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Get ready to rustle up some serious flavor with this Cowboy Queso! Packed with zesty sausage, hearty beans, and a kick of beer, it’s the perfect dip for any gathering—just grab your tortilla chips and dig in!

This appetizer is the perfect pairing for taco night or really any Mexican meal. And you’ll definitely want to serve it at your next party or potluck! Here are some of our other go-to dips to try next: easy taco dip, addicting bean dip or this classic 7-layer dip.

Cowboy queso in a skillet.

Reasons You’ll Love This Recipe

  • It’s a Crowd Favorite: Queso is always a welcome dip and especially when it tastes as incredible as cowboy queso!
  • Easy to Make: Just a handful of ingredients and about 20 minutes is all you need for the best Mexican-style dip ever!
  • SO Addicting: This appetizer will be the hit of any party! Once you start dipping, you just can’t stop!

What is Cowboy Queso?

This has quickly become my go-to dip when I need something easy that I know everyone will devour! Cowboy queso is very similar to our smoked queso dip, made with sausage and Velveeta cheese. However, this cowboy version is taken to the next level with the addition of beer, beans and corn! It’s quick and easy to whip up and makes a great appetizer for any occasion from parties to lazy weekends!

Ingredients in Cowboy Queso

Velveeta cheese is a must in this dip because it’s incredibly melty and has the creamiest texture for dipping. Combine that with the sausage and all of the other flavorful ingredients, and you’ll have an amazing appetizer for game day, parties, or family get-togethers. Check out the recipe card at the bottom of the post for exact measurements.

  • Mild Sausage: 1 pound cooked and crumbled.
  • Chili Powder: For a subtle kick of heat.
  • Onion powder: Gives this dip the perfect onion flavor.
  • Pale Ale Beer: Adds robust deep flavor.
  • Rotel: A delicious combination of diced tomatoes and green chilies.
  • Velveeta Cheese: Don’t try to substitute the Velveeta. You will love the creamy texture it gives the dip.
  • Monterey Jack Cheese: If you have the time, shred this yourself from a block. It will have the best flavor and melt more smoothly.
  • Black Beans: Rinse and drain for added fiber, flavor and texture.
  • Corn: Use canned or frozen corn for a hint of sweetness in every bite.
The top view of the ingredients for the dip, each individually labeled.

For Serving

  • Garnish: A garnish of fresh cilantro, diced tomatoes, and sliced jalapeños adds color, texture and extra flavor.
  • Tortilla Chips: The classic option for any type of queso dip!
Top view of the individual garnish ingredients, each labeled.

Beer Replacement

Use chicken broth or beef broth to replace the beer in this recipe if you prefer!

How to Make Cowboy Queso

This cowboy queso recipe requires little effort and has the best cheesy consistency and mouth-watering flavor! You won’t want to stop dipping!

  1. Cook the Sausage: In a large cast iron skillet, add the sausage. Cook and crumble over medium-high heat until no longer pink. Drain any grease once cooked through.
  2. Add Seasonings and Beer: Stir in the chili powder, onion powder, and beer. Allow the beer to cook and reduce for about 4-5 minutes.
  3. Add Cheese: Add the Velveeta and Monterey Jack cheeses. Reduce the heat to medium and melt the cheese, stirring occasionally.
  4. Add the Beans, Corn, and Rotel: Once the cheese is melted, stir in the beans, corn, and Rotel tomatoes and heat through for about 5 minutes. 
  5. Garnish and Serve: Garnish with chopped cilantro, diced tomatoes, and jalapeños. Serve warm with chips!

Cowboy Queso in the Crockpot

Cook and brown the sausage over the stove then drain any excess grease. Add all of the remaining ingredients to the crock pot. Cook on high for 2 hours or on low for 4 hours.

Tips and Variations

Here are some suggestions for ways that you can customize this dip to make it your own and ideas for fun serving options!

  • Swap the Meat: The sausage adds great flavor, but ground beef, chicken, or pork all work! Season with taco seasoning and cook before adding. Cooked chicken breast or carne asada would also be super tasty.
  • Add More Spice: Add spicy Rotel, hot sausage, sautéed diced jalapeños, a pinch of cayenne pepper or a dash of your favorite hot sauce for an extra fiery kick.
  • Serve With: Cowboy queso dip is delicious served with a variety of dippers like tortilla chips, pretzel bites, toasted bread, or even vegetables like celery and bell peppers.
Close up of cowboy quest in a skillet with 2 tortilla chips dipped in it.

How to Store Leftover Queso

This delicious cowboy queso dip is easy to store and keeps for days. Here’s the best way to keep it fresher longer.

  • In the Refrigerator: Simply transfer any leftovers to an airtight container and store it in the fridge for up to 3 days.
  • To Reheat: Transfer to a microwave-safe container and microwave on medium heat for 30-second intervals, stirring in between, until warmed through. Or, for more even heating, transfer the dip to a small saucepan over low heat, stirring consistently, until it’s hot and bubbly.
A chip being dipped in cowboy queso.

More Delicious Hot Dips

Hot dips are just SO delicious! If you are looking for more incredible dip recipes, you have to try some of our other tried and true favorites! The hardest part is deciding which one to make first!

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Cowboy Queso

By: Alyssa Rivers
Get ready to rustle up some serious flavor with this Cowboy Queso! Packed with zesty sausage, hearty beans, and a kick of beer, it's the perfect dip for any gathering—just grab your tortilla chips and dig in!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 8 people

Ingredients 

  • 1 pound mild sausage
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 cup pale ale beer
  • 10 ounces Rotel tomatoes with green chilies, drained
  • 16 ounces Velveeta cheese
  • 2 cups Monterey jack cheese shredded
  • 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup corn, canned or frozen
  • cilantro, tomatoes, and jalapenos, for serving
  • tortilla chips, for serving

Instructions 

  • In a large cast iron skillet, add the sausage. Cook and crumble over medium-high heat until no longer pink. Drain any grease once cooked through.
  • Stir in the chili powder, onion powder, and beer. Allow the beer to cook and reduce for about 4-5 minutes.
  • Add in the Velveeta cheese and Monterey Jack cheese. Reduce the heat to medium and melt the cheese, stirring occasionally.
  • Once the cheese is melted, stir in the beans, corn, and Rotel tomatoes and heat through for about 5 minutes.
  • Garnish with chopped cilantro, diced tomatoes, and jalapeños.
  • Serve warm with chips!

Video

Nutrition

Calories: 484kcalCarbohydrates: 21gProtein: 30gFat: 30gSaturated Fat: 15gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3gMonounsaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0.1gCholesterol: 90mgSodium: 1439mgPotassium: 594mgFiber: 4gSugar: 7gVitamin A: 985IUVitamin C: 5mgCalcium: 564mgIron: 2mg

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

Additional Info

Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: Tex Mex
Tried this recipe?Mention @alyssa_therecipecritic or tag #therecipecritic!

About Alyssa Rivers

Alyssa Rivers is the author of 'The Tried and True Cookbook', a professional food photographer and experienced recipe-developer. Having a passion for cooking, her tried and true recipes have been featured on Good Morning America, Today Food, Buzzfeed and more.

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