The 2-Ingredient Cream Cheese Dip I Bring to Everything (It’s the First to Disappear!)

published May 31, 2024
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Credit: Amelia Rampe
Raspberry Pepper Jelly Cream Cheese Dip

When it comes to party appetizers, dips are my all-time favorite. There’s something about seeing a big variety of creamy, cheesy dips with all sorts of chips and crackers that’s irresistible to me. Forget dinner — just give me all your dips!

When I found Amelia’s recipe for her family’s raspberry pepper jelly cream cheese dip, it brought me back to the time I first tried it years ago. The gathering I went to had every dip you could imagine — classics like French onion dip, nacho dip, spinach-artichoke dip, and seven-layer dip — to name a few. But what caught my eye was a block of cream cheese on a plate. The block of cream cheese had hot pepper jelly poured on top, and that was it. I was surprised at the simplicity of it. I’m not going to lie, I was kinda silently judging the presentation (really, a block of cream cheese with jelly on top?). But once I tasted it (with a Ritz cracker, of course!), I was in love. It was sweet, spicy, and creamy all in one bite.

Get the recipe: Raspberry Pepper Jelly Cream Cheese Dip 

Credit: Photo: Alex Lepe; Food Styling: Debbie Wee

Don’t Even Bother Making This Dip Fancy

What makes this dip so special is that it embraces our inner lazy cook. It doesn’t try too hard, and that’s OK! What matters is that it’s absurdly delicious. It’s also the one dip that everyone reaches for first at parties. I have a theory that people love it because they can actually see all the ingredients in it. People can be wary of new recipes, but this one is as straightforward as you can get. So don’t make it fancy. Drop that block of cream cheese on a plate, pour some pepper jelly on top, and enjoy the party!

Get the recipe: Raspberry Pepper Jelly Cream Cheese Dip

Other Ways to Top a Block of Cream Cheese

Amelia recommended a raspberry pepper jelly in her recipe, but feel free to use your favorite jam, jelly, or preserves. I went to Door County, Wisconsin, a couple of months ago and bought a jar of cherry horseradish spread that I’m excited to try on cream cheese. Here are a few more ideas to try.

  • Cranberry jalapeño dip: This festive dip is perfect for the holidays.
  • Chopped giardiniera: Use your favorite store-bought or homemade giardiniera for a tangy and crunchy dip.
  • Crab rangoon dip: Keep it simple by topping a block of cream cheese with flaked crab (or imitation crab) and sweet chili sauce.
  • Shrimp cocktail dip: Top cream cheese with zesty cocktail sauce and chopped cooked shrimp.
  • Spicy cantaloupe jam: If you’re wondering what to do with the cantaloupe you just bought, make this spicy jam!
  • Muffuletta spread: If you love muffuletta sandwiches, you’ll love this spread on top of cream cheese.