Our healthier version of chile con queso will have ooey-gooey-cheese lovers celebrating. Now you can enjoy this Tex-Mex dip without all the fat and calories. We replaced some of the cheese with a low-fat white sauce and used sharp Cheddar plus a splash of beer to boost the flavor. Our version cuts the calories in half and reduces total fat and saturated fat by nearly 60 percent.

EatingWell Test Kitchen
Source: EatingWell Magazine, January/February 2009


Recipe Summary

20 mins


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and cook, stirring, until soft and beginning to brown, 4 to 5 minutes. Add beer and cook until reduced slightly, about 1 minute. Add 1 cup milk and bring to a simmer.

  • Meanwhile, whisk the remaining 1/2 cup milk and cornstarch in a small bowl. Add to the pan and cook, stirring vigorously, until bubbling and thickened, 1 to 2 minutes. Reduce heat to low, add cheese and cook, stirring, until melted. Stir in drained tomatoes, lime juice, salt, chili powder and cayenne (if using). Serve warm, garnished with scallions and cilantro.


Make Ahead Tip: Cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days. Slowly reheat on the stove over medium heat or on Medium in the microwave.

Note: We like the flavor of Rotel brand diced tomatoes with green chiles the best in this dip. Choose original or mild, depending on your spice preference.

Nutrition Facts

84 calories; protein 4.1g; carbohydrates 5.1g; dietary fiber 0.4g; sugars 2g; fat 5g; saturated fat 2.6g; cholesterol 13.8mg; vitamin a iu 242.9IU; vitamin c 1.5mg; folate 7mcg; calcium 116.4mg; iron 0.1mg; magnesium 7.4mg; potassium 65.8mg; sodium 319mg.

Reviews (4)

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12 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 8
  • 4 star values: 3
  • 3 star values: 1
  • 2 star values: 0
  • 1 star values: 0
Rating: 4 stars
Substitute for beer? We have beer allergies here - any suggestions for what to use in place of beer? I know we could leave it out but was hoping for something to add to the taste... Read More
Rating: 5 stars
Wonderful Flavor I loved the hint of beer taste in the cheese. I made as directed and moved the cheese to a mini crock pot to keep it warm for New Years Eve. The next day I heated it up slowly in the same crock pot. De-Lish! Read More
Rating: 5 stars
Awesome queso dip I had no problems with this dip what so ever. I made homemade chips and my kids loved it. It was a nice thick cheesy dip. I used all 3 tablespoons of cornstarch no issues using all 3 tablespoons and I had no cornstarch taste with the dip. Didn't have pale ale on hand so I used a lager and 3/4 colby cheese and 1 cup sharp cheddar. I didn't add cilantro or scallions cause I didn't have any. This was an excellent fast dip. I can't wait to make this in canada when I can get my hands on some molson stock ale! Pros: fast quick and easy Read More
Rating: 4 stars
Nothing special wouldn't make again. I made this dip for a potluck. I wish I had done a trial-run because I didn't like it at all. It tasted pretty bland even with the spices onion and Rotel. My friends asked if there were potatoes in it if that gives you an idea of the consistency/flavor. It made a pretty big batch (about 4 cups) and less than 1 cup of this was eaten by a group of 20 people. I hate to say it but the calorie-cutting was NOT worth it here and I won't be making this again. Pros: Quick and easy to make standard ingredients Cons: Weird consistency flavors don't mesh well Read More
Rating: 5 stars
Like restaurant queso! I really liked this healthier version of queso. I disagree with the review that said there is too much cornstarch. You can't taste it like they said. I saved the Rotel liquid to thin it out a bit if needed & did use a little of it but not much. My husband even liked it. He doesn't usually like the healthier version of anything!:). I topped my serving with fresh cilantro & it was great! I will make this again. Pros: Lower fat less calories Read More
Rating: 3 stars
Adjusted ingedients It had good flavor hiding underneath the beer and the corn starch. The 3 tablespoons of corn starch was overkill. It left it with a chalky aftertaste. And so much of it was not needed. It can be made without the beer and still tastes awesome. I added the scallions and cilantro into the dip instead of serving fresh on the top and then added 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper and it was great! Pros: Easy to make Cons: WAY too much corn starch Read More
Rating: 5 stars
Pretty good flavor though it definitely tastes low-fat. We enjoyed it fresh but it did not taste good reheated the next day. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
This dish is so full of flavor and so decadent that I had trouble convincing my husband that it was low fat. I had to show him the recipe on your website! Absolutely delicious. We added some 95% lean ground beef and enjoyed this with some chips we made in our air fryer. Will absolutely make this dish again. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
This recipe was fast and easy! I will never buy that jarred queso dip again!! Read More