If you’re looking for a great gluten-free appetizer recipe to bring along to potlucks, watching the big game with friends, holiday parties, or even movie night on the couch, this gluten-free chili cheese dip is just what you need!
It’s ready in under 45 minutes and uses homemade turkey chili for an easy appetizer everyone will love. It’s creamy, cheesy, meaty, and has so much flavor.
You can even use leftover chili to create this easy chili dip! Serve with gluten-free tortilla chips, corn chips, or even some fresh vegetables for a perfect appetizer that will be a huge hit at your next party. It’s so simple, yet so tasty!
Why I love this easy chili cheese dip
My family has been making a form of this easy chili cream cheese dip recipe for as long as I can remember. Now that I have celiac disease and I’m on a gluten-free diet, I love making this homemade gluten-free version.
While it does require a few more steps than the original that my mom would make, it’s still easy to do and so worth the extra steps.
It only takes an extra 15-20 minutes to make your own chili for this chili cream cheese dip. I like being able to tweak the chili depending on my tastes and mood – making it sweeter or spicier or using up whatever leftover ingredients I have on hand.
Typically, you’ll find cream cheese, a meat or vegetarian chili, and shredded cheese to make chili cream cheese dip.
Sometimes the cream cheese will be mixed in with the chili layer, but in my version we have 3 distinct layers:
- cream cheese on the bottom
- gluten-free turkey chili in the middle
- melty shredded cheddar cheese and green onions on top
I love having the three separate layers because the cream cheese on the bottom gives a nice contrast to the meaty chili in the middle. It’s a fun game day appetizer that tastes just as good as it looks! Perfect party food!
- ground turkey – You can use ground beef instead of ground turkey if you prefer.
- seasonings – Pre-packaged taco seasoning is often not gluten-free, so I’ve included the individual spices to make my gluten-free taco seasoning blend.
- shredded cheddar cheese – You can swap out the shredded cheddar cheese for monterey jack, pepper jack, or colby jack cheese if you prefer.
- green onions – The green onions give the dip flavor and color. If you’re in a pinch, you can omit the green onions or swap with chopped fresh cilantro, scallions, raw or pickled red onion, diced avocado, or sliced jalapeños!
Make Ahead Tips
- You can cook the chili up to two days ahead of time. I actually like the flavor of the chili the next day better than the first. In fact, this is a great way to use leftover chili!
- You can also layer the cream cheese, chili and shredded cheddar cheese up to one day ahead of time. Just cover the dish and place in the refrigerator until ready to heat in the oven.
- Refrigerate leftover chili cheese dip in an airtight container and reheat in the microwave for a few minutes or in the oven at 350F until the cheese is melted.
You can use homemade chili or a can of chili for this chili dip recipe. While I highly suggest making your own chili for this dip, I do understand the ease of using canned chili for a dip like this. If you do decide to use canned chili, read all of the ingredients to make sure that it is gluten-free!
A lot of canned chili brands use gluten as a filler in their recipes, making canned chili NOT gluten-free. I’m often unable to find a gluten-free canned chili so I opt to make my own. If I do find canned chili at the grocery store, it tends to have beans in it. Personally, I prefer no beans in my chili cheese dip.
This chili dip recipe is also great for using up leftover homemade chili that I already have on hand. My slow cooker turkey chili is a favorite in this recipe! Make sure you use a thick chili so that the dip isn’t too soupy!
Since this is a dip recipe, you can use a variety of baking dishes successfully in this recipe. I tend to use a 9-inch quiche dish for this recipe because it is the perfect diameter and height. It also looks beautiful so I can easily prepare this appetizer and bring it along to a party. You can also use a pie dish, round cake pan, or 8-inch square baking dish.
More Gluten-Free Chili Recipes You’ll Love
- Slow Cooker Sweet Potato Turkey Chili
- Quick and Easy Beef Chili
- Chicken Quinoa Chili
- Slow Cooker Turkey Chili
- Pumpkin Apple Cider Turkey Chili
Looking for Dips and Salsa Recipes? Try these!
- It’s so easy to make your own Homemade Mango Salsa! Just 5 minutes and a few simple ingredients!
- This easy Corn and Cotija Guacamole makes the perfect party appetizer!
- This Pineapple Salsa is so bright and fresh, and is served in a pineapple boat!
- If you’re looking for a tasty, creamy dip that’s great for entertaining, this Avocado Bean Dip is for you!
- This Buffalo Cauliflower Dip recipe is so cheesy and savory! A vegetarian take on classic buffalo dip!
Gluten-Free Chili Cheese Dip
- 1 lb ground turkey
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1/2 onion (finely diced (1 cup diced))
- 1 clove garlic (minced)
- 4 tbsp tomato paste
- 3/4 cup water
- 2 tsp chili powder
- 2 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- ½ tsp paprika
- 8 oz cream cheese
- 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- 1/4 cup green onion (chopped)
- Head olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Then, add the onions and cook for 5 minutes, until translucent.
- Add the minced garlic and cook for an additional minute.
- Add in the ground turkey and cook until no longer pink, 6-8 minutes.
- Stir in the tomato paste, water, chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, salt and paprika. Stir to combine.
- Let simmer for 8-10 minutes to let the flavors meld.
- Preheat the oven to 350F.
- Spread the softened cream cheese on the bottom of a 8×8-inch baking pan or 8-inch pie dish.
- Pour the chili on top of the cream cheese layer.
- Sprinkle with shredded cheddar cheese.
- Bake at 350F for 12-15 minutes, until cheese is melted.
- Sprinkle with chopped green onion and serve with tortilla chips.