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game day green chile queso recipe

I realize this post may be a little late for some of you to actually make it for THE game day (Super Bowl LI) tomorrow, but you can always make it for another game day. Softball, soccer, baseball... Or a Tuesday. Whatever. I've gotten so many requests for the recipe in the last week, that I thought I'd just post it here. (DUH! Why didn't I think of that before?)

This recipe started a while back when I really wanted to make a queso that didn't start with that weirdly-orange brick of "cheese food." I tried it with just cheddar, but it always broke on me and ended up a greasy mess. I tried adding a little arrow root to keep it together, but that gave it a weird gel-ness consistency. Also, I tend to get hives if I eat tomatoes that haven't been cooked down into a sauce, so the ol' Rotel was out, too.

Enter in cream cheese and green chiles.

My Gram used to make me cream cheese and jelly sandwiches. Don't judge me. They were delicious. And my favorite part of a bagel was always the cream cheese. Since going GF, I haven't had much use for cream cheese, but why couldn't that work? Alone, it was too much creamy (I know. I didn't think it could happen, either.), and a little bland. But WITH some cheddar, we could get the same consistency and cheesiness as that weird block of "cheese."

Now... what about the spicy part? I've always loved spicy things and green chiles have been close to the top of the list (behind Buffalo wings and pickled jalapeños). Living in Colorado, green chilis have become even more of a staple because they're everywhere. But even if you can't find freshly roasted (and peeled!) green chilis where you live, you can still make this amazing queso-esque dip.

Over time, I've added and taken away ingredients, never really measuring, but this is how I've made it for our Game Day Feast tomorrow. Feel free to make it your own with what your fans like. Not only is this good as a queso with chips or veggies, but I've used leftovers over chicken breasts and it's a hit that way, too.

In addition to this cheesy-creamy goodness, I've also made a gluten-free Chex Mix in the slow-cooker and some gluten-free chocolate-chocolate chip cupcakes, that I will decorate as footballs. That way, no matter what else my amazing hosts are serving, I'll be sure and have some safe choices.

green chile queso

This recipe is written for a game day crowd, but you can always scale it back for a smaller crowd.

3 -8 oz bricks of full fat cream cheese

16 oz roasted, peeled and chopped Hatch green chiles, or jar of 505 Hatch Green Chiles (not the sauce that looks creamy)

3 c shredded sharp cheddar

2 t onion powder

2 t garlic powder

1 t salt

1 t freshly ground cumin (because, just like nutmeg, pre-ground cumin is NEVER OK)

1 c chopped cilantro, optional (because cilantro is as polarizing as religion and politics)

1/2 c sliced green onions

Combine everything except the cilantro and green onions into a medium sized pot over medium-low heat until the cheeses are melted, stirring often.

Remove from heat and before serving, mix in the cilantro and green onions. Serve with chips &/or veggies.

This dip is also great at room temperature, so if you do not have one of those adorable, little slow-cookers, fear not! (But be advised, it does form a skin on top. Just keep mixing that in and no one will notice.)

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