This queso dip is the BEST recipe for white cheese dip and is a copycat from your favorite Mexican restaurant. Only 4 ingredients and 5 minutes for the EASIEST and most authentic queso blanco dip recipe.
White Cheese Dip is everyone’s favorite Mexican appetizer. Get your tortilla chips ready for dipping, or drizzle the white queso dip over your favorite Mexican dishes. My recipe is so easy, it all comes together within 5 minutes in the microwave, then you can keep the queso warm in a small crock pot. Everyone LOVES my recipe for white cheese dip!
White Cheese Dip Recipe
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 when removed from 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.
If you glance at the comments of my original queso blanco post, 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!
White Cheese Dip Ingredients
My recipe for queso blanco uses only 4 ingredients and you can have it done in 5 minutes! Here’s what you need to make the best white cheese dip:
- White American cheese — yes, this is the kind of cheese used in the Mexican restaurants for white cheese dip. My preference is Land o’ Lakes brand that you should be able to find in most stores in the deli area. If you cannot find it, I’ve had great success with Boar’s Head, too. Other brands should work just fine, too, so don’t give up if you can’t find these two.
- Milk — or you can use half and half or whipping cream. The final texture may be different (thicker or more runny) but will taste just as delicious!
- Water — I do put a little water into my dip because that is what the restaurant’s recipe called for. I have sometimes left it out (because I just forgot!) and it was fine, just a little thicker. If you use half and half instead of milk, water probably isn’t necessary. If you use whipping cream instead of milk, then water is more than likely a must.
- Green chiles — these are from a can and give the white cheese dip an extra kick!
- Pickled jalapeños – you can find these in the ethnic aisle of your grocery store in a can or jar. I typically use the canned variety because I find them in whole pieces more often than the jarred kind that usually is sliced. Do not use fresh jalapeños because you’ll miss out on the extra pickled flavor and you’ll use some of the pickled jalapeño juice in the recipe, too!
(Hand model courtesy of my two-year old son.)
What Kind of Cheese Is Used in Mexican Restaurants?
When developing and testing this white queso dip, I quickly made up my mind to start with the recipe a reader shared from her restaurant since it seemed the most promising. It didn’t call for authentic (good quality) Mexican cheese as some of the other readers suggested. Instead, the Mexican restaurants use ONLY white American cheese and very few other ingredients. The original queso dip recipe I tested also used white American cheese, and added shredded Monterey Jack. I didn’t love that recipe and thought it needed something more. What I didn’t expect was that it really needed a bit of something less!
How to Make EASY White Cheese Dip
You are going to love how easy this is to put together, especially because you do not shred the cheese and you can serve it in the bowl in which it was prepared. Only one dirty dish! The original instructions were for large restaurant quantities and used restaurant equipment 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 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.
To make white queso dip, following the easy steps below:
- Cut the block of American cheese into cubes. Microwave cheese, milk, water for 5 minutes on high, stirring every 1 minute.
- Remove bowl from the microwave and stir in the chiles and jalepeños.
- Serve immediately by dipping tortillas or drizzling over your Mexican dish. Or transfer to small crock pot to keep warm during a party.
Scroll down for full recipe ingredients and instructions.
Crock pot white cheese dip. You can make this white cheese dip in the crock pot. Place all ingredients in a small crock pot and heat on low for 1 to 2 hours, stirring occasionally. Once it’s ready, lower the heat setting to warm. No fuss, no mess!
Adjust the spice. 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 in the recipe card).
Stir in other ingredients. Toss in other ingredients, like diced tomatoes and sausage bits!. However, if you are someone who is in search for the runny white cheese dip you enjoy in the restaurants, then I highly recommend you just start with the basic and very simple recipe below. I’m confident you will be pleased.
Mexican recipes to serve with queso blanco dip
Printable recipe is below. Leave a comment and/or a star rating to let me know what you think. Enjoy!
Mexican Restaurant White Cheese Dip
- 1 1/4 (1.25) lb block White American Cheese (Land O'Lakes brand preferred), cut into 1-inch cubes
- 2/3 cup milk
- 1/2 cup cold water
- 1/4 cup diced green chiles , from a can
- 2 pickled jalapenos , chopped
- 1 ounce pickled jalapeno juice
- pinch of cumin (optional)
- Combine the cheese cubes, milk and water 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. If not, continue to microwave in 30 second increments until it all cheese is melted. Remove from the microwave and stir in the rest of the ingredients.
- Serve immediately as a dip with tortilla chips or as a sauce over your favorite Mexican dish. If using for a party dip, use the Crock Pot Method.
Crock Pot Method:
- Combine all ingredients in a small Crock Pot. Set on low for 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Once melted, reduce setting to warm.
- Store any leftover cheese dip in the fridge. Reheat in the microwave, stirring every 30 seconds until creamy and hot.
- White American cheese is found at most deli counters in your local grocery store. Land o' Lakes is my preferred brand, however, I have had great results with Boar's Head, too.
- If after 5 minutes in the microwave your cheese is not all melted, give it an additional 30 seconds and stir again. Repeat until melted. You may also use a wire whisk if clumps remain.
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This white cheese dip recipe was originally published 11/30/2011 and updated on 6/17/2019 with a video and new additional photos. Updated again on 1/18/2020 with additional recipe tips.