The Washington Post

Hot-Cold Nacho Wreath

Hot-Cold Nacho Wreath 6.000

Goran Kosanovic for The Washington Post

Jan 30, 2017

Some folks might look at this creation from Poole's Diner chef Ashley Christensen and dub it a queso dip, but we think the melted cheese layered on the chips and the nifty chorizo-cream cheese topping make this a smart, crowd-accessible way to serve nachos.

Unless many hands will dig in immediately, we suggest mixing the shredded cheese at the center with sour cream; that will keep the melted cheese from congealing quite so fast or firmly.

To read the accompanying story, see: The perfect nachos: A step-by-step guide.

Make Ahead: The chorizo-cream cheese topping can be made and refrigerated a day or two in advance.

6 - 8

When you scale a recipe, keep in mind that cooking times and temperatures, pan sizes and seasonings may be affected, so adjust accordingly. Also, amounts listed in the directions will not reflect the changes made to ingredient amounts.

Tested size: 6-8 servings

  • 2 or 3 medium hothouse tomatoes, diced
  • 2 scallions, trimmed and cut into thin slices (white and light-green parts)
  • Juice of 1/2 lime, plus wedges for serving
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 8 ounces fresh chorizo sausage links, casings removed
  • 2 poblano chile peppers, roasted and cut into 1/4-inch dice (see NOTE)
  • 8 ounces low-fat or regular cream cheese, at room temperature (do not use nonfat)
  • 10 ounces sturdy corn tortilla chips, preferably DIY (see related recipe)
  • One 8-ounce block Monterey Jack cheese, shredded (2 cups total)
  • One 8-ounce block Colby or mild cheddar cheese, shredded (2 cups total)
  • 1 cup regular or low-fat sour cream, plus more as needed (do not use nonfat)
  • 1 to 2 cups shredded iceberg lettuce, for serving

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Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.

Toss together the tomatoes, scallions, lime juice and a small pinch of salt in a medium bowl.

Line a bowl with paper towels. Heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Once the oil shimmers, add the chorizo, in pinches; cook for 5 to 7 minutes, breaking it up with a wooden spoon, until the sausage is cooked through. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the chorizo to the lined bowl.

Discard the paper towels from under the chorizo in the bowl; add the roasted, diced poblanos and cream cheese, stirring until well incorporated.

Arrange a layer of the tortilla chips in the shape of a wreath on the lined baking sheet, forming it as wide as possible. Scatter some of each cheese over the chips. Repeat to create two more layers of chips, and using about half the cheese, total.

Combine the remaining shredded cheeses and the cup of sour cream. Spoon the mixture into the center of the wreath.

Spoon the chorizo-cream cheese topping all the way around the inner edge of the wreath. Bake for about 10 minutes or until the cheeses have melted.

Scatter the tomato-scallion mixture and the lettuce (to taste) around the wreath. Spoon a dollop of sour cream at the center. Serve right away, with lime wedges.

NOTE: Roast the peppers on a baking sheet in a 425-degree oven for about 20 minutes, until they begin to deflate and the skin looks loosened. Transfer to a zip-top bag and seal to steam for about 10 minutes, then discard the skins, stems and seeds.

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Recipe Source

Adapted from “Buenos Nachos,” by Gina Hamadey (Dovetail, 2016).

Tested by Bonnie S. Benwick.

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Nutritional Facts

Calories per serving (based on 8, using low-fat cream cheese, store-bought unsalted chips and low-fat sour cream) : 600

% Daily Values*

Total Fat: 40g 62%

Saturated Fat: 19g 95%

Cholesterol: 90mg 30%

Sodium: 730mg 30%

Total Carbohydrates: 32g 11%

Dietary Fiber: 3g 12%

Sugar: 5g

Protein: 24g

*Percent Daily Value based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Total Fat: Less than 65g

Saturated Fat: Less than 20g

Cholesterol: Less than 300mg

Sodium: Less than 2,400mg

Total Carbohydrates: 300g

Dietary Fiber: 25g

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