Queso Dip

Quick Summary

Deliciously creamy Queso Dip is easy to make from scratch and a crowd favorite every time! Serve with salty tortilla chips for the best appetizer ever!

queso dip in bowl with chips

Chips, salsa, and guacamole are my absolute favorite, but my boys are all about the queso. Ok, I like it too, who doesn’t love a cheesy dip? But they REALLY love it. 

This Queso Dip recipe is their all-time favorite. It’s creamy, slightly spicy, and really good with salty tortilla chips

And guess what? It’s easy to make at home. That’s right, you don’t have to go to a restaurant to get queso. You can make it from scratch and I promise it is the real deal. 

We love serving warm queso on game days or as a snack for parties or movie nights at home. Everyone loves it and dives right in! It’s delicious as a dip or drizzled over your favorite Mexican food dishes.

The Best Cheese for Queso

This recipe calls for both cheddar and Monterey Jack cheeses. I do not recommend using pre-shredded cheese because it contains a powdery coating and doesn’t melt well. 

You’ll have the best results if you buy a block of cheese and shred it yourself. I promise the extra arm work is worth it. 

I also add in cream cheese, it’s the secret ingredient for keeping the queso super creamy. It melts right in and creates the smoothest queso and it will help the queso stay creamy after it cools down too. 

Spice It Up!

The queso has a jalapeno pepper, but I don’t think it is super hot, it just has a nice pleasant kick. For more heat, you can add a little bit of cayenne pepper in addition to the jalapenos. 

And if you want the BEST flavor ever, which I think you do, add chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. The flavor is SO good! You can find the peppers at almost any grocery store, look in the Mexican aisle.  You will need two chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, remove the seeds and finely chop them up. You can freeze the remaining peppers and sauce. 

But if you prefer a traditional queso, you can certainly leave out the chipotle peppers. It is good both ways:)

Queso in a bowl

How to Make Queso

Ok, let’s get this queso party started! Who’s ready? I am always ready! 

  • In a large saucepan, heat the oil or  butter over medium heat. Add the onion and jalapeno and cook until soft. Stir in the garlic and cook for just a minute. 
  • Add the cream cheese and 1 cup of the milk and stir until melted. I recommend using whole milk because we want super creamy queso. Low fat or skim milk won’t get us there.  Season with salt and pepper. 
  • Turn the heat to LOW and add the shredded cheese, ½ cup at a time, stirring constantly, until all of the cheese is added and melted. Make sure the heat isn’t too high, you want it to melt slowly. Once all of the cheese is melted, add the remaining ¼ cup of milk. 
  • Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the green chiles, diced tomato, and cilantro. If you are using the chipotle in adobo pepper, stir that in as well. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper, if necessary.

Queso Toppings

I love topping the queso off with a few toppings. You could even put toppings out and let everyone at the table dress their own little bowl of queso! Here are a few of our favorite toppings:

Serving Suggestions

Serve the queso warm with tortilla chips. Dunk the chips into that warm cheesy sauce and you will be in heaven! 

You can also use the queso as a dip for taquitos, quesadillas, burritos, or drizzle it over tacos or nachos. This cheesy sauce is great with any Mexican meal. 

How to Store and Reheat

Store leftover queso in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

Reheat in the microwave  stirring every 15 to 20 seconds, until the queso is heated through. If it is too thick, you can add a splash of milk and stir. 

Easy queso recipe

More Mexican Appetizer Recipes

Queso Dip

Deliciously creamy Queso Dip is easy to make from scratch and a crowd favorite every time! Serve with salty tortilla chips for the best appetizer ever!
5 from 2 votes

Ingredients
  

  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil, can use butter
  • 1/2 cup diced yellow onion
  • 1 jalapeno, stemmed, seeded and diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 8 oz cream cheese, cut into cubes
  • 1 1/4 cups whole milk, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 8 oz cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 8 oz Monterey Jack, shredded
  • 4 oz mild green chiles
  • 1 Roma tomato, finely diced
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • 2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, from can, seeds removed and finely chopped, optional
  • For garnish: pico de gallo, diced avocado, and cilantro
  • Tortilla chips, for serving

Instructions
 

  • In a large saucepan, heat the oil or butter over medium heat. Add the onion and jalapeno and cook until soft, about 4 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook for one more minute.
  • Add the cream cheese and 1 cup of the milk and stir until melted, this will take about 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Turn the heat to low and add the shredded cheese, ½ cup at a time, stirring constantly, until all of the cheese is added and melted. Make sure the heat isn’t too high, you want it to melt slowly. Once all of the cheese is melted, add the remaining ¼ cup of milk.
  • Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the green chiles, tomato, and cilantro. If you are using the chipotle in adobo pepper, stir that in as well. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper, if necessary.
  • Pour the queso into a serving bowl and garnish with a little pico de gallo, diced avocado, and fresh cilantro. Serve immediately with tortilla chips.

Notes

Don’t use pre-shredded cheese. Buy block cheese and grate it for best results.
The chipotle peppers in adobe sauce are optional, but we love the flavor they add! 

Nutrition

Calories: 244kcal, Carbohydrates: 4g, Protein: 11g, Fat: 21g, Saturated Fat: 12g, Cholesterol: 60mg, Sodium: 425mg, Potassium: 133mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 3g, Vitamin A: 720IU, Vitamin C: 6mg, Calcium: 331mg, Iron: 1mg

Have you tried this recipe?

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Photos by Olive and Mango

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Maria

I'm Maria and my husband is Josh. We share a love of cooking, baking, and entertaining. We enjoy creating recipes that are simple, fresh, and family friendly. We love sitting around the table with good food, good conversation, and good friends and family! Our kitchen is always open!
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  1. You know I’m going for the Pats! Whoop whoop. Queso dip is always good. And I agree, crock pot is the way to go

  2. This dip looks sinful and absolutely delicious!! I can’t wait to make it for our superbowl party. We live in Boston so we – of course – are huge Patriots fans! GO PATS!

  3. I’m a huge fan of cheese dip, I love the use of white cheese. Right up my alley, for sure. Perfect game food!

  4. Maria!!!this is beautiful!!! Queso is one of my favorite foods in the wHole wide world!!! Absolutely making this on Sunday!

  5. ooooooh queso…a huge favorite of mine! i’ve never made a version other than the velveeta+rotel kind, but this looks so easy and sounds so much better!

  6. GIANTS!!!!

    We are Saints fans here (that loss to the 49rs killed me), but I am kind of excited about a Patriots/Giants rematch, since the last one was such a good game.

    This queso looks amazing!!

  7. I love Queso dip, but never made it. Theonly kind I made was velvetta cheese and salas! 🙂 I am so going tomake this!

  8. Definitely going to make this! I no longer have an interest in the SuperBowl since the Saints are out. I will just make the dip, eat it and read a book. 😉

  9. This looks so delicious! Queso is a must have appetizer during football games in our house! Who will I root for in the Super Bowl? Well, believe it or not, I plan to root for the Patriots despite the fact that they beat my Ravens in the championship game last Sunday!

  10. My husband is a huge queso fan. I love that this doesn’t look so thick and sludgy as some…will give it a try!

  11. So yummy! I think I will make this to go homemade pretzels! I had something similar to this dish combination at a pub recently and it was to die for! Can’t wait to try it at home now! Thanks for sharing the recipe!

  12. Your description says “white cheddar” but your ingredients call for “white american.” Do you mean “white cheddar” in the ingredients? This sounds wonderful (as do all of your recipes)!!

    1. It is white American cheese-you can find it at the deli counter. Fixed the description-thanks for catching that:)

  13. love seeing queso dip not made with velveeta! 🙂 i think this needs to make an appearance at our super bowl party too!

    1. Place the poblano pepper under the broiler and roast until it is black. Let the pepper cool and then remove the black skin. You can also roast peppers on the grill or on a gas stove. I hope that helps!

  14. Awesome cheese dip. Will definitely be cheering on the home team (Pats) assuming we have nbc to see the game.

  15. This is making me SO hungry. I love melty queso so much. What a perfect game-day snack! My fiancé was also rooting for the Niners- he’s still so sad!

  16. Yum! Nothing beats a big bowl of delicious dip along with tortilla chips! This looks like the perfect addition to the Super Bowl party we are hosting!

  17. How does melted American taste. Is it like velveeta or cheddar? I am not a fan of american on my sandwiches but I wonder what the taste is like in a dip. I am intrigued.

    1. I don’t eat Velveeta so I am not sure of the comparison:) It is not a strong cheddar. It melts in nicely with the Pepper Jack and other flavors.

  18. This almost kinda sorta makes me wish I was going to a superbowl party this year! but instead I’m going to a four year old’s birthday party…I have a feeling this will be a hit there as well!

  19. Yum…I love that it’s not the typical velveeta (which weirds me out anyway) and RoTel. We’re having friends over for the Super Bowl and you have to have cheese dip! Thanks for the recipe.

  20. Husband will be at a Super Bowl party so might send this dip with him (or make it and eat it all myself!) Cape Cod girl, so GO PATS!!

  21. I just wanted to tell you both how much I have come to appreciate your blog. I guess I came across it about a year ago, but I have been reading it more and more and looking through the archives because I am looking for vegetarian inspiration. You have some really wonderful, affordable recipes that I think even I could make — no fancy techniques or tools required — and I so appreciate that. Thank you!

  22. I am planning on checking through your archives for SuperBowl recipes. This dip looks yummy.
    I am from Boston so I am with Josh…GO PAT’S

  23. I am not a fan of cheese, but I have a friend who is obsessed with white cheese dip. I can’t wait to share this with her!

  24. This is pretty much the definition of creamy, queso-y goodness. I think I’ll just swan dive in it, no chips needed.

  25. The texture of this dip looks perfect for dipping. The ingredients sound so good with the american cheese.

  26. Made this over the weekend… DELISH is an understatement. I think its the new fave dip in my family. Thanks for sharing!!

  27. I made this last night and it did not come together. The whole thing was separated. the cheese would not melt into the milk (I used the same cheese as you did and followed the instructions to a t). I had to end up adding flour to some of the separated milk in a separate bowl then stirred it back in and it finally came together. the only bad part was it was too thick now and tasted a little like raw flour. Do you know what i could have done wrong? Any suggestions because the flavor was great!? Thanks!

    1. I am not sure why you had trouble. The cheese should melt right together. We’ve never had an issue. Sorry!

  28. I made this last night as a test before Superbowl. It’s amazing. Going to increase the recipe and finish off in a crock pot this Sunday.

  29. This dip is great. I’ve avoided american cheese in all my other attempts in the past, but you just can’t get the consistancy with out it. I made up a batch and thinned it out with a little extra milk and added macaroni to it, YUM!!! I must also add that I am in love with your blog, so many tasty tasy ideas.

  30. Thanks for the recipe. Love you blog. I hate to be negative but wanted to say that canola oil is super bad for you. This recipe would be great with olive or avocado or perhaps coconut oil (all healthy oils) instead. Just spreading the word 🙂

  31. Made this last night and was right on point.

    I roasted the jalapeno when I was roasting the poblano pepper. I also did monterrey jack instead of pepper jack because I didn’t want too spicy.

    I had no issue with the cheese and milk coming together. In fact I needed to add a bit of extra milk because it was too thick I could barely stir it… but once I did, it was perfect.

    Yummmmmmmmmmm We are sitting here eating the leftovers for breakfast LOL

  32. 5 stars
    It’s not often I will give =any= recipe five stars, but this one  deserves it in the appetizer category. My 12-year-old cousin, who is quite the queso aficionado, gave it high marks, which is what tipped the number of stars from four to five.

    We both agreed that for us, we could stand a little more heat, so the only adjustment for our tastes will be to add a tad more jalapeño next time we make it. 

    1. Milk based sauces break / curdle when there isn’t enough fat and the sauce is heated to too high of a temperature. I switched the oil to butter and used whole milk. Also, by not bringing it to a boil may help as well.