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If there is any dip I might bathe in, it would be queso dip. Today, I am sharing my delicious Simple and Fast Homemade Queso Dip recipe with you so that you can soak in it too. Well, bathe your chips in it. 

Jokes aside, this is a great recipe that can be made quickly with some cheese, salsa, and a few pantry staples. It is fast and simple, but the best part is it’s delicious! Make this Homemade Queso Dip for your next gameday party or just to eat something tasty.

Homemade Queso Dip in a white and gold bowl and a hand dipping a single corn chip into it.
Try this easy homemade queso dip for your next game day party or snack.

🧀 What makes this recipe special?

There are a million recipes out there to make queso with Velveeta. Not trying to hate on the ‘veeta, but I want you to have a special queso dip. This is it.

This queso is made with cheddar cheese, and it really is a homemade-style dip that isn’t the norm. Not only is it a from-scratch, but it is super quick and easy. This recipe just takes 20 minutes! 

Intended for corn chips, but it could be used for anything that needs a nice cheese dip with a bit of flavor. 

While you can use store-bought salsa in this queso dip, we make use of our Homemade Salsa recipe to make it extra memorable. Other great gameday recipes we love are this Cheesy Fried Pickles recipe or go all out with a special Chicago Deep Dish pizza

🌶️ Ingredients

Cheese and salsa are the stars of this recipe, but there is a short list of essential supporting ingredients. Here is what you will need:

  • Butter
  • All-Purpose Flour
  • Whole milk
  • Cheddar cheese
  • Restaurant-style salsa
  • Salt & pepper
  • Chili powder (optional)
  • Cayenne powder (optional) 

See the recipe card for quantities.


We add a few spices to our recipe, but you can make this your own if you want. Would you like more spices? Perhaps add a bit more cayenne pepper or add some canned green chilis? Try it!

There are many options here, but the recipe I provide is a great queso recipe as it is. 

🍲 Instructions

The recipe is simple and can be made in less than 20 minutes with just a few ingredients. We are taking a simple mornay sauce but adding cheddar cheese instead of the traditional cheeses. Then, we add some salsa to it, and that is it! It really is that easy. 

Cheese Sauce

Start with a simple cheese sauce in this recipe, which will require butter, milk, all-purpose flour, and shredded cheddar cheese. If you have ever made a roux or Mornay sauce, this should be familiar.

If not, it is super simple. We have used similar recipes in several recipes, like our Cauliflower Au Gratin and Macaroni and Cheese.

First, melt butter in a saucepan and then stir in flour to make it a paste. Then, while mixing and heating, add milk. Stirring is important here, as the dairy can scald on your pan, and we don’t want that.

After the milk is incorporated and when the sauce starts to heat, just when a boil starts, it should thicken to a nice sauce. At this point, we add the cheddar cheese and stir that in until it is melted.

Now, we have a delicious cheese sauce.

Add the Salsa

Once the cheese sauce is made, add in the salsa and mix in! Use whatever salsa you like, but I love a good restaurant-style salsa. While I recommend using the ratios in my recipe, you can add more or less to your taste. 

🤷 Substitutions and variations

There are a few ways that this can be changed up.

  • Cheese – This calls for cheddar, but Monterry, Pepperjack, swiss, or any meltable cheese would work great. 
  • Milk – I use whole milk, but 2%, skim, or heavy cream can also be used with varying results.
  • Spices – I give some recommended spices, but you can really change this up to make it your own. Paprika or many other seasonings could work. Instead of cayenne powder, you could add some canned, diced peppers. 

📦 Storage

One thing I have seen with some queso recipes is that once it is cooled, it hardens. That is not the case for this recipe.

I have eaten it as a dip directly from the refrigerator, and the cheese sauce is subtle enough so that it does not harden when cooled. This will keep in the fridge for several days. 

I would not recommend freezing this recipe, as dairy may cause grainy when frozen and thawed. That said, if you have to, it’s best to let it cool completely before placing it in an airtight container or freezer bag and storing it in the freezer. When ready to use, thaw it in the refrigerator and then heat it gently on the stove or microwave, frequently stirring to recombine the ingredients.

One great way to make this ahead of time is to make the recipe and put it in your slow cooker or crock pot. Then, serve when you are ready.

🎓 History Tidbit

The dish as we know it today, “chile con queso,” was popularized in the United States by Tex-Mex cuisine. This is a fusion of Texan and Mexican cuisine, which became popular in the early 20th century in border towns such as San Antonio and El Paso. Today, it can be found in various forms and variations across the United States and Mexico.


How long is homemade queso good for?

This depends on your ingredients, but homemade queso should be good for several days if stored in the refrigerator. 

What kind of cheese should I use for queso dip?

You can use any melting cheese such as cheddar, Monterey jack, Colby, Colby-Jack, or a combination of these. Some people also use Velveeta cheese or American cheese as a base for queso dip, which can make it very smooth and creamy.

📝 Tips and tricks

  • Use a Restaurant Style Salsa for best results, but any salsa will work.
  • Here is my homemade restaurant-style salsa recipe.
  • Cheddar cheese is what we use, but any meltable and shreddable cheese, including swiss and pepper jack, would work for this.
  • Try adding canned green chilis or cooked taco meat for different flavors
  • I use this for corn chips, but it would also be great as a taco topping or to pour over burritos. 
Bowl of queso dip on a gold platter with corn chips spread all around the platter and the table underneath.
Give this tasty game day cheddar queso a try today!

🛠 Products used in this recipe

😋 Did you make this recipe?

That is awesome, and thank you so much for giving this Homemade Queso Dip recipe a try. If you could leave a rating in the comment area below, it would be greatly appreciated. This lets me know how I am doing and also helps others decide if they want to make this recipe. Most of all, thanks for visiting Ramshackle Pantry.

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Homemade Queso Dip in a white and gold bowl and a hand dipping a single corn chip into it.

Simple and Fast Homemade Queso Dip

  • Author: Ben Myhre
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 4 Servings 1x
  • Category: Appetizer
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Mexican
Save Recipe


If you need a dip that is simple, fast, and delicious, but still has homemade flavors, this is for you. My Homemade Queso Dip is popular in our house and can be ready in just minutes. This cheesy Mexican dip is a perfect appetizer or snack for the hungry people in your lives.


  • 2 Tablespoon Butter
  • 2 Tablespoons All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup restaurant-style salsa
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder (optional)
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne powder or to taste (optional)


  1. In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium-high heat, making sure to stir to keep from scalding.
  2. Add All-Purpose Flour and mix to a paste consistency.
  3. Slowly stir in the milk until the mixture is smooth, making sure to stir to keep milk from scalding.
  4. The heating mixture should start to thicken. At this point, add the cheese and stir until combined.
  5. Add salsa, salt, pepper, chili powder(option), and cayenne powder (optional). Stir.
  6. Remove from heat and serve. Can serve warm or chilled.


  • Use a Restaurant Style Salsa for best results, but any salsa will work.
  • Here is my homemade restaurant-style salsa recipe.
  • Cheddar cheese is what we use, but really any meltable and shreddable cheese would work for this including swiss and pepper-jack.
  • Try adding canned green chilis or cooked taco meat for different flavors
  • I use this for corn chips, but it would also be great as a taco topping or to pour over burritos.


  • Serving Size: 1/4 total
  • Calories: 165 Calories
  • Sugar: 3 g
  • Sodium: 684 mg
  • Fat: 11 g
  • Saturated Fat: 7 g
  • Unsaturated Fat: 4 g
  • Carbohydrates: 14 g
  • Fiber: 0 g
  • Protein: 5 g
  • Cholesterol: 27 mg

Keywords: Homemade Queso Dip

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  1. This recipe did not work at all. All of the points where it was supposed to “thicken” never happened. I finished the recipe adding all the ingredients and optional ingredients, but when I taste-tested it, it tasted like absolute crap. It was way too flour-y, and I could barely even taste the cheese in my mouth, compared to all the other ingredients combined, which just was too complicated for my taste. I spit it out immediately. 0/10 recipe, would not recommend.

    1. Hey there,

      I am so sorry this didn’t work out for you, but this has to be an execution issue. Unless you happen to live in a place where the laws of chemistry or basic food science do not apply, two tablespoons of flour for a cup of milk and two tablespoons of butter should absolutely thicken over medium high heat. If it did not, it is very likely a temperature issue, you did not mix appropiately, or you did not use the ingredients outlined in the recipe. I apologize that the seasoning ingredients list (2 seasonings and salt and pepper) is too complicated of a flavor profile. And two tablespoons of flour for 2+ cups of liquid is too flour-y?

      If you try this recipe again, I recommend using the listed ingredients and following the instructions, Karl.