When I think of what to bring to parties, the first “food” that comes to mind is a dip. They are typically pretty easy to put together and make ahead, almost everyone loves them, and you get to dress them up with dipping accessories like pretzels, crackers, and veggies.
Party regulars like hummus, guacamole, and spinach artichoke are three of my very favorites. You can usually find me hovering over each, hoarding the crackers and chips as my dipping vehicles. Ask any of my friends. In fact, I’m sure some of them are reading this and nodding their heads because it’s so true. And I’m not using the term “hoarding” lightly here. I’m a party dip’s worst nightmare. My love for them is embarassing.
To throw my friends a curveball, I decided to bring a sweet dip to our Halloween party this past weekend. Something creamy, yet low fat to serve alongside my bounty of Granny Smiths.
When I think of pairings for apples, toffee and cinnamon typically come to mind. Peanut butter is an obvious #1 but I wanted to keep things festive and use the warm flavors associated with autumn. Plus, I bought along these. Don’t want to overload friends with peanut butter (if that is such a thing?)
This simple whipped mixture of low fat cream cheese, dark brown sugar, vanilla extract, and a generous dash of cinnamon, nutmeg, & cloves comes together in seconds. It took more time to chop the apples then to make the dip. And I was using an apple cutter.
For texture, I gave the dip some crunch by adding chopped heath bars after I beat the rest of the ingredients. Each creamy cinnamon-spiced smear is loaded with the crunchy chocolate toffee chunks
If you prefer, you could easily use pure toffee chunks or omit the toffee altogether. Maybe add some chopped Snickers or chocolate chips? I digress.
My cinnamon toffee dip definitely required toffee.
The dip’s thickness is easily in your control. I used about 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract in my recipe, which thinned it into a dippable consistency. Using less vanilla extract may require you to serve the dip alongside a butter knife since it will be thicker and more spreadable.
The dip’s sweetness paired impeccably with tart granny smith apples. To save myself from wasting all too much time slicing apples, I served the dip alongside gingersnaps as well. If you’re in a pinch of time like I was, supplement your apples with crunchy gingersnaps.
I had valuable time to spend working on my Halloween costume, not slaving away in the kitchen!
After working late last Friday, this dip answered all my party-guest prayers as I stressed over what type of creative, yet QUICK sweet I’d bring to wow all my friends. I am a foodie blogger afterall, I have to represent with something fabulous!
In case you’re curious, I remade this dip the next day to shoot pictures in daylight – only to be devoured by just Kevin and I later that night. With a spoon as my dipping vehicle of choice. Whatevs!
If I didn’t have time to chop up enough apples, you better believe I didn’t have time to snap blogworthy pictures before the party! But this dip was just TOO incredible not to share with you, so I was glad to make it again the next day.
With so many wonderful party foods like jalapeno poppers and a pumpkin-shaped cheeseball (it was SO cute), I was humbled to see my little lowfat cheesecake dip be devoured by the partygoers.
Impressive and EASY, it’s a recipe I’m stapling front and center into my party-food recipe binder. Yes, I have one of those. It’s full of dips.
Makes 1 and 1/4 cups (for a big party, double the recipe). Dip is gluten free.
- 8 oz low fat cream cheese, softened (not fat free)
- 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract (or more/less, depending on your desired dip thickness)
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/3 cup chopped Heath Bars or Heath Bar Bits ‘o Brickle baking pieces (I used 4 fun-sized Heath Bars)
- Beat the softened cream cheese, brown sugar, vanilla, and spices together with an electric mixer. Scrape down the sides as needed. By hand, fold in the chopped toffee. Sprinkle with additional toffee if desired. Serve chilled.
- Serve with sliced apples or crunchy gingersnaps.
RECIPE SOURCE: sallysbakingaddiction.com
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What are your favorite party foods?
Toffee infused, applicious, cinnamon-spiced recipes to put you in the fall party spirit:
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