This Cheese Fondue is so versatile—it’s perfect for dipping vegetables, meat, bread, or crackers. This cheese fondue is smooth and creamy, with a deliciously rich sharp flavor. Plus, it’s alcohol-free so the entire family can enjoy!
Okay, I’ll admit it. I’m a bit obsessed with cheese fondue. Not only because it’s delicious (and it is) but there is so much you can do with this dip recipe. There are fairly few ingredients to this recipe, and it takes about 20 minutes or less to put together.
For this recipe, I like to use the Oster 3-qt Electric Fondue pot because you can control the temperature. It’s a versatile dish that’s affordable and not too big. This appliance is easy to stash away and pull out whenever you are in the mood for cheese fondue.
I like making this recipe when we have a date night in. It’s simple to put together but it feels special. This is a much classier take on the classic queso—although you could dip chips into it if you really wanted to.
Alcohol-Free Cheese Fondue
Most fondue recipes call for alcohol or beer of some sort, which is kind of a bummer if you are making cheese fondue for kids or someone who does not consume alcohol. This version, on the other hand, is 100% alcohol-free! It was hard to find another recipe I liked for cheese fondue without alcohol, so I decided to make my own. It’s delicious, and so fun to see the crazy combinations kids choose to dip in.
How to Cook Meat in a Fondue Pot
Sometimes we dip meat into the cheese fondue. The meat will need to be cooked before you dip it in. Often we end up just grilling the meat in a pan or on the grill, but you can also cook it in the fondue pot before making the chese fondue.
To do so, you will need to use oil. Make sure you read the directions for your specific pot to get the manufacturer’s recommendation. The Oster Electric Fondue Pot we use allows you to heat the oil to the exact right temperature without scorching. Once the oil is ready at 375 degrees, you are ready to start cooking.
If your fondue pot does not have a temperature setting, one easy trick to use to see if it’s ready for meat is to heat the oil until it is hot enough that if you drop a bread cube in, it will turn golden brown in 30 seconds.
Cooking Times for Meat in a Fondue Pot:
Here is a basic time-table of how long everything needs to cook for. Of course, the time estimates vary greatly depending on how thick your meat is. As a frame of reference, the ones below were all done at 1/2″ – 3/4″ cubes. Before eating, make sure the meat is cooked through and your time estimations are right.
- Shrimp (uncooked) – appx. 1 minute (or until pink and opaque)
- Chicken — 2 min
- Beef/Steak — 45 seconds – 1 min
- Sausage — 1 min
Once the meat is all cooked through.. dip into the yummy cheese fondue (see below)!
Do I Need a Fondue Pot to Make This Cheese Fondue?
Probably. This recipe was specifically created to be used in conjunction with a fondue pot. The pot will keep your fondue at high heat which will melt it evenly and then once it is melted, keep it at the perfect warm temperature without scalding the bottom. Electric fondue pots are also fairly inexpensive. The one we use costs about $30 brand new.
There are a few other ways you can try to make this cheese fondue without one. I haven’t personally tested these, but if you decide to, please come back and leave a comment to share what worked (or what didn’t).
Some people have had luck creating fondue recipes using a slow cooker on a medium-low setting. Other reviews I read said that a double boiler pot over the stove works as well. I personally love having a fondue pot around to make this cheese fondue, but you can always try one of the above and see if it works for you.
What to dip:
Ready for some suggestions as to what you can dip into your cheese fondue? I have so many! Here are some of my regular favorites. Side note – if you are doing veggies, I would suggest blanching them so they are JUST crisp-tender.
- Tortilla Chips
- Brussel Sprouts
More Fondue Recipes
Cheddar Cheese Fondue:
- In a fondue pot or saucepan over LOW heat, combine beef broth, milk, Worcestershire sauce, dry mustard, garlic and flour.
- When it is warm enough to melt cheese (don't let it boil.. or even bring it to a simmer-- this is very important) gradually stir in the cheese and laughing cow cheese doing a figure-8 motion.
- Add beef broth to thin if needed.