This festive Cranberry Jalapeño Cream Cheese Dip will be the hit at your next holiday gathering! A homemade cranberry jalapeño sauce is poured over an herbed spiced cream cheese mixture making it an irresistable sweet & spicy combo. This gorgeous appetizer is not only delicious, but couldn’t be easier to make!
Cranberry Jalapeño Cream Cheese Dip
I am a huge fan of cranberries, and get so excited to see those bags of bright berries appear in the grocery store!
You’ll definitely want to make this gluten-free appetizer for your next holiday party! It’s spicy, tangy, sweet, and creamy all into one bite. The quick and easy homemade cranberry sauce recipe uses fresh cranberries, a jalapeño(to kick up the spice), orange juice, and warming flavors of cinnamon that will have your kitchen smelling like the holidays.
The cranberry sauce then gets layered on top of whipped cream cheese. Serve alongside gluten-free crackers or tortilla chips, but be sure to save any leftovers…this dip is the perfect topping for toast and even works well as a spread on turkey sandwiches.
Ingredients Needed to Make This Cranberry Jalapeño Dip
Here’s everything you’ll need to make the quick homemade cranberry jalapeño sauce:
- Whole Fresh Cranberries. Fresh cranberries work best for this recipe for flavor and texture. Frozen cranberries can be used, but will add extra liquid.
- Jalapeño. I used a whole, seeded jalapeño. You can adjust the amount of spice by using a half jalapeño for less spice or leaving in a few seeds for extra spice!
Orange Juice. I used the orange juice we had in a carton in the fridge! You can also squeeze you’re own if you’re up for it.
- Cinnamon. One cinnamon stick is all you need to add some warming flavor. I find that a whole cinnamon stick gives so much flavor, but if you don’t have them on hand, go ahead and use ground cinnamon.
For the herbed cream cheese mixture, you’ll need:
- Cream Cheese. I chose to use whipped cream cheese in this recipe since it’s easy to mix and easy to scoop! If you need a dairy-free option, use your favorite plant-based cream cheese spread.
- Herbs & Spices. Garlic powder, salt & diced green onions give the cream cheese an addicting flavor!
How To Make This Cranberry Jalapeno Dip
- Add all of the ingredients for the cranberry sauce to a stovetop pan over medium heat until boiling. Simmer 8-10 minutes until all the cranberries are burst. Smash the cranberries with a fork and set aside.
- In a separate bowl, mix together the whipped cream cheese, herbs and spices.
- Spread the cream cheese on a serving platter then cover with the cranberry mixture.
For serving, you’ll want to grab some of your favorite gluten-free crackers. I used Breton Gluten-Free Crackers for this dip because they’re not only made with better-for-you ingredients and are Certified Gluten-Free, they’re BIG enough to load up with all the toppings!
Can I make this Cranberry Jalapeño Dip in advance?
It’s best to make the Cranberry Jalapeño Dip at least 2 hours in advance to give time for the flavors to meld. Be sure to keep the cream cheese mixture and the cranberry dip separate until you serve.
How to Store this Cranberry Dip
Cover your serving dishes and store it in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Top the cream cheese mixture with the cranberry sauce when ready to serve.
Can I Serve This Appetizer Warm?
Absolutely! Spread the cream cheese mixture in a shallow, oven-safe pie pan. Add the cranberry sauce mixture on top and bake at 375 for 15-20 minutes until warmed through.
If you’ve tried this recipe, be sure to me on instagram @thrivingglutenfree so I can see how it turned out!
Cranberry Jalapeno Cream Cheese Dip
Cranberry Jalapeno Sauce
- 12 oz Fresh Cranberries
- 1 Jalapeno seeded and diced
- 1 cup Orange Juice
- 1 Cinnamon Stick or ¼ tsp ground cinnamon
- ½ cup Sugar More or less to taste; pure maple syrup works well too!
Cream Cheese Mixture
- 16 oz Whipped Cream Cheese Sub a plant-based cream cheese for dairy free
- ½ tsp Garlic Powder
- ¼ tsp Salt or to taste
- ¼ cup Fresh Green Onions Diced; plus more to garnish the dip
- Gluten-Free Crackers
- Add all ingredients for the cranberry jalapeno sauce to stovetop pan on medium heat until boiling.
- Reduce heat and allow to simmer until all cranberries burst and sauce is thickened, stirring occassionally. This should take about 8-10 minutes, then smush cranberries with fork, potato masher or use an immersion blender for a smooth cranberry sauce. Turn off heat and set aside.
- Meanwhile, in a separate bowl, mix together the cream cheese with garlic powder, salt and a few tablespoons of green onions.
- Spread the cream cheese on a serving platter then cover with the cranberry mixture. Store in the refrigerator until serving. Garnish with green onions and serve with gluten-free crackers.