This creamy chilled queso dip is the perfect summer spread. Make it ahead of time for ultimate flavor then serving with tortilla chips or pretzels. It’s super flavorful and extra cheesy!

This title does this delicious dip no justice.

creamy chilled queso dip

I wish I could explain how incredible this cheesy spread is. It has all the incredible flavors of a melty queso but is chilled and spreadable… so it’s ideal for summer.

grated cheddar and monterey jack

This dip… oh my gosh. This has quickly become our new favorite dip. It’s served cold, but is super creamy and almost mousse-like. It’s very pimento cheese-esque, but I’ll go as far to say that I think we like this BETTER than pimento cheese.

Which is huge. 

scallions, jalapeños and red peppers

When I tell you that this is the ultimate pool snack, I am not exaggerating.

Sure, it does have to be kept cold. But if you pack it on ice then set it on a bowl over ice, you’re golden. You can use something fancy like this or literally just set a bowl of it over a larger bowl of ice. It will be gone in minutes! 

creamy chilled queso dip

This dip turned out better than we could ever imagine. Lacy and I wanted to make this after she had Hillstone’s queso last year – a creamy, cheese, tex-mex dip but served COLD.

I will admit that I was not on board at first. It didn’t sound overly appealing to me. Heck, after all, one of the best things about queso is the creamy, melty cheese pulls. 


I am happy to say that I was wrong. This dip is everything I want it to be and more. It tastes exactly like how you’d think a hot, melty queso would taste.

creamy chilled queso dip

And that’s the bonus. After all, you’re not going to make and serve hot melty queso at the pool. There isn’t an easy way to keep queso hot, unless you rig up some kind of mini crockpot and extension cord situation. 

creamy chilled queso dip

Here’s how it comes together!

The base is a mix of mayo and grated cheese. OH yes. No, there isn’t something you can sub for the mayo. Sour cream or greek yogurt just doesn’t give this the same effect.

The key is that you MUST grate the cheese yourself and the dip turns out better if you finely grate the cheese into smaller shreds – not thicker ones. Use a mix of sharp cheddar and monterey jack for the perfect queso flavor.

Then the adds in! I like pickled jalapeños, red bell peppers and scallions. Dice all of them into the same size, roughly. A little lime juice too.

Stir everything together with a spatula – don’t blend or puree it. Then stick it in the fridge for a few hours or even overnight.

creamy chilled queso dip

As it sits, the flavor develops. The consistency turns into that mousse-like spreadable but still dippable cheese. 

This dip works with tortilla chips, pretzels, crackers, celery or carrot sticks – almost anything. You really can look at it as a spread and/or a dip. Put it on burgers (like I did with pimento cheese here), sandwiches, in pasta or even a casserole. 

It doesn’t look like anything overly special, but you have to try it! Mind = blown.

creamy chilled queso dip

Creamy Chilled Queso

Creamy Chilled Queso

This creamy chilled queso dip is the perfect summer spread. Make it ahead of time for ultimate flavor then serving with tortilla chips or pretzels. It's super flavorful and extra cheesy!
4.99 from 70 votes
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  • 1 ½ cups finely grated sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1 ½ cups finely grated monterey jack cheese
  • ¾ cup mayonnaise
  • cup diced pickled jalapeños
  • cup diced red pepper
  • ¼ cup diced scallions
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • kosher salt and pepper
  • tortilla chips, for serving
  • chili lime seasoning, for serving


  • Stir together the cheese, mayo, peppers, scallions, cilantro, lime juice and a big pinch of salt and pepper. Mix everything together until combined.
  • Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours (or even overnight) before serving. This is great right out of the fridge but I like to let it come to room temperature for 15 minutes or so before serving.
  • Serve with tortilla chips, crackers, pretzels or veggies. I sprinkle on some tajin or chili powder right before serving.

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creamy chilled queso dip

This is my heaven.