The Simple Spicy Way To Jazz Up Jarred Queso Dip

Queso is a beloved topping and side, but the jarred version of this dip isn't always up to par. With chains like Moe's and Chipotle serving well-seasoned, creamy queso, the kind sold at grocery stores seems dull by comparison. Fortunately, there are simple ways to jazz up this item. Adding a few garnishes to the store-bought queso will make it just as appetizing as its restaurant counterpart.

The biggest difference between jarred queso and the kind made in restaurants is the spice factor. Store-bought queso is often mild, lacking the kick that adds flavor to Mexican cuisine. Too often, jarred queso tastes more like nacho cheese sauce. Adding jalapeños and other peppers will spice things up. Those who don't like their dip hot can use ingredients like pickled juices and garlic to enhance its flavor instead.

Other toppings will add to the jarred dip's taste and texture, and there are plenty to experiment with. Tomatoes often come in premade queso, but fresh ones will liven it up further. Chopped onions are an obvious way to add zest, and avocados make a unique topping. The options are endless, though some require more effort than others.

Meat, beans, and more cheese makes optimal queso

Ingredients like jalapeño peppers will spice up jarred queso. However, it takes more than that to bring it to the level of restaurant dip. For those willing to put more effort into their enhancements, adding meat works surprisingly well. Bacon bits bring flavor and a crunchy texture to store-bought dip, while chicken and ground beef add protein to the cheesy side. All of these will turn queso into a more filling and flavorful treat. 

Beans also pair well with queso. Mixing black or pinto beans into jarred dip will turn a snack into full-blown nachos. Melting extra cheese has a similar effect, with the added bonus of multiple flavors. Of course, anyone willing to put that much effort into their dip might be better served making a homemade queso recipe. Jarred dip is often a convenience item, and working too hard to improve it almost defeats the purpose.