I did it, I did it! Actually, I should be yelling “WE did it!” One year ago I posted a recipe for Queso Blanco, but it didn’t quite match the wonderful, runny restaurant dip that we love oh-so-much. It was good in taste, but the texture was a little funny and quickly thickened off the heat. Well, I’m so extremely happy to announce that I finally found the perfect queso blanco dip combination that matches my favorite white cheese dip in some Mexican (and even some chain) restaurants. And, the reason I now have it is because of you, my readers.
The original queso blanco post is one of my top visited recipes on this blog. If you glance at the comments, you’ll see that many readers stopped by to share their thoughts about what I might change to make it exactly what I wanted. The other day, I finally decided to filter through the comments and emails. I made a plan to try all of them until I came up with the perfect formula. There were numerous great suggestions, but one in particular caught my eye. Why? Because the reader gave me the exact recipe from the restaurant where she worked!
I quickly made up my mind to start with this recipe, since it seemed the most promising of what I was looking for. It didn’t call for authentic (good quality) Mexican cheese as some of the others suggested. Instead, it only uses white American cheese and very few other ingredients. The original queso blanco I tried also used white American cheese, but also some shredded Monterey Jack, and it had me wishing for a little bit of something more. What I didn’t expect was that I was really needing a bit of something less!
You are going to love how easy this is to put together, especially because you do not have to shred the cheese and you can serve it in the bowl in which it was prepared. Only one dirty dish! The instructions I was given were for large restaurant quantities and using restaurant equipment that I do not have, nor am I even familiar with. Aiming for the easiest method, I took the ingredient list, sliced it in half and decided to throw it all into my trusty Pampered Chef batter bowl, then into the microwave. Worked like a charm! After five minutes in the microwave (stirring after every minute) the cheese was completely melted and perfectly runny. After letting it set for a few minutes, the dip did thicken a little bit, but not nearly as much as the other recipe from last year.
I can’t wait for you to give this a try. The amount of heat can be adjusted to your preference. For me, I added an extra pickled jalapeno and it was exactly the temperature we wanted (reflected below). Toss in other ingredients, like diced tomatoes, sausage bits, cilantro, whatever you desire. But, if you are someone who is in search for the white queso dip you enjoy in the restaurants, then I highly recommend you just start with the basic and very simple concoction below. I’m confident you will be pleased.
- 1 1/4 (1.25) lb block White American Cheese (Land O'Lakes brand preferred), cut into 1-inch cubes
- 1/4 cup diced green chiles
- 2 pickled jalapenos, chopped
- 1 ounce pickled jalapeno juice
- 2/3 cup whole milk
- 1/2 cup cold water
- pinch of cumin (optional)
Toss all ingredients into a large microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high for 5 minutes, stopping to stir after every minute. The mixture might seem watery during the first few stirs, but should come together as a nice runny dip after all the cheese is melted.
Serve immediately as a dip with tortilla chips or as a sauce over your favorite Mexican dish.
*Recipe Note: White American cheese is found at most deli counters in your local grocery store.
*Reheat Instructions: Store any leftover cheese dip in the fridge. Reheat in the microwave, stirring every 30 seconds until creamy and hot.
Source: Adapted from Christine, Reader of Pennies on a Platter