Are you seeking a pumped-up version of your favorite cheese dip? Here it is! This smoky cheese dip is loaded with flavor whether made on a smoker or a charcoal grill. It's perfect for all kinds of gatherings and parties.
1-28 oz. pkgs. Alma Creamery Pepper Cheddar cheese curdsdepending on how spicy you prefer your queso
2lbs.pork sausagecooked, crumbled, and fats drained well
2 - 10oz.cans diced tomatoes and green chilieswith juices
6-8clovesgarlicminced or crushed (1-2 Tbs.)
1-2Tbs.dehydrated onion flakes
1/2cupbeermay substitute broth or milk
Pickled jalapenos, pico de gallo or salsa, and tortilla chips, for serving
Crunchy-Sweet Pickled Jalapeno Peppers
10-15 jalapenos (depending on their size) sliced
4whole garlic clovespeeled and smashed slightly
1-2 tsp. black peppercorns
1cupwhite distilled vinegar
Make the Smoked Queso
Preheat the smoker to 350 degrees F.
Place all ingredients except the beer into a heavy-duty aluminum pan; place the queso onto the center rack of the smoker and close the lid. Smoke the queso for 30-40 minutes (or until the queso reaches the desired amount of smokiness you prefer), gently stirring the queso as it cooks, adding the beer as needed, until the queso reaches a creamy, smooth consistency.
Serve the queso topped with pickled jalapenos, pico de gallo, and tortilla chips.
Make the Pickled Jalapenos
This recipe makes two 16 oz. jars of pickled refrigerator pickles.
Divide the jalapeno slices, garlic cloves, and peppercorns between the two (16 oz.) jars.
In a small saucepan over medium heat, prepare the brine by combining the vinegar, water, sugar, and salt; stir occasionally until the sugar and salt are completely dissolved, approx. 4-5 minutes; remove from the heat. Pour the prepared brine over the jalapenos in each jar; let cool completely to room temperature. Cover the jars with lids, then refrigerate. Pickled jalapenos will keep for up to 3-4 weeks in the fridge.
Please note: As the pickled jalapenos chill in the fridge, they may mellow and become sweeter. OR, they may become spicier! You can never predict jalapenos. :)
Cheese dip is delicious made on a charcoal grill if you don’t own a smoker. The charcoal aroma doesn’t add smokiness (exactly) but it does add it’s own unique flavor to the cheese dip that’s delicious. If you have a propane grill, you can smoke the queso by placing some wood chips into a disposable pan that is then set beside the pan of queso as it cooks.I use one of two types of pans for smoking queso: a large heavy-duty aluminum pan or a 12″ cast iron skillet. If you opt for the for aluminum, I’d advise doubling up on the pans since they are more sturdy together and will be very full of hot, easily-sloshed cheese dip by the time it is fully smoked and ready to eat. An aluminum pan is nice because it’s disposable (yay!), but I really like how well the cast iron skillet holds in the heat.If you don’t want the cheese dip to be too spicy, you can omit the pepper jack cheese and substitute a cheddar or cheddar/blend of some sort. Gouda is a delicious addition, as well. Adding this second type of cheese brings good depth of flavor and contrast to the mild flavor of the Velveeta cheese.Yes, this queso dip can be made with Velveeta cheese (or any processed cheese, no matter the brand) all by itself. The cheese dip won’t be as complex in flavor, but still creamy and enjoyable.You can use any type of pre-cooked meat in this recipe….cooked sausage, cooked ground beef, ground venison, or ground bison. Smoked queso is also delicious with cooked pulled pork, so don’t forget that option.
Keyword: Blanco Dip, on the grill, with shredded cheese