Whether it’s a fried triangle, a wheat wafer, a crispy flatbread or a salted cracker, all chips need dip. Instead of perusing the grocery-store aisles in search of canned preservative-laced dips, a bit of planning and short preparation time is all that’s required to make a dip to please either the Super Bowl crowd or the guests on “Any Given Sunday.” Below are some easy and delicious recipes to whip up before the Big Game.
Homemade Salsa: No stove needed here. This What’s Gaby Cooking recipe requires just a food processor or a powerful blender. Even better: The prep time is only five minutes.
Ingredients: 1 can (14 ounces) of fire-roasted tomatoes; 1 cup of fresh cherry tomatoes, sliced in half; 1/2 cup of white onion, chopped; 2 cloves of garlic, chopped; 1/2 of a jalapeno, chopped; 2 chipotle peppers in adobo, plus 1 teaspoon of the adobo sauce; 1 teaspoon of kosher salt; 1/2 teaspoon of freshly cracked black pepper; 1/2 cup of cilantro and the juice of 1 lime.
Instructions: With a food processor or a high-powered blender, puree all the ingredients until the mixture is uniformly blended. Adjust the taste with salt and pepper. For more spice, add more chipotle pepper. Transfer the blended mixture to a container and refrigerate before serving.
Easy Guacamole: A little more care is needed here to ensure the ingredients for this staple dip yield the perfect consistency. This Real Simple recipe requires about 15 minutes of prep time.
Ingredients: 1/2 of a white onion, finely chopped; 1 jalapeno (seeded for less heat, if desired), finely chopped; 1/4 cup of fresh cilantro, chopped; kosher salt and black pepper; 2 ripe avocados, diced; and 2 tablespoons of fresh lime or lemon juice.
Instructions: Combine the onion, jalapeno, cilantro, 3/4 of a teaspoon of salt and 1/2 teaspoon of pepper in a large bowl. With the help of a fork, smash the vegetables until their juices begin to release. Then add the avocados and lime juice. Stir to the mixture until the chopped vegetables are combined.
Hummus: TV chef personality Alton Brown, the author of this recipe, suggests slow cooking dry chickpeas before assembling the hummus. Skipping that part of the recipe -- in other words, using canned chickpeas -- should not affect the final product. Rinsing the canned beans would be a good idea, to avoid oversalting the final product. This requires about 15 minutes of prep time.
Ingredients: 1 pound of chickpeas; 2 cloves of garlic, minced; 1-1/2 teaspoons of kosher salt; 5 tablespoons of freshly squeezed lemon juice; 1/4 cup of water; 1/3 cup of tahini, stirred well; 1/4 cup of extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for serving; and powdered sumac (optional).
Instructions: Combine the chickpeas, garlic, and kosher salt in the bowl of a food processor. In-between processing for 15 to 20 seconds each, add the lemon juice and water, the tahini and the olive oil. Periodically, stop to scrape down the inside of the food-processor bowl. Serve the hummus in a bowl, drizzling it with olive oil and a sprinkle of sumac.
Hot Crab Dip: This one is a crowd-pleaser because of its decadence. And it can be a little more on the pricier side, as far as dips go. This McCormick recipe calls for about 10 minutes of prep time and 30 minutes in the oven.
Ingredients: 1 package (8 ounces) of cream cheese, softened; 1 cup of mayonnaise, 2 teaspoons of Old Bay-brand seasoning; 1/2 McCormick Mustard, ground; 1 pound of lump crabmeat; and 1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese.
Instructions: First, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. In a bowl, mix the cream cheese, mayonnaise, Old Bay Seasoning and ground mustard until all is well combined. Then add the crabmeat, tossing it gently. Spread the mixture in a 1-1/2-quart baking dish. Before baking, sprinkle the cheddar cheese and additional Old Bay Seasoning. Bake the dish for 30 minutes or until the top is melted and bubbling.
Spinach Artichoke Dip: This recipe would be the most labor-intensive of the ones discussed here. It’s been tested by the folks at Bon Appetit. One key to success is to make sure to squeeze as much liquid as possible from the spinach. Forget that step and you may ruin the “creamy harmony” of the dip, the recipe’s author writes.
Ingredients: 1 bunch of spinach, with thick stems trimmed; kosher salt; 1 tablespoon vegetable oil; 1 large shallot, finely chopped; 1 garlic clove, finely grated; freshly ground black pepper; 4 ounces of cream cheese; 1/2 cup of sour cream; 1/2 cup of mayonnaise; 1 10-ounce. package of frozen artichoke hearts, thawed and chopped; and 3/4 cup of grated parmesan cheese.
Instructions: First, preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Take the trimmed spinach and boil it in a large pot of salted water until the spinach has wilted. This should take about 30 seconds. Then, transfer the spinach to a bowl of ice water to cool and stop the cooking. To drain and release excess moisture from the spinach, transfer to a clean kitchen towel and wring the spinach out. Remove the spinach from the towel. Next, heat the oil in a saucepan over medium heat, adding shallots and stirring until translucent for about 3 minutes. Then, stir in the garlic and cook until fragrant for about 1 minute. Add the spinach to the shallot and garlic mixture, and stir until pan looks dry. Make sure to season the spinach with salt and pepper, and then allow it to cool. In a food processor, pulse the cream cheese, sour cream and mayonnaise. Periodically, scrape down the sides of bowl and continue blending until the mixture is smooth. Transfer that mixture to a bowl with the artichoke hearts, parmesan cheese and spinach. Season the mixture again, with salt and pepper. Scrape the mixture into a 1-quart baking dish. Bake the dish for 20-25 minutes, until the top is golden brown. Let it cool slightly before serving.