Having kids is great for a lot of reasons, but one of the little-discussed perks of being a parent is having an excuse to eat tater tots on a regular basis. Show me an adult who doesn’t admit a fondness for tater tots, and I’ll show you a liar.
There was a time, years ago, when I would just make tater tots for the kids while cooking a separate, more respectable side dish for my husband and myself. We’d consume our baked potatoes or rice pilaf in sad silence while praying that the girls wouldn’t finish all of the tater tots on their plates so we could score some. (That never happened, by the way).
We’ve since gotten over ourselves, and now fully admit to loving tater tots just as much as the kids do. On tater tot night, I make a big ol’ tray full of tater tots for the whole family, and I have no qualms about fighting a 7-year-old for the last one.
Tater tots are delicious on their own, but over the summer I had a tater tot experience that elevated them from kid fare to delicacy. At Irv’s pub in Hershey, PA we had tater tot nachos. The term nachos was a little misleading because they tasted more like jalapeno poppers to me. The tots were covered in a blend of cheddar cheese and sour cream, and topped with pickled jalapenos. They were so good and so simple that I knew I’d need to re-create them for my blog. Thankfully, it was just as easy as I thought it would be.
Here’s how to make them…
Bake a sheet pan full of frozen tater tots according to package instructions. Once they are fully cooked, remove the pan from the oven. Sprinkle shredded cheddar cheese generously over the tater tots, and put them back into the oven until the cheese has melted.
Scrape the cooked tater tots and melty cheese mixture into a bowl and add several dollops of sour cream and a large handful of drained, pickled jalapenos. Gently stir to combine and serve immediately.
Tip #1: Make sure you cook the tater tots right before you plan to serve them, and cook them until they’re really nice and crisp so that the sour cream doesn’t make them soggy.
Tip #2: Make sure you have a good tot-to-jalapeno ratio. You want to get cheese, sour cream and jalapeno in each bite to give it that great popper taste.
This is a perfect football-watching food, and it’s easy to throw together at the last minute…my favorite kind of appetizer! I’m pretty sure anyone you make these for will love you forever.
Tater Tot Nacho Recipe (Jalapeno Popper Style)
- 32 oz frozen tater tots
- 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1/2 cup pickled jalapenos
- Cook tater tots on sheet pan according to package instructions.
- After the tots are fully cooked, remove pan from the oven and sprinkle shredded cheese over the top of the tots.
- Return pan to oven for several minutes, until cheese is melted.
- Put the cheesy tater tots into a bowl and add dollops of sour cream, and a handful of drained pickled jalapenos.
- Gently stir to combine, and serve immediately.