Colorado sauce made from smoky peppers adds a kick to this meatless queso fundido recipe. Serve it hot with plenty of warm tortillas for dipping!
Cheese is what my dreams are made of. I just can’t get enough of the stuff lately!
I didn’t encounter a lot of cheese dishes when I was in China, so when I got back last week I went on something of a cheese binge in order to get my fix.
That’s how things like Queso Fundido Colorado come into existence.
I absolutely adore Colorado sauce – so much so that I already shared my favorite recipe with you over in this post from a few years back. I feel like that sauce just hasn’t gotten enough love or attention in my life, so I figured I should introduce it to melty cheese. (<–cheese logic)
To make this incredible appetizer, you’ll start by making the sauce. Save about 3/4 cup of it for the queso fundido, then put the rest in a mason jar and save for awesome huevos rancheros or enchiladas.
Next, saute some onions in an oven-safe pan (I used what I call my “curry” pan, which is cast iron –> you can grab one for about $17 on Amazon), then layer the pan with onions, Colorado sauce, and cheese. Bake until bubbly and toasty, then drizzle with a bit of extra sauce before you top it with cilantro and tomatoes.
I love serving this with warm flour tortillas. I find the the best way to make them “scoopable” is to fold them in half twice to make a triangle.
This is a dish best served hot and bubbly – I’ve never really *loved* the results I’ve gotten when I’ve tried to re-heat it. I guess you’ll just have to eat it all in one sitting. What a pity.
Here’s Your Recipe!
Colorado sauce made from smoky peppers adds a kick to this meatless queso fundido recipe. Serve it hot with plenty of tortillas and chips for dipping!
30 minPrep Time
20 minCook Time
50 minTotal Time
- 4 dried New Mexico chili peppers
- 2 dried Ancho chili peppers
- 1 dried Chipotle chili pepper
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled
- 2 teaspoons dried Mexican oregano
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/8 cup grapeseed or vegetable oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 cups vegetable or mushroom broth
- 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
- 1 cup diced yellow onion
- 3/4 cup Colorado sauce, divided
- 8 ounces shredded Monterrey jack cheese
- 8 ounces shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1 cup diced ripe tomato
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
- 1 package Old El Paso™ Burrito-Size Flour Tortillas
- While wearing hand protection, remove the stems and seeds from all of the chili peppers and tear them into small pieces. Wash hands thoroughly. Fill a bowl with hot water and soak the chili pepper pieces for 10-15 minutes, until soft. Drain, reserving 1/4 cup of the soaking water.
- Transfer the soaked peppers to the bowl of a blender and add the garlic, oregano, cumin, coriander, oil, and salt. Pulse the blender a few times, and then add in the broth and reserved soaking water. Puree until liquefied.
- Place a large sauté pan over medium-heat on your stove top. Holding a fine mesh sieve over the top of the pan, pour the contents of the blender through the sieve to strain out any remaining solids. Discard solids.
- Bring the sauce to a soft boil; reduce the heat to low and simmer for 5-10 minutes, or until the consistency of Enchilada sauce. Set aside 3/4 cup for the Fundido recipe; store remaining sauce in the fridge for 1 week or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
- Preheat the oven to 375° Fahrenheit. Heat the vegetable oil in a medium oven-safe skillet set over medium heat. Once the oil is shimmering, add the diced onion and sauté for 4-6 minutes or until lightly browned. Scoop out half of the onion and set aside. Drizzle in 1/4 cup of the Colorado sauce over the remaining onions in the pan. Top with half of the shredded Monterrey cheese and half of the shredded mozzarella cheese.
- Scatter the reserved onions over the top of the cheese in the pan and drizzle with another 1/4 cup of Colorado sauce. Top with remaining cheese.
- Bake, uncovered, in the preheated oven for 12-18 minutes, until cheese is bubble and brown. Pour the remaining 1/4 cup of Colorado sauce over the top and garnish with the tomatoes and cilantro. Serve with warm tortillas for scooping.
For a quick and easy version, swap the Colorado sauce for Old El Paso™ Mild Red Enchilada Sauce. Tasty!
For extra flavor, toast the tortillas in a large non-stick skillet over medium heat for 30-60 seconds per side. Fold into quarters and serve warm.
Today’s recipe is sponsored by the wonderful people over at Old El Paso. Thank you for supporting the brands that support The Wanderlust Kitchen!