Warm Layered Black Bean Dip

This Warm Layered Black Bean Dip with cilantro pesto and Monterey Jack cheese is a delicious addition to any gathering.

This Warm Layered Black Bean Dip with cilantro pesto and Monterey Jack cheese is a delicious addition to any gathering.

It’s no secret that I’m partial to beans, especially a good bean dip. Those layered bean dips that pop up at pot luck get-togethers are the best. A few weeks ago we ordered a black bean dip at a local restaurant mainly because I had to see how they made it. It was a hot layered black bean dip, chock full with jalapenos and topped with cheese. Good stuff.

This past weekend I decided to create my own version. It was easy, with simple ingredients. Not only did we eat it as a dip, but topped our chicken burritos with it. Yum! You’ll need black beans, ancho chile powder, cumin, salt, pepper, cilantro, poblanos, olive oil, tomato, corn and cheese. Of course, add or subtract any ingredients as you like.

This Warm Layered Black Bean Dip with cilantro pesto and Monterey Jack cheese is a delicious addition to any gathering.

Begin by roasting the peppers. I used poblanos, but if you like it hot, add a jalapeno. The roasting of the peppers isn’t totally necessary but it does bring out the flavor of the peppers. You’ll find a mini-explanation on how I roast peppers in this Cilantro, Roasted Peppers & Pistachio Pesto recipe.

This Warm Layered Black Bean Dip with cilantro pesto and Monterey Jack cheese is a delicious addition to any gathering.

After you get the peppers going move on to the beans. Heat drained beans in a saucepan over medium heat, add the ancho chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper. Ancho chili powder is a nice change from the regular chili powder but whatever you have on hand will work just fine. Aleppo chili powder would be nice too. I’ve been on a hunt for some but can’t find it anywhere locally but again, just use what you have on hand.

When the beans and seasonings have warmed, mash the heck out of them with a potato masher or your preferred mashing technique. Add 1/4 cup (or more to your liking) of the shredded cheese and mix well. I used yummy queso this time but again, use what cheese you like – Monterey Jack would be nice, as well as a cheddar. If needed, add some of the bean juice for a smooth consistency. Once the peppers are roasted and prepped (again, see this post for one way to roast peppers), place the cilantro, peppers and 1 tablespoon of olive in a food processor and process until smooth.

Now it’s time to begin the layering process. Begin by spreading the bean mixture on the bottom of an oven safe dish. Next goes the cilantro/pepper combo over the black bean mixture. Top the cilantro/pepper mixture with tomato and corn, then follow with the remainder of the cheese. Bake in a 400° F oven until the cheese melts & begins to brown, about 10-15 minutes.

This Warm Layered Black Bean Dip with cilantro pesto and Monterey Jack cheese is a delicious addition to any gathering. This Warm Layered Black Bean Dip with cilantro pesto and Monterey Jack cheese is a delicious addition to any gathering.

Serve with chips, bruschetta, in a burrito or whatever tickles your fancy. Enjoy!

Warm Layered Black Bean Dip
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
This tasty warm layered black bean dip is great for any gathering. Serve with chips or crackers.
Recipe type: Appetizer
  • 2 15 ounce cans black beans, drained
  • ¼ teaspoon ancho chile powder (or preferred chili powder)
  • ¼ teaspoon cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 3 poblano peppers, roasted (see here for roasting technique – if not roasting peppers, seed peppers before using unless you want it spicy)
  • ⅓ cup cilantro leaves, packed
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ⅓ cup corn, drained
  • ⅓ cup diced tomato
  • 4 oz. (divided) queso or Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
  1. Heat the beans in a saucepan over medium heat.
  2. Add the ancho chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper and combine well.
  3. When beans have warmed, mash the heck out of them with a potato masher or your preferred mashing technique.
  4. Add ¼ cup (or more to your liking) of the shredded cheese and mix well. If needed add some of the bean juice for a smooth consistency.
  5. In a food processor place the cilantro, peppers and 1 tablespoon of olive and process until smooth.
  6. Spread the bean mixture in the bottom of a oven safe dish.
  7. Spread cilantro/pepper mixture over the black bean mixture.
  8. Add the tomato and corn, then the remainder of cheese.
  9. Bake in a 400° F oven until the cheese melts & begins to brown, about 10-15 minutes.
  10. Serve with chips, bruschetta, in a burrito or whatever tickles your fancy.
(While this post isn’t part of sponsored content, I do work with Bush’s Beans from time to time. Wanted to make sure that was clear.)

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  1. 3


    Oh, my! I could just roll that up in a tortilla and eat it like that. Good golly, Amy, you have some of the best bean recipes around. And, yes, I’d love to have one of those handy-dandy little strainers, please ma’am.

  2. 4

    julia says

    LOVE black beans, well, any kind of bean for that matter. This looks GREAT! Oh course a strainer would be useful for all my bean consumption.

  3. 7

    Betsy says

    I was just noticing that I could totally use one of those nifty bean strainers! my lucky day that you’re giving them away, id LOVE one! thanks

  4. 9

    Lori H says

    I use alot of beans so I would love a strainer! And the recipes would be welcome too!

  5. 10

    Zahra Duffy says

    Oh man, after my husband became a vegetarian, beans and potatoes have become must-haves in our household. I would so incredibly love to have a handy dandy bean strainer! 😀

  6. 12

    My Two Seasons says

    Mmm…that looks so good! I love a good bean dip! And I’d love to have that strainer! It sure would be handy!

  7. 14


    This looks SO fantastic! I LOVE black beans. I could totally eat this for dinner. The strainer and recipes from Bush’s sounds awesome, thanks!

  8. 16

    Melissa says

    I am going to get on that right away and make some tonight – I love anything with black beans – thanks for sharing, Amy.

  9. 20

    Jessica says

    That bean dip looks fantastic! I am having a party Friday night. I just might have to make that dip!! Thanks for sharing.

    Oh, and I would love one of the bean strainers 😉

  10. 23

    Tickled Red says

    Geez Louise! The cheese is making my mouth water. That looks like something my surfer would keep all to himself. He is the hot & spicy lovin’ one in our house.

  11. 24


    mmmmmm… this looks great. My boyfriend and I are going go vegetarian for the month of June to see if we could go all veggie. I think this recipe would definitely make want to go so!

  12. 29

    Wei-Wei says

    Yum layered dip! Whenever I see this I always feel like making it in a glass bowl where you can see a cross section. 😀


  13. 30

    Laurel H. says

    I would LOVE the bean strainer. I make black beans and rice all the time and we do tons of food with beans, and it would come in very handy!!! Your black bean dip looks great.

  14. 31

    Missy says

    Looks very yummy and the strainer is a very nice idea. Thanks for sharing the recipe.

  15. 32

    Suzy Q says

    I love using beans in appetizers…feel like I can eat twice as much since they’re so healthy!

  16. 33

    Jeannene Walker says

    OMG this looks amazing. I love Mexican anything and this is a must!

  17. 34

    Amy L says

    I want that on our next visit. You can come over anytime and share!! It looks wonderful. I just finished planting the garden. I have 3 different hot peppers, cilantro, and lots of tomatoes. I will have to try this when things start producing. Very exciting!

  18. 35

    habanerogal says

    Love the look of all those gorgeous colors and of course the bubbly cheese on top

  19. 37

    cbp says

    Yay! Your love of beans has finally been put to good use. I’ve never known a real, live, official Bean Ambassador before now and I’m proud to call you my friend! I too love beans and would love to have one of those handy, dandy bean strainer/drainers of my very own. The recipe booklet would be extra nice too… please and pretty please! Can’t wait to try your version of the Layered Black Bean Dip :)

  20. 40


    yes, i want a strainer! and i’d also like a batch of this stellar dip, no chips required. a spoon would be nice, but i’m not above using my fingers. :)

  21. 41

    Lauren S. says

    The dip looks delicious, can’t wait to try it and to maybe try it with a new strainer!

  22. 42

    Jade @ No Longer 25 says

    I saw these on another site too and they look fab, I love butter beans the best, we had some last night in a butter bean and chorizo stew – so good!

    I’d like to win a strainer, pretty please?

    This dip looks really good, I’ll have to give it a try, thankfully I’ve already had my lunch or this post would be making me drool.

    Have a lovely day,

  23. 43

    Eileen says

    Oooooh, doggy! That looks delicious! And, yay me, Bush’s beans are on sale at the market this week and I just stocked up…

  24. 44

    Angela says

    I would love a strainer! I always lose beans when I try to strain them with just the lid, and I never want to bring out a regular size colander just for a can or two of beans. This would be such a handy tool to have!

  25. 46

    Layla says

    Mmm… This looks very tasty:) I will have to make this for our next family dinner!! That bean strainer would really come in handy then too!!

  26. 52

    Jennifer says

    I love that little strainer! What a useful tool to have. The bean dip looks wonderful too.

  27. 53


    That looks delicious and this is what I am making for my hubby bday dinner for an appetizer! I have to leave cilantro out (taste like soap to me lol!)

  28. 54

    Wenderly says

    I too have never met a bean that I didn’t like…on occasion, I’ve met a bean or two that doesn’t like me (I’m not offended though) and don’t think for one little minute that, it would stop me from eating them! Can’t wait to try this little ditty!
    Would love to have the little bean strainer, stinkin cute!

  29. 57

    Jenn D says

    That looks so good! I’ve been looking for a good bean dip to try and this looks like it. I bet my husband thanks you for it. :) That bean strainer looks so handy. Would love to have one. 😉

  30. 60

    Jon C says

    The bean strainer does look like it would be handy to have. I would love to have one.

  31. 64

    Betty says

    Your pictures make me want to bite my computer screen. Bush’s Beans are my favorite and are always in my pantry and it’s good to have more bean dishes to share with the neighbors at summer time gatherings.

  32. 65

    Maggy@ThreeManyCooks says

    This bean dip looks absolutely incredible! I want to make this right now and eat it all to myself. The cilantro layer is ingenious. So much flavor there. YUM!

  33. 66

    Ann says

    I loooove black beans, put them in just about anything and I’ll eat it! And a bean strainer! What an interesting little gadget.. I want one!!!

  34. 67

    Deeters says

    Love black beans in foods and live to make food for work! This would be agreat recipe for work.

  35. 68

    Alecia says

    Oh my…the bubbling cheese on top. This looks incredible! Count me in for the strainer.

  36. 69

    Patty says

    This recipe sounds fabulous…I love hot dips, even here in sunny AZ. Oh, and I think the bean strainer would be a nice addition to my kitchen tool arsenal.

  37. 70

    Constance says

    Black beans are a favorite and this recipe looks like it’s right up my alley. I would love a canned bean strainer.

  38. 71

    katie o. says

    can we talk about these photos for a second? amy, you have mad skills. teach me. please. :)

  39. 72

    the country cook says

    I would definitely like one of those strainers! I bet they would work for straining a can of anything…but especially beans. :-)

  40. 73

    JessicaO says

    I’m a sucker for any kind of dip – this looks very delish! I’ll be trying it out soon…maybe with my new strainer?

  41. 74

    Crystal says

    Ooooo, la, la! I would love to have one of those for my birthday! I love Bean Dip!!:) 😉

  42. 76

    Kimberly Rothman says

    I’d love one of those strainers!!! We eat a lot of beans in this house! :-)
    My husband is going to LOVE this recipe… I also think it will be a hit at my next Margarita Night with the girls!
    PS. Love your website!

  43. 77

    Liz says

    The ingredients are going on my shopping list right now. Looks delicious and who couldn’t use a bean strainer and recipes!?

  44. 78

    Stephanie says

    That dip looks really good…and I just happen to have a couple cans of black beans in the cupboard! I might have to make this soon! The strainer looks like it would be useful to have…

  45. 79

    Jennifer says

    Oh, me me me! I would love a bean strainer! Please!

    And that bean dip looks AMAZING. Definitely bookmarking this one.

  46. 82

    Patricia Curtin says

    we eat alot of mexican food at our house and this looks just wonderful for at family get together.

  47. 84


    I am following you on Twitter, and I am actually stopping by to be one of your many commenter’s on this recipe. It caught my eye when I hit your page. Your blog is beautiful. I love the way you have showcased your recipes. They look wonderful.
    I would love for you to follow and stop by sometime.

  48. 85

    Debra L. says

    I’m not crazy about layered dips, but this one looks great, worth a try. Your pictures convinced me, especially the dipped chip. The handy dandy drainer/strainer and a Bush’s recipe booklet is something I need.

  49. 86

    KimD says

    Saw your recipe on PW and loved reading your related blog post. Thanks for the opportunity to win!!

  50. 90

    MikkiB says

    Wow! winning is always cool. But the best part is the recipe. Going to try it soon!

  51. 91

    Monica Beck says

    I think this bean dip looks amazing….I think I will give it a try. I would love one of these strainers too!!

  52. 98

    connie says

    strainer – yes, please. and I’ll be tryin’ this recipe soon. thanks for sharing!
    hugs from PA

  53. 99


    That dip looks delicious! A little different from the usual 7 layer whatever dips. I’m definitely going to try this soon!

  54. 100

    Dian says

    I would love one of the bean strainers. The dip sounds very delicious. can’t wait to try it.

  55. 102

    beth says

    I too love Bush’s beans! I use them for chili all the time. I would love to have that strainer. And the dip is going to be made soon, it looks devine

  56. 103

    Maris (In Good Taste) says

    This sounds so good! I love dips and I have been seeing black beans all over the internet today. Yum!

  57. 104

    CrysStidFam says

    That tool looks awesome! And I love beans as much as the next lady…..good stuff :-)

  58. 106

    nikki says

    I would love a bean drainer, thanks for offering. I use beans in some way just about everyday. But you know the saying ” beans beans the magical fruit, the more you eat the more you toot” that is so true! For my husband, I mean.Ha

  59. 108

    Debbie Ward says

    The receipe looks amazing–I love anything made with black beans, and would love a strainer in my kitchen!!

  60. 110

    Mary Frances Ellison says

    The recipe looks terrific … I, too, am a big fan of the Bodacious Bean! They’re delicious, versatile and just plain fantastic.

    Hope I win a bean drainer/strainer.


  61. 116

    Megan says

    I realize it’s been years but what size oven safe dish did you use for your dip? Thanks! Can’t wait to make it Saturday.

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