Spinach and Artichoke Dip Ingredients

Spinach and artichoke dip is without a doubt one of my all time favorite appetizers. Notice I didn’t say that it was my “favorite” appetizer of all time, because that would just be silly. It is however, pretty far up on my list. So let me clarify my overly dramatic problem with the issue I am about to bring up. It’s an issue that doesn’t even need to be an issue in the first place, but one that I feel very strongly about nonetheless.

Now I know it gets super boring for you as the reader to hear food bloggers get all exited over whatever dish they are currently writing about, saying things like “Honest to goodness, this peanut butter and Nutella sandwich on dark pumpernickel is like, seriously the best recipe I have ever come up with!” or “I’m blogging on my blog about this new acai berry smoothy, and everyone totally knows, acai berries are like you know, seriously my all time favorite food!”

Read the above quotes like a ditsy blond would, and it makes it even funnier. No offense to any smart blonds out there.

So the question then would be, is it actually your absolute “favorite” thing, or does it just taste really good? All I’m saying is, let’s tone down the usage of the word “favorite” and only use it if it’s true. Ugh, now I am questioning if the first line in this blog post even makes sense.

Spinach Wilted

Hmm…I’m not sure that looks very appetizing.

Let’s just move on, and talk about spinach and artichoke dip. I think I was formally introduced to this dish years ago at Red Robin. It was served with celery and bread wedges, which kind of resembled a thicker kind of pita bread. It was creamy, it was hearty, and it was delicious. Over the years, I have made various attempts at making my own homemade spinach and artichoke dip, although finding only moderate success.

A lot of the recipes I checked out called for cream cheese, mayonnaise, and sour cream. Maybe that’s how some restaurants make it, I don’t know, but it never seemed quite right to me. Something about cooked mayonnaise doesn’t sit well with me.

Bacon was a nice addition to some recipes though, and I mean come on, you simply can’t go wrong by adding bacon. I didn’t include it in the recipe below however, because I wanted the spinach and the artichoke (apart from the cheesiness of the Monterey Jack cheese) to be the primary focus. That and the fact that if I don’t use a little restraint, I would probably put bacon in everything.

Blueberry muffin? No problem, let’s just add a little bacon to that muffin you got there. How about some fancy bacon pesto, or maybe a scoop or two of double fudge chocolate ice cream with some crumbled bacon on top?

As you can see, that is just one example of the many dumb problems I have created for myself. Another shining example would be portion control. Twelve hungry people? No problem, let’s whip something up real quick. Two hungry people? Mental breakdown.

Make no mistake, I understand these are anything but problems, it’s just that they’re some annoying traits I seem to have inherited. Maybe one day I’ll get myself checked out. But probably not.

After some painful thinking, but some supreme dedication, I finally decided that the correct way to approach this dish was to use a little roux and some half & half as opposed to using mayo, cream cheese and/or sour cream. In addition, by sprinkling a mixture of Romano and Parmesan cheese on top, I could really make people think I knew what I was doing.

Spinach and Artichoke Dip Cheeses

These are some delicious looking cheeses, and I will be thoroughly impressed if anyone notices the discrepancy in this picture.

But seriously, I have to talk about the spinach for a minute. You can either use frozen spinach from a bag, or you can actually wilt fresh spinach yourself if you have any on hand. I definitely prefer fresh spinach because it tastes better to me but I’m not going to lie, it does take some time to remove all the stems and is definitely my least favorite part of making this dish. A couple bags of spinach might look like a lot (and indeed it sure seems like it when you are removing the stems), but you might be surprised at how much it shrinks while it cooks.

Unless you want this process to take all day, do yourself a favor and just grab a large sauce pan and dump the whole bag of spinach in after it comes to a boil. After 3 minutes or so, remove the spinach, and rinse it under cold water. It doesn’t matter how you remove it, just be careful that you don’t burn yourself.

You could use a slotted spoon and scoop the spinach out of the boiling water, or do like I do, and pour it into a large bowl waiting in the sink before rinsing. Squeeze any excess water out and then chop it up. Repeat this process until all the spinach has been wilted. The plus side to using frozen spinach is that you will save yourself some time by not having to do this step.

But if you are making something such as spinach and artichoke dip, I would figure you appreciate good food and wouldn’t dream of using a shortcut.

Well that’s that I guess. A blog post from me that isn’t comprised of two thousand words. Congratulations to me I guess. *Pats himself on the back*

As usual, give us your feedback. We want to hear everything you have to say, whether it be good or not so good. So until next time… – insert cool catch phrase here – …

Alas, I must take my leave and awaken the slumbering children for snack time, while I ponder what my cool catch phrase is going to be.

Spinach and Artichoke Dip

Creamy Spinach and Artichoke Dip

By: Semiserious chefs
Serves: varies (wild guess, maybe 1 – 12)


  • 2 (8 – 10 oz) packages fresh spinach (wilted and chopped)
  • 1 can (14 oz) quartered artichoke hearts (chopped)
  • 1/2 cup red onion (diced)
  • 1/4 cup shallots (diced)
  • 2 large cloves garlic (minced)
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter (half a stick)
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 2 cups half & half
  • 1 1/2 cups Monterey Jack cheese (shredded)
  • 1/2 cup brie cheese (rindless)
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine ground sea salt
  • Pepper (to taste)
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese (shredded)
  • 1/4 cup Romano cheese (shredded)


  1. Begin by removing the stems from all the spinach. Fill a large sauce pan halfway full with water and bring to a boil over high heat. Once it begins boiling, drop half of the spinach in the water and stir. After 3 minutes, remove spinach and rinse under cold water. Squeeze out any excess water and set aside for later. Repeat with the remaining spinach.
  2. Preheat oven to 350° F (175° C)
  3. In another large sauce pan, melt the butter over medium-high heat and add the red onions and shallots. Sauté for 2 minutes, stirring frequently.
  4. Add the garlic and sauté for one more minute.
  5. Add the flour and continue mixing with either a spatula or a whisk, until a roux has formed. It shouldn’t take very long, so just make sure if it starts darkening too much, to remove it from the heat.
  6. Add the half & half and place the sauce pan over medium-high heat again if you had previously removed it, and continue stirring until the consistency has changed to a thick creamy sauce. Once this has happened feel free to take everything off the heat to prevent burning.
  7. Now add the salt and pepper, wilted spinach, and artichoke hearts.
  8. Add the Monterey Jack and the brie. Continue stirring until the cheese has completely melted into the sauce.
  9. Pour into an appropriately sized baking dish (7″ x 11″ works perfectly) and top it off with the shredded Parmesan and Romano cheeses.
  10. Bake uncovered on middle rack for 10 – 12 minutes.
  11. Remove from oven and let cool for a couple minutes before going to town on it.

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