Two Great Party Dips

Good friends of ours had an Age of Aquarius party last night for their joint birthday. Of course I had to cook something to bring. I picked a caramelized onion dip and sun-dried tomato dip, both from Barefoot Contessa.

Pan Fried Onion DipPan-Fried Onion Dip
Makes 2 cups
  • 2 large yellow onions
  • 4 Tbsp. unsalted butter (I use 2 Tbsp.)
  • 4 Tbsp. vegetable oil (I use 2 Tbsp. olive oil)
  • ¼ tsp. ground cayenne pepper (use up to ½ tsp. if you want it spicy)
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 4 oz. cream cheese, room temperature (I use the ⅓ less fat Neufchâtel)
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • ½ cup good mayonnaise (I use the light Hellmann’s)
Cut the onions in half and then slice them into ⅛” thick half-rounds (I use the thin setting on my mandolin). (You will have about 3 cups of onion.)
Onions after 5-10 minutes

Onions after 5-10 minutes

Heat the butter and oil in a large sauté pan on medium heat. Add the onions, cayenne, salt and pepper and sauté for 10 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, stirring occasionally, for 20 more minutes, until the onions are browned and caramelized. Allow onions to cool.

Caramelized OnionPlace the cream cheese, sour cream and mayonnaise in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and beat until smooth. (I use my food processor fitted with a metal blade.) Add onions and mix well. Taste for seasonings.
Serve at room temperature.
I serve this with Kettle Brand potato chips – either the Sea Salt variety or Salt and Fresh Ground Pepper. You could also serve with fresh vegetables and crackers for dipping.
Sun Dried Tomato DipSun-Dried Tomato Dip
Makes 2 cups
  • ¼ cup sun-dried tomatoes in oil, drained and chopped (~8 tomatoes)
  • 8 oz. cream cheese, room temperature (I use the 1/3 less fat Neufchâtel)
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • ½ cup good mayonnaise (I use the light Hellmann’s)
  • 10 dashes Tabasco sauce (I use the Green Jalapeño Tabasco)
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt (I use 3/4 tsp.)
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced (white and green parts)
Purée the tomatoes, cream cheese, sour cream, mayonnaise, Tabasco, salt and pepper in a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Add the scallions and pulse twice. Serve at room temperature.
When I am serving this with the onion dip above, I use the same Kettle Brand potato chips for both. You could also serve with crackers and fresh vegetables.
Do not substitute the dry sun-dried tomatoes for the oil-packed ones; the flavor will not be as intense.

Healthier Creamy Coleslaw

Years and years ago, I modified a recipe for coleslaw that I found on a jar of mayonnaise. I lightened it up without changing the flavor or consistency of a traditional creamy coleslaw. No one I serve it to can tell that it’s different.

Healthier Creamy Coleslaw

  • cup light mayo
  • cup fat-free plain yogurt
  • 1½ Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp. sugar
  • ¾ tsp. salt
  • 2 16-oz. bags shredded coleslaw
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste

Combine mayo, yogurt, vinegar, sugar and salt in a large bowl. Add coleslaw mix. Combine well. The mixture will look very dry. Cover and chill at least 4 hours before serving. The coleslaw will shrink and become moist. Add freshly ground pepper to taste and stir. We like to serve with a pepper grinder on the table for diners to add additional pepper to taste.

Healthier Creamy Coleslaw

Healthier Creamy Coleslaw


  • I buy my mayo from Whole Foods because their 365 brand does not contain soy oil unlike most national brands.
  • I don’t use Greek yogurt as it’s much thicker & tarter than the regular yogurt.
  • If you prefer to chop your own vegetables instead of buying the preshredded coleslaw, use: 1 medium head cabbage, thinly sliced, ¼ small red cabbage, thinly sliced and 4 medium carrots, shredded.
  • Optional vegetables to add: thinly sliced sweet onions, thinly sliced green bell pepper or thinly sliced celery.