Frito Pie

Frito pies are well-known in the south, you can create this comfort food at home. Made from Frito chips, chili, cheese, and more. This is perfect for a quick and easy dinner, game night, and for tailgating.

Frito Pie and a bag of Fritos

I didn’t grow up in the South but moved to Texas when I was fifteen. Someone asked me if I wanted a Frito pie. I had no clue. And, if you don’t live in the South, you also may never have heard of it. And honestly, even in the South, not many places serve it. I know you can get one at Jason’s Deli and at Sonic if you ask very nicely.

I was making a batch of my Wendy’s Chili, which is a wonderfully tasty dish, and my follow-up thought was, oh man, I wish I had a Frito pie. That’s when I decided to create this Frito pie recipe.

  • Sonic put its Frito pie inside rolled up flour tortillas and sells them as Frito Wraps. They are very good and you can even make your own!

So, What Is a Frito Pie?

A Frito chili pie is simply a dish of Fritos covered with chili and topped with cheese sauce, chopped onions, and a squirt of mustard. Yes, this pie may be heartburn in the making, but you just can’t beat the crisp saltiness of the Fritos smothered in chili and topped with cheese. While that half back I was in love with in high school is now a fading memory, I can make a Frito pie in my own kitchen any time, and so can you.

  • Frito pies were originally created in Mexico, and today they are very popular in the South and the Midwest. They are also known as walking tacos, Frito boats, or Frito chili pies.

How to Serve Frito Pie

You can serve this Frito chili pie up as a casserole or in individual portions inside the chip bags. Walking Frito pies are great for game nights or some other appropriate gathering. And, no dishes to clean up!

There are two ways to open a chip bag for a walking Frito pie. The easier way is just to open up the top of the bag and fold it over, but the smaller opening makes it a little harder to eat. A better way is to turn the bag on its side and cut along the long edge with a pair of scissors to make an opening that’s nice and big.

Display the filled bags with plenty of forks and napkins and surround them with small dishes of toppings. You could also keep the chili warm in a slow cooker nearby and let your guests go to town.

You can use homemade chili or canned chili (I recommend Wolf brand chili)

Ideas for Frito Pie Toppings

  • Lettuce, sliced jalapenos, and sour cream
  • Tomatoes, onion, and sour cream
  • Sliced hot links (spicy smoked sausage links)
  • Sour cream and banana peppers
  • Salsa
  • Guacamole
  • Sliced black olives
  • Lime wedges
  • Mustard

I would like to know if you live in the South and have tried Frito pie. If so, what do you top yours with? Better yet, share some of your guilty pleasures. 

Frito Pie Recipe

You don’t have to live in the South to fall in love with this Frito pie recipe. It could become one of your secret pleasures.

Frito pie on a fork sitting on the side of a bowl of the pie

Frito Pie Recipe Ingredients

This is what you need to make a classic Frito Pie:

  • Fritos Corn Chips
  • Canned or homemade chili
  • Shredded Cheese
  • Chopped onions

Optional toppings:

  • Sour Cream
  • Jalapeno peppers
  • Mustard
Frito Pie Ingredients

How to Make Frito Pie

  1. Heat the chili in a small pan or in the microwave.
  2. Place Fritos in the bottom of a bowl.
    Fritos in a bowl
  3. Pour the heated chili on top of the Fritos.
    a bowl of Fritos topped with chili
  4. Sprinkle cheese on top.
    a bowl of Fritos topped with chili and cheese
  5. Sprinkle chopped onions on top.
    Frito pie with onions sprinkled on top
  6. Place sour cream, jalapeno slices, and mustard on top if desired.
    sour cream and jalapeno topping on a Frito pie

Do you live in the South? Have you tried Frito Pie before? If so, what do you top yours with? Better yet, share some of your guilty pleasures.

I would never invite someone over for a Frito Pie, but I would sure make one if you hinted you wanted one 😉

Frito pie and various toppings for it

Love pie for dinner? Try these savory pie recipes!

Favorite Comfort Food Recipes

Check out more of my savory pie recipes and the best comfort food recipes here on CopyKat!

Thanks to my friend Denise we have the Frito Bandito!

Frito Pie and a bag of Fritos

Frito Pie

You don't have to live in the South to enjoy a Frito Pie. 
5 from 9 votes
Print Pin Rate Add to Collection
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Frito Pie
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 1
Calories: 687kcal


  • 1 cup Fritos corn chips
  • 10 ounces chili
  • ¼ cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 tablespoon chopped onions

Optional Toppings

  • Sour Cream
  • Yellow mustard
  • Jalapeno pepper slices canned or fresh


  • Heat chili in a pan or in the microwave.
  • Place the Fritos corn chips in a bowl.
  • Ladle hot chili on top of the Fritos.
  • Sprinkle cheddar cheese on top.
  • Sprinkle onions over the cheese.
  • Top with sour cream, jalapeno slices, and mustard if desired.


Calories: 687kcal | Carbohydrates: 81g | Protein: 17g | Fat: 35g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 29mg | Sodium: 680mg | Potassium: 1031mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 16g | Vitamin A: 2980IU | Vitamin C: 407.4mg | Calcium: 388mg | Iron: 4.3mg

About Stephanie Manley

I recreate your favorite restaurant recipes, so you can prepare these dishes at home. I help you cook dinner, and serve up dishes you know your family will love. You can find most of the ingredients for all of the recipes in your local grocery store.

Stephanie is the author of's Dining Out in the Home, and's Dining Out in the Home 2.

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Reader Interactions


  1. Hollis Ramsey

    5 stars
    the heck with all those fancy-schmantzy recipes. this is Frito Chili Pie, and a bag of Frito chips + a can of Hormel No-Beans Chili topped with plenty of grated sharp cheddar and diced onions and jalapenos is JUST WHAT THE DOCTOR ORDERED! i like everything hotter than most folks, so i use lots of fresh-chopped jalapenos and more than a touch of Tabasco Scorpion Sauce. but that’s all. i might even open a bottle of red wine to go with, since i’m out of Guinness Extra Stout (the only beer i’ve ever loved enough to drink beer). hey, i’m just a plebe with pretensions, a prole with delusions of grandeur! and that suits me fine.

      • Hollis Ramsey

        5 stars
        it sure was! in fact, i had it for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, too. used 4 cans of chili and an entire family-size bag of Fritos. i did add some extras for the second-third-fourth go-round, though: lime zest, adobo sauce from chipotles, diced radishes, and lime zest + juice. frankly, it was really too much because most of it was undetectable, tastewise. but it seemed like a good idea at the time, and i was glad to use some fresh ingredients instead of having them rot in the fridge.

      • Linda Drake

        Stephanie, I have eaten Frito chili pie all my life (I’m almost 74 years young), and I have NEVER heard of putting mustard on it! All of the other ingredients are things I have added in the past, but it’s always best to stick with “what ain’t broke”, Fritos, chili, cheese and onions!

      • Stephanie Manley

        I respect your opinion. You won’t stop me from grabbing the mustard bottle 😉 I have even seen some folks grab sour cream 😉 The beauty of dining is you can always customize food the way you like best!

  2. James

    I am 72 years old and I have ate frito pie since I was a kid. The canned chili aspect is the right now instant frito pie freaks perk. But home made chili is the cats meow in making this dish.I love my onions too….plenty of cheese and jalapeno….but not scalding hot…just mildly spicy, even Picante sauce in a mild small amount gives that tasty flavor as well.

  3. Kenneth Atkins

    Hi I’ve just read a bunch of comments and wanted to say THANK YOU for THIS recipe it’s just what I was looking for. I wanted a recipe with canned chili and was having trouble finding one. And with Wolf’s chili really reached out and grabbed me. Thanks again.

5 from 9 votes (4 ratings without comment)

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Yes, you CAN make it at home! 
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