Accidental Foods

They say that necessity is the mother of invention. I think accidents are the father.

When you think along the pantheon of food, there have been more than a few accidental inventions:

  • Sandwich – The Earl of Sandwich was at a gambling table and didn’t want to get up. I’ve been there and know that feeling. He ordered his dinner of meat to be brought to him between two slices of bread.
  • Chocolate Chip Cookies – A baker at the Toll House Inn (yes, that Toll House) was making chocolate cookies one day and ran out of chocolate powder.  Taking a bar of semi-sweet chocolate, she broke it into chunks and put it into the batter, thinking that the chocolate would melt evenly. It didn’t and thank God for that!
  • Ice Cream Cone – At the 1904 World’s Fair an ice cream vendor ran out of dishes. Lucky for him, his neighboring vendor was selling pastries. A quick fold on the pastry and the cone was born.
  • Potato Chips – A diner kept complaining about how his fries were cut too thick. After sending the potatoes back several times, the chef sliced the spuds as thin as he could and fried them up. The chip was born.
  • Popsicles – An 11-year-old boy was mixing soda and left the concoction outside overnight. The whole thing froze with the stirring stick sticking right out of the pail.
  • Nachos – In 1943 a group of army wives from south Texas went across the border for dinner. They arrived at the restaurant after the kitchen had closed for the night. The maitre d’ went back into the kitchen looking for what he could serve. He took some tortillas and sliced them into wedges, grated some cheese over them and placed them under a broiler. He added a sliced jalapeño and served it.

Photo May 25, 12 17 28 PM

My nachos this day were a little pumped up from the original recipe.

Photo May 25, 11 45 20 AM

The great thing about nachos is that you can add so many things to it.

Photo May 25, 12 00 48 PM

Cooking the onions and jalapeño first.

Photo May 25, 12 01 40 PM

Adding the chicken.

Photo May 25, 12 17 10 PM

Out of the oven….

Photo May 25, 12 17 15 PM

and into my mouth. Yum!

Restaurant Style Chicken Nachos

Prep Time: 30 min | Cook Time: 10 min | Makes: 6


  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 6 green onions, sliced, white parts and tops separated
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 shredded, cooked, whole chicken breast
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup salsa
  • 1/2 (12 ounce) package tortilla chips
  • 1 (8 ounce) package shredded Cheddar/Monterey Jack cheese blend
  • 1/2 large tomato, diced
  • Black beans
  • jalapeno, sliced


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

2. In a 12 inch skillet over medium heat, cook and stir the garlic and white parts of the green onions in canola oil until tender. Mix in shredded chicken, salt and pepper. Toss until well coated with oil. Stir in the salsa.

3. Arrange tortilla chips on a large baking sheet. Spoon the chicken mixture over tortilla chips. Top with Cheddar/Monterey Jack cheese blend and tomato. Bake in the preheated oven 10 minutes, or until cheese has melted. Remove from heat and sprinkle with green onion tops before serving.

Nutritional Info:

NutritionAmount Per Serving (6 total) Calories 407 cal 20% Fat 25.7 g 40% Carbs 24.4 g 8% Protein 21.4 g 43% Cholesterol 54 mg 18% Sodium 670 mg 27% See More Based on a 2,000 calorie diet


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Categories: Cheese3, Chicken2, Lunch3, Recipes, snack, vegetable3

Author:The Ranting Chef

Check out the best recipes at

12 Comments on “Accidental Foods”

  1. March 9, 2014 at 12:22 pm #

    Looks good. Great article, too.


  2. March 9, 2014 at 12:23 pm #

    Reblogged this on Catholic Glasses.


  3. March 9, 2014 at 12:46 pm #

    I’m ALL about accidents! Great post.


  4. March 9, 2014 at 1:42 pm #

    Reblogged this on Take Back the Kitchen and commented:
    I have heard of how the sandwich, chocolate chip cookies, ice cream cones, potato chips, and popsicles (ice lollies, if you’re UK-born) are a mistake, but the nachos one is a new one. I also have heard that the naming for “chimichangas” was a mistake, as it was from a Mexican mom who was trying to cover up her cursing in front of her child. Another culinary mistake that became popular was the chocolate lava cake. According to food legend, a pastry cook took out a batch of mini chocolate cakes too soon, but since he was in a hurry, he just told the customers that they’re a new dessert made by the kitchen.
    Creating accidental foods is how I got through some of my culinary classes, like that tomato-flavored cream cheese that I tried to pass for dip (goes great on bagel sandwiches, especially ones with lox or smoked salmon. Not so much the greasy breakfast sandwiches where sausage, ham, or bacon is your protein). Or that Mexican cheese and chicken dish I did in Chef Wagner’s Bistro class that I made after I successfully made sopas.


  5. March 9, 2014 at 8:22 pm #

    I’m thinking of a word that starts with apocr and ends with yphal. History’s full of great stories of how this or that was discovered, but very little is new under the sun.


  6. March 9, 2014 at 9:11 pm #

    Thank goodness for all those accidents!


  7. March 9, 2014 at 10:09 pm #

    Loved reading about how those food items came about! Nachos are such a comfort food. 🙂


  8. March 12, 2014 at 9:21 am #

    Awesome recipe…


  9. March 13, 2014 at 8:22 am #

    Very interesting! I didn’t know our favorite dishes had such accidental origins!


  10. April 26, 2014 at 4:38 pm #

    Love the accidental foods that are now such popular items! Your nachos look so good-I’ve been thinking of what I could do with all the fresh cilantro that I have growing, maybe this is it’s destiny!


  11. May 2, 2014 at 5:21 am #

    Looks yummy. Want to try cooking that some time.



  1. I Love Me Some Salsa | Rantings of an Amateur Chef - February 26, 2015

    […] Chicken Nachos […]


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: