How to Make Mexican-Style Fried Cheese

  • 01 of 07

    A Delicious Mexican Snack

    Queso Blanco
    Dorling Kindersley/Getty Images

    Fried cheese, or queso frito, is a Mexican delicacy and perfect as an appetizer or afternoon snack, or even a breakfast treat. It is eaten not only in Mexico but is also popular in South American countries such as Columbia.

    Not every cheese will work—you need a cheese that is slightly spongy, and a little bit crumbly. (Other cheeses will just melt in the oil and make a big mess.) One type of cheese to look for is literally called "frying cheese," or queso para frier. It is a fresh-tasting cheese that does not melt when exposed to high heat. You can also use queso asadero (grilling cheese), other Mexican cheeses, or halloumi, a Greek cheese. 

    Unlike a mozzarella stick, this dish is not deep fried—instead, the cheese is cut into sticks and pan-fried in a hot non-stick skillet.

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  • 02 of 07

    Start With Fresh Cheese

    fresh queso blanco
    Chelsie Kenyon

    To make this recipe, begin with a fresh Mexican cheese. If you can't find queso de freier, queso blanco and queso fresco will work well. Unwrap the cheese from its packaging and place it on a cutting board or plate.

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  • 03 of 07

    Slice the Cheese

    sliced queso blanco
    Chelsie Kenyon

    Since the cheese is fried in finger-like pieces, you need to cut the cheese twice. First, slice it lengthwise into about 1/2-inch sticks.

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  • 04 of 07

    Slice the Cheese a Second Time

    thinly sliced queso blanco

    You want each piece to be easy to eat with your hands, so the cheese needs to be cut one more time. Cut the slices lengthwise again, to form evenly-sized sticks.

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  • 05 of 07

    Fry the Cheese

    queso blanco strips in a pan
    Chelsie Kenyon

    Heat up a non-stick pan over medium-high heat for 1 to 2 minutes. Place the cheese sticks, a few at a time, in the hot pan, making sure not to overcrowd. You will see the edges start to bubble, but the cheese will not melt. 

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  • 06 of 07

    Turn the Cheese

    frying queso blanco
    Chelsie Kenyon

    Once the underside is golden, using a spatula, turn the cheese to its next side. Continue to cook until brown, turning the pieces of cheese until all four of the sides of each cheese stick are brown.​

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  • 07 of 07

    Serve the Cheese

    a plate of fried queso blanco
    Chelsie Kenyon

    Remove the hot cheese from the pan to a paper towel to absorb any greasiness. Serve immediately (or within minutes) with your favorite salsa. Fried cheese is also delicious with fruit preserves.