Spinach artichoke dip has to be one of the most popular appetizers around, as evidenced by the fact that so very many restaurants include some variation on their menu.  Its popularity is understandable considering how decadent and irresistible it is.  Really, I seem to find myself powerless to its charms.  As a kid I doubt I would have touched it with a ten foot pole since it contained artichokes.  I hope this mentality still holds with some today – more for me!  Whether having it as a “main dish” during a night of drinks with friends or using it as a starter for a full meal, I have no self control around this dip.  I will be serving this as a pre-Thanksgiving appetizer and I am hoping my various kitchen tasks will keep me busy enough to refrain from demolishing it before everyone else.

I used to have a recipe for spinach artichoke dip that was very tasty, but it called for jarred alfredo sauce and since I don’t buy that for any other purpose, I decided to come up with a version that didn’t require a special and somewhat expensive ingredient.  I searched a lot of my most trusted recipe sources first, but none of the versions I found sounded like what I was going for.  This is what I whipped up and after having tweaked it a bit, it’s now ready to be shared and shared often.  If your hips hate me, I sincerely apologize.

Ingredients

8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for topping
1/3 cup sour cream
1/3 cup mayonnaise
10 oz. frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
1 cup coarsely chopped canned artichoke hearts
4 cloves roasted garlic*, smashed
¼ tsp. salt
½ tsp. roasted red pepper flakes

Directions

  • 01

    Preheat the oven to 400˚ F.  In a medium bowl, combine the cream cheese, Parmesan, sour cream, mayonnaise, spinach, artichokes, roasted garlic, salt and red pepper flakes.  Mix well with a rubber spatula until all ingredients are evenly blended.  Spread into a small baking dish (I used a gratin dish).  Sprinkle additional grated Parmesan over the top if desired.  Bake for 35-40 minutes or until the top is slightly browned.  Serve warm with baguette slices, pita chips, crackers, etc.

  • 02

    *To roast individual cloves of garlic, I just throw the unpeeled cloves into a baking dish or pan and bake at 350˚ F for 25-30 minutes.  Let cool before squeezing the cloves from the peels.