Is there such a thing as too much cheese? Or bacon? Or chips?
If you’re a fan of the blog, you know I’m a fan of the cheese. I’ve shared my tips on how to take the best photos of your grilled cheese, I’ve made over the top mac and cheese for you (again, BACON!) and I’ve even judged two grilled cheese contests, not to mention creating recipes for Grilled Cheese month every. single. April.
I should give up my hair dryer for a cheese grater so I can be a bona fide cheese head.
So when Kettle Brand Potato Chips asked if’ I’d be interested in creating a tailgating inspired recipe for fall, it simply wasn’t that much of a stretch to stick right with my theme, and go with the cheese.
Chip. Dip. SCORE!
I knew I wanted to create a dip that fit the mold and tastes of the typical football lover. And by typical foot ball lover, I mean my husband. His blood runs red. San Francisco 49ers red.
He’s a bit of a snacker so it wasn’t hard to pass this one to him. The hard part was pulling it away.
My man loves his savory dips, the gooey-er the better.
Let’s make sure there’s some sort of meat in there. Bacon. It’s like the little black dress. It goes with everything.
And hot sauce, natch. He’ll end up adding more anyway.
And a piquant flavor burst of mustard. I can’t escape my German roots.
And please, please, please, let there be beer. MORE BEER!
Click your heels 3 times and let’s follow the Kettle Chip road.
Kettle Brand potato chips are perfect vehicles for this type of dip because they’re extra crispy, they’re thick and they can stand up to the girth of a stout dip like this.
And they come in so many flavors that favor cheese that you don’t have to choose just one. So I chose all of them. Actually I barely scraped the surface of their flavor barrel. Check out all of these genius flavors! I mean, how DO you choose?
But if you put me in a room full of yellow jackets without a bee keeper’s suit on and twisted my arm and told me I HAD to choose which I like best with this dip, it would be narrowed down to Sriracha, Maple Bacon (I know, right!?!?!) and Pepperoncini.
I can’t get enough of those puckery little buggers. And now they flavor a chip! I’m doomed.
About the recipe
To get the most cheesy flavor immersed into this dip I used a sharp Wisconsin cheddar. The sharper the cheese, the more flavor you’ll get out of it. If you prefer a milder bite, go for the medium heft.
Part of the creaminess lies in the addition of cream cheese. Please go with the full-fledged variety rather than low fat. You’ll have less chance of the mixture breaking or separating when baking. Go on. Don’t worry about calories, they don’t count on game days anyway.
I used a mixture of grainy mustard and Dijon. If you prefer one over the other, make your choice. However, I will always use the grainy in my dip even if I have to give up the Dijon.
Feel free to experiment with the style of beer you use, however I would suggest you don’t use a light-style beer for this recipe as it won’t translate the beer flavor as well. I used an IPA from my man’s beer fridge (oh yes he does) but a dark or nut brown ale would be super tasty too. Remember, the different flavors of beer will definitely impact the flavor of the dip, so choose according to your level of beer love.
You can make this dip 3 to 4 days before the big game and refrigerate until ready to use. Just be sure to bring to room temperature before baking so the inside gets warmed while the top toasts.
To serve hot at a tailgate, make this recipe in a slow cooker and take it directly to the game. Follow all of the directions for cooking the dip, but instead of transferring the cheese mixture to the baking dish to be baked in the oven, transfer to a slow cooker insert and cook for 1-2 hours on high.
- ½ pound bacon slices
- 1 tablespoon butter
- ½ yellow onion, diced
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon stone ground mustard
- 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 1 12 ounce beer, preferably an IPA or dark brown ale
- 6 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese, about 8 ounces
- Generous dashes of hot sauce such as Frank's or Tabasco
- Kettle Brand Chips for dipping
- Heat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Add bacon to a large skillet over medium heat. Sauté 10 minutes until just crispy then remove and place on a paper towel lined plate. Cool and then chop or tear the bacon into rough pieces. Discard the bacon grease.
- In a medium high sided skillet or saucepan on medium heat, melt the butter. Add the onions and cook until soft, about 3-4 minutes. Whisk in the mustard and then add the beer, scraping up the bits from the bottom of the pan. Increase the heat and bring to a boil and cook for 5 minutes stirring occasionally. Add the cream cheese then reduce the heat to medium. Whisk the cream cheese into the beer mixture until the cheese melts and becomes creamy. Turn off the heat. Set aside ¼ cup of the shredded cheddar. Add the rest of the cheddar cheese about 1 cup at a time to the beer mixture, stirring until the cheese melts and is smooth. Repeat until all of the cheese has been added. Stir in ¾ of the bacon, saving the rest for the top of the dip.
- Spray a 1 quart baking dish with cooking spray. Pour the dip into the dish and top with the remaining ¼ cup cheddar cheese and the rest of the crumbled bacon.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the dip is bubbling. Serve warm with potato chips.
- ** Slow Cooker Option **
- Follow all of the directions above but instead of transferring the cheese mixture to the baking dish, transfer to a slow cooker insert and cook for 1-2 hours on high. Transfer to the big game tailgate in the slow cooker.
Cheer loud and dip hard, then get in the kitchen to cook something good!
This post is in partnership with Kettle Chips. As always, thank you for reading and for supporting companies I partner with, which allows me to create more unique content and recipes for you. All opinions are always my own.
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