This Queso Dip is a copycat of the cheese dip sold in jars and served at your favourite Mexican restaurant. The miracle of this is that it’s silky smooth even when it cools – and reheats perfectly. Imagine the possibilities!
COPYCAT QUESO DIP
“I MUST try fake cheese dip!” I declared to Jo when I visited her in Calgary, Canada, earlier this month. “We don’t have it in Australia!” She wrinkled her nose and looked at me dubiously, trying to figure out if I was serious. Once she realised I was, she lead me to the astonishingly large range of fake cheese dips in the corn chip aisle at the supermarket.
I picked out an orange coloured Queso with “MADE WITH REAL CHEESE!!!” plastered across the label. Honestly – does anyone believe that for a second??? Cheese ain’t cheese if it can survive on the shelves for months – years!!!
But…. don’t judge me. We warmed that “stuff” up, and I had my first try of fake cheese dip….. and I enjoyed it. Yes, there’s that artificial edge to it (real cheese… *snort*!). But I still liked it. Decided I had to replicate it using real ingredients when I got home to Sydney.
So I did. 🙂
WHY THIS IS LIFE CHANGING
This Queso Dip recipe is for everyone out there who has attempted to make a Mexican cheese dip like what you get at Mexican restaurants and found it lacking. If you want the dip to be silky smooth like the stuff you get in jars, then the recipes call for fake cheese – Velveeta or other processed cheeses.
Other recipes are made starting with a roux – butter & flour – which is used to make a béchamel sauce into which cheese is added. While this makes a terrific cheese sauce for pouring over vegetables, in lasagna, gratins etc, it doesn’t have that truly silky and rich texture of a cheese dip.
Some recipes call for real cheese and varying combinations of cream / sour cream / mayonnaise – but the problem with these is that when the dip cools down, the cheese congeals. It’s super tasty – but you need to keep it warm. And it has a tendency to split when rewarmed.
The solution? Evaporated milk + cornflour/cornstarch + cheese = silky smooth rich cheese dip / sauce. Truly. It works. 🙂
Actually, I shared Nachos Cheese Dip a couple of years ago which is a simpler version of this dip. This Queso Dip is my copycat of the fake cheese dip I tried in Canada (it was Tostitos) and the ultra addictive dips served at Tex Mex restaurants in America.
I even made my own corn chips using corn tortillas because I can no longer find white corn chips here. And also because corn chips made using corn tortillas tastes so much more like corn than store bought. Plus the added bonus of being able to control the amount of salt on them – is it just me who finds store bought corn chips super salty?? I swear, they are getting saltier. If I want corn chips to use for a dip, I have to hunt for salt reduced or even unsalted.
Don’t make this Queso Dip when you’re home alone. I’m supposed to be on my Post Holiday Health Kick (I know, I know, you hear this every time I come back from holidays!!!) and it’s taken astronomical will power to hold back.
I’ve got 3 batches of this Mexican Cheese Dip in my fridge. I’m planning to offload them tomorrow. – Nagi x
PS Except maybe that one little jar. I might keep that for myself…..
PPS I realise that some people may raise their eyebrows at the name “Life Changing Queso Dip”, but for Queso Dip lovers, I deign to say this will be life changing!!!
QUESO DIP RECIPE
WATCH HOW TO MAKE IT
Queso Dip (Mexican Cheese Dip) recipe video!
Queso Dip (Mexican Cheese Dip)
- 2.5 cups / 225 g Cheddar cheese, freshly shredded (Important - read Note 1)
- 1 tbsp cornflour / cornstarch
- 1/2 tbsp / 8 g butter
- 1 large garlic clove, minced
- 1/4 small white onion, very finely chopped (1/4 cup)
- 375 g / 13 oz evaporated milk (1 can, not low fat)
- 1 small tomato, finely diced (3/4 cup) (Note 2)
- 1/4 tsp each onion powder, garlic powder, cumin
- 4 oz / 113g can chopped green chile, fire roasted (Subs Note 3)
- 1/4 cup coriander / cilantro, finely chopped
- 2 - 3 tbsp milk, any
- Place cheese and cornflour in a bowl, toss to coat.
- Melt butter over medium heat in a large saucepan or small pot.
- Add garlic and onion, cook slowly for 3 minutes or until onion is translucent but not browned.
- Add tomato (including juices) and cook for 2 minutes until tomato is slightly softened.
- Add evaporated milk and cheese. Stir, then add chiles and Spices.
- Stir until cheese melts and it becomes a silky sauce.
- Add salt to taste - amount required depends on saltiness of cheese used - and stir through coriander.
- Stir in milk or water to adjust consistency (I use 2 tbsp) - the dip thickens when it cools, and milk can be added later to adjust to taste.
- Remove from heat. Serve warm or at room temperature - it will be soft and scoopable even when it cools.
- Store in the refrigerator. When refrigerated, it becomes the consistency of the cheese spread sold in jars that are not in the refrigerator section. Reheat in microwave and adjust consistency as desired with a tiny bit of milk. If you add too much, just put on stove again until it thickens.
LIFE OF DOZER
That’s not a peeved look on his face, even though that’s what you might think. It’s a look of contentment and utter comfort in his very cozy sweatshirt. I’m sure of it. He’s not embarrassed. 😈