Caramelized Onion Dip

Caramelized Onion Dip | Kailley's Kitchen

Kailley’s Kitchen is shamelessly devoid of much in the way of savory recipes. To put it in perspective, the last savory recipe I published was this walnut encrusted salmon recipe back in March. MARCH.

It’s due time for a change…

Football, basketball, and hockey are all in full-swing, and with prime sporting season come tailgates, game watches, and sports-centered parties. While the sports may be the focal point of these events, the food at said events is the second most important thing (okay, maybe tied with the alcohol supply). This, coupled with the fact that nothing is more horrifying than a bunch of hangry sports fans, is reason enough to collect an arsenal of fool-proof game day recipes to quell the hunger of the masses.

First up: the art of dipping (the potato chip kind, not the mouth cancer kind)

You can’t have chips without dip (unless we’re talkin’ Cheetos), and you can’t have dip without chips (or a comparable dipping implement like veggies or pretzels), so you might as well accept and embrace the greatest union of edible goods since Mr. Bachelor Chunky Peanut Butter met Miss Desperate-for-Love Grape Jelly and consummated the marriage.

 Like George Orwell once wrote, “all chip dips are created equal, but some are more equal than others.”

This caramelized onion dip happens to fall into that “more equal” category, while that generic brand mild salsa collecting dust in your pantry exemplifies the plebeian class of dips. Do the right thing: make the former and leave the latter on the shelf. Thank me later.

I adapted this recipe from a trusty Ina Garten standby, and amped it up with a bit of sugar for caramelizing, a more powerful punch of heat, and some garlic for greater depth of flavor. It’ll last 3-4 days in the refrigerator, so you can feel free to make it a day or two before your sports shindig. Pair it with your chip of choice, or make your own if you’re feeling ambitious!

*Click here to buy The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook

Caramelized Onion Dip

Caramelized Onion Dip | Kailley's Kitchen

Fight for your right to double-dip.

Caramelized Onion Dip | Kailley's Kitchen

Caramelized Onion Dip

Total Time: 1 hour

Caramelized Onion Dip


  • 2 large yellow onions
  • 4 Tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/8 teaspoon onion powder
  • 4 ounces (1/2 brick) cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • Chips for dipping!


  1. Cut onions in half and then slice them into 1/8-inch thick quarter-rounds
  2. Heat butter and oil in a large pan over medium heat
  3. Add onions, cayenne, salt, sugar, pepper, garlic, and onion powder, sauté for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally
  4. Reduce heat to medium-low and sauté for 20 minute minutes, stirring occasionally (onions should be browned and caramelized)
  5. Drain the majority of the oil and butter out of the pan (I usually like to leave a little bit for additional flavor)
  6. Allow onions to cool to room temperature (about 30 minutes)
  7. While onions are cooling, add the cream cheese, sour cream and mayonnaise to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and beat until smooth and creamy
  8. Add the onions and mix well
  9. Serve at room temperature with potato chips of choice


  1. says

    Fabulous recipe! I changed it up a bit because I love garlic. I added 5 or 6 cloves of garlic and a heaping 1/4 teaspoon of Chipolte powder. The Chipolte was all I had in the house. The onions are so yummy that they almost didn’t make it into the dip.

    • Kailley @ Kailley's Kitchen says

      That sounds delicious, Alice! There’s no such thing as “too much garlic” 🙂 The addition of chipotle sounds great, too! I’m so glad you enjoyed the recipe!

  2. says

    Made this last night. Did not get the garlic into it. It tastes fabulous. I like garlic, but I just did not get it into the recipe. I wanted to wait and add it closer to the onions being done. I substituted non-fat greek yogurt for the sour cream, used low fat mayonaise, and light cream cheese. Its fabulous. I will get the garlic in it next time…

  3. Susy says

    Way too good! We used light cream cheese, sour cream, and mayo. Added a bit more garlic and some Worcestershire sauce. Also diced my onions smaller. This disappeared way to fast! Even better aftr it sits for an hour or so. The flavors meld so well. Definitely a keeper of a recipe.


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