Bison Nachos

Bison are a seminal component of Western American history. The massive bison hunts of the 19th century resulted in their near extinction. With conservation efforts in place, the Yellowstone bison are considered the last truly wild herd of American plains bison in existence. Regenerative bison farms have reintroduced this healthy beef alternative into American food systems.

stack of bison nachos dripping with cheese. food photography and recipe by Jackie Alpers.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Bison Nachos
Servings: 4 servings
This recipe calls specifically for bison meat, but if you are unable to find it, simply opt for the highest quality beef or beef substitute you can find, with a lean to fat ratio of about 85:15. Jackie Alpers has recipes for pico de gallo salsa and a homemade taco seasoning blend in her Taste of Tucson cookbook.


  • 1 pound ground Bison
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 Tbsp taco seasoning blend
  • 1 Tbsp dried onion flakes
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • ¼ cup water
  • 1 1-pound bag corn tortilla chips
  • 1 cup prepared queso sauce warmed, such as Land-o-Lakes Queso Bravo
  • ½ cup prepared black beans rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup chunky pico de gallo salsa we used Sam’s Fresh Salsa.


  • Brown the bison in olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Drain any fat that accumulated. Stir in the tomato paste, taco seasoning blend, dried onion flakes and fennel, then stir in the water. Simmer on medium-low for 10 minutes.
  • Carefully arrange a base layer of tortilla chips on a large plate or platter. Drizzle on a thin layer cheese sauce which will act as “glue” to hold the other ingredients in place. Then carefully stack the rest of the chips, adding more cheese as you go to create a mountain of nachos. Spoon on the prepared bison meat, then the black beans and pico de gallo salsa. Serve immediately.
Course snacks
Cuisine Sonoran, Southwestern, Western Americana
Keyword bison, black and white nachos recipe, The Unofficial Yellowstone Cookbook

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The Unofficial Yellowstone Cookbook Cover
cover of The Unofficial Elf Cookbook by Jackie Alpers. Treat every day like Christmas with recipes inspired by the classic film "Elf".
The Unofficial Elf Cookbook by Jackie Alpers
About Jackie Alpers
Jackie Alpers International Photography Awards Honorable Mention
International color awards nominee medal