Chips in Salsa

In this best possible version of flavored tortilla chips, Traci Des Jardins tosses the just-fried chips with homemade salsa, then sprinkles them with a little Mexican Cotija cheese. Slideshow: More Great Salsa Recipes 

Chips in Salsa recipe
Photo: © Lucas Allen
Active Time:
30 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs


  • 1/2 pound plum tomatoes

  • 1/2 pound tomatillos, husked and rinsed

  • 1 medium white onion—half sliced crosswise 1/2 inch thick, the rest finely chopped for garnish

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil, plus more for frying

  • 6 dried árbol chiles

  • 2 garlic cloves, halved

  • Kosher salt

  • 12 corn tortillas, each cut into 6 wedges, or one 1-pound bag sturdy, restaurant-style tortilla chips

  • 1/4 pound Cotija cheese, shredded

  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro


  1. To make the salsa, light a grill or preheat a grill pan. Grill the tomatoes, tomatillos and onion slices over moderately high heat, turning, until charred in spots, 10 minutes.

  2. In a medium saucepan, heat the 1 tablespoon of oil. Add the árbol chiles and garlic and cook over moderately low heat until lightly browned, about 2 minutes. Add the grilled tomatoes, tomatillos and onion and 1 1/2 cups of water. Simmer over moderately low heat until the onion is softened, about 30 minutes. Transfer to a blender and puree until smooth. Strain the salsa through a medium-mesh strainer; season with salt.

  3. In a large saucepan, heat 2 inches of oil to 375°. Working in batches, fry the tortillas, turning occasionally, until golden and crisp. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the chips to a paper towel–lined plate to drain.

  4. In a large bowl, toss the warm chips with half of the salsa. Transfer the chips in salsa to a platter and top with the cheese, cilantro and finely chopped onion. Serve right away, passing the remaining salsa at the table.

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