Nachos are a perfect food. A holy union of cheese and crunch, they're served on street corners and at trendy dining spots in equal measure across L.A. Whether eaten with kimchi, vegan cheese or more traditional toppings, they'll always be delicious — because come on, they're nachos. Here are 10 of the best nachos in the city.
Pulled pork nachos, Gus’s BBQ
The nachos served at Gus’s BBQ are not subtle. They wallop you across the face with a four-cheese sauce and two types of melted cheese (jack and smoked mozzarella), then add on barbecue baked beans and pickled jalapeños for good measure. Then comes the pulled pork, smothered in a homemade barbecue sauce. Some nachos are an appetizer. These are a full-blown meal.
808 Fair Oaks Ave., South Pasadena; (626) 799-3251, facebook.com/gussbbq.
Carne asada nachos, Mexicali Taco & Co
Mexicali Taco keeps it simple. They take tender carne asada, pile it on top of perfectly crunchy, double-fried tortilla chips and add classically melty nacho cheese sauce. Head to the restaurant’s substantial salsa bar to add salsa verde, mole or whatever else you desire. The resulting nachos are by the book — sometimes you just don’t mess with perfection.
702 N. Figueroa St., downtown; (213) 613-0416, mexicalitaco.com.
Suadero nachos, Downtown Taco Company
When the stars align, the crowds at Angel City Brewery are blessed in the form of truly great Mexican food from Downtown Taco Company. This food stand appears elsewhere across downtown occasionally, and its mobile status doesn’t keep it from churning out food in prodigious quantities. Order nachos covered in braised brisket suadero and drizzled in garlicky guacatillo sauce (as the name implies, a delicious combination of avocado and tomatillo) for the perfect mid–brewery crawl snack. These nachos are a silver bullet for drunchies, but they’re equally amazing when consumed sober.
Location varies; facebook.com/downtowntacocola.
Frito pie, HomeState
Tex-Mex is a unique breed of cuisine, responsible for delicious fusion foods like queso, chile con carne and, of course, the Frito pie. A Frito pie a popular Texas snack experience that can be found in L.A. at HomeState, where Central Texas cuisine is brought to East Hollywood. There, a Fritos bag is stuffed with chili con carne, pickled jalapeños, lettuce, pickled red onions, sour cream and cheese for a decidedly Texan spin on nachos.
4624 Hollywood Blvd., East Hollywood; (323) 906-1122, myhomestate.com.
Kimchi nachos, Komodo
Korean Mexican fusion will never cease to be amazing, and kimchi nachos are a match made in heaven. The ones at Komodo are covered in a thick layer of chicken and bacon for a dish that’s equal parts meat, cheese and spice.
235 Main St., Venice; (310) 255-6742, komodofood.com.
Roasted cauliflower nachos, Petty Cash Taqueria
Petty Cash Taqueria bills itself as semi-authentic Mexican cuisine, and the resulting food is a delicious blend of L.A. and Baja flavors. The nachos are stellar. Tortilla chips and melted jack cheese are given the L.A. treatment — blanketed in kale and and roasted rainbow cauliflower, natch — before being drizzled with crema spiked with poblano peppers. The whole dish is covered in pickled Fresno chilies for a mild, slightly sweet dose of heat.
7360 Beverly Blvd., Fairfax; (323) 933-5300, pettycashtaqueria.com.
Green Dragon “Wachos,” The Lobos Truck
For the Lobos Truck nachos, tortilla chips are eschewed in favor of waffle fries. The resulting “wachos” might be considered sacrilegious by nachos purists, but they’re undeniably delicious. Go big with the Green Dragon Wachos: crinkly waffle fries covered in sweetly spicy Green Dragon sauce, guacamole, scallions and a drizzle of ranch.
Locations vary; thelobostruck.com.
Chorizo nachos, Bar Amá
“Super Nacho Hour” might be the three greatest words we’ve ever heard. Bar Amá is Tex-Mex, so the nachos served during happy hour come lacquered in thick, gooey queso. Embrace it, and be sure to add chorizo for some textural complexity. Vegan options are available.
118 W. Fourth St., downtown; (213) 687-8002, bar-ama.com.
Filet mignon nachos, Sky’s Gourmet Tacos
Most Mexican restaurants have one plate of nachos on their menu. Sky’s offers a number of varieties, from shiitake mushroom to shrimp. The vegan nachos, lovingly made with meat and cheese substitutes, are a true example of L.A. cuisine, but carnivores can’t do better than the filet mignon nachos. If you’re willing to cough up $18 for nachos, these babies are the perfect marriage of greasy and gourmet.
5408 W. Pico Blvd., Mid-City; (323) 932-6253, skysgourmettacos.com.
Nachos, Mohawk Bend
Uber-trendy Echo Park gastropub Mohawk Bend is all about crowd-favorite comfort foods, so of course the nachos are terrific. The cheddar cheese is baked until golden brown, evenly coating each tortilla chip beneath two types of salsa, fresh guacamole and pico de gallo. Or sub in cashew crema for a vegan version at no extra charge. For the ultimate dining experience, pair with one of the 72 beers on tap.
2141 Sunset Blvd., Echo Park; (213) 483-2337, mohawk.la.