Irish Nachos with Corned Beef

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Easy Irish nachos made with potato chips and corned beef deli meat is the perfect pub appetizer to serve for St. Patrick's Day. You can have a hot pan of nachos ready to serve in 15 minutes.

A pan of Irish nachos made with potato chips and corned beef.

Irish nachos are a playful twist on traditional Mexican nachos made with tortilla chips. The Irish version starts with a potato chip base and uses Irish corned beef on top.

Are Irish nachos authentically Irish? I would definitely say that this is a tongue-in-cheek American invention BUT when we spent 7 days in Ireland last year, my daughter actually ordered Irish nachos at an Irish pub and thought it was one of the most delicious things she ate the whole trip.

Authentic or not, this is a perfect recipe just in time for St. Patrick's Day dinner.

Why This is the Best Recipe

I love making baked nachos at home but I think this is the best Irish nachos recipe because:

  1. Fun Irish Spin: Instead of using tortilla chips, I love the fun twist of a bag of kettle cooked potato chips for the nacho base. Chopped up deli meat corned beef adds such a unique flavor with no extra work.
  2. Awesome Texture: The crunchy kettle chips taste amazing once warmed through in the oven. They are thick and hearty enough to hold up to lots of toppings.
  3. Easy Toppings: Delicious nachos are all about the toppings, using easy prepped ingredients cuts the time down to practically nothing!


The ingredients to make Irish nachos are on the counter.

To make my easy Irish nachos, all you need is:

  • Kettle Cooked Potato Chips: These are thicker than regular potato chips and will hold up better to lots of toppings. I used salted chips but you could use salt and vinegar or salt and black pepper flavored chips, too.
  • Deli Corned Beef: If you happen to have leftover corned beef from your St. Patrick's day meal, you could use that but I just took the shortcut and bought deli meat and chopped it up. It was perfectly tender and delicious.
  • Swiss Cheese: I shredded a brick of Swiss cheese because it melts so much better than pre-shredded bags of cheese. You could take that shortcut if you wanted though.
  • Sour Cream
  • Pico de Gallo: This diced tomato, onion, and cilantro mix is chunkier than salsa. I bought a prepared tub from the grocery store because it will help keep the nachos crispy without the added moisture salsa brings.
  • Green Onions

Prep the Nachos

Place the top rack in your oven 6 inches from the broiler and then pre-heat the broiler.

Set out a large baking sheet and spread the potato chips in an even layer like this:

The kettle chips have been spread in an even layer on a large baking sheet.

I ran my brick of Swiss cheese through a food processor to shred it but I do also have a box grater I use to shred cheese, too.

I think hand-shredded cheese just melts so much better on nachos because it doesn't have the anti-caking coating on it like a bag of pre-shredded cheese does.

The swiss cheese has been shredded in a food processor.

Spread about 2/3 of the Swiss cheese over the potato chips.

Sprinkle the chopped corned beef evenly over the top.

Then sprinkle the remaining 1/3 cheese over the top of that. This helps "glue" the corned beef onto the nachos but still allows it to peek through for color.

The potato chips have been covered in swiss cheese and corned beef.

Baking Instructions

Place the pan of Irish nachos under the broiler and cook for 3 - 4 minutes. Keep a close eye on it because they can burn quickly.

Just cook them long enough for the cheese to melt completely and the chips to warm through.

The pan of nachos is on the counter fresh from the oven.

Irish Nacho Toppings

Serve the baked potato chip nachos with dollops of sour cream, a sprinkle of the pico de gallo, and more chopped green onions over the top.

There are several other fun toppings you could choose from if you wanted to play around with some easy variations:

  • Thousand Island Dressing: Instead of sour cream, drizzle this over the top.
  • Sauerkraut: This vinegary ingredient would make the nachos taste very reuben-like.
  • Pickled or Fresh Jalapenos: For a spicy kick.
  • Bacon: Crumbled peppered bacon would taste great with the corned beef, too.
  • Fresh Chives: For a less onion-y taste, a sprinkle of fresh chives would be a great alternative to the green onions.
  • Fresh Cilantro: If you want to use a jarred salsa, a sprinkle of fresh cilantro is a great alternative to the fresh pico.

Prep Ahead Tips

Nachos always taste the best fresh from the oven when they are crispy and warm.

However, you can save time if you prep ahead a few of the ingredients:

  1. Chop the Corned Beef: Keep it stored in an airtight container in the fridge.
  2. Shred the Swiss Cheese: Shred your own cheese and store it in an airtight container in the fridge.
  3. Chop the Green Onions: Pre-chop the onions and store them in an airtight container.

With these tasks out of the way, it will take you 5 minutes to assemble and bake the nachos before serving!

Serving Suggestions

The pan of Irish nachos has been topped with sour cream, pico de gallo and green onions.

It is a great idea to serve these easy Irish nachos as a St. Patrick's Day appetizer before a simple dinner like Irish potato soup or as a movie snack while you watch one of these romantic Irish movies.

They would also be a fun football party appetizer if you're looking for something a little different to take to the potluck party.

More Irish Recipes

Looking for more delicious Irish recipes? You'll find them all in my St. Patrick's Day index but here are a few of my recent favorites:

📖 Recipe

A pan of Irish nachos made with potato chips and corned beef.

Irish Nachos

5 from 2 votes
Better than pub food! These Irish nachos start with kettle cooked potato chips and are topped with melty Swiss cheese and tender corned beef. Serve with a dollop of sour cream and pico de gallo for a delicious appetizer for St. Patrick's Day or a football party.
TOTAL TIME 13 minutes
PREP TIME 10 minutes
COOK TIME 3 minutes
YIELD 12 servings


  • 1 (13 oz) bag of kettle cooked potato chips
  • 1 (14 oz) brick Swiss cheese shredded, or 2 cups pre-shredded Swiss cheese
  • 5 - 6 slices deli corned beef chopped
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1/3 cup pico de gallo
  • 3 - 4 green onions chopped


  • Preheat the oven broiler with the top rack about 6 inches from the heating element.
  • Set out a large baking sheet and spread the potato chips in an even layer.
  • Sprinkle about 2/3 of the shredded Swiss cheese over the potato chips.
  • Sprinkle the chopped corned beef over the top. Then sprinkle with the remaining 1/3 of cheese.
  • Broil the nachos for 3 - 4 minutes or until the cheese has melted and the chips are warmed through. Be careful, nachos can burn quickly under a broiler so don't leave them unattended.
  • Serve the warm Irish nachos topped with dollops of sour cream, pico de gallo, and green onions over the top.

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The photo collage shows the finished nachos with toppings next to a photo of the potato chips on the baking pan about to be topped.

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