Last Updated on July 12, 2021
Today we’re going to be looking at how to make nacho cheese without flour. I’ll be delving into some recipes and looking at some of the best gluten-free nacho cheese sauces on offer.
I, for one, have always been a huge lover of nacho cheese seasoning and sauce. It makes almost anything taste better and is the perfect dipping sauce for chips. Nacho cheese sauce doesn’t contain any specific type of cheese – you can use anything you’re craving. Any cheese that can easily melt is perfect. The most popular cheeses to use in a nacho cheese sauce are:
- Cheddar – comes in a range of strengths and is definitely the most popular choice as it melts so well
- Mozzarella – it’s smooth and mild, and also extremely stringy
- American – silky and traditional
- Cream Cheese – salty, rich, and incredibly tasty
- Monterey Jack – it’s tangy, melts easily, and really adds a punch to your cheese sauce
Is Nacho Cheese Gluten-Free?
If homemade, nacho cheese sauce is extremely easy to make gluten-free. However, if buying from a grocery store, always check the label. These sauces are usually heavily processed and may contain flour, vinegar, certain spices, and other additives that are not suitable for those following a gluten-free lifestyle. Flour is often used as a thickener in sauces and we all know how good a thick nacho cheese sauce is! Which is why often shop-bought sauces will not be gluten-free.
We’ll be taking a look at recipes to make at home that are gluten-free and sauces to buy that are gluten-free.
Homemade Gluten-Free Nacho Cheese Sauce (Without Flour)
Build Your Bite’s 5 Minute Nacho Cheese Recipe, as the title suggests, is super quick and super easy! It doesn’t contain any flour at all – not even the gluten-free kind! The only ingredients used are:
- whipping cream (it’s a great thickener, great alternative to using flour – and makes it extra creamy)
- colby jack cheese (can be substituted for cheese of your choice)
- chili powder
- garlic powder
- corn starch (also a good thickener)
With a whopping 4.6 stars out of 5, this recipe is a hit. You can find the full recipe here.
Butter With a Side of Bread has another easy nacho cheese recipe for you to try at home. I tried to find recipes as simple and quick to make, as I know some of us don’t have the time to be spending hours in the kitchen. This one has very few ingredients, you’ll need:
- corn starch
- taco seasoning (check to make sure it’s gluten-free)
This recipe can even be frozen for 6-8 weeks and is rated 4.8 out of 5 stars by others who have made it. You can find the full recipe here.
Gluten-Free Nacho Cheese Sauces
If you’re looking for sauces that come ready to pop open and get dipping – I’ve rounded up some of the best! As always when shopping gluten-free, it’s best to stick to products that are certified gluten-free or at least claim to be gluten-free on the label.
While other products that don’t contain any gluten ingredients are usually okay, unless it clearly states that it is processed in a separate facility to gluten-containing products – I would maybe email the company and ask. Brands are usually more than happy to help and supply further information on any of their products. However, it is always best to check that cross-contamination isn’t a risk.
Read more about: Is BBQ Sauce Gluten-Free? Get BBQ Ready!
Rico’s is certainly worth a mention on this post. It’s labelled gluten-free and is said to taste just like movie theater nacho cheese. That’s just what we’re all really looking for, right? While this one does contain a lot of ingredients and does seem processed, none of them contain gluten (and none of them are flour!):
“cheese whey, partially hydrogenated soybean oil, modified food starch, cheese, jalapeno peppers, sodium phosphate, salt, maltodextrin, monosodium glutamate, vinegar, natural flavors, mono, and diglycerides, sodium stearoyl lactylate, color added)”
This brand comes in a range of flavors including hot and spicy, gourmet nacho, and cheddar. Although they aren’t certified gluten-free, these products are said to be safe for us to consume.
El Mexicano is one of the most popular ranges of nacho cheese sauces – and guess what? Not only are they gluten-free, but they are also certified gluten-free. This means that their sauces have been through vigorous testing by the FDA and meet all of their requirements to ensure their safety for us. In fact, all of their cheese, creams, and yogurts are certified!
The ingredients for their Nacho Cheese sauce:
“Cheese Whey, Vegetable Oil (contains one or more of the following: sunflower oil, canola oil, soybean oil), Modified Food Starch, Cheddar Cheese, contains 1% or less of the following: vinegar, Sodium Phosphate, Salt, Jalapeno Peppers, Sodium Caseinate, Natural Flavour, Monosodium Glutamate, Lactic Acid, Cellulose Gum, Annatto and Oleoresin Paprika Color, Autolyzed Yeast Extract, Mono and Diglycerides”
Again, heavily processed – but no flour in sight! And let’s face it, processed cheese really does taste better than natural cheese. Please tell me I’m not the only one?
Mrs. Renfros is easily accessible in grocery stores and although the most expensive of the three, they have some incredible flavors and ones that’ll blow your minds – literally! All of their cheeses are labelled gluten-free; let’s have a look at some of their flavors.
- Chipotle Nacho Cheese
- Ghost Pepper Nacho Cheese
- Nacho Cheese Dip
Let’s Get Dipping
To conclude, it’s very easy to make your own nacho cheese sauce without flour or to find a shop-bought variety that does not contain flour. I’d love to know of any recipes that you have or any gluten-free brands you love. Please feel free to leave any comments below. For me, there’s not much that beats dipping nachos into a cheese sauce – I know what I’ll be doing tonight!
Hi, my name’s Zoë. I’m 28 years old and live in London, UK. I work full time as a freelance writer and critic for West End theatre. Writing has been a passion of mine for as long as I can remember. I spend most of my free time at the theatre, or at conventions. I’m married to the love of my life, and live in a small apartment with my fur baby, Lillie. I run two of my own blogs: No Safer Place and Stage to Page: both of which have won awards. I also have a YouTube channel where I talk about all things stagey.