3 Ingredient Chili Cheese Dip is such an easy and delicious appetizer that everyone will love! Cream cheese, canned chili, and shredded cheese are all you need and this dip will last seconds as everyone digs in!
There is nothing I love more than a good appetizer waiting on friends to come over for the night! I am pretty positive I could have a whole food blog just centered around easy appetizer ideas. It is because everyone loves a good cheesy app like Kentucky style beer cheese dip or Baked chorizo cheese dip. Oh man, or even Spinach and artichoke dip in a bread bowl - we have been eating that like crazy around here recently!
This chili and cream cheese dip has been around since I was in middle school. Some friends of ours Mom made this for us all the time. I had never had anything like it and requested it all the time when we went to their house. All of us kids would sit around the table with a bag of chips burning our tongues on the hot dip because we couldn't wait for it to cool before we dug in.
I have been making this for years ever since. It's made with only 3 ingredients and in 20 minutes - this chili bean dip is going to be your new baked dip go-to - let me show you how to make it step by step!
- Cream Cheese - use full-fat cream cheese.
- Canned Chili - this original recipe uses Hormel canned chili. I always use the version with beans, but you can use the no-bean kind - up to your personal preference! See below for different variations and substitutions.
- Monterey Jack Cheese - I prefer to buy a block of cheese and grate it myself. I think the couple of minutes it takes to do this is worth it.
How to Make
STEP ONE: Spread the softened cream cheese into a pie dish.
STEP TWO: Pour chili over the cream cheese and spread it out evenly.
STEP THREE: Spread out the shredded cheese evenly on top.
STEP FOUR: Place in a preheated oven at 350 the oven and bake for 10 minutes - until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
STEP FIVE: Remove from the oven and enjoy hot and fresh! This is a great Cheese dip for chips - we love the Great Value Chili Garlic tortilla chips in our home....they are the best!
Variations and Substations
If you don't have a can of Hormel chili (or don't like it), you have a couple of different options:
- You can use a different brand of canned chili - one that you like or prefer
- If it is during the colder months and you have leftover homemade chili, this is a great use for it!
- I have also done this with taco meat for a different spin on this baked dip.
The same goes with the cheese, I always use monterey jack, but good melty cheese like cheddar and Colby jack are great options.
PRO TIP - I always prefer to buy a block of cheese and grate it myself rather than using bagged pre-shredded cheese. Skip out on all those anti-caking agents on pre-shredded cheese. The extra 2 minutes it takes to shred your own I think make a difference in taste and texture.
Frequently Asked Questions
This is best eaten hot and fresh. While you could keep leftovers (covered and stored in the fridge for a day), I think this is best to just enjoy after it's been baked and then made fresh again if desired.