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31 party-ready dip recipes for game day

From spinach artichoke to Buffalo chicken dip, score a touchdown with these savory (and sometimes sweet) starters.
Fresco by Scotto

If there’s one invitation I want to receive this year, it’s a game day party that boasts a big spread of dips. As football playoffs and the Super Bowl commence, we’ll show you how to throw a party featuring a number of crowd-friendly dips. Assign each person in attendance to one of these 31 dip recipes, resulting in a massive spread ranging from classics such as Spinach-Artichoke Dip and Queso to riffs on fun appetizers like Jalapeño Popper Dip and Parm Dip. Don’t forget about an even bigger spread of foods for dipping — be sure to arrange a crowd-friendly assortment of sliced vegetables, chips, crackers, pretzels, crostini and breads. 

Have you ever been to a party where there wasn’t a crowd of people hovering over the same dip? Not likely. A good dip functions as the watering hole of a party. A central gathering place where people stop and chat and admire whose cheese pulls are the longest. And when you have enough dips, there’s no need to spend too much time in the kitchen preparing additional appetizers or a hearty main course. It’s a win-win scenario.

Do yourself a favor and make sure your refrigerator is well stocked with cream cheese, cheddar cheese, mozzarella cheese, mayonnaise, sour cream and hot sauce — you’ll need these ingredients and more to whip up these dips recipes. Bonus points if you also happen to have jalapeños, scallions and canned artichokes.

Everything Bagel Dip

Imagine the perfectly assembled everything bagel — generously coated in a savory seasoning, slathered with cream cheese, and topped with capers and scallions —then turn that into a dip. Whisk sour cream, cream cheese and some lemon juice to form a creamy dip base, then stir in everything bagel seasoning, briny capers and scallions to round out the flavors. Serve with bagel chips, sliced cucumbers and cherry tomatoes to complete the effect. 

Jenna's Queso

Queso, in all its cheesy glory, is the ultimate game day crowd pleaser. This recipe from native Texan Jenna Bush Hager is inspired by the one served at Magnolia Cafe in Austin. All you need are four ingredients — Velveeta cheese, diced tomatoes and green chiles, refried beans and sliced avocados. For an extra spicy kick and pop of freshness, top with sliced jalapeños. 

Jalapeño Popper Dip

Skip the tedious task of stuffing individual jalapeño poppers and try your hand at this deconstructed version instead. Use chopped jarred jalapeños, cheddar and mozzarella and stir into a creamy base of yogurt and cream cheese. Cover the top with crushed Cheez-Its, then bake until golden and bubbly. 

Swiss cheese and bacon are the dip version of a dynamic duo. For this creation, combine cream cheese, mayonnaise and shredded cheese. Bake until melty, then crank up the broiler so the top gets brown and crispy. Top with bacon and sliced scallions before diving in. 

Bring a touch of the South to your next game day gathering with this pimento cheese dip. Grated sharp cheddar, jarred pimentos, minced onions and mayonnaise combine to form the perfect room temperature dip. Serve with Ritz crackers in an oval-shaped dish, then decorate with Sriracha to make playful football laces. 

Easy Queso Dip

A bowl of hot, melty cheese is hard to beat, which is why queso reigns supreme in the dip department. Combine sharp cheddar, cream cheese, minced jalapeños and diced tomatoes in one pot and cook until the cheese is melted, then serve with crunchy corn chips or spoon over nachos. 

Buffalo Chicken Dip

Hot take: Buffalo chicken dip beats Buffalo wings every time. Cut out a bunch of prep work with the use of shredded rotisserie chicken and combine it with cream cheese, blue cheese dressing, hot sauce, shredded cheddar, celery and zingy banana peppers. Bake until heated through and crispy on top, then garnish with sliced scallions.

Caramelized Onion Dip with Potato Chips

Once you make homemade caramelized onion dip, you’ll never go back to the store bought stuff. Ditch the powdered packet in favor of real caramelized onions, which get cooked low and slow to golden brown and buttery perfection. Fold them into a mixture of cream cheese, sour cream and Worcestershire sauce, then serve with potato chips. 

Parm Dip

This customer-favorite, umami-rich Parm dip recipe is courtesy of Bottega Restaurant in Napa. To make it, pulse a block of Parmesan cheese, Asiago cheese, garlic, pepper, parsley, basil, scallions and red pepper flakes in a food processor until the ingredients form a grainy texture. Drizzle in olive oil until creamy and serve as a spread with crostini. 

Turn a simple container of ricotta into a dreamy spread by adding diced mozzarella, Parmesan cheese, oregano and red pepper flakes, then bake until bubbly. Drizzle with homemade garlic sauce and pile on crostini for a heavenly bite.

Try this set-it-and-forget-it approach to Buffalo chicken dip in the slow cooker. Cook chicken breast with hot sauce, then layer with cream cheese, sour cream, cheddar cheese and blue cheese. Once cooked through, add even more cheddar cheese and top with scallions. Serve this spicy crowd-pleaser with vegetable sticks, crackers or chips. 

Classic spinach artichoke dip gets turned on its head in this baked feta version. If you have 35 minutes to spare, this vegetable-packed dip is right around the corner. Combine chopped artichoke hearts with olive oil, garlic powder and slices of feta, then bake. Stir the softened feta into the artichokes, then add chopped spinach, grated Parmesan, Greek yogurt, and scallions. Heat through then enjoy with your favorite dippers. 

Healthy Buffalo Chicken Dip

The hidden nutrients snuck into this Buffalo chicken dip are an unexpected bonus. Cooked cauliflower rice camouflages into a mixture of shredded chicken, Greek yogurt, sour cream, cream cheese, hot sauce, blue cheese, scallions and seasonings. Once baked and topped with melted shredded cheese, the cauliflower is undetectable. 

Spinach Artichoke Dip

This isn’t your local restaurant chain’s spinach-artichoke dip. Frozen artichokes are cooked with lemon juice, then mixed with ricotta, Parmesan, mayonnaise, chicken seasoning, queso fresco, caramelized shallots and spinach. Place the dip in a cast iron skillet, top with more Parm and bake until bubbly. 

If you’re not an eggplant fan, this smoky dip will have you changing your tune. Broil two halved eggplants, then scoop out the toasty flesh and pulse in a food processor with garlic, lemon juice, tahini, salt and olive oil. Fold in chopped parsley and paprika, then serve with pita chips. 

Poblano-Corn Cheese Dip

Forget your favorite football team — once you try this irresistible cheesy dip, you won’t even remember who you’re rooting for. Make this dip ahead of game day by sautéing diced poblano peppers and onions with frozen corn, scallions, garlic, lime juice, paprika, sour cream, cream cheese and cheese. Pop it in the fridge until you’re ready, then bake it to bubbly perfection. 

Mezze Plate

Show up to game day with a stacked mezze platter showdown. On one side of the field: smoky eggplant dip made with charred eggplant, diced red bell pepper, jalapeños, red onion, raisins and red wine vinegar. On the other side: creamy hummus, made with canned chickpeas, garlic, cumin, tahini and lemon juice. Who will win? That’s for you to decide.

Winter Crudités with Creamy Herb Dip

Ditch the store-bought crudités platter in favor of a seasonal vegetable spread. Opt for endives, radishes, tri-color carrots, watermelon radish, seedless cucumbers, baby peppers and cherry tomatoes for a colorful array on your board. They all make a great pairing for this herby yogurt dip. 

Whipped Ricotta

All you need is one ingredient for the most luxurious dip ever: ricotta. Break out your food processor to ensure a light and fluffy texture, then top with olive oil, honey, vinegar, salt and pepper and serve with toasted naan and crostini. 

If you don’t want to cook, we’ve got good news for you. Grab your blender and pulse cherry tomatoes, garlic, almonds and olive oil. Add Parmigiano-Reggiano and basil then season to taste. Grab a loaf of bread and get to ripping and dipping to soak up the flavorful dip. 

Smoked Trout Dip

Pop open a can of smoked trout and you’re halfway to a delightful, flavor-packed dip that will knock your socks off. Mix with cream cheese, sour cream, horseradish, minced red onion, parsley, chives, Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco and lemon juice. Pair with crackers, cucumber slices, carrots, bell peppers and endives. 

Cheeseburger Dip

Here’s an easy way to share a cheeseburger with a crowd: turn it into a dip! Sauté ground beef with seasonings then toss with caramelized onions, cream cheese, cheddar, mozzarella and heavy cream. Top with even more cheese (because why not), then broil until bubbly. For the full effect, garnish this dip with shredded lettuce, chopped tomatoes and a side of secret sauce.  


This recipe is straight out of the movies, thanks to Marvel’s Black Panther: The Official Wakanda Cookbook. Muhammara is made by charring and peeling red bell peppers, then pulsing with walnuts, lemon juice, garlic and oil. Drizzle with pomegranate syrup for a touch of sweetness to balance out the smokiness of the roasted peppers.

Keep the bell peppers coming with this roasted red pepper dip. Char them in the oven, then let steam so the skin easily peels off. Coarsely chop, then pulse in a food processor along with feta cheese, yogurt, lemon juice, paprika and garlic. Stream in olive oil until the dip is your preferred consistency, then serve with grilled vegetable crudités. 

Spinach Artichoke Dip

This spinach artichoke dip is so good you’ll want to eat a thick layer of it sandwiched in between two slices of bread. What makes it so good? A combination of cream cheese, mayonnaise, Parmesan, mozzarella, garlic and basil. Fold in artichoke hearts and spinach and the secret ingredient: crunchy water chestnuts. 

Creamy Artichoke Dip with Homemade Pita Chips

Briny, canned artichoke hearts are the star of this creamy dip. Combine the chopped artichokes with Parmesan cheese, sour cream, mayonnaise, cream cheese, dill, garlic and jalapeño in a food processor until smooth. Fold in even more chopped artichokes for texture, then bake until bubbly. Serve with pita triangles as a vehicle for this weighty dip. 

Hot Artichoke and Lobster Dip

Pull out all the stops for this fancy dip, which combines everyday ingredients like cream cheese, mayonnaise and sour cream with large, succulent chunks of steamed lobster and artichoke hearts. Don’t forget the roasted garlic, which infuses this dip with just the right amount of savory flavor. 

Salted Caramel Cannoli Dip

Dips aren’t just meant to be savory — they can totally do the heavy lifting and act as dessert, too. Take this salted caramel cannoli dip, for example. Instead of frying and piping individual cannoli, whip ricotta, cream cheese, vanilla, powdered sugar, chocolate chips and pistachio, then serve with crushed waffle cones, pretzels and fruit. 

Dylan's Apples and Pumpkin Dip

Speaking of dessert, make this autumnal dip for tailgates all fall long. Combine yogurt, pumpkin puree, vanilla, pumpkin pie spice and maple syrup for sweetness, then serve with apple slices for dipping.

Marry the best of both worlds — New York-style cheesecake and eggnog — in this creamy dessert dip. It’s made with softened cream cheese, sour cream, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla. Serve with sliced apples, pears, bananas, strawberries or graham cracker squares.