You don’t need a Super Bowl party to justify making queso, but you do need queso to justify your Super Bowl party. And while Ro-Tel is never wrong, you can elevate your queso game with the still-easy version made with Mexican melting cheese served at Little Coyote, a new Latin-leaning barbecue spot at the foot of Lookout Mountain in Chattanooga, Tennessee.
“This queso works so well because it’s incredibly versatile,” says chef Erik Niel, also of Chattanooga’s Easy Bistro and Main Street Meats and a two-time James Beard Award nominee for best chef in the Southeast. “The base can be made a little or a lot spicy by incorporating more jalapeños or other hot peppers. It’s also great with chili to make it queso con carne, and can be made savory by adding fresh herbs right before serving. There’s something about it that works for everyone—it’s quickly become a staple at Little Coyote. I recommend trying it with fresh corn tortillas because sweet corn and rich queso work together beautifully.”