Skip to Content

5 Minute Nacho Cheese Sauce

You can’t go wrong with this easy homemade nacho cheese sauce recipe. This recipe is so simple that anyone can make it! Learn how to make nacho cheese in just 5 minutes with this simple method.

Easy 5 minute nacho cheese sauce recipe

5 minute nacho cheese sauce is the answer to pretty much every problem you’ve ever had.

Ok, maybe not really, but it’s definitely going to be the highlight of your meal!

Ideal served with tortilla chips, or over nachos, but I could totally get down with drizzling it over roasted vegetables or just about anything.

a chip being dipped into nacho cheese

Nacho Cheese Sauce Ingredients (No Roux)

  • heavy cream
  • colby jack cheese
  • paprika
  • garlic powder
  • chili powder
  • cornstarch

How to make nacho cheese sauce

collage image showing the ingredients being added into the pan

Step 1: add the heavy cream to a pan and warm it to medium heat, but do not boil.

Step 2: Once your heavy cream is warm, add the paprika, chili powder, garlic powder, cornstarch, and freshly grated colby jack cheese.

Stir or whisk the cheese sauce often for three to five minutes, until thick.

The longer you stir over low to medium heat, the thicker it becomes.

Using Fresh Grated Cheese

Pre shredded cheese is not the way to go for this recipe, as fresh just tastes so much better and makes a big difference in the quality of the nacho cheese sauce. 

For a super thick sauce, just leave it on the heat a little longer, watching and stirring so that it doesn’t burn.

gluten free nacho cheese

This nacho cheese recipe is similar to my  cheddar cheese sauce recipe , but made with colby jack cheese and mexican spices to create a nacho cheese flavor.

 How Do You Make a Quick Cheese Sauce? 

The answer is simply: cornstarch.

By using this as a thickener, you spend much less time and the taste is just as good!

Once I realized the cornstarch trick, I make all of my cheese sauce recipes this way!

Cornstarch is now a time saving staple in my home.

You can’t taste it, and it makes dinner time a heck of a lot easier.

How to make nacho cheese in 5 minutes

Once we first made this recipe, I had to make it three times in one week because I just could not get enough of it!

The homemade nacho cheese just takes nacho night to the next level.

It literally takes five minutes to make and tastes so good I really can’t even prepare you for the deliciousness.

Since first posting this recipe, I have made this countless times and even served it at a party.

From easy dinners to party appetizers, you really can’t go wrong with a batch of this cheesy goodness!

how to make cheese dip

It reminds me of going to a mexican restaurant and filling up on chips and cheese.

I could totally do that with this recipe!

I love this cheese sauce plain with tortilla chips, or drizzled (very) generously over whatever mexican dish we are having that night.

the best easy nacho cheese

What to eat with nacho cheese sauce

  • nachos
  • burrito bowls
  • quesadillas
  • tacos
  • burritos
  • enchiladas
 nacho cheese sauce recipe

You can’t resist how delicious this nacho cheese is.

a chip placed in the nacho cheese

What is the best cheese for nacho cheese sauce

I find colby jack perfect in this recipe, but if you wanted to use another cheese (think sharp cheddar, pepper jack, etc) you totally could.

Or, if you like spicy sauce, double the paprika in this recipe for a spicy nacho cheese or use pepper jack cheese.

I definitely plan on making a white cheese/queso blanco sauce based on this recipe in the future.

gluten free mexican cheese sauce

Here’s my favorite way to serve it: drizzled oh so generously over my 30 minute sweet potato refried bean nachos.

5 minute nacho cheese sauce recipe. Perfect for dipping, or poured over nachos! Just 6 ingredients! #nachocheesesauce #vegetarian #mexicanfood

more mexican recipes

Or check out my roundup of 26 vegetarian mexican recipes!

Are you making this recipe? I want to see! Don’t forget to tag me on instagram @buildyourbite and hashtag #buildyourbite with your recipe creations!

Be sure to pin this recipe for later and follow Build Your Bite on Pinterest for all the latest delicious recipes!

Did you make this recipe? I would love if you left a star rating below!

Yield: 6 servings

5 Minute Nacho Cheese Sauce

chip being dipped into nacho cheese

The easiest 5 minute nacho cheese sauce made with no flour or roux. You will never go back once you taste this! 

Prep Time 1 minute
Cook Time 4 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes


  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 cups freshly grated colby jack cheese
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch


  1. Heat a sauce pan on medium heat and add heavy cream
  2. Once cream begins to get warm, add cheese, paprika, chili powder, garlic powder, and corn starch
  3. Whisk until thick and creamy (around 5 minutes or less)
  4. Serve with chips, over nachos or with any mexican themed dish!

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 285Total Fat: 26gSaturated Fat: 17gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 79mgSodium: 241mgCarbohydrates: 3gFiber: 0gSugar: 1gProtein: 10g

Did you make this recipe?

Be sure to tag me on instagram @buildyourbite and hashtag #buildyourbite with your recipe creations!

 Looking for more easy recipes? Be sure to check out this copycat Papa John’s Garlic Dipping Sauce.

Sharing is caring!

a hand taking a monster cookie from a stack of cookies
Gluten Free Monster Cookies
← Read Last Post
cheese sauce drizzled over broccoli on a plate
Cheddar Cheese Sauce
Read Next Post →

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Skip to Recipe