Chiles con Queso (Chillies in Cheese Sauce)

A cheese fondue with a difference from Gino D'Acampo. The chillies and tequila give this cheese sauce quite a kick. It makes an excellent starter or light lunch
By Gino D'Acampo
Chiles con Queso (Chillies in Cheese Sauce)
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4-6
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes plus steaming
  • Effort: medium


  • 4 serrano chillies, (or other fresh green chillies)
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1/2 red onions, finely chopped
  • 500 g Monterey Jack cheese, grated (or a mix of Edam/Cheddar cheeses)
  • 2 tbsp crème fraîche
  • 3 tbsp double cream
  • 2 firm tomatoes, halved and seeds removed
  • 1 tbsp tequila

Tips and Suggestions

Heating the chilies will bring out their sweetness, as the natural sugars in them will caramelise. Removing the seeds from the chillies reduces the heat.


1. Place the chillies in a dry frying pan over a medium heat until all the skin blisters and darkens. Be careful not to allow the chilli flesh to burn.

2. Place the chillies in a polythene bag for 20 minutes, and then remove the skins and seeds.

3. Cut the chillies into thin strips and then cut the strips in half to make short strips.

4. Heat the oil in a frying pan and cook the onion until it is beginning to soften. Add the cheese, crème fraîche and cream and continue heating over a low heat until the cheese melts.

5. Add the chilies and stir continuously until the sauce becomes smooth.

6. Dice the tomatoes into 1cm pieces. Stir into the sauce, and then pour into a serving dish.

7. Just before serving, stir in the tequila and mix well.

8. Serve warm with tortilla chips.

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