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Queso. This creamy, cheese sauce is made with REAL cheese! Enjoy the classic Tex Mex Queso at home with this easy to make recipe! 

A chip dipping into homemade queso.

  How do you make Queso with real cheese? 

The trick to making Queso with real cheese is to use a combination of cornstarch and evaporated milk. NOT CONDENSED MILK. This is a trick I learned from the food geniuses at Serious Eats. If you’re into the science behind it you can check out the article on Smooth, Stable Cheese Sauces

To make homemade queso:

  1. Shred cheese of choice.
  2. Coat with cornstarch.
  3. Saute diced onion in medium size skillet. Add in minced garlic, diced tomato and diced green chiles. 
  4. Add in the evaporated milk. Stir. 
  5. Add the cheese, stir until melted. 
Shredded cheese ready to make homemade queso cheese dip.

What cheese do you use to make queso? 

The best cheeses to use are cheeses that melt nicely. Which are mild cheddars, Monterey Jack or Pepper Jack. I have found that sharp cheddars are tasty, but they give a slightly gritty texture. It’s not overpowering, but it is noticeable. If you don’t mind that then go for the sharp cheddar! 

Use cheese that you have to shred yourself since the bagged pre-shredded cheeses come with powder on them that can give a gritty texture to your end result.  

A skillet filled with homemade queso.

What to serve with Queso? 

The best choice is going to be some tortilla chips! Dipping chips in Queso served with a margarita is my idea of a perfect meal! 

Chips and Queso are also a great appetizer for any classic Tex Mex meal like these Ground beef tacos. OR these slow cooker carnitas. 

Want to add some extras to this Queso dip? Here’s some ideas:

  • Ground beef
  • Cooked Mexican chorizo 
  • Jalapeños (dice some up and saute with the onions in the first step)
  • Bacon 
  • Hot Sauce drizzle
  • Black beans and corn
  • pico de Gallo
A skillet filled with homemade queso and topped with fresh pico de Gallo.

Tips for making this cheese dip:

  • Don’t use pre-shredded cheese, this cheese will have a powder on it that creates a gritty texture. 
  • Some cheeses like sharp cheddar or sharp white cheddar will give a gritty texture also. If you have bad luck with a particular cheese take note and let us know in the comments. 
  • Evaporated milk is necessary since it has less water content to it and more milk proteins. 
  • To reheat: add leftover queso to a skillet and heat over low heat, once it starts to melt, add a bit more milk to it. You can adjust the amount needed to get the desired consistency.
A chip coated in creamy homemade queso.

More recipes you may enjoy:


5 from 3 votes
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Servings: 6
Author: Serene
Queso. This creamy, cheese sauce is made with REAL cheese! Enjoy the classic Tex Mex Queso at home with this easy to make recipe! 
A chip dipping into homemade queso.


  • 8 ounces mild cheddar cheese shredded
  • 8 ounces monterey jack cheese shredded
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch 
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1/2 cup white onion diced
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/2 cup roma tomato diced
  • 1 jalapeno* diced (seeds & membranes removed)
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 cup evaporated milk


  • Add the shredded cheese to a medium size bowl. Sprinkle with cornstarch and stir briefly to ensure all the cheese is coated with the cornstarch. 
  • Heat the oil in a medium size skillet over medium heat. Add in the diced onion and jalapeno. Cook until the onion is softened and translucent. 
  • Add in the minced garlic, diced tomato Cook briefly for 1 minute while stirring. 
  • Add in the seasonings (oregano, cumin, salt, chili powder) stir to combine. 
  • Stir in the evaporated milk, scrape the pan to ensure all veggies are released from the pan. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low. 
  • Add in the shredded cheese. Cook over low heat stirring while the cheese melts. 
  • Serve immediately, while warm. 



  1. Can substitute the jalapeño with diced green chiles or a fresh poblano pepper if desired. If using diced green chiles, add these to the skillet when adding in the tomato.


Serving: 1 | Calories: 386kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 22g | Fat: 30g | Saturated Fat: 17g | Cholesterol: 86mg | Sodium: 874mg | Potassium: 229mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 889IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 671mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Like this? Leave a comment below!

Welcome to my kitchen!

Welcome to the House of Yumm!! My name is Serene. I’m the food photographer, recipe developer, and official taste tester around these parts.

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  1. WOW, this queso looks amazing! And the bowl is super cute, I think I need to make a trip to WorldMarket very soon! 🙂

  2. Yep, we always have the cheese dip as one given app at every gathering here in Louisiana too! I’ve never put pico in mine, but I love this idea!!

    1. Thanks so much Jaren! I just love how fresh the pico is, I loved using it instead of the canned stuff. Definitely a winner for us!

  3. I love me some queso dip! The pico and chorizo are the perfect addition to spice it up, perfect for bringing to parties!

  4. I have lived in the south since I was 2, but my parents are from the midwest and I STILL feel like a fraud when I say ‘ya’ll’. If you can pull it off you are doing better than me!! Also. This dip looks amazing. You certainly pulled queso off!

    1. I’m so glad I’m not the only one Heather! I feel like a complete fraud when I try it out. I’m waiting for someone to tell me to just give up. And thanks so much 🙂 At least I can do my best to master southern cooking if I can’t pull off the accent and phrases right?

  5. That looks so delicious, I can’t believe I’ve never tried it… Delicious food always makes a great party even better :).