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Velveeta Queso – (Cowboy Queso!)

This Velveeta Queso is loaded with smooth Velveeta and everything a Cowboy dreams of, including Beef, Beer, Black Beans, and more.

Pair this with my homemade salsa and guacamole, and try my easy White Queso recipe next!

A hand dipping a tortilla chip into a skillet filled with Queso Dip with black beans, beef, and tomatoes.

Velveeta Queso

We have been making this Velveeta Queso dip for years, it instantly became one of our favorite recipes when we first made it.

Of all of my appetizer recipes, I think I’ve made this one the most.  You can even make this in the Crock Pot AND up to 2 days ahead of time. Score.

How to Make it

See recipe card below this post for ingredient quantities and full instructions.

Brown the ground beef and drain any excess grease.  Add beer and simmer for 4-5 minutes.

Ground Beef in a skillet with beer being added to make queso dip.

Add Velveeta and Cheddar Jack Cheese, let it melt and stir until smooth.

Add Black Beans, Cilantro, and Red Onions. Stir to combine.

A skillet with cheese being melted and cilantro, onions, and black beans being added to make queso dip.

Add Rotel tomatoes and any excess tomato juice until desired consistency is reached.  Stir to combine and serve!

Tomatoes being added to a skillet full of Cowboy queso dip.

PRO TIP: I like to use my 10-inch cast iron skillet for this recipe. Cast iron conducts heat really well and makes everything super flavorful.

Meat Variations

  • Ground Turkey, Ground Sausage, and Bacon are all great meat variations!
  • OR- You can go meatless if you’d like!

Beer Substitutes

  • Chicken or beef broth make great beer substitutes in this recipe.
  • Root beer or coke adds interesting flavors in place of beer as well.

Crock Pot Method

Can you make Velveeta Queso in the Crock Pot? Absolutely!

  • Brown the meat first, then add all remaining ingredients. Heat on high for 2-3 hours or on low for 4-5 hours.

This is the Crock Pot that I have which allows you to sear/brown meat on the stove top within the crock pot dish which eliminates cleaning an extra pan. It also automatically switches to warm if once the time is up!

Make-Ahead Method

This is an excellent dip to fully prepare ahead of time.

  • After it’s prepared, let it cool, and refrigerate it in an airtight container for up to 3 days. 
  • Reheat it over low heat on the stove top and serve once heated through.
  • This dip also fits perfectly in this 1.5 quart crock pot. Be sure to stir it on occasion if reheating in this crock.

A bowl filled with queso dip with black beans and tomatoes, with a hand dipping a tortilla chip in it.

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A hand dipping a Tortilla Chip into Velveeta Queso

Velveeta Queso

4.99 from 55 ratings
This Velveeta Queso recipe is filled with smooth Velveeta cheese, Rotel tomatoes, black beans, beer, beef, and so much more! Otherwise known as Cowboy Queso, this loaded dip is sure to please!


  • 1/2 lb. ground beef
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Pinch of Red Pepper Flakes, optional
  • 3/4 cup Pale Ale, I use Tuckerman Pale Ale
  • 1/2 cup Pepper Jack cheese, shredded
  • 16 oz Velveeta cheese, cubed
  • 1 14.5 oz. can Rotel Tomatoes, partially drained
  • 1 cup black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/4 cup red onion, finely diced
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped


  • Cook and crumble the ground beef over medium-high heat in a large, high-walled skillet. Drain any grease once cooked through.
  • Add in the crushed red pepper flakes, salt/pepper, and beer. Let the beer reduce for about 4-5 minutes.
  • Reduce heat to medium-low. Add in the cheese and let it melt, stirring occasionally.
  • Once the cheese is melted, stir in the beans, red onions, and cilantro.
  • Add the tomatoes. You may also add some of the juice if you prefer a thinner consistency.
  • Let it continue to heat through for about 5 minutes, then serve!

Crock Pot Instructions

  • Brown the meat and drain the grease, then add all remaining ingredients to the Crock Pot. Heat on high for 2 hours or on low for 4-5 hours.
    This is the Crock Pot that I have which allows you to sear meat on the stove top within the crock pot dish which eliminates cleaning an extra pan. It also automatically switches to warm if once the time is up!


Beer Substitution Options:
  • Chicken or beef broth make great beer substitutes in this recipe.
  • Root beer or coke adds interesting flavors in place of beer as well.


Calories: 352kcal, Carbohydrates: 17g, Protein: 26g, Fat: 18g, Saturated Fat: 10g, Cholesterol: 66mg, Sodium: 1276mg, Potassium: 489mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 6g, Vitamin A: 860IU, Vitamin C: 0.7mg, Calcium: 519mg, Iron: 1.5mg
Did you try this recipe?Mention @TheCozyCook on Instagram or tag #thecozycook!

Recipe Adapted from The Cookie Rookie

A warm and savory queso dip with your favorite ale, ground beef, tomatoes, black beans, and fresh cilantro. | The Cozy Cook | #dip #appetizer #football #mexican #cheese #gameday #queso #blackbeans #beef #recipe #fingerfood #easyrecipes #partyfood #snacks

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213 comments on “Velveeta Queso – (Cowboy Queso!)”

  1. This dip is soooooo good! It’s hearty with the beans and meat and is full of flavor. WARNING: You won’t be able to top eating it. Bringing to an upcoming party– sure to be a big hit. Thanks Stephanie! 

  2. Hello! I really want to make this for my work Dip-Off but I need to go into work at 7am. What is the best way to make this ahead of time and serve for the next day? Also do you recommend adding the extra liquids when putting canned food in? Thanks in advance.

    • Hi Abby, I would prepare it all as outlined, let cool, and refrigerate. (The extra liquid is added when the tomatoes are added in step 6, that won’t change.) And then I’d just let it reheat over warm heat in a small crock pot or dip crock! 🙂

  3. I served this at our latest house concert and everyone loved it!! I left out the red pepper flakes to be sensitive to those that don’t like spicy (like me). I’ll be making again very soon.  

  4. I love this combo! I added chorizo, it’s a spicy Mexican sausage. I did it crock pot style but I left it ready in the fridge overnight… just so I don’t stress so much the day of.  I threw on the warm option 4 hours before the party started the next day and it was phenomenal! Thank for sharing! 

  5. We hate the taste of ANY beer, would this be good without the Pale Ale

    • Hi Cindy! (Pasting from the notes section of the recipe card)- Chicken or beef broth make great beer substitutes in this recipe. Root beer or coke adds interesting flavors in place of beer as well. Enjoy!

  6. I have never made this dip before but I was trying to figure out dinner on the cheap and grabbed the velveta  and googled a recipe to make hot cheese dip with velvet-a. So glad I chose this one! It’s was so good! I added sliced olives and used shredded Mexican cheese. I like it hot, my husband doesn’t so I put Chili flakes on mine….really good! Already snooping for more things to make off this site. Lots  on my list already…

  7. I froze leftovers in small batches so nothing would go to waste, hopefully. 
    I did a slow warm in the microwave, stirring it every minute or so, and it turned out perfect!

  8. This was a hit at our card club last night.  I did not have Pale Ale so used beef broth.  It was delicious.  

  9. Amazing and quick to prep! I used the crockpot directions and took it for a work potluck! Everyone enjoyed!

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