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 here from 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.
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Here’s the Recipe!
For the Colorado Sauce:
- 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
For the Queso Fundido:
- 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
For the Colorado Sauce:
- 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.
For the Queso Fundido:
- 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.
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Nutrition InformationYield 6 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 521Total Fat 32gSaturated Fat 14gTrans Fat 1gUnsaturated Fat 15gCholesterol 67mgSodium 1362mgCarbohydrates 36gFiber 7gSugar 9gProtein 25g
Nutrition information has been auto-calculated for your convenience.
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!