Chili Cheese Dip (with healthy swaps!)


Chili cheese dip really is the greatest game day appetizer of all time. It’s cheesy and eaten with a chip…need I say more?

This cheesy dip recipe is ready in just 30 minutes and can easily be doubled or tripled, making it an easy appetizer. It’s high in protein thanks to the ground turkey and Greek yogurt, and FULL of flavor. There’s no doubt your guests will gobble it right up for the big game!

chip scooping dip

Classic chili cheese dip recipes are made with canned chili, sour cream, and cream cheese. Ours, however, will get you the same flavor, but with better-for-you ingredients. Here’s why we love it:

  • Serves a crowd
  • Healthy swaps
  • Ready in less than 30 minutes
  • Option to make it ahead of time

A quick rundown: To make this party food, you’ll first cook together the ground turkey, garlic, and onion on the stove top. And then add the rest of the ingredients. Transfer it to a baking dish and top it with Then top it with shredded cheese before baking it in the oven until warm, bubbly, and delicious.

What You Need to Make Homemade Chili Cheese Dip

This homemade chili cheese dip recipe is made with basic, whole ingredients that provide a bit more nutrition compared to your typical party appetizer.

  • Ground turkey: For one, we used lean ground turkey as it’s light, savory, and packs in the protein.
  • Beans: You also can’t have chili without beans. We used only pinto beans to keep things simple yet delicious.
  • Greek yogurt: The creaminess of this dip comes from Greek yogurt, which adds another boost of protein.
  • Chili seasoning: we made an easy spice blend made up of many classic chili seasonings. If you have our homemade blend on hand, feel free to swap out all of the spices for around 2 tablespoons of our mix!
  • Cheese: We can’t make this recipe without mentioning the most indulgent ingredient — cheese, and lots of it! Don’t hold back on topping this dip with shredded cheese, as it takes it to the next level of cheesy deliciousness. 

To make this dish, you’ll need a 9×9-inch baking dish or a 10-inch cast-iron skillet, whichever you prefer. The latter is great because you won’t have to use more than one dish!

meat in pan

Variations of Chili Cheese Dip

  • Ground meat: Both ground beef and ground chicken will work the exact same with this recipe. Heck, I bet you could even use Beyond Meat’s impossible meat for this recipe!
  • Beans: Swap the pinto beans for black beans or kidney beans, or make a mixture of all three!
  • Greek yogurt: Cream cheese or sour cream can be swapped 1:1 with plain Greek yogurt, but you’ll end up with a heavier dip. If you’re feeling extra indulgent, we’re here for it!
  • Spices: You’re welcome to take a shortcut and use taco seasoning instead! The flavor will taste more like a taco, but it will still be delicious. You can also play around with the spices and add more or less of your favorites.
sprinkling cheese on bean dipsprinkling cheese on bean dip

Can I make this chili cheese dip recipe ahead of time? 

Feel free to prep this chili cheese dip the night before, baking it the next day. You’ll likely need to bake it a bit longer in order to get it fully warmed up.

You could also transfer it to a slow cooker on low heat to keep it warm for longer periods of time.

Storage

Store your leftover chili cheese dip in an airtight glass container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

chip scooping dipchip scooping dip

What to Serve with Chili Cheese Dip

We love eating this chili cheese dip with chips and crackers. I’ve personally eaten the leftovers on a baked potato (MIND BLOWN, right?).

Cheesy mexican dip in a baking dish.Cheesy mexican dip in a baking dish.

Chili Cheese Dip Recipe

This chili cheese dip is the ultimate game-day appetizer made with NO pre-made chili. Instead, we used ground turkey, canned beans, spices, and cheese. The meat is browned on the stove and then the ingredients are cooked together in a casserole dish in the oven.

Prep:15 minutes

Cook:15 minutes

Total:30 minutes

Fat 16

Carbs 16

Protein 30

Instructions 

  • Preheat oven to 400º and spray a 9×9-inch dish with cooking spray.

  • Place olive oil on a large frying pan and heat over medium/high heat. When the olive oil is fragrant, add onion and minced garlic and sauté until onions are translucent.

  • Add ground turkey to the pan and cook for 5-8 minutes or until the meat is fully browned.

  • Turn heat down to low/medium and add green chiles, tomato paste, pinto beans, and spices. Mix and let cook for 2-3 minutes. Add Greek yogurt and 1/3 cup cheese into the meat mixture and combine. If you want your dip to be a little bit runnier, feel free to add a few tablespoons of water and that should d the trick!

  • Transfer into to a 9×9-inch oven-safe baking dish and sprinkle the remaining 1/3 cup of cheese on top.

  • Bake for 15 minutes or until dip begins to bubble.

  • Remove from oven and serve with veggies and chips. Enjoy!

Tips & Notes

  • Make ahead instructions: follow the first 4 steps, but do not put the cheese on top. Let the dip cool and then cover. Refrigerate overnight. When you’re ready to serve. Bake at 400ºF until warm — about 20 minutes. Then, top with cheese and bake for 5 more minutes or until melted.

Nutrition facts

Calories: 317kcal Carbohydrates: 16g Protein: 30g Fat: 16g Fiber: 4g Sugar: 2g

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