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Chili’s White Spinach Queso (Copycat Recipe)


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Grab some chips and get ready to dip into this irresistibly gooey cheese dip! This copycat recipe for Chili’s White Spinach Queso will transform your kitchen into the ultimate fiesta spot. 

Dipping a tortilla chip into  a red bowl filled with copycat Chili's white spinach queso.

What you’ll love about this recipe: 

  • Creamy Dreamy Goodness: So ooey and gooey, with the perfect amount of chopped spinach and pico de gallo for extra flavor
  • Simple Ingredients, Big Flavors: This dip is so flavorful, you’ll hardly believe it’s made with just 7 simple ingredients
  • Love Your leftovers: This dip is also great as a base for an incredible mac and cheese (just add pasta!) and it also delicious on a baked potato 

Dip, dip hooray! This easy queso recipe is perfectly creamy

I have a confession to make — I love Chili’s. 

I’m not typically a chain restaurant kind of girl, but there’s something about Chili’s that never seems to disappoint. At least, that was until they took the white spinach queso off the menu. 

If you’ve never had it, this cheesy dip was like a cross between spinach artichoke dip and classic white queso. And it was SO GOOD. 

Inspired by countless cravings and the number of times I’ve caught myself daydreaming about this appetizer, I finally set out tot make my own DIY version of chili’s skillet queso. 

One of my old roommates worked in a Mexican restaurant and told me the secret to their queso dip was using white American cheese, so I started there. To my delight, I discovered that not only is it possible to bring this restaurant favorite into your kitchen, but it’s also shockingly easy and fun to make. Maybe even too easy. 

Whether you’re gearing up for a movie night with family or friends, hosting a festive gathering, or simply treating yourself to satisfy a craving, this White Spinach Queso will bring the fiesta vibe right to your table.

Grab your chips and let’s dive in!

Ingredients for making white cheese dip with spinach.

Ingredients You’ll Need

Whole milk. The base of our creamy queso. For the creamiest results, use with whole milk or 2% milk. 

Butter and Flour.  Forms a roux that thickens the dip to perfect creamy texture and helps keep the melted cheese super smooth 

Garlic Powder. For a little extra pow 

Frozen Chopped Spinach. The secret veggie star of our dip! 

White American Cheese. For the best quality, steer clear of the individually wrapped slices and head for the deli counter. 

Pepper Jack Cheese. Adds a little zip and compliments the American cheese for a more complex flavor.

You can also grab some optional adds ins, like pico de gallo (for the true copycat experience!), canned green chilies, or a pinch of chili powder or cayenne pepper for extra heat. 

melting the butter.
Adding the milk.
Adding the spinach.
Making a light roux.
Melting in the cheese.
Finished queso spinach dip in a pot.

How To Make Queso Dip

Make the Roux (I promise it’s easy!)

In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Whisk in flour and garlic powder, cooking for 1-2 minutes until thick and golden.

Add the Milk. Gradually whisk in the milk until smooth. Continue cooking until slightly thickened.

Cheese, Please. Lower the heat and add both cheeses, a little bit at a time, stirring until melted and smooth.

Spinach Time. Stir in the spinach and cook until everything is heated through.

Serve Warm. Transfer to a serving bowl, garnish with pico de gallo, and serve with plenty of tortilla chips for dipping.

Recipe Tips

  • Cheese Matters. Pre-shredded cheese is ok in the recipe, but for the best results grab a brick and grate it yourself. This will give your the smoothest melt.
  • Spinach Prep. Make sure to squeeze out as much water as possible from the thawed spinach to avoid a watery queso.
  • Keep It Low. Melt your cheese mixture on low heat to prevent the dairy from separating.

Overhead view of white spinach queso in a red serving dish.

Frequently asked questions

Can I use fresh spinach instead of frozen?

You can, but you’ll need to cook it first. Chop the fresh spinach and add it to a pot with 2 tablespoons of water. Cook over medium heat for 3-4 minutes, until wilted. Drain thoroughly before adding to the cheese dip.

How long does this queso keep?

If you have leftovers, store in the fridge for up to 3 days and reheat gently on the stove or in the microwave.

Any non-dairy substitutions?

I’d skip the non diary milk for this one, but if you need a vegan cheese dip check out this vegan queso recipe.

How can I adjust if it’s too thick?

A splash of milk will thin it out; add gradually while stirring.

Is this dip spicy?

It has a little kick from the pepper jack cheese, but I defintely wouldn’t say it’s spicy. If you don’t want any spice at all, you can swap the pepper jack cheese for Monterrey jack. 

How can I prevent the cheese from clumping or becoming grainy?

Avoid high heat, which can make the cheese to seize and separate. Keep the stove on a low setting and add the cheese a little bit at a time, letting each addition melt before you add more.

Other recipes you might like:

queso dip on a white background.
Overhead view of white spinach queso in a red serving dish.

White Spinach Queso

Perfect for parties or cozy nights in, this white queso dip is creamy, dreamy, and super easy to whip up. Grab some chips, gather your pals, and let's get snacking!
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Course Appetizer
Cuisine American
Servings 10
Calories 214 kcal


  • 1 cup Whole Milk
  • 2 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter
  • 2 Tablespoons Flour
  • ½ teaspoons Garlic Powder
  • 1 cup Frozen Chopped Spinach thawed and drained
  • 8 ounces White American Cheese shredded or shopped
  • 8 ounces Pepper Jack Cheese shredded
  • Pico de Gallo for serving
  • Tortilla Chips for serving


  • In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Whisk in flour and garlic powder, cooking for 1-2 minutes until light golden brown.
  • Gradually whisk in the milk until smooth and slightly thickened.
  • Lower the heat and add both cheeses ia little bit at a time, stirring until melted and smooth.
  • Stir in the spinach and cook until everything is heated through.
  • Serve warm.


Serving: 1servingCalories: 214kcalCarbohydrates: 4gProtein: 11gFat: 17gSaturated Fat: 10gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0.4gCholesterol: 52mgSodium: 536mgPotassium: 143mgFiber: 1gSugar: 2gVitamin A: 2327IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 457mgIron: 1mg
Love this recipe?Mention @TheBusyFoodieLauren or tag #busyfoodie!
By on February 23rd, 2024

Hi, I'm Lauren!

I love to cook -- but even more importantly, I really like to eat! I have a demanding day job that keeps me busy, so time is precious. I'm a culinary school graduate and five-time cookbook author who's all about finding ways to make delicious, restaurant-quality meals at home on a tight schedule. Read more...

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