Looking for a delicious vegan queso dip that’s also allergy-friendly? I’ve got you covered with this recipe that is dairy-free, nut-free, gluten-free and completely whole food plant-based. It also comes together in no time, so it makes the perfect snack with some veggies or oil-free tortilla chips. What are you waiting for?
Maybe it’s just me, but I’m constantly on the hunt for flavorful dips, and sauces. They really take a simple meal up a notch, making it taste like something that required a lot more effort than it did. The perfect dip can make your taste buds dance, and this one does just that.
Queso dip was somewhat of a guilty pleasure before I went whole food plant-based (WFPB). I’ve tried a few since making the switch and they were good, but always made with cashews, so not something I could send to school with my girls as a snack. Here in Ontario, the schools are typically nut-free environments to protect those with this life-threatening allergy. As such, I’ve gotten used to converting old favourites so they are not only WFPB, but nut-free as well.
For this dip, I knew I wanted to add a healthy twist to it. I love a snack that you can feel good about eating. So, I decided on white beans as the base to add some fibre, minerals and the magical goodness of legumes. If you haven’t heard, legumes are amazing for our health. They are high in fibre and protein, while also being naturally low in fat and free of cholesterol. They also may help to lower cholesterol, blood pressure, and offer better blood sugar control in diabetics. Amazing!
I knew white beans wouldn’t give that creamy queso texture on their own though. So, I added some hemp heart to add back some healthy fats. Hemp hearts are a great source of essential omega-3 fatty acids and protein.
I wanted to make this recipe quick and easy to prepare, so I took a shortcut to save you some chopping. Using salsa saves you some valuable time and adds the same flavours you’d get from including tomatoes, onions and jalapenos.
For this quick and easy version, you will need:
Chunky salsa – choose mild, medium or hot based on your heat preference.
Red bell pepper – small
Turmeric powder – for colour and the amazing health benefits.
Salt – optional
Black Pepper – increases the absorbability of turmeric for increased benefits.
This vegan queso comes together in no time with the use of canned white beans. You can use any variety you like, just aim for one with no salt added. If you don’t have canned beans, you can use dried if you prefer. Just cook them prior to making this recipe.
For the salsa, choose a chunky or extra chunky variety if you can. If your salsa is a little watery, you can adjust by adding a few extra tablespoons of beans. Aim for salsa that has ingredients you recognize, no added oil and low sodium if you can. Then choose your level of heat. I tend to use mild so the kids will still enjoy it, but feel free to use medium or hot if you prefer things spicy.
Making Vegan Queso Dip
Grab your blender and be ready for a delicious dip that comes together quickly.
Take your small red pepper and remove the core and seeds. Then give it just a rough chop, it’s going in the blender anyway.
If you’re using canned beans, drain them through a fine-mesh strainer and give them a good rinse. Then tap the strainer against the side of the sink to get rid of any excess water.
Add all of your ingredients to the blender and blend until smooth and creamy. If you like, you can stir in a tablespoon or two of salsa or diced tomatoes afterwards if you like your queso chunky. If you like it hot, stirring in diced or pickled jalapenos would also work well.
Blending will warm the dip slightly. If you prefer it cold, just pop it in the fridge for a bit before you dig in.
See? I told you it’d be easy! Now grab some fresh veggies or tortilla chips and dig in. This makes a perfect game-day snack or an easy appetizer when you’re entertaining.
- 3/4 cup canned white beans (no salt added)
- 3/4 cup chunky or extra chunky salsa (choose your level of heat)
- 1 small red pepper
- 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
- 2 tbsp hemp hearts
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp onion powder
- 1/2 tsp ground turmeric
- pinch black pepper
- salt (optional, to taste)
- diced jalapeno
- pickled jalapeno
- diced tomato
- diced bell pepper
- Drain and rinse the beans in a strainer
- Roughly chop the red pepper
- Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth and creamy. Stop as needed to scrape down the sides.
- Transfer to a serving dish and add stir-ins if you wish.
1. Aim for chunky or extra chunky salsa, regular salsa may lead to a looser dip.
2. If you only have regular salsa, you can thicken the dip by adding an additional tablespoon or two of beans.
3. Watch the sodium content on your salsa, if it has salt added you may want to omit any additional salt.
Made this recipe? Be sure to tag me (@mentalforlentils) and use #mentalforlentils. I love seeing your kitchen creations.