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Cooking Tips

Clever Uses for Leftover Dip

Three ideas to turn yesterday’s treasure into today’s treasure too.
By Published Oct. 14, 2022

With football season in full swing (it is, isn’t it? I’m just here for the food), there’s a chance you might find yourself with leftover dip from time to time. Some of you may be surprised to learn that leftover dip is even a thing. I was, too, until I started working for Cook’s Country. 

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The first recipe I ever developed for Cook’s Country also happens to be my favorite: Spinach-Artichoke Dip. For most of my recipe assignments, I’m usually happy to take a little break from them after the many weeks spent developing. With spinach-artichoke dip, though, this was not the case. I first made it at home the same week I turned in my final recipe, and I’ve made it dozens of times since for every occasion from the Big Game to “it’s Tuesday.” As such, I’ve also become an expert in repurposing leftover dip. Here are some of my favorite things to do with any leftover cheesy, gooey dip.

Mac and Cheese

This is the easiest, most straightforward use for cheesy dips: Boil pasta, stir in leftover dip, thin with pasta water as needed. Done. (If you want to bypass the dip and head straight for the mac, here’s your recipe.)

Stuffed Mushrooms

This one worked particularly well for me one time that I had back-to-back parties: For Party #2, I took leftover dip from Party #1 and mixed in lots of crispy bacon bits. Then I roasted off some cremini mushroom caps, dolloped on the bacon-y dip, and baked them just until warmed through. Delicious! And if apps-on-apps isn’t your thing, use portobello caps to make an entrée instead: Schmear a thinner layer of dip onto roasted portobello caps and top them with a sprinkling of toasted buttery bread crumbs.

Omelets

Trust me on this one: There’s something magical about a golden, fluffy omelet stuffed with a cream cheese-y dip. And even if you don’t have any leftovers, you should try it anyway: This omelet is a little bit lighter and fresher, inspired by my go-to omelet from a now-closed breakfast joint in my college town. (That one included chopped tomatoes and melty Swiss cheese in addition to spinach, herbs, and cream cheese. Throw them in if you’ve got them!)

Spinach-artichoke is what I usually have, but you can try any of these with whatever leftover cheesy dip you have: crab dip, Vidalia onion dip, even buffalo chicken dip. So go ahead and make that extra dip for your next gathering; we’ll call it meal prep.