Skinny Chili Cheese Dip
Skinny Chili Cheese Dip is easy to make, big on flavor, and low on fat and carbs. It has a surprise ingredient that makes it healthier but it's so delicious that no one will ever know. It's the perfect game day recipe!
Can you even believe what is going on here? This skillet. This dip. This cheeeeese. This skinny chili cheese dip is everything.
Whoa, wait, skinny chili cheese dip? Does that even make any sense?
It does when you mix the cheese with pureed cauliflower, the magical transforming vegetable. I know I know, I was skeptical at first too. But, trust me when I tell you that the cauliflower creates a creamy béchamel-like base for the cheese to melt into.
♥♥♥ food that's healthy but tastes like it's deliciously bad for you.
Most recipes that use cauliflower as a base for cream sauces suggest boiling or sautéing it, but I wanted the cauliflower to act not just as a base but to add flavor to the dip too. By roasting the cauliflower until it is very brown, it develops a deep, nutty flavor that works great with the chili spices.
I want you to make me a promise.
Promise me you won't leave the lime out of the recipe. I know it probably sounds a little odd, but it makes the whole dish. It adds a brightness to the dip that makes all the other flavors pop.
I have to give credit to my handsome man for the lime. That man is pure genius.
Let's talk a little about turning veggies into things they're not meant to be. I've been on a bit of a transforming vegetables kick lately. There was the cauliflower fried “rice”, the zucchini noodle spaghetti and then last week the pad thai made from carrot noodles.
I seriously love how versatile veggies can be. I'm mean really, how awesome is it that you can replace an unhealthy part of a dish with a vegetable and hardly know the difference?!!
Typically when you make a cheese sauce, you start with a mixture of butter, flour, and milk that is called a béchamel sauce. By cooking then blending cauliflower with a little water, you can create a base that has the same consistency as béchamel.
It's pure awesomeness.
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Best Dip Recipes:
- Jalapeno Hot Cheese Dip
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- Best Hot Spinach Artichoke Dip
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Skinny Chili Cheese Dip Recipe
If you love this recipe as much as we do, let us know with a 5-star rating!
- 3 cups chopped cauliflower, about ½ head
- ¼ cup chopped onion
- 2 teaspoons cooking oil
- ¾ cup water
- 2 cups grated white cheddar cheese
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- ¼ – 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper, to taste
- 1 tablespoon lime juice, fresh is best
- 1 clove garlic, very finely minced
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- ½ cup chopped tomatoes, see notes
- ¼ cup finely chopped onion
- ¼ cup cilantro, chopped
- Extra chili powder and jalapeño pepper, to serve
- Preheat your oven to 425 degrees.
- Place the cauliflower and onion onto a rimmed baking sheet and toss with the oil. Roast for 20-25 minutes, stirring halfway, until the cauliflower is soft and quite brown.3 cups chopped cauliflower, ¼ cup chopped onion, 2 teaspoons cooking oil
- Blend the cauliflower and onion on high with the water then pour it into a small skillet over medium-high heat. Heat the cauliflower until it starts to bubble then stir in the cheese. Remove the skillet from the heat and stir in the chili powder, cayenne, lime juice, garlic, and sea salt.¾ cup water, 2 cups grated white cheddar cheese, 2 teaspoons chili powder, ¼ – 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper, 1 tablespoon lime juice, 1 clove garlic, ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- Taste the cheese sauce for seasoning then top it with the tomatoes, onions, cilantro, chili powder, and jalapeno.½ cup chopped tomatoes, ¼ cup finely chopped onion, ¼ cup cilantro, Extra chili powder and jalapeño pepper
This recipe is part of our Healthy Super Bowl Recipes series.
I’ve made so many of your recipes and was always very satisfied. Unfortunately, this one didn’t measure up. I followed your recipe exactly and it didn’t look anything like what you show. I think I would’ve needed at least 2 more tablespoons of chili powder to get mine so dark like that. I also doubled the amount of cheese, but it still just tasted like cauliflower. It was definitely no secret ingredient. It was all we could taste. I wish I knew what I did wrong.
Making this tomorrow for company coming. I will roast the Cauliflower in my air fryer. I love the roasted texture and taste. Such a nice dip dor us watching our waistline. I wondered about altering the recipe just a tad with a bit of light cream cheese and a bit less of the cheddar? Experimenting with guests is ill-advised, so I will change it next time. So excited to find this, and you, Kristen.
I bet some cream cheese in here would be lovely! I hope you have a great dinner party tonight!!
It turned out great! I used my food processor for the cauliflower and couldn’t quite get it fluid enough – at least how yours looked. I didn’t want to add too much water, but maybe chicken broth might have been OK. In any event, I added it to the skillet and included my spices. I didn’t have cayenne, so I used Ancho Chile Powder along with the chili. I also added to the top – some salsa fresca I made earlier, some thin sliced radishes and a couple of grates of Mexican Queso Panela cheese. My company went nuts. We had fun hearing them guess the secret ingredient.. lol.
I’m so happy it turned out! So fun to “trick” people into eating healthier food, isn’t it?!
Gah! I’m flippin over this Kristen! OMGeee… I know this is over the top! Please and Thank you!!! Gimme all the cauliflower… it’s a super hero in the vegetable world! Hooray! Delicious work! 😀
Haha thank you so much, girl! Cauliflower is my fav … I love how it makes unhealthy things healthy!
Love !!! Love!!! All kristens reclpes and l will be making this one for sure!!!
Awww … thanks so much, Debbie!
Oh wowww, looks AMAZING. Definitely making this to our house warming party on Sat! I was just wondering if it has to be super hot when served. I mean, it might be sitting on the table for a few hours before being entirely consumed. Do you recommend re-heating in that case?
It actually handles being away from the heat fairly well, much better than dips that are only melty cheese. But … it is better warm so it might be a good idea to serve it in a microwavable dish so you can quickly reheat it if necessary. 🙂
Hope you have a great party!
Wow. This looks so good!
This looks so delicious! And I love the “sneaky” use of cauliflower! Yum!
Thank you so much! I I love sneaking in extra veggies to dishes. 🙂
Love the idea of using cauliflower in here. And this skillet is just so colorful. Your photos are gorgeous. Probably the best looking cheese dip I’ve ever seen!
Thank you so much, Liz! You just put a big smile on my face. 🙂
When do you add the broiled onions?
With the cauliflower and the water?
Sorry that is a bit confusing. Will chance that now. 🙂
You do add the cauliflower and onions together and blend them with the water.