled across a recipe for loaded BBQ chicken nachos from Tasty and immediately got cooking. I’ll teach you how to make my BBQ pulled chicken below, but you could also check out their recipe for another chicken option!
Step 1: Make the pulled BBQ chicken.
I’ll start by saying, you can use any chicken you like for these BBQ chicken nachos. You could even use something like my BBQ pulled pork tenderloin. But if you want to have your world rocked, go with my pulled chicken thighs.
I’ve included a how-to video below, and here’s a quick list of everything you’ll need:
- 2 pounds of chicken thighs or chicken breast
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil
- 2 teaspoons of smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon of garlic powder, cumin, kosher salt, dry mustard, and chili powder
- 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper
- 1 tablespoon of brown sugar
- 1/2 cup of your favorite BBQ sauce
And that’s it for the chicken. The rest of your BBQ chicken nachos assembly is simple!
Step 2: Cook 4 slices of center cut bacon.
I used a 12″ cast iron skillet to make these shredded chicken nachos, but you could cook the bacon in any skillet and use a baking sheet instead. If you go with cast iron, be sure to wipe the excess bacon grease out before assembling the rest of your nachos.
And you didn’t hear this from me, but you could totally use precooked bacon and skip this step.
Step 3: Place a layer of tortilla chips in a large skillet or baking sheet and top with red onion strips, diced tomatoes, parsley, bacon pieces, BBQ pulled chicken, and shredded cheese.
As always, veggies are optional but highly recommended. Aside from that, you could make your BBQ chicken nachos a bit healthier by baking your own tortilla chips. This is the method I used for my pulled pork nachos.
My low calorie tortilla chips call for cutting extra thin corn tortillas into triangles, hitting with a little cooking spray, and baking at 400ºF for 6-8 minutes directly on a baking sheet. You’ll need to make a larger batch, which will extend the cook time.
Reducing the amount of cheese, bacon, and going with a single layer of nachos are all additional ways to reduce the calorie count of your pulled chicken nachos.
Don’t sweat perfection when layering your ingredients. Nachos are perfectly imperfect, after all.
Step 4: Repeat for a second layer and bake at 400ºF for 12-15 minutes.
I won’t judge you for adding extra cheese on top.
The original chicken nachos from Tasty call for diced avocado and sour cream, but I went with a simple fat free Greek yogurt drizzle. Serving with a drizzle of fresh BBQ sauce is also recommended. Whatever you do, get it on quick and get the nachos on your plate. These things are heavenly straight from the oven.
Speaking of oven, what about air frying? You know I love an air fryer!
How to Make These BBQ Chicken Nachos in an Air Fryer
I made a picky eater friendly version with 2 ounces of tortilla chips, 2 ounces of shredded cheese, and around 5-6 ounces of pulled chicken. Then 350ºF for 5-6 minutes in the air fryer did the trick.
That’s a wrap. If you have any recipe questions I haven’t covered, feel free to drop a comment at the bottom of this post. Otherwise, enjoy your BBQ chicken nachos! And if you’re looking for more ways to use this chicken, check out my BBQ chicken sliders and BBQ chicken stuffed sweet potatoes next.
- 12 oz Pulled BBQ Chicken*
- 6 oz Tortilla Chips
- 4 slices Cooked Center Cut Bacon or Precooked Bacon, crumbled
- 1-2 Tomatoes, diced
- 1/2 Red Onion, cut into thin strips
- 2 handfuls Parsley, roughly chopped
- 6 oz Shredded Cheese
- Preheat an oven to 400ºF and cook the bacon in a 12" cast iron skillet, wiping away any excess bacon grease after cooking. (You can also cook the bacon in any skillet and assemble the nachos on a sheet pan.)
- Place 3-4 ounces of chips on the bottom of the skillet. Top with roughly half the cooked bacon pieces, diced tomato, red onion, parsley, cheese, and chicken.
- Add a second layer of chips and the remaining ingredients on top.
- Bake for 12-15 minutes. Serve with a drizzle of fat free Greek yogurt, sour cream, and/or BBQ sauce.
*The recipe for my pulled BBQ chicken is in the post above. Though you can use other cooked BBQ shredded chicken options for your nachos.
Each serving of BBQ chicken nachos has 7 WW SmartPoints (blue).
Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Servings Serving Size: 1 Serving
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 255Total Fat: 16gCarbohydrates: 11gProtein: 16g