Queso: Austin lives in Portland


Last week I had the privilege (and duty) to participate in my first SXSW Interactive Festival. It was a week filled with innovation, meet and greets, celebrity sightings (most notably Grumpy Cat, Mindy Kaling, Edward Snowden–by satellite, Snoop Dogg and George Takei) and tons of amazing food. I only visited Austin one other time, when I was introduced to the amazing signature dish of Texas: queso.

For you Spanish speakers out there, queso is not just cheese, it’s a combination of chiles, tomatoes, garlic and often times black beans to make an appetizer worth drooling for. I decided to try my hand at it myself without a recipe, and it turned out fantástico!

Queso (al Parque) serves 4


  • Block of sharp cheddar cheese
  • 8 oz. lowfat sour cream
  • 1 tbs gluten-free flour (cornstarch or gluten-full flour are alternatives)
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • garlic powder to taste
  • 1 can black beans
  • 1 can green chilis
  • 1/2 cup quartered cherry tomatoes
  • 1 avocado


Over low heat, melt grated cheese and gradually add in the sour cream. When the cheese and cream are combined, sprinkle in flour and mix. If the sauce starts to look too thick, don’t worry, the other  moisture-rich ingredients will thin out the queso. Add in ingredients garlic through tomatoes and stir until warm.

Serve the queso in a dish, then place the sliced avocado on top and serve. So good. So easy. SO memorable. Let’s just say guacamole is always a hit, and everyone at my party abandoned the guac until the queso was completely drained.

Whether you’re busting out this recipe for Cinco de Mayo or just any old Wednesday, I promise you won’t be (too) disappointed. ¡Buen provecho!


2 thoughts on “Queso: Austin lives in Portland

  1. Nancy Goan

    So sorry Allison. The Texas recipe is i can Rotel tomatoes and green chilis, and 8 oz of velveeta. Melt all in microwave and your done. You can also add a can of Wold Brand Chil.


    • allisonkpark

      So good to know, Nancy! Considering I don’t have a microwave and velveeta and I have a complicated relationship, I may be slower to adopt the true Texas recipe. I’ll let you know when I come around. 😉


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