Skip to Content

Rotel Dip

Rotel dip is the cheesiest, hunkiest, and tastiest of all dips. It’s got everything–flavorful ground beef, melty Velveeta, chunky tomatoes and green chilies for a little bit of kick.


a bowl of rotel dip topped with cilantro and tomatoes served with tortilla chips
Photography by Gayle McLeod

A Few Tips For How To Make Rotel Dip

“There’s too much rotel cheese dip,” said no one ever. Luckily this Rotel dip is simple to pull together, with easy-to-find ingredients. Let’s get all of your burning questions about how to make rotel dip with ground beef out of the way before we get to dipping. Rotel is synonymous with dip, but what is Rotel dip made of? Rotel is the brand name of a classic canned tomato made with green chillies, created in Texas in the 1940s by Carl Roettele, and it serves as one of the key ingredients in, you guessed it, Rotel Dip, along with cheese and ground beef. When you open the can of Rotel tomatoes and chilies you might wonder, “Are you supposed to drain Rotel?” The answer is “No!” because you want to add all of the flavor and juices from the can to the dip. This leads to another question you might ask about getting the right texture–How do you keep Rotel dip from getting thick? We find that using the entire can of Rotel, and then fully melting the cheese lends itself to the perfect consistency for this dip. And if by chance you’re reheating the Rotel dip, simply return it to low heat and stir until the cheese has re-softened and it is warmed through!

ground beef, chili powder, onion powder, garlic powder, velvet cheese, and canned rotel tomatoes in bowls to make rotel dip
browned ground beef, chili powder, onion powder and garlic powder being cooked together in a skillet
seasoned browned ground beef, velvet cheese, and canned rotel tomatoes in a skillet to make rotel dip
rotel dip being stirred in a skillet made with beef, chili powder, onion powder, garlic powder, velveeta and rotel tomatoes

Rotel Dip Ingredients

What we love about a good Rotel queso dip is that the ingredients are good ‘ol pantry classics. Here’s the grocery list:

  1. Ground beef. We use a 90/10 blend because it has a lower fat content and cooks down a little drier, which is perfect for our purposes of making rotel dip with ground beef.

  2. Seasoning for the beef. We use a combination of chili powder, onion powder, and garlic powder.

  3. Velveeta! What would Rotel Velveeta dip be without it? We don’t want to know.

  4. One 10 ounce can of Rotel–this is that classic can of tomatoes with green chilies and a little hint of spice.

  5. For topping, we recommend a sprinkling of fresh chopped cilantro, green onions, and diced tomatoes for a little something extra.

  6. Corn tortilla chips, because a spoon to eat this Rotel cheese dip recipe is only appropriate when no one is looking!

rotel dip being stirred in a skillet made with beef, chili powder, onion powder, garlic powder, velveeta and rotel tomatoes
rote dip in a serving bowl made with ground beef, velveeta cheese and rotel tomatoes topped with cilantro and tomatoes

Tools You’ll Need

When You Dip, I Dip, We Dip

If you’re hosting a dip-centric party, or have a surplus of chips, maybe you’d like to make a few of our other favorite dips:

a bowl of rotel dip topped with cilantro and tomatoes served with tortilla chips

Did You Make This Rotel Dip Recipe? Let’s See It!

Show us a photo of the Rotel dip at your next party and maybe even a video of the beautiful people enjoying it. Tag us on Instagram using @themodernproper and #themodernproper. Happy eating!

Rotel Dip

  • Serves: 12
  • Prep Time:  15 min
  • Cook Time:  5 min
  • Calories: 144


  • 1 pound 90/10 ground beef
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 15 ounces velveeta cheese, cut into cubes
  • 1 (10 ounce) can Rotel tomatoes

For Serving

  • corn tortilla chips
  • minced cilantro, optional
  • sliced green onions, optional
  • diced tomatoes, optional


  1. In a large skillet over medium high heat cook the ground beef, breaking it up, until browned, about 8-10 minutes. Add the chili powder, onion powder, garlic powder and stir to combine.

  2. Add in the velveeta along with the Rotel, reduce to medium heat and stir until the cheese has fully melted, about 5 minutes.

  3. Top with cilantro, green onions and tomatoes if using. Serve immediately along with corn tortilla chips.

Note: To reheat Rotel dip, simply return the dip to low heat and stir until cheese has re-softened and dip is warmed through. Dip can be made up three days in advance and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Nutrition Info

  • Per Serving
  • Amount
  • Calories144
  • Protein14 g
  • Carbohydrates5 g
  • Total Fat7 g
  • Dietary Fiber0 g
  • Cholesterol42 mg
  • sodium605 mg
  • Total Sugars3 g

Rotel Dip

Questions & Reviews

Join the discussion below.

  • Erin

    Do you need to drain the beef? And if so, do you add the spices and then drain, or do you drain first and then add the spices?

    There is no need to drain, not too much fat drains off of 90% ground beef. If you are using a higher fat content ground beef feel free to drain it before adding the spices. Hope you enjoy Erin!

  • Chet

    What an awesome dip. Loved it!! Best of all, the leftovers are just as good. I would put it on my eggs for breakfast, or some home fries. Nothing went to waste.

    Thanks Chet, glad you loved it!

  • Jenn

    AMAZING! This was gobbled up so quick.

    Glad it was enjoyed!