Arkansas has many native foods that are grown here. We also have a lot of good recipes that originated right here, such as chocolate gravy and sugared rice. The most famous of our products, though, has to be cheese dip.
A few years ago, Nick Rogers did some extensive research and developed a documentary. Titled “In Queso Fever,” the film delved into the history of the popular chip dip. Rogers uncovered a lot of undiscovered truths about cheese dip. He found it was created here in the 40s by a man named Blackie Donnelly, the owner and founder of Mexico Chiquito. Cheese dip outdates nachos.
It’s been adopted universally here in Arkansas. Game days, potlucks, casual get-togethers, you cannot get away from the cheesy emulsion. There are dozens of recipes, many utilizing Velveeta and Rotel. In fact, more Rotel is purportedly sold in Arkansas than in any other state in the Union.
Restaurants love cheese dip, too. You’ll find everything from traditional yellow dip to pale white quesos, deep red cheese dip and light green dip as well in the Natural State. Satisfy your craving for the dish by visiting an Arkansas restaurant with a signature dip, or by making your own.
On October 20th, the 3rd annual World Cheese Dip Championship will be held at the Clinton Presidential Center. Dozens of competitors will offer their version to attendees, who will determine a popular choice for the best. Judges will determine who represents the state at FoodFest, a national food festival held each year in New Orleans.