Vegan Queso – this nacho dip is creamy and “cheesy”, but dairy free, oil free, and made from whole foods. Grab a bag of tortilla chips and get to dipping!
This Vegan Queso has been a long time coming. You all know I have a chips and salsa addiction. What you don’t know is that I used to have a chips and queso addiction too. I’ve made a few versions of nacho “cheese” dip at home that I have definitely enjoyed, but they didn’t necessarily remind me of the jarred kind I used to love. I have been wanting to make my Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese sauce into a nacho cheese sauce for some time now and I finally did it! It’s creamy, cheesy, smoky, a little spicy, and so darn delicious!
Inspiration From My Famous Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese
It’s the number one most popular recipe on my blog for a reason – it’s amazingly delicious! My Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese has been winning over vegans and carnivores alike, kids and adults, men and women. I was even on The Doctors recently serving up this dairy free dream to unsuspecting mac and cheese loving children. They ALL loved it!
I have always wanted to transform this vegan cheese sauce into a spicy vegan cheese dip as well and, thankfully, I’ve finally done it! It really tastes like cheese sauce you guys!! I added some smoked paprika for some smoky notes and green chiles and salsa for a little heat. I promise you won’t be able to stop eating this stuff!
How to Make Vegan Queso
This Vegan Queso needs less than 10 ingredients and no special skills. The only prep work is peeling and cutting the butternut squash. You could even skip that part and buy pre-chopped squash if you prefer. Then just simmer the squash until tender. You throw the cashews in there, too, so no need to soak them first. Then, bust out your blender and purée until smooth. Add a few extras, gently heat until bubbly, grab those chips, and dive in! Snacking bliss!
I hope you love this Vegan Queso as much as we do! If you try it, please come back and leave me a message below with your feedback. You can also find me on social media. Be sure to tag @veggie_inspired and #veggieinspired so I’m sure to see it. Enjoy!
Vegan Queso - this nacho dip is creamy and "cheesy", but dairy free, oil free, and made from whole foods. Grab a bag of tortilla chips and get to dipping!
- 1 1/2 cups cubed butternut squash (peeled and seeded before cutting into cubes - or you can buy a package of pre-cut squash)
- 1/2 cup raw cashews
- 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
- 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp turmeric
- 3-4 tbsp non-dairy milk (or water)
- 1/4 cup your favorite salsa (I like Trader Joe's Salsa Authentica)
- 1 4.5 oz can diced green chiles
Add the cubed butternut squash and cashews to a pot and cover with water by at least an inch. Bring to a boil, lower the heat to med, and simmer for about 20 minutes until the squash is fork tender.
When the squash/cashews are done, drain and pour into a high speed blender.
Add the lemon juice, smoked paprika, nutritional yeast, salt, and turmeric. Blend until completely smooth, adding the non-dairy milk (or water) 1 tbsp at a time to get things moving if needed. You'll need to use the tamper to push the ingredients to the bottom. Don't make it too thin! Use just enough liquid to get it all blended. I used about 3-4 tbsp.
Once it's completely smooth, pour the mixture into a pot (you can use the same one you used for the squash/cashews) and stir in the salsa and diced green chiles.* Gently heat the queso over medium heat until thick and bubbly.**
Serve immediately with Tortilla Chips.
*Alternately, you can add the salsa and green chiles to the blender with the other ingredients. I like my queso to be a little bit chunky, so I just stir them in.
**This queso is good cold as well, but I prefer it warm.