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Tortilla chip scooping out some Roasted Poblano Queso Dip

Roasted Poblano Queso Dip

Serve this spiced, cheesy dip for your next Game Day celebration!
Course Soirees/Appetizers
Cuisine North American
Keyword queso dip, roasted poblano
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 10 people


  • 2 large poblano peppers
  • 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1 small white onion, minced (about 1/4 cup)
  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1/3 cup all purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1/2 cup lager or ale (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • kosher salt and black pepper to taste
  • 8 ounces monterey jack cheese, grated
  • 8 ounces gouda cheese, grated
  • 8 ounces white extra sharp cheddar cheese, grated
  • 1/4 cup cilantro leaves, chopped
  • tortilla chips to serve

Optional Garnishes

  • chopped red onion
  • thinly sliced jalapeño pepper
  • fresh cilantro leaves


Roast, then Prep, the Poblanos

  • Heat a 12" cast iron skillet over high heat.  the pan over high heat. Once the skillet is hot, press your poblanos onto the surface, make sure as much of the skin is touching the skillet as possible. You can use tongs to press the pepper down onto the skillet if your hand is getting too hot.
  • Flip the poblanos over to roast each side.
  • Once you've seared the peppers remove the them from the pan, and put them into a bowl, then cover the bowl with a clean tea towel. 
  • Allow the peppers to steam while you prep the rest of the ingredients- or for 10 minutes. 
  • After the pepper has steamed for 10 minutes, use your finger to peel or rub off the charred bits of pepper skin. Discard any pepper peels. 
  • Once you have peeled away the skin, give the peppers a quick rinse under cold water, then pat them dry.
  • Cut off the stem-end of the pepper, then lay your knife parallel to the cutting board and cut the pepper in half, lengthwise.
  • Use the back of your knife to scrape away the white membrane and the seeds. Discard the seeds, membrane, and tops.
  • Cut the pepper halves into strips a 1/2" wide, then turn the strips ninety degrees and cut them down to 1/2" pieces. Set aside.

Prepare the Dip

  • Return the skillet to the burner and heat to medium-high. Melt the butter in the pan, before adding the onions, garlic, and poblanos. Saute, stirring frequently with a wooden spoon.
  • Saute the veggies until they're glossy and opaque- about 4 minutes.
  • Add the all-purpose flour to the pan. Stir the flour into the veggies, then allow it cook for at least 1 minute.

Creating the Milk Sauce (Béchamel)

  • Carefully pour the whole milk to into the roux that we created in the pan. Stir the milk constantly as you pour it in because it will begin to cook- and thicken- immediately.
  • Add the beer (or additional milk if you're not using beer) to the pan- remember to stir!
  • Now add the lime juice. This citric acid will help prevent the sauce from curdling and becoming grainy. Allow the mixture to heat until it begins to thicken, stirring frequently.

Flavor and Develop the Mornay Sauce

  • To flavor the sauce, stir in the dijon mustard, ground cumin, chili powder, 1 teaspoon of kosher salt, and a 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper.

SUPER Important Trip About Cheese Sauces

  • After you've seasoned the sauce, turn the heat off, or remove the pan from the stove altogether. Add all of the cheese to the sauce in the pan. 
  • DON'T allow the dip to boil- or even simmer- after you've added the cheese. The cheese will curdle, which will make your sauce clumpy and gross. Once you've added the cheese to the sauce, stir until you no longer see individual strings of cheese, and the queso is smooth.
  • After you've achieved a smooth consistency, stir in the fresh cilantro. Dip a chip into the queso and taste to see if it needs salt or pepper. Add more as needed. 
  • If the queso dip is a little on the runny side, that's okay. Give it a minute, or two; as the sauce sits, it'll thicken- just remember to stir it.

How to Serve

  • Garnish the Roasted Poblano Queso Dip with chopped red onions, thin jalapeño slices, and some more cilantro. Keep uncovered. 
  • To keep the dip warm, I recommend transferring it to a slow cooker, or to a pot warmer. Add more milk if the queso seems to be thickening too much (adjust the seasonings as needed).
  • The dip is good- held on warm- for up to four hours. Be sure to give the dip a stir every so often. The longer this Roasted Poblano Queso Dip sits, the thicker (and gooier) it gets.
  • Save any leftovers in a food container in the refrigerator for up to 48 hours. 


Once you're ready to reheat:
add a splash of milk to the dip, then nuke it in the microwave on 1 minute bursts until it's reached your preferred consistency. Stir after each minute. Add more milk (a tablespoon at a time) until you've achieved a smooth consistency. Adjust the seasonings as needed.