Chili Con Queso Dip

Every year about 3 days before the Super Bowl we start getting emails and comments asking when we’re doing a post about football party food.  And every year we say, “shoot, ya we should do that!”  So this year I actually thought about it ahead of time and put it on our calender so we could dedicate a whole fun week to it.  The problem?  It happens to be one of the weeks leading up to Valentines day- and as much as I love sporting events and great parties, I love adorably cute knock-your-socks-off heart shaped valentines deliciousness with free printable labels, more.  This my friends is why I’m posting this great party dip about 3 weeks before the big event!  Interesting side fact:  I just read on Wikipedia (the source of all known truth) that Super Bowl Sunday has the 2nd largest food consumption in America, only beat out by Thanksgiving.  Amazing!

There are lots of great short-cut dips of this same style.  Lots of people like to mix a block of cream cheese with some salsa, and there’s the Rotel + Velveeta dip, and heck, I love this one.   This Chili Con Queso is sort of a homemade version of those.  It takes just a few minutes to make and we love it.  It’s warm and creamy, and it’s got a little bit of a kick.  If you want it spicy, just add some jalapenos or red pepper flakes to the mix.  I love that you could adjust the flavors to add in things you love.  I took it to a Christmas party this past winter and everyone loved it.  I couldn’t stop eating it myself!

Start with sauteing diced onions in a little butter

then add chopped tomatoes, green chilis and spices (this is where you could add in extra heat if you wanted to)

Simmer that for a bit

and toss in some pepperjack cheese that’s beenmixed with a little cornstarch

final addition is some cream cheese, which melts right in

And you have a velvety smooth and creamy dip with bites of tomatoes and chilies and the kick of the spices.

Do any of you have the little mini-crock pot?  My big crock pot came with this little one and one batch of dip fits perfectly inside!  That way you can keep it nice and warm on the table.

Or just pop it in a baking dish.  You can always keep it warm in the oven until it’s time to serve, or zap it in the microwave.  Definitely a simple crowd pleaser.


Sara Wells
Meet The Author

Sara Wells

Sara Wells co-founded Our Best Bites in 2008. She is the author of three Bestselling Cook Books, Best Bites: 150 Family Favorite RecipesSavoring the Seasons with Our Best Bites, and 400 Calories or Less from Our Best Bites. Sara’s work has been featured in many local and national news outlets and publications such as Parenting MagazineBetter Homes & GardensFine CookingThe Rachel Ray Show and the New York Times.

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Questions & Reviews

  1. I have made this recipe a couple of times and each time I make it people are surprised how easy it is to make plus it is gone within minutes of placing it down. I usually a whole block of pepperjack cheese as well as the whole blcok of cream cheese and comes out very cheesy!!Very YUMMY!!

  2. I just made a double batch of this for Uncle Matt for fathers day. It is amazing.. so simple to make, yet so awesome!! Thanks Sara for saving me again! I was assigned the appetizers and we are having dinner at Lauren’s in a bit:)

  3. I just made this! It came together super easy, hardly dirtied any dishes, and is delicious! I used can of tomatoes with chilis (undrained) in lieu of the fresh, simply because it’s what I had on hand. It tastes very similar to a Tostitos-style queso dip. Yum! 🙂

  4. YUM!!!! I made this today but doubled the pepperjack and halved the cream cheese (my hubby isn't the biggest fan of cream cheese–he is a fool). It was DIVINE! Thank you for the recipe. Three of us polished off the whole recipe . . . whoops.

  5. This turned out really good, but I had made a double batch! When I read that you keep it in a small crock pot, I thought it'd fit nicely in my 2.5quart crock…I didn't actually click the link to the one you use to see that it's much smaller! The dip barely covered the bottom of my crock pot, so next time I'll definitely double or even triple the batch. Everyone loved it so I think we wouldn't have trouble getting rid of it if I made more. I used a smokey jack cheese instead of pepper jack, and a little bit of cheddar, and it tasted great.

  6. I made this over the weekend and it was a huge hit! Love it, thank you for the recipe!! I was in a hurry & didn't want to chop tomatoes so I used a can of the diced tomatoes & green chile's and it worked great – plus they were $0.59/can.

  7. Sara, thanks for your response! I know, it's a totally weird thing to be allergic too. I'm not sure if it's a real true allergy, or just a sensitivity to it, because I can eat all other kinds of dairy, but for some reason me + cream cheese has always led to horrible results. Maybe something about the consistency, or the way it's pasteurized? But all those awesome dips I am missing out on! If you think of any substitutions, I'd love to hear them.

  8. Ok—so I can't believe you posted this!! I make something similar every new years eve…in the form of a fondue-type dip…and it always turns out too runny…cornstarch! I can't believe the secret is cornstarch!! Thank you! Can't wait to try it!!!

  9. Yum, yum! I'm pretty sure we'll be going to a Super Bowl party, so I've already been thinking about what to bring and this fits the bill. I like that it's got some fresh ingredients instead of just cans of stuff. 🙂

  10. What is the purpose of the corn starch? Doesn't it get plenty thick with the cream cheese and the regular jack cheese?

  11. Recipe sounds YUMMY!! Where on earth can I find one of those mini crockpots?? It is too cute and just what I need for small batches. Do you have any idea where to purchase one??

  12. @Sara …. oh sure, way to egg me on 😉

    I may use this as a splurge later this week; my little guy wants enchiladas so I may make this dip to eat before dinner is ready with some chips.

    thx for the tip on using low-fat cream cheese!

  13. Jenn, it actually only has about 25 calories per tablespoon, and that's with full fat cream cheese! So you could easily have 1/4 C made with reduced cal cream cheese and a few chips for about 150 cals. Not horrible!

    MW- you poor thing! I'll have to think about a substitute. What part of cream cheese are you allergic to? You're not allergic to all dairy? There's marscapone…

  14. This looks so delicious! In fact, so many of your cream cheese-laden recipes look totally delicious, but the problem is: I'm allergic to cream cheese! Weird, right? Can you suggest a way to make this without it? Is there a similar substitute? Could I use regular cheese instead?

  15. that is SOOOOO not diet friendly!

    but sounds SOOOOO delicious! I wonder how it would taste to add some cooked ground hamburger to it to make it more of a meal?

  16. Yum! That looks fabulous! I have loved every recipe I have tried from here, so I think I need to make this one soon!

  17. I've been so excited for your super bowl recipes!! I also really appreciate your photography tips. I ordered the light thing on Amazon. After about 4 I don't have much light in my kitchen and my pics are too yellow then if I adjust the white balance it's too blue. Anyway I think it will help. LOVE YOUR RECIPES AND PICTURES!!! Thanks!!