A Spicy Perspective

Best Frito Chili Pie

The Best Frito Chili Pie – An easy recipe for classic Frito “pie” made with flavorful beef chili and corn chips! Serve this in a bowl or right in the bag with shredded cheese and all your favorite toppings.

close view of frito chili pie in a shallow bowl

You know I am a big fan of great retro recipes that are no-frills but have big, comforting flavors that we all love. Many are easy to prepare and perfect to feed a crowd for fun gatherings.

Frito Chili Pie is a fabulous old-school recipe for tailgating, casual holiday parties, and campfire dinners. It’s just the right combo of crunchy, salty, savory, meaty, and cheesy that you crave in a classic party food!

three bags of fritos filled with frito chili pie

Classic Frito Chili Pie

If you aren’t already familiar, you should know that there is no actual pie involved here. But that’s ok! Frito Pie gets its name from how the dish is layered and served… crunchy corn chips are covered with homemade beef chili, then topped with shredded cheese and sliced green scallions, and finished with tangy jalapenos and a dollop of sour cream.

These can be assembled individually in shallow round dishes (like a pie) – or for a more traditional serving style, layer the chili and goodies right into single-serving bags of Fritos chips.

This Frito pie recipe takes under an hour to make and is even great to prep in advance. Simply make the chili portion ahead of time and have your toppings ready to go. Then rewarm the chili when ready to serve and enjoy!

side view of frito pie topped with cheese, scallions, jalapenos, and sour cream

Ingredients You Need

For the Frito Chili:

  • Ground beef
  • Sweet onion – diced
  • Garlic – minced
  • Canned kidney beans – drained
  • Tomato sauce
  • Diced fire roasted tomatoes
  • Ancho chili powder
  • Ground cumin
  • Dried oregano
  • Beef base – or bouillon

To Make the Chili Pies:

  • Fritos Corn Chips – either one large bag or 10 single serving bags
  • Sharp cheddar cheese – shredded
  • Scallions – chopped
  • Sour cream
  • Sliced pickled jalapenos – like our fantastic homemade quick pickled jalapeno slices
corn chips in shallow dishes, with toppings in background

How to Make Easy Beef Chili

Set a 6-quart saucepot over medium heat. Add the ground beef, diced onion, and garlic to the pot. Use a wooden spoon to break the meat into small pieces as you brown the beef and soften the onions, about 8-10 minutes.

ground beef browned in a large pot with wooden spoon

Once the meat is cooked through and broken into very small pieces, add in the drained kidney beans, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, chili powder, cumin, oregano, beef base, and 1 cup of water.

hand adding canned tomatoes to kidney beans and beef in a large pot with wood spoon

Stir well. Simmer for at least 15 minutes, stirring the bottom of the pot every 3 to 5 minutes to make sure it doesn’t stick.

Get the Complete (Printable) Old-School Frito Chili Pie Recipe Below. Enjoy!

finished chili in a pot with wooden spoon

 Once the chili thickens, turn off the heat. Then taste, and salt and pepper as needed.

top view finished pot of chili with wooden spoon

How to Assemble and Serve Frito Chili Pie

Place a handful of Fritos in a bowl, and top with a generous scoop of chili.

corn chips in a shallow bowl topped with chili

Then add a bit of the shredded cheese and sliced scallions.

shredded cheese and sliced green onions added to the corn chips and chili

Top with sour cream and pickled jalapeno slices. Enjoy warm.

top view Frito chili pie in a shallow white dish

Pro Tip: You can always set out a buffet line with all the various ingredients, and let guests serve themselves!

side view assembled chili pie

How to Serve In Individual Frito Bags

Open the Frito bag and fold the top down to create a rim. Scoop chili over the Fritos. Don’t worry, the bag can handle it!

Top each bag with shredded cheese, scallions, sour cream, and pickled jalapeños. Serve warm.

bags of frito corn ships filled with chili, cheese, scallions and green onions plus jalapenos

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I make this a vegetarian or vegan Frito pie recipe without meat?

Skip the beef and prepare the chili with an additional two cans of kidney beans, or two cans of black beans if you’d like to add a more southwestern flavor. For a completely dairy-free plant-based recipe, also use your preferred vegan sour cream and cheddar cheese.

What other toppings can I add?

Lots of other nacho and chili-type goodies can be loaded on your Frito pie! Try fresh guacamole, salsa, chopped cilantro, and/or hot sauce for an extra kick of spice.

What goes with Frito chili pie?

This iconic party food is perfect with other game-day favorites like loaded stuffed jalapenos, crispy buffalo wings, and classic queso. Or bring some freshness to the table and serve alongside a crisp green salad with ranch dressing.

How do you store leftovers?

The corn chips will get soggy after more than an hour, so it is recommended the assembled Frito pies be eaten immediately. However, the chili itself will keep well in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

hand holding bag of fritos with chili pie recipe made

Looking For More Classic Party Meals? Be Sure To Also Try These Easy Recipes:

Print Recipe
5 from 4 votes
Leave a Review »

The Best Frito Chili Pie Recipe

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
This classic Frito pie recipe is made with flavorful beef chili and those crunchy corn chips we all know and love! Serve in a bowl or right in the bag with shredded cheese and your favorite toppings for a delicious game day, tailgating, or camping all-in-one meal.
Servings: 10 servings

Ingredients

For the Frito Chili –

For the Frito Chili Pies –

  • 9 ¼ ounce bag Fritos corn chips or 10 single serving bags
  • 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup chopped scallions
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 cup sliced pickled jalapenos

Instructions

  • Set a 6-quart saucepot over medium heat. Add the ground beef, diced onion, and garlic to the pot. Use a wooden spoon to break the meat into small pieces as you brown the beef and soften the onions, about 8-10 minutes.
  • Once the meat is cooked through and broken into very small pieces, add in the drained kidney beans, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, chili powder, cumin, oregano, beef base, and 1 cup of water.
  • Stir well. Simmer for at least 15 minutes, stirring the bottom of the pot every 3 to 5 minutes to make sure it doesn’t stick. Once the chili thickens, turn off the heat. Then taste, and salt and pepper as needed.
  • To serve: Place a handful of Fritos in a bowl. Top with a generous scoop of chili, followed by shredded cheese, scallions, sour cream, and pickled jalapeños.

Notes

To serve in individual Frito bags: Open the Frito bag and fold the top down to create a rim. Scoop chili over the Fritos and top with shredded cheese, scallions, sour cream, and pickled jalapeños.

Nutrition

Serving: 1.5c, Calories: 617kcal, Carbohydrates: 48g, Protein: 31g, Fat: 35g, Saturated Fat: 13g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g, Monounsaturated Fat: 12g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 88mg, Sodium: 951mg, Potassium: 1082mg, Fiber: 11g, Sugar: 7g, Vitamin A: 1354IU, Vitamin C: 13mg, Calcium: 246mg, Iron: 7mg
Course: Appetizer, Main, Main Course, Snack
Cuisine: American
Author: Sommer Collier

Making this recipe? Follow us on Instagram and tag @ASpicyPerspective so we can share what you’re cooking!

Share This Recipe With Friends!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Did you make this recipe? Rate it!




4 comments on “Best Frito Chili Pie”

  1. Yum – this is a family favorite packed with flavor and so delicious.

  2. this is the best thing ever! ive tried tacos with Fritos and even making them in the chip bag, but the chili added to these Fritos is amazing! thank you so much for sharing this recipe! 

  3. This recipe was a HUGE hit when we had friends over. The kids especially loved eating straight out of the Fritos bags. Fun and yummy!

  4. This recipe is always a hit!! I mean what’s not to love…chili & fritos?! Lots of flavor & crunch!