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Nacho Cheese Dip

Skip the store-bought dip and make this homemade velvety spicy nacho cheese dip in just 10 minutes! It’s always a hit for dipping chips, veggies, soft pretzels, crackers, and more!

nacho cheese dip and chips on table

Spicy Nacho Cheese

This is is the best nacho cheese dip and not just because it tastes so much better than store-bought but because it’s creamy, flavorful, and costs less to make it from scratch. You can taste the flavor of the cheese that you can’t get from the overly processed store-bought stuff and it’s so easy to make in just 10 minutes.

If you like a bit of heat, this nacho cheese dip recipe has a nice kick to it. It’s the perfect party dip that is usually gone in as little time as it takes to make. It makes a delicious Mexican appetizer for family night and a quick and easy dip for when I’m hosting a crowd!

grated cheese on cutting board

Best Cheese for Melting

Sometimes I’ll use Velveeta, similar to my Velveeta queso (a 2 ingredient dip you’ve got to try!) because I like that it melts nicely, but there are also times when I’ll use good quality sharp cheddar. Ideally, you want to use a cheese that melts nicely (think fondue). Mozzarella, Gruyere, Pepper Jack, Fontina, or Gouda are some great options.

Ways to Use It

  • Family movie night calls for homemade tortilla chips and nacho dip!
  • When hosting a party, set up a nacho bar and have a variety of dips, including salsa, sour cream, guacamole, and of course, a spicy nacho cheese dip.
  • My kids love to use it as a pretzel cheese dip with homemade pretzel bites, which makes for a great after-school snack idea.
  • Drizzle it on top of sheet pan nachos or baked skillet nachos for a nice finish to the loaded toppings!
  • A great way to get your kids to eat more raw veggies is to serve a delicious dip along with them!
  • This muffin tin snack tray is something my kids love. It’s a great way to have a variety of different snacks to choose from which means they can pick and choose what they want to dip!
nacho cheese dip and chips on table

Tips

  • Is the sauce too thick? Stir in an extra 1-2 Tablespoons of warmed milk.
  • Transfer the dip to a mini crockpot, or if no kids are around, a fondue bowl, to keep it warm and melty.
  • Dice up Velveeta before melting. It will melt better for a nice smooth consistency.
  • If using cheddar, make sure it’s good quality and freshly grated from a block. The anti-clumping additives used in pre-shredded cheese don’t allow for easy melting.
  • Adjust the spice. Add a little more hot sauce or cayenne pepper if you like your dip extra spicy. You could even want to add in some diced jalapeno!
  • Omit the spice if you don’t like any spice at all. It’ll still be great!

Storing & Reheating

To store: This dip is best served immediately, so it’s not recommended to try and make it too far ahead. It can be stored in the fridge for up to 3 days, covered, however, the texture will change over time.

To reheat: Reheat the dip in the microwave or gently on the stove top until warmed through.

nachos with toppings in cardboard container

More Delicious Mexican Dips:

nacho cheese dip in bowl and chips

Nacho Cheese Dip

5 from 2 votes
Skip the store-bought dip and make this homemade velvety spicy nacho cheese dip in just 10 minutes! It's always a hit for dipping chips, veggies, soft pretzels, crackers, and more!
Prep Time: 5 mins
Cook Time: 5 mins
Total Time: 10 mins
Servings: 8

Ingredients 

  • 1 Tablespoon butter
  • 1/2 Tablespoon corn starch , or all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper , more to taste
  • 1 cup milk , warm in microwave 15 seconds
  • 8 ounces cheddar cheese or Velveeta
  • 2-3 teaspoons hot sauce (I prefer Frank's) , more to taste
  • S&P , to taste

For serving: Tortilla chips, soft pretzels, vegetables

    Instructions

    • Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Sprinkle the cornstarch or flour over the butter along with the cayenne pepper. Stir constantly and cook for about 1 minute.
      mixing roux in pot with red spoon
    • Next slowly pour in the milk while whisking it fast. Continue whisking and cooking until it has thickened (but still pourable). Be careful to watch it so it does not burn.
      pouring milk into white pot
    • Remove from heat. Stir in the cheese until and stir until smooth. The sauce will continue to thicken as it cools.
      mixing shredded cheese in pot
    • Season with salt and pepper, to taste (I start with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper). Add 2-3 teaspoons hot sauce and more cayenne pepper depending on heat preference. If it's too thick, you can whisk in a Tablespoon or two more of warmed milk.
      mixing cheese dip with spoon
    • Place in a mini crockpot to keep warm and gooey. If it thickens, reheat in the microwave for 15 seconds. Serve with tortilla chips. Store leftovers in an airtight container.
      cheese sauce in crock pot

    Notes

    Cheese: If you are using processed American cheese (Velveeta), dice it up before adding. It will result in a creamier texture. If using shredded cheese, make sure to use freshly grated high quality cheese. 
    Spices: If you prefer a little spice, add in extra hot sauce and 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper. 
    Storage: This dip is best served immediately after making. You can store in a covered container up to 3 days in the refrigerator. but the texture will change slightly. Reheat in the microwave or the stove top until warmed. 

    Serving: 2Tablespoon | Calories: 139kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 35mg | Sodium: 183mg | Potassium: 47mg | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 352IU | Calcium: 221mg | Iron: 1mg
    Course: Condiment
    Cuisine: American
    Author: Jamielyn Nye

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