chile con queso

October 25, 2010


There is a place in my heart for cheese and it’s a very, very big place. Anyone who knows me in person, knows my deep-seated love of cheese. It’s actually genetic, since my brother and mum are similarly obsessed. And my grand-dad, by my mum’s account, had a cheese sandwich for his lunch every single day.

Have I convinced you that it’s in my blood? I can think of no other food that I can gorge myself on in the way that I can with cheese. Enter: queso.

Queso simply means “cheese” in Spanish, but in Tex-Mex cuisine, it refers to a spicy, cheesy dip for tortilla chips. You order it in Tex-Mex restaurants in Austin, in the way that you would order salsa in other parts of the country. Completely normal to be digging into what is essentially a giant bowl of melted cheese…

The “classic” version uses Velveeta “cheese” and Rotel. I use the quotation marks because Velveeta is a processed cheese product that can weirdly sit on a shelf, unrefrigerated for weeks. Wrong. But so, so right.

My husband may not forgive me for erring from that classic queso, but I wanted to try a somewhat more wholesome and fresh kind, and I found it from Homesick Texan. This lady knows her stuff.

It’s not for the faint of heart (6 cups of cheese, plus butter and sour cream anyone?) but it might be the most addictive thing on the planet. Make with caution. I will no doubt be drowning my sorrows (literally) in a bowl of this stuff, upon my return from Texas. Join me?

Chile Con Queso

from Homesick Texan


  • 1/2 onion diced (about 1/2 cup)
  • 4 cloves of garlic minced
  • 3 Serrano peppers diced
  • 3 jalapeno peppers diced
  • 2 tablespoons of butter
  • 2 tablespoons of flour
  • 1 cup of milk
  • 6 cups of shredded cheese, can use any combination of Longhorn cheddar and Monterrey Jack
  • 1/2 cup of cilantro, chopped
  • 2 plum tomatoes, peeled and diced (about 1 cup, can use canned if tomatoes aren’t in season)
  • 1/2 cup of sour cream
  • Salt to taste


1. Melt the butter in a saucepan on medium-low heat, and then cook the onions and peppers for about five minutes or until onions are translucent.
2. Add the garlic and cook for another minute.
3. Whisk the flour into the butter, vegetable mix and cook for about 30 seconds.
4. Add the milk to the pot, and cook on medium, whisking constantly until sauce is thick, about five minutes. Stir in the cilantro and tomatoes.
5. Turn heat down to low, and a 1/4-cup at a time, slowly add the shredded cheese stirring into the white sauce until completely melted. Repeat.
6. Stir in the sour cream.
7. Add salt to taste.

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