Appetizer Dips and Spreads Recipes

The Basics

Hot Artichoke Dip
Hot Artichoke Dip. Linda Larsen

Let's face it - dips and spreads are the most popular appetizer to serve when your crowd is watching the big game or a movie. They're quick and easy to make, delicious and flavorful, and can be served with a huge variety of dippers, crackers, and breads.

Chips and the ubiquitous onion dip are so popular for a reason; they taste great! So whether you make the traditional dip made by combining a package of onion soup mix with a container of sour cream (I'm not going to give a recipe for that because it's, well, not really a recipe...) or roast garlic to puree with Brie cheese, rest assured, everybody will love it.

What to serve with the dips? The possibilities are endless. There are sweet dips to serve with biscotti and apple and pear slices (dipped in lemon water to stop browning), and savory dips to serve with breadsticks, pretzels, potato chips, taco chips, bruschetta, crackers, baby carrots, bell pepper strips. Layered dips usually are served with simpler dippers like water crackers, flavored tortilla chips, or those neat scooping chips. And spreads are perfect with toasted baguette slices or pretzel rods. You can also serve french fries (the frozen kind you bake are great), beef jerky, homemade crackers, endive leaves, bagel chips, or hot breadsticks made from the dough-in-a-tube.

So browse through this great collection of dips and choose two or three (or more!) for your gathering. Enjoy.

Layered Dips

  • Layered BLT Dip
    Yes, this is a BLT sandwich in dip form! It's gorgeous, easy to make, and delicious.
  • Pesto Torte
    This gorgeous layered dip must be made ahead of time so the flavors have a chance to meld.
  • Layered Taco Dip
    This recipe makes a huge dip that is very popular, and one of my favorites.
  • Layered Reuben Dip
    This hot dip tastes like a reuben sandwich. Serve it with pretzel rods and some sliced rye bread, buttered and toasted until crisp.
  • Layered Pizza Dip
    You can top this warm dip with any of your favorite pizza toppings. Better yet, make two with different toppings and let your guests dig in.

Classic Hot Dips Recipes

  • Pizza Fondue
    This hearty dip is great served with focaccia bread, cut into wedges or fingers and toasted until crisp.
  • Crockpot Onion Dip
    This recipe is a sophisticated version of the two ingredient onion dip mentioned above.
  • Melted Pesto Cheese Dip
    Just three ingredients make this delicious dip super quick and easy.
  • Crockpot Crab Dip
    Apple juice adds a nice fresh and sweet flavor to this classic hot dip.
  • Hot Artichoke Dip
    This dip really needs no introduction: it's classic, gorgeous, easy to make, and delicious.
  • Crockpot Beer Cheese Dip
    You know, there is a divine reason for processed cheese - and this dip is it.
  • Crockpot Chili con Queso
    Another classic dip using processed cheese. Please, don't try to substitute natural cheese for this recipe or the preceding one, it just doesn't work.
  • Warm Cheese Dip
    Three cheeses, onion, garlic, and mustard melt together in this fabulous warm dip.

Classic Cold Dips

  • Corned Beef and Cabbage Dip
    What a hearty appetizer! This great recipe is perfect for a crowd.
  • Hummus
    I once made this dip with UNroasted garlic cloves, and then went shopping. Big mistake! Although the crowds parted to let me through...
  • Sour Cream Pesto Dip
    This is a fabulous last minute appetizer that really is delicious with roasted potato wedges.
  • Guacamole
    Well, what can one say about guacamole? There are many recipes for it, but this one is the best. It's pure, classic, and so delicious. I love to serve it with nacho chips for even more flavor.
  • Texas Caviar
    Garlic, onion, and jalapenos add zip to a black eyed pea dip perfect to serve with taco chips.
  • Dragon's Breath Dip
    Two heads of roasted garlic combined with brie make a fabulous appetizer. Don't omit the seasoned salt; it adds great flavor.
  • Cheese Ball
    Just omit the Halloween decorations and this cheese ball is ready for the big game.

Sweet Dips

  • Gingery Fruit Dip
    This delicious dip has a nice kick from the ginger. Serve it with gingersnaps along with fresh fruit.
  • Pina Colada Dip
    Pat wrote to tell me that she usually can't find coconut pudding mix, so she uses vanilla pudding mix and some coconut extract. Great tip!
  • Praline Cranberry Dip
    Serve this sweet and crunchy dip with biscotti, toasted angel food cake fingers, and fruit slices.
  • Margarita Dip
    Margarita mix and orange juice are the 'secret' ingredients in this easy and delicious recipe.


  • Brie with Cherry Chutney
    This is an elegant recipe, beautiful and delicious. Serve it with water crackers.
  • Blue Cheese Terrine
    Apple, blue cheese, and walnuts flavor sour cream in this excellent spread.
  • Tapenade
    A nice combination of olives makes this rich spread very tasty. Just remember, little bit goes a long way.
  • Roasted Red Pepper Spread
    This variation on hummus made with roasted red peppers is gorgeous and delicious too.
  • Onion Jam
    When onions are caramelized by cooking slowly, they become tender and sweet. This 'jam' served over cream cheese, is fabulous.
  • Turkey and Dried Fruit Pate
    Pates are usually made with chicken or goose livers. This one is made from chopped cooked turkey, making it universally popular.