Healthy Queso Dip
Truth be told, this recipe actually began as the “cheese” on my vegan “cheesy” kale chips. I have always loved that cheese and have been known to lick the spatula and run my finger around the top of the Vitamix before washing it. It’s that good. And that is how this recipe was born . . . I was looking for a healthy version of queso to feed my guys while we watch the Super Bowl, and realized that I already had the perfect recipe.
Bye bye processed cheese. Hello creamy, healthy goodness.
Soaked cashews and chia seeds provide the base for this cheese, and the result is a dip that is creamy, bursting with flavor, and packed with protein and healthy fats. It’s also rich in vitamins and minerals, including vitamin B12, vitamin C, calcium, potassium, iron, and fiber. And there’s not a trace of anything processed or artificial.
We’ll be enjoying this healthy queso tomorrow during the game with homemade tortilla chips. I hope you enjoy it as much as we do!
Healthy Queso Dip (vegan, gluten free)
2 cups raw cashews (soaked in filtered water for at least 30 minutes, or up to 4 hours)
1/4 cup chia seeds (soaked with cashews)
1 red bell pepper, seeded and quartered
2 medium lemons, juiced
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1 teaspoon garlic granules
1 1/2 teaspoons turmeric powder
1/2 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste
Soak cashews and chia seeds as instructed above. Carefully drain any excess water from the bowl (don’t worry if you aren’t able to drain it completely). Place all ingredients, except for the diced tomatoes, in a high-speed blender and blend until smooth. If the cheese seems a little too thick, slowly add filtered water as needed until it reaches your desired consistency.
Remove from blender immediately and fold in diced tomatoes. Depending on your blender, you may need to gently warm the cheese on the stove to reach your desired temperature. I just pour the cheese directly from my blender into my mini crock pot, which keeps it warm until I am ready to serve.
Serve with homemade tortilla chips and fresh vegetables.
*Note: I try to avoid purchasing diced tomatoes because it is so difficult to find ones that are packaged in containers that are completely BPA-free. I had organic tomatoes on hand so I just diced one and folded it right into the dip. Homemade salsa would work great as well, as would a jar of your favorite salsa. When you try the recipe, let me know what combination worked best for you.