taco dip

Dips are the perfect accompaniment to standard party appetizers. Fancy dips can be intimidating for family and guests, so having a selection of practical, tasty dips will ensure that you don't end up with an abundance of leftovers when the party is over. As a bonus, the following crowd-pleasing recipes can be made in advance, so pairing them with fruit, bread, crackers, chips or vegetable trays will be a snap.

Orange Fruit Dip

1 jar marshmallow creme, 7 ounces
1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons frozen orange-juice concentrate, thawed
1 (8-ounce) tub whipped topping, thawed

Whip all ingredients until smooth. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Serve with fresh fruit.

Spinach and Artichoke Dip

4 cloves garlic
1/4 teaspoon olive oil
1 (10-ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
1 (14-ounce) can or jar artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
1 (10-ounce) jar Alfredo pasta sauce or homemade
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
French bread or crackers, for serving

Preheat oven to 350 F. Place garlic in a small baking pan. Drizzle 1/4 teaspoon olive oil on garlic. Cover pan with foil. Roast in oven for 30 minutes, until soft and lightly browned. Squeeze roasted garlic into a large mixing bowl. Add the remaining ingredients and mix until combined. Spread into an 8-by-8-inch baking pan. Cover and bake for 30 minutes or until cheeses are melted. Serve warm or place in a slow cooker to keep warm. Serve with fresh or toasted French bread or crackers. Adjust thickness to your liking. Add more cheese to thicken or add extra Alfredo sauce to thin.

Seven Layer Taco Dip

1 (1-ounce) packet taco seasoning mix
1 (16-ounce) can refried beans
1 (16-ounce) container sour cream
1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1 (16-ounce) jar chunky salsa
1 large tomato, chopped
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1 (6-ounce) can sliced black olives, drained
tortilla chips, for serving

In a medium bowl, combine the taco seasoning mix and refried beans. Spread the mixture into a 9-by-13-inch pan. Mix the sour cream and cream cheese in a medium bowl. Spread over the beans. Layer salsa, tomato, cheese and olives. Serve with tortilla chips.
Optional: Include layers of onions, guacamole, green peppers or lettuce. Layer in a trifle bowl for a pretty display, and offer a spoon to scoop.


2 avocados
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 ripe tomato, chopped, or 1 cup chunky salsa
1 lime or lemon, juiced
salt and pepper, to taste

Halve, pit and peel avocados, and mash in a bowl. Stir in onion, garlic, tomato, juice, salt and pepper. Refrigerate for 30 minutes before use.
-- submitted by Karen, Ontario

Make-ahead Dip

1-1/2 cups mayonnaise
2-1/2 cups sour cream
fresh parsley, to taste
3 tablespooons grated onion
3 tablespoons dried dill weed
1 teaspoon seasoning salt

In a medium bowl, using a wooden spoon, mix the mayonnaise, sour cream, parsley, onion, dill weed and seasoning salt. Cover and refrigerate overnight. This can be the dip for a rye-bread boat or as a vegetable dip.

photo by verybadlady