Last fall we hosted a contest to find the Perfect Party Dip, and Jean Eppler’s cleverly-named “Cranberries Gone Wild Dip” took home the title. With its ubiquitous appearance this past holiday party season, our voters clearly picked a winner; however, just three votes separated the top three party dip contestants.
While Jean’s dip spoke to the season with its festive Christmas colors and seasonal main ingredient (cranberries are out of season now, and can only be found frozen), our runners-up are perfect for the ultimate DIP-APALOOZA, otherwise known as Superbowl Sunday.
What makes Peggy Fisher’s Hot Beef Taco Dip (Fargo, ND) and Sherre Sattler’s Jalapeno Popper Dip (Grand Forks, ND) ideal for this occasion? While completely different from each other, they are both hot dips, as in, they are kept warm throughout serving. And with the recent low temperatures, outside and even indoors this week, a hot dip is definitely the way to go on Sunday. Plus, the game is being played outdoors at MetLife Stadium in New Jersey, and we anticipate that we’ll probably even feel cold just watching the action. (Although right now the forecast predicts a balmy 37 degrees with light rain – that’s a walk in the park for our hearty lot here in the Upper-Midwest.)
Next, both dips are easy to make, and this is important because we don’t think you’ll be able to choose between the two, so why not serve them both? We also love that they can both be made the day before and refrigerated until ready to bake.
Of course, taste is probably most important, and these dips creatively embody the flavors of two highly popular party foods: tacos and jalapeno poppers.
Peggy Fisher’s Hot Beef Taco Dip is wonderfully hearty and offers the classic taco flavors of seasoned ground beef, melted cheddar cheese, sour cream and tomatoes. In her recipe submission, Peggy said, “Old, young and in between LOVE this easy and satisfying dip,” and the comments we received last fall at our tasting events confirmed this opinion. People are attracted to Peggy’s dip because it is colorful and appealing in appearance, and they keep coming back for more because it tastes so darn good. Peggy serves her dip with Tostito Scoops chips, and even recommends leaving recipe cards on display next to the dip for guests to take.
Sherre Sattler’s Jalapeno Popper Dip was a terrific surprise. When I first received this recipe entry, I was intrigued by its name, but doubted that it could really live up to the flavors of this popular appetizer. But it does. This creamy concoction of cream cheese, mayonnaise (did I really just say that?), canned green chilies and jalapeno peppers, and parmesan cheese is topped with panko (Japanese-style) breadcrumbs, butter and more parmesan cheese, and the result is almost embarrassingly delicious. Sherre recommends serving her dip with bagel chips, Ritz crackers, or baguette slices, but tortilla chips will also work well.
You can use a chafing dish to keep each dip warm throughout the party, but to be honest, we don’t expect them to stay on your party table for long. We’ve mentioned three distinctively different dips for you to feature at your Superbowl party this Sunday, but feel free to check out the Superbowl Party section on our blog at for more great ideas. Have fun this Sunday, and just in case you’re wondering who Tony is rooting for he wanted me to leave you with this clue: Omaha!