Chipotle vegan queso dip | dairy-free, gluten-free
“Vegan” and “gluten-free” are so hot right now that sometimes I worry about using the words, in case they make a recipe seem trendy for trend’s sake instead of just good food. As you may know, neither Alex nor I are strictly vegan or gluten-free but enjoy creating recipes that are, because we know people who eat this way and, well, it’s just good food. (And it’s a challenge! You may remember our quest to find the perfect creamy dairy free / vegan ice cream.) Turns out vegan is one of the best ways to describe foods without dairy, so vegan it is, for this recipe at least.
If there’s one person who makes special diets look particularly enticing, it’s Lindsey Love of the blog Dolly and Oatmeal. Her photography is drop dead gorgeous, and it’s hard to believe her recipes are 100% gluten-free, dairy-free, and vegetarian. It more looks — delicious, like seasonal, real food. Which it is. Lindsey is committed to a whole foods approach to gluten-free eating, which includes, get this: whole grains (you’ll learn more about her approach in a Healthy & Whole feature post, coming soon!).
In her new cookbook, Chickpea Flour Does It All, Lindsey explores chickpea flour, a whole-grain flour that’s known for its nutritional value and thickening power. We had never cooked with chickpea flour before, but after this recipe we were intrigued to try more! As I paged through the book (mouth watering on nearly every page), it fell open to this vegan queso, and I knew we had to try it. It’s made with both cashews and a chickpea flour sauce that’s similar to a roux, which thickened very nicely and much easier than standard flour. That, along with some jalapeno peppers, chipotle powder, nutritional yeast and turmeric, made a dip with just the right flavoring and amount of heat, with a texture very similar to a standard queso! I was hooked, and can’t wait to make this again.
Full disclosure: Lindsey does not recommend making your own chickpea flour since it can damage your blender. However, we couldn’t find chickpea flour at our neighborhood grocery and had some chickpeas on hand, so we threw them in our Vitamix and it blended right up! I think we’ll stay away from doing this on the reg to keep our Vitamix shiny and new, so next time we’ll look a little bit harder for chickpea flour.
Congratulations to Lindsey on a gorgeous book and one very fine vegan queso.
Find the book: Chickpea Flour Does It All
- ½ cup raw cashews, soaked overnight and drained
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1 shallot
- ¼ cup jarred jalapeños
- 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- ¼ teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1 tablespoon jalapeños juice (from the jar)
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon chipotle powder
- 1 cup water
- ¼ cup chickpea flour
- Cilantro, for garnish
- In a high-speed blender, blend the cashews, garlic, shallot, jalapeños, yeast, turmeric, jalapeño juice, salt, and chipotle powder; set aside.
- In a small saucepan, whisk together the water and chickpea flour until no lumps remain. Turn the heat to medium and continue whisking every few seconds to prevent scorching. Whisk for roughly 6 to 7 minutes, until the mixture thickens and resembles a roux or melted cheese. Remove from the heat and carefully scrape into the blender with the other ingredients.
- Blend the ingredients on high for 1 minute, stopping to scrape down the sides of the blender, until smooth and creamy. Taste and adjust seasoning, adding more chipotle, salt, turmeric, or yeast if desired.
- Use a rubber spatula to scrape the dip into a serving bowl, and top with cilantro. Serve immediately while hot, or let dip cool a bit (dip will continue to thicken as it cools). Leftovers can be refrigerated in a resealable container and can be eaten cold or reheated on the stove.