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Cheesy, creamy, little bit of spicy...this buffalo chicken dip is one of the best football food snacks ever. It's a 5-ingredient snack that takes just minutes to make. You'll be the superhero of the Super Bowl party with this appetizer!
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What's in this recipe?
The traditional version consists of shredded chicken, ranch dressing, buffalo sauce, cheddar, and cream cheese. The ranch adds flavor, the sauce adds spiciness, the cheese thickens it and makes it creamy, while the chicken adds lots of protein. Feel free to add additional spices or hot sauce to change things up.
Who invented it?
The origins of this snack aren't clear. We do know that it's a spinoff of buffalo wings, which were invented in 1964 by Teressa Bellissimo. She created the wings as a late-night snack for her son Dominic and his friends, and they eventually became very popular at their family-owned bar in Buffalo, New York. The locals started requesting the wings as well, and eventually they became a popular snack worldwide.
This appetizer is a nice way to enjoy the flavors of wings in a less messy format. It has the heat, the meaty protein, and the creaminess of the traditional blue cheese dressing served on the side with wings. Many recipes, like mine, use ranch dressing instead of blue cheese dressing, but feel free to use blue cheese if you like.
Why is my buffalo dip greasy?
It often becomes greasy when the oils from the sauce and the cheese begin to separate. While this doesn't affect the flavor, it can make it look less appealing. This separation may be due to overcooking.
You can reduce the chances of separation by baking it for less time in the oven, or making it in the crockpot instead. The gentler heat of the crockpot (if it's set to low) shouldn't overheat it as easily.
How do you thicken the dip?
If it is runny, I'd recommend mixing in an extra cup or two of grated cheddar and reheat it to melt the cheese. Melted cheese does thicken the liquid.
What goes well with this?
There are several things that taste great dipped in this appetizer. Here's some ideas to get you started!
- Celery or carrot sticks
- Tortilla chips
- Toasted baguette slices
- Bell pepper slices
Here are some delicious and creative ways to enjoy leftovers. Tell me in the comments on this blog post if you try one of them!
- Pour on French fries.
- Add to a grilled cheese sandwich.
- Toss with cooked pasta.
- Spread on crackers or eat with crudités.
- Use it as a filling for this garbage bread.
Can I reheat it?
Yes, you can reheat it in the microwave, the oven, or a crockpot. It's best to reheat low and slow, as too much heat too quickly can cause the fat to separate. Here's how to do it with each method.
- Oven: bake in an oven-safe dish at 350 F for 10-15 minutes, or until hot.
- Crockpot: place in a slow cooker and turn on low for 1 to 2 hours, stirring occasionally, until hot.
- Microwave: heat on high in 30 second intervals, stirring between each one, until hot.
How long is it good for?
It can keep for up to 1 week in the fridge. Keep it tightly covered with plastic wrap or inside of an airtight container to maintain freshness.
Can you freeze it?
Yes, you can freeze this appetizer before or after it's cooked. Place it in an airtight container or zip-top freezer bag and freeze for up to 3 months. Defrost overnight in the fridge, then reheat the next day in the oven or crockpot.
How to Make
Gather the ingredients: shredded chicken, ranch dressing, buffalo sauce, cheddar, and cream cheese.
Beat the softened cream cheese with an electric mixer until smooth.
Pour in the ranch dressing.
Pour in the buffalo sauce.
Beat the mixture together until smooth.
Dump in the chicken.
Add the shredded cheddar cheese.
Mix in the cheddar cheese and shredded chicken until evenly mixed.
Spread in a casserole dish or put in a crockpot.
Bake at 350 F for 20 minutes or put the crockpot on low for 1-2 hours. It should be warm, and all the cheese should be melted.
- Meat: instead of poached chicken breasts, use roasted chicken or rotisserie chicken. You can even use leftover turkey instead!
- Ranch Dressing: try sour cream, Greek yogurt, or blue cheese salad dressing.
- Cheddar Cheese: blue cheese crumbles or grated Monterey Jack cheese. Pepper jack also would be a tasty option.
- Make this recipe a little healthier by using reduced-fat cream cheese and cheddar cheese.
- Make this vegetarian by using chickpeas or roasted cauliflower.
- In a hurry? Use rotisserie chicken instead of poached.
- Don't use store-bought ranch and buffalo sauce. Make your own ranch and buffalo sauce instead for the best flavor possible.
- Need to soften cream cheese fast? Remove it from its foil wrapper, cut into chunks, and microwave at 15 second intervals until softened.
- Want more heat? Add extra hot sauce, cayenne pepper, diced jalapeños, or crushed red pepper flakes.
- Reheating leftovers? Do it low and slow to prevent grease separation. Microwave for 20-30 seconds on 70% power, stirring halfway through.
- Frank's Hot Sauce: this is hot sauce has the right amount of spiciness.
- Electric Mixer: this workhorse is an affordable alternative to a stand mixer.
- Silicone Spatulas: scrape out every last bit of food from the bowl with these flexible spatulas.
- Casserole Dish: this is the perfect dish for baking and serving this appetizer.
Other Super Bowl Appetizers
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Buffalo chicken dip is a super easy, crowd pleasing appetizer that’s perfect for game night, Christmas, New Years, or anytime you’re having a party! This appetizer can be baked or made in a crockpot. The football fans at your house will love this spicy, creamy snack for the Super Bowl!
- Beat the softened cream cheese with a handheld electric mixer until smooth. Dump in the ranch dressing and buffalo sauce and mix until well combined.
- Stir in the grated cheese and shredded chicken until evenly mixed.
- Crockpot Method: place the dip in a 5-quart slow cooker, cover, and keep on low for 1-2 hours, until the dip is warm and melted.
- Oven Method: spread the dip in a casserole dish and bake at 350 F for 20-25 minutes, until bubbling around the edges.
- Stir the dip, then serve warm with tortilla chips, crackers, or celery sticks.
- Short on time? Use rotisserie chicken.
- Make your own ranch and buffalo sauce for the best flavor. Everything tastes better when it's made from scratch!
- Soften the cream cheese by letting it sit on the counter for an hour before using. Alternatively, remove the cream cheese from its foil wrap and microwave at 15 second intervals until softened.
- Add more heat with hot sauce, cayenne pepper, diced jalapeños, or crushed red pepper flakes.
- Reheat individual portions in the microwave for 30 seconds.
- Category: Appetizer
- Method: Baked
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: crockpot buffalo chicken dip, buffalo chicken dip tasty