Cheddar Ranch Dip

It’s almost Christmas! I’m sure your menu is set, ingredients are in the fridge, and maybe some desserts are already made. If you need one more item to fill out your snack foods and hors d’oeuvres, might I suggest this dip? I’m kind of crazy about it and sort of have a two-decade long love-affair with it.

photo (3)Years ago, let’s estimate that I was ten-years-old, my Uncle Jose and Titi Lisa lived kind of near a Wegmans. They still live near Wegmans, but when our story begins there weren’t that many Wegmans locations so living kind of near a Wegmans was special. Anyway, one time my family went to visit them, and they served a cheddar ranch dip from Wegmans with some Wheat Thins. It was the best snack ever. I love cheese and crackers, and this just took it up a notch. It’s very cheesy and tangy. It was creamy, but also had a pleasing lumpy texture from the shredded cheese. We devoured it. And every time we visited after that, they bought it. I always looked forward to it. We’d arrive and give our kisses and hugs hello, then go about catching up. All the while, I knew that dip was waiting for us in the door of the fridge. But when would it be taken out?!

Then in 2005, they built a Wegmans near where my parents used to live in Maryland. AMAZING. Now I could have dip when I came home from college. But they never had it. Oh sure, they had dips. They had chipotle ranch, or cheddar vegetable, but never my cheddar ranch.

Use a seasoning packet. Regular salad dressing can make this too runny. Image came from here.

Use a seasoning packet. Regular salad dressing can make this too runny. Image came from here.

Somehow, I managed to grow up and move on and not worry too much about dip. And then one day in 2010, Ryan and I were in Connecticut at a Labor Day barbecue, and a friend brought cheddar ranch dip. I took a bite, and was transported back to being ten years old visiting my family. I got the gist of recipe and went home excited.

Surprisingly, after all my lusting, I’ve only made this recipe a few times. But it’s yummy, simple, and you can can totally whip this up for a party in no time. I got home from work at 6pm, watched a little TV, made it, and was out the door ready to party by 6:45pm.

Anyway, I hope you like this dip and that it sticks with you for years to come.

Ingredients:

8 oz block of cream cheese

1-1.5 cups of shredded cheddar cheese

1/2-3/4 cup of beer (I used Miller Lite, use what you like)

4 tsp ranch seasoning

pepper (to taste)

Directions:

1. In a medium bowl, using an electric mixer, blend together the cream cheese, 1 cup of cheddar, 1/2 cup of beer, and ranch seasoning. Blend until everything is well mixed together.

2. Taste! Add a little pepper for a zesty kick. Add more cheese if you like more cheese and texture. I used the whole 1.5 cups. Add more beer if you would like it to be a little less thick. I used somewhere between 1/2 and 3/4 cup of Miller Lite. Adjust until you love the taste.

3. Scoop into a bowl, drizzle a little shredded cheese on top for garnish.

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