National Queso Day: Where To Find The Best Food Freebies And Deals

September 20th is National Queso Day! While you can apparently thank the good foodies of Chihuahua, Mexico, for queso, it first came to the United States through Tex-Mex cuisine around 1900 (via National Day). Things got kicked up a notch when Velveeta arrived on the queso scene in 1939. While the word "queso" is simply Spanish for "cheese," expect to get dip if you order it (via U.S. Dairy). You may also see this dip described as "chile con queso" ("chiles with cheese"), and it can be made with peppers or even spicy sausage. 

Fans of old-school queso prefer a recipe that includes Velveeta, Ro-Tel tomatoes, and green chiles while innovators have created queso from aged orange cheddar, white cheddar, and Monterey Jack. White queso typically tends to be a little thinner. The different varieties might get a spicy kick from green chiles, jalapenos, or a combination of them. Queso often gets added flavor from cumin or chili powder.

Whatever type of queso is your favorite, the time has come to celebrate, and different restaurants are here to help. Here is where you can find fabulous deals on your favorite cheesy dip.

National Queso Day loyalty rewards

Loyalty rewards members at Taco John's are due for a treat. On September 13, the chain rolled out its Queso Blanco, which contains three kinds of cheese along with red peppers, jalapeño peppers, and smoky hatch chiles. In an offer that started September 18th and runs till the 20th, all Loyalty Guests can help themselves to a free side of chips with Queso Blanco (via QSR magazine). However, you have to have the chain's mobile app in order to get a QR code, which you can use in person at the restaurant or through the app. While Taco John's pairs its new queso with chips, we don't see why you couldn't (or shouldn't) smother any of the chain's other items with this dip.

Pancheros is also adding a cheesy treat for loyalty rewards members, per QSR magazine. Starting on National Queso Day and ending on October 1st, Pancheros will reward loyalty program members across the country with free queso on their entrees. People have until September 20th to download the Pancheros app and get a loyalty membership. In addition, Pancheros observed the holiday by naming a "Queso King." The cheese-munching monarch of 2021, Josh D., can enjoy a whole year of free queso at his local Pancheros and an honorary queso cup to boot.

Free queso for a year

On The Border has launched a wonderful thing called a "Queso Club" that kicked off at the start of September (via On The Border's website). Border Rewards account holders who acquire a club subscription can have free queso for 365 consecutive days. But that's not all. Normally, the free dip comes with a cost, as people must purchase a $1 Queso Club subscription and order a full-priced bowl of queso to start off. However, in a statement shared with Mashed, On The Border revealed that for National Queso Day, "the first 100 guests to sign up online for On The Border's Queso Club will receive a free membership."

This offer is a golden opportunity for On The Border fans and the brand itself. "Queso is our number-one selling menu item," said Chief Marketing Officer Edithann Ramey (via Restaurant News). "I've even heard firsthand from guests they're happily addicted! Our guests are already used to annual subscriptions for all kinds of things, but we wanted to give them a subscription that gives back." And "an entire year of free spicy, cheesy goodness" sounds like a pretty scrumptious way to achieve that while attracting subscribers.

Queso promos for a lucky few

Moe's Southwest Grill deserves a special mention for offering free queso for a year to 21 people in honor of both its 21st anniversary and National Queso Day! As described in a statement shared with Mashed, customers simply make a purchase through the member rewards program for free entry (which means you need to sign up if you haven't already). However, each purchase up to National Queso Day serves as a new entry. Moe's has a history of fun Queso Day promotions and has offered both free queso and fun items like a T-shirt in the past (via Twitter).

Barberitos, a burrito chain found in the Southeast that has just 50 locations (per the Barberitos website), is also giving queso-lovers something to celebrate (via Franchising). Exclusively through the company's mobile app, customers can treat themselves to a free small serving of queso on September 20th.

You might also love this Torchy's Tacos offer. The SA Current reports that from National Queso Day to the 26th of September, customers can get free deliveries from Torchy's Tacos restaurants when ordering on the Torchy's App or