Trader Joe’s 11 best dips for better snacking

These are the zesty, creamy, flavorful dips that always make it into our carts

Published April 14, 2021 10:00AM (EDT)

 (Rocky Luten / Food52)
(Rocky Luten / Food52)

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My obsession with dips knows no bounds, which is why Trader Joe's refrigerated varieties are unsurprisingly a staple in my weekly dipping rotation. From hummuses and spreads to cheeses and vegan offerings, I've pretty much sampled them all. Here are the 11 best Trader Joe's dips that always deliver in taste, texture, and versatility — must-haves when putting together your next grocery list.

A quick note: I've selected dips that are Trader Joe's regulars. Seasonal items like the truffle dip and blue cheese roasted pecan dip are fabulous, though somewhat difficult to find on a consistent basis. (But if you do find them, by all means toss them in your cart!)

1. 5-Layer Dip

She's beauty, she's grace, she's five layers of ingredients you know and love in your face. Southwestern standards like guacamole, sour cream, pico de gallo, and shredded cheese shine like they normally do, but it's the black bean hummus base that's this tub's real star. Creamy and teeming with savory richness, it will guarantee you won't miss the refried beans.

2. Mediterranean Hummus

When it comes to hummus, TJ's has a bevy of delicious options, including this parsley-infused Mediterranean offering topped with pine nuts and olive oil. It's definitely the most basic of the bunch, but one that will play a lead role in any party setting or gathering. Honorable mentions include cilantro and jalapeño or sriracha (for a spicy kick), tomato and basil (for the pizza-lover in all of us), eggplant (if you love baba ghanoush), and roasted garlic (for an extra-zippy dip that will also ward off any nearby vampires).

3. Pimento Cheese Dip

If you're from the South, you know that anything with pimento cheese is worth dipping into. TJ's spin on this classic preparation is no exception. The blend of cheddar, peppers, mayonnaise, and seasonings make it the perfect pairing for buttery crackers or even a toasted bagel. Looking for something cheesy with a bit more heat? Trader Joe's cheddar with jalapeños pub cheese is also an excellent option.

4. Caramelized Onion Dip

Featuring cream cheese, mayonnaise, and sour cream, this dip is unmistakably rich, smooth, and creamy, with silky slices of ever-so-sweet-and-lovely caramelized onions hidden throughout. This is the dip I could eat with a spoon, but it's really ideal dolloped on top of red meat dishes like burgers and steaks.

5. Garlic Spread Dip

I can't get enough of this dip. It is, perhaps, the dip I buy most frequently because of its ability to enhance nearly every savory dish that's on my dinner table. From pastas and salads to proteins and roasted vegetables, this tangy treasure is so much more than something to dunk your favorite carb into — it's a veritable meal-elevator.

6. Tzatziki Creamy Garlic Cucumber Dip

This dip may be looser than most tzatziki sauces, but its refreshing flavors of cucumber, dill, mint, and lemon juice make it a wonderful accessory for any Greek feast. You can also use it to marinate kebabs before throwing them on the grill for extra juiciness (and serve more on the side).

7. Buffalo Style Chicken Dip

Imagine everything you love about buffalo wings, but in dip form. You've got cayenne-spiced chicken with notes of vinegar and garlic supported by cream cheese, sour cream, and Monterey Jack, to give it a luxuriously velvety base. All that's missing are carrot and celery sticks, and perhaps a generous sprinkle of crumbled blue cheese on top. Don't wait till game day for this creamy, spicy treat.

8. Artichoke & Jalapeño Dip

Zest, spice, and everything nice, this chunky dip will sit pretty in your refrigerator as a go-to indulgence for anything crunchy, like chips, raw veggies, and even fried plantains. Craving cauliflower? You're in luck! Trader Joe's cauliflower and jalapeño dip is equally scrumptious when the clock strikes snack time.

9. Zhoug Sauce

Cilantro may be a polarizing ingredient for some palates, but when combined with jalapeño peppers, chile flakes, garlic, cardamom, sea salt, and cumin seeds, it makes for a beloved Trader Joe's dip everyone can get behind. The spicy Middle Eastern–inspired gem is made for pita and falafel, but you'll probably find yourself putting it on go-to meals like scrambled eggs, turkey sandwiches, and even pasta.

10. Vegan Kale, Cashew, And Basil Pesto

It may be your inclination to pile this on top of a bowl of penne or gnocchi, but this simple, vegan blend is also a fantastic sandwich-topper and marinade for all kinds of protein. I've even used it to finish a bruschetta or mozzarella and tomato stack for a warm weather picnic highlight that blows your average potato salad out of the water.

11. Organic Salsa (Medium)

A classic never goes out style, and this rings truer than ever with Trader Joe's take on a Taco Tuesday night classic. This salsa is all about balance, boasting an appetizing array of everything we know and love in our favorite tomato-centric condiment (with all apologies to ketchup): diced Romas, onions, cilantro, lime juice, and both Anaheim chile and jalapeño peppers for a user-friendly level of heat.

More Trader Joe's favorites: 11 New Trader Joe's Must-Haves We're Adding to Our Carts

By Joey Skladany

MORE FROM Joey Skladany

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Dips Food Food52 Snacks Trader Joe's