Tis’ the Season for Santa, Sleigh Rides and Festive Dips! My favorite festive dip is this Cranberry Jalapeño Dip. This no-bake dip recipe is loaded with tart cranberries and a kick of jalapeño and layered over creamy cream cheese. It’s like pico de gallo with cranberries instead of tomatoes.
As with our popular Red Pepper Jelly, this makes the perfect Christmas Recipe to serve to your family and guests. I legit grubbed 50% of it 10 minutes after finishing shooting. It was my lunch AND dinner. My “healthy eating plan” may not be happy, but my stomach sure is. I’m not sorry. Especially since I pair it with our Mulled Wine recipe.
Table of Contents
Cranberry Jalapeño Dip
This Cranberry Jalapeño Cream Cheese Dip is tangy and creamy and is much better than the Stonemill Cranberry Jalapeno Dip you find at Costco. The tartness of the cranberries is beautifully balanced by the spiciness of the jalapeños. A little sugar adds a touch of sweetness.
Cranberry dip is a festive, delightful appetizer guaranteed to please! If you like cranberry jalapeño salsa or cranberry jalapeño jam you’ll love this cranberry dip. Sometimes we amp up the flavor with smoked cream cheese!
This dip pairs with many popular Christmas Party Themes.
How To Make Cranberry Jalapeño Dip
Cranberry jalapeño dip is easy to make and comes together quickly. Only a handful of ingredients are needed. If you prefer not to add the jalapeño, the dip will still be amazing. It will just be a Cranberry Cream Cheese Dip.
Step 1. Coarsely chop the cranberries.
Step 2. Add in green onions, jalapeños, sugar, cumin, lemon juice, and salt. Pulse.
Step 3. Transfer to a bowl, cover, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
Step 4. Place a block of cream cheese on a serving plate. Top with the cranberry jalapeño mixture. Serve with your preferred vessel.
What Should You Serve with Cranberry Dip?
There are many perfect vehicles for your delicious cranberry dip recipe, including butter crackers, Ritz crackers, wheat thins, pita chips, and French bread. Any bread, cracker, or chip that you like will work well!
If entertaining, I like having a batch of candied jalapeños, pickled jalapeños and pickled banana peppers to serve with the crackers and cream cheese as well. Mix it up! Oh, and a seasonal Leftover Cranberry Sauce Cocktail or Madras Drink drink.
How Spicy Is This Cranberry Jalapeño Dip Recipe?
You can control the level of spice in this recipe. For the mildest version, remove the seeds from the jalapeño and use only one. Or omit all together to make it a Cranberry Jalapeño Cream Cheese Dip. If you love spice, which is how I roll, use two jalapeños.
How do you Chop Cranberries?
Ideally, you should use a hand chopper to keep the cranberries chunky and to speed up your prep time. You can hand chop your cranberries, but it may take you a little longer. Alternatively, a food processor is a great substitute to a hand chopper, but there is some risk of over-blending resulting in a watery purée. But DON’T WORRY…..
What Do You Do If You Over-Blend The Cranberries?
If your cranberries are chopped too finely, you may notice some excess liquid. No Worries! Drain the excess liquid through a fine mesh sieve or do what I’ve been known to do….just scoop it out with a spoon little by little. I promise, the flavor is exactly the same.
More Appetizer Recipes:
Festive Cranberry Jalapeno Dip
- 12 oz Fresh Cranberries ((*Note 1))
- ¼ Cup Green Onions, Chopped ((*Note 2))
- 1-2 Jalapeno pepper, Seeded and Diced ((*Note 3))
- ½ Cup Sugar (+ More If You Like It Sweet) ((*Note 4))
- 1 Tbsp Fresh Lemon Juice
- ¼ tsp Cumin
- ⅛ tsp Salt
- 16 oz Cream Cheese, Softened
- Crackers and/or Bread For Serving ((*Note 5))
- Pulse the cranberries with a hand blender or food processor until coarsely chopped (you can also chop them by hand). DO NOT over blend. Add the green onions, jalapeño, sugar, cumin, lemon juice and salt and pulse until the ingredients are chopped and combined.
- Transfer the mixture to a covered bowl and refrigerate for at least 1 hour (or up to overnight). (*Note 6)
- Right before serving, place the block of cream cheese on a serving plate. Top with the cranberry mixture. You can do this step up to an hour before serving, however keep it stored in the refrigerator until ready to consume.
- Serve with crackers or bread.