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Best Spinach Artichoke Dip (Restaurant-Style)

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Learn the cheffy method for making a top-notch spinach artichoke dip — once you try it, you’ll never go back to the traditional recipe.

spinach and artichoke dip with tortilla chips.

Creamy, cheesy, and brimming with veggies, spinach artichoke dip is a surefire hit at any gathering. While most homemade versions rely on cream cheese, sour cream, and mayonnaise, restaurant chefs take a different approach. They typically use a Mornay sauce—a cheesy variation of the classic béchamel sauce—to bind and flavor the dip. Although it sounds fancy, Mornay sauce is actually the same easy sauce you’d use for homemade macaroni and cheese and some creamed spinach recipes. This restaurant method, which is done entirely on the stovetop, is actually a bit faster than the baked home-style version. And, in my opinion, it results in a much more delicious dip.

“This was AMAZING! There’s a restaurant near me that has something very similar and this was just as good if not better…It’s a WINNER!”

Karen

What You’ll Need to Make Spinach Artichoke Dip

spinach artichoke dip ingredients
  • Onion and Garlic: These aromatics form the flavorful foundation of the dip.
  • Butter, Half & Half, and Flour: Combined to create a roux, these ingredients thicken the dip, ensuring a creamy, rich texture that’s perfect for scooping.
  • Frozen Spinach: Adds a healthy, bright element to the dip. Thawing, draining, and squeezing the spinach removes excess water, preventing the dip from becoming watery.
  • Canned Artichoke Hearts: Provide a slightly tangy flavor and hearty texture. Properly preparing the artichokes by draining, rinsing, chopping, and blotting ensures they integrate well without adding extra moisture.
  • Shredded Cheddar and Pecorino Romano (or Parmigiano Reggiano): These cheeses melt into the dip, offering a gooey texture and rich flavor.
  • Tortilla Chips: The perfect crunchy, salty vehicle for scooping the dip.
  • Jump to the printable recipe for precise measurements

Step-by-Step Instructions

Begin by prepping the frozen spinach and canned artichokes. The spinach should be thawed and squeezed as dry as possible. The artichokes are packed in water with salt and citric acid, so they need to be rinsed very well, drained, and then blotted dry with a paper towel. (If you add them directly to the dip without first rinsing them, they will give the dip an off flavor.)

blotting chopped artichokes with paper towel

Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring frequently, until soft and translucent, 3 to 4 minutes. Mix in the garlic and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute more. Stir in the flour.

Cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute more. Pour in the half & half.

Then add the spinach and artichokes. Cook, stirring occasionally, until hot and thickened, about 2 minutes.

Add the Cheddar, Parmigiano Reggiano, salt, and pepper. Cook, stirring constantly, until the cheese is melted, 1 to 2 minutes.

Transfer the hot dip to a serving bowl and serve with tortilla chips.

spinach and artichoke dip with tortilla chips.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use fresh spinach instead of frozen?

Yes, you can definitely use fresh spinach here. I’d start with about 1½ pounds and cook it down with a bit of water. You’ll need about 1½ cups of steamed chopped spinach (though it will seem like much less once you squeeze all the liquid out).

Can spinach artichoke dip be made ahead of time?

Yes, it can be made up to 3 days ahead of time and refrigerated in a covered container. Reheat it on the stovetop over medium heat, adding a bit more half & half to thin the dip, if necessary. Because of all the dairy, this dip is not ideal for freezing.

What are good dippers for spinach artichoke dip besides tortilla chips?

Sliced baguette, pita chips, or toasted pita bread offer a nice crunch and surface area for scooping.

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Spinach Artichoke Dip (Restaurant-Style)

Learn the cheffy method for making a top-notch spinach artichoke dip — once you try it, you’ll never go back to the traditional recipe.

Servings: 4 to 6
Prep Time: 25 Minutes
Cook Time: 15 Minutes
Total Time: 40 Minutes

Ingredients

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1¾ cups half & half
  • 1 (10-ounce) box frozen chopped spinach, thawed, drained, and squeezed dry
  • 1 (14-ounce) can quartered artichoke hearts, drained, rinsed well, chopped, and blotted dry with paper towels (see note)
  • 1½ cups shredded sharp Cheddar
  • ½ cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Pinch nutmeg
  • Tortilla chips, for serving

Instructions

  1. Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring frequently, until soft and translucent, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute more. Do not brown. Add the flour and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Pour in the half & half, and then add the spinach and artichokes. Cook, stirring occasionally, until hot and thickened, about 2 minutes. Stir in the Cheddar, Parmigiano Reggiano, salt, pepper, and nutmeg and cook, stirring constantly, until the cheese is melted, 1 to 2 minutes. Taste with a chip and adjust seasoning, if necessary. Transfer the dip to a serving bowl and serve with tortilla chips.
  2. Note: Canned artichokes are packed in water with salt and citric acid, so they need to be rinsed very well, drained, and then blotted dry with a paper towel before using. If you add them directly to the dip without first rinsing them, they will give the dip an off flavor.
  3. Make-Ahead Instructions: The dip can be made up to 3 days ahead of time and refrigerated in a covered container. Reheat on the stovetop over medium heat, adding a bit more half & half to thin the dip, if necessary.

Nutrition Information

Powered by Edamam

  • Per serving (Does not include chips - 6 servings)
  • Calories: 285
  • Fat: 21 g
  • Carbohydrates: 15 g
  • Sugar: 4 g
  • Fiber: 5 g
  • Protein: 11 g
  • Sodium: 496 mg
  • Cholesterol: 61 mg

This website is written and produced for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and the nutritional data on this site has not been evaluated or approved by a nutritionist or the Food and Drug Administration. Nutritional information is offered as a courtesy and should not be construed as a guarantee. The data is calculated through an online nutritional calculator, Edamam.com. Although I do my best to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered estimates only. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased, natural fluctuations in fresh produce, and the way ingredients are processed change the effective nutritional information in any given recipe. Furthermore, different online calculators provide different results depending on their own nutrition fact sources and algorithms. To obtain the most accurate nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator.

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Comments

  • I made this for a family gathering and it was a hit! Easy to make and tasted delicious!

    • — Brenda on February 12, 2024
    • Reply
  • I made this recipe to take to a super bowl party. It was easier than another recipe I’ve used in the past, and it was a HUGE hit. It was the first snack to go at the party and multiple people asked for the recipe – I was so happy to share it!

    • — Sophie on February 12, 2024
    • Reply
  • One of the worst recipes that I have ever tried! I used Gruyère, a very expensive cheese and grated Parmesan. I even added a small amount of cream cheese to make it creamier.. Nothing helped!
    Do not bother with this recipe. I threw the whole thing away!

    • — Mercedes Ramos on February 11, 2024
    • Reply
  • Sorry Jen. I love most of your recipes, but I found this dip very bland.

    • — Linda Kelly on February 11, 2024
    • Reply
  • I tried this recipe tonight and it was very bland. I reheated it with a little mayonnaise and sour cream and a touch more salt. Better but still bland…just isn’t for me.

    • — Kathy on February 9, 2024
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  • I’m dying to make this recipe. It sounds amazing. I have just one question: can I use artichokes marinated in oil? I usually have that on hand. I would assume that they would need some of the liquid squeezed out. Would it mess up the finished flavour of the dish? Every one of your recipes that I have tried always turn out great. I can count on it!

    • — Rita on February 9, 2024
    • Reply
    • Hi Rita, If you drain and rinse the artichokes, it should work (and so glad you like the recipes)! 😊

      • — Jenn on February 9, 2024
      • Reply
  • Put in a mini creuset and sprinkled Gruyère on top and baked for 5 minutes in the oven! Looks and taste beautiful!

    *on a different note…I love Your website but have problems loading pages and crashing because of the amount of ads:/ Makes it difficult to pull up recipes😕😕😕😕

    • — Sam on January 13, 2024
    • Reply
    • Glad you enjoyed this! I’m sorry the ads are making it difficult for you to view the recipes. An option is to view the recipe as if you were going to print it. That will remove all the ads. So, you’d go through the process of preparing to print a recipe and just view it that way. Hope that helps!

      • — Jenn on January 15, 2024
      • Reply
  • I am going to make this and bring to a New Year’s Eve party. I want it to be served warm. Can I reheat in a microwave when I arrive — or put it under the boiler? Your advice please.
    I have never made this recipe, but I have made many from your website — all delicious!
    Thank you!

    • — Janet on December 29, 2023
    • Reply
    • Hi Janet, so glad you like the recipes! Yes, you can reheat this on the stovetop or in the microwave. Hope everyone enjoys!

      • — Jenn on December 29, 2023
      • Reply
  • This was my first attempt at spinach artichoke dip and all I can say is it was very bland. I used salted butter, don’t know if that would make it bland but I had to add salt and it still wasn’t flavorful. Going to try to add some mayo and sour cream to the leftovers, and maybe more cheese.

    • — Ursula on December 25, 2023
    • Reply
  • I made this for a bridal shower and it was delicious! I tripled the recipe and with all the other food, I have some leftover. Any chance it can be frozen? Or any suggestions on how to use the remaining amount in another dish?

    • — Sherry on September 26, 2023
    • Reply
    • Hi Sherry, I think it would be delicious tossed with hot pasta. (You may need to thin it out- you could use milk, cream, or some of the pasta water. And because of all the dairy in this, I’m not sure it’s a great dish to freeze, but if it’s going to go to waste otherwise, I think it’s worth a try.

      • — Jenn on September 26, 2023
      • Reply
  • Hi Jenn, I’ve tried several of your recipes with great results.
    Can this be frozen either before or after cooking?

    • — Laura on September 25, 2023
    • Reply
    • Glad you like the recipes! Because of all the dairy in this, I’m not sure it’s a great dish to freeze – sorry!

      • — Jenn on September 26, 2023
      • Reply
  • Is the parmesan cheese to use, the powdered kind in a tub from the dried food section of the grocery store (looks like it from the pictures)? Pls confirm. Can’t wait to try this! 😊

    • — Caroline Doucet on July 20, 2023
    • Reply
    • Hi Caroline, No, the cheese should be grated from a wedge that you can usually find in the nicer cheese section of grocery stores. I usually get mine at Whole Foods. Here’s some more info. Hope you enjoy the dip!

      • — Jenn on July 20, 2023
      • Reply
  • I loved this recipe.

    • — P Ash on June 30, 2023
    • Reply
  • Every year, 3 close friends and I go away for a few days to relax, recharge, and eat great food. This year I made Spinach Artichoke dip and it was excellent. There was none left. Thank you for another hit!

    • — Deb on June 12, 2023
    • Reply
  • Fantastic! I insisted we halve the recipe because my (young adult) children can (still) be picky. We are not halving this recipe the next time. Amazing stuff!!!

    • — Nicole F on April 7, 2023
    • Reply
  • Delicious! I couldn’t find organic spinach in a box so I used organic frozen chopped spinach from a bag and I did not thaw it and it still came out great (not watery at all). Simple to whip up and the taste is fantastic. One to keep on rotation.

    • — Steph on February 10, 2023
    • Reply
  • Made this for Christmas Eve! Awesome!

    • — Nancy L Norris on January 4, 2023
    • Reply
  • Absolute perfection! Served this for New Year’s Eve and it was a huge hit. Thanks again for your great recipes. Easy to follow and always delish.

    • — Jill Stabeno on January 1, 2023
    • Reply
  • This recipe is the absolute BEST, no need to look for any other. My guests ate this all up with some warm tortilla chips. Jen, thank you for helping me look good!

    • — Marisol R. on December 30, 2022
    • Reply
  • Do you have any suggestions for making this recipe gluten free? Is there a gluten free flour that you would recommend as a substitute?

    • — Christine on December 21, 2022
    • Reply
    • Sure, gluten-free flour would work here. Enjoy!

      • — Jenn on December 22, 2022
      • Reply
  • Really good! Made a double batch to take to a party then realized it was too much, so kept some at home to enjoy the following day. Mixed it with spaghetti, leftover turkey and sautéed mushrooms as a play on turkey tetrazzini. (Just thin the sauce with a little pasta water.) Delicious!

    • — LPB on December 12, 2022
    • Reply
  • Made this and received many compliments on how good it tasted!

    • — Michelle on November 27, 2022
    • Reply
  • This recipe is amazing! I made it exactly as written following all of your additional instructions and it turned out perfect. I have been looking for a spinach artichoke dip that replicated one that I had while visiting New Orleans. I have tried several other recipes using cream cheese etc. None of them were even close to what I was looking for. This recipe is better than any I’ve tried. Definitely a keeper! Thank you for sharing.

    • — Kathy Nicholas on November 26, 2022
    • Reply
  • It is so good and so easy to make it. Cant believe it that I made it myself. Followed recipe exactly how it is.

    • — Edith on November 23, 2022
    • Reply
  • Hi Jen
    If making a double portion is it safe to assume just double the amount of all ingredients or what do you suggest?

    • — Laura on November 23, 2022
    • Reply
    • Yes, Laura, that’s fine. Enjoy!

      • — Jenn on November 23, 2022
      • Reply
  • This was AMAZING! There’s a restaurant near me that has something very similar and this was just as good if not better! I had a little get-together and this was one of the things I served. The bowl almost looked like it was licked clean!! Also, several people asked for the recipe. It’s a WINNER!

    • — Karen on November 22, 2022
    • Reply
  • Made this as written and we found this to be missing something,perhaps some kind of acid component or subbing the cheddar with pepper jack cheese.

    • — lowandslow on November 21, 2022
    • Reply
  • Wow this was a HUGE hit, Jenn! I definitely won’t be making the typical spinach dip again! One thing I noticed that is a frequent thought when making your amazing recipes is that it would be so helpful if at least the metric versions included the weight of a small, medium, and large onion. Since I use a scale I go by the typical recommendations of weight for each size, but it still can vary a lot. And often there’s not a small onion in a bag so knowing the ounces or grams or even volume would be super helpful!

    • — Emilie on November 15, 2022
    • Reply
    • Hi Emile, So glad to hear you enjoyed this! And I will keep your request in mind as I develop new recipes. This website is also a great resource.

      • — Jenn on November 15, 2022
      • Reply
  • Hi, Jenn, this dip served in the cast iron is a great idea! Do you have a single recipe pictured in the skillet? Do you happen to remember what size skillet you used? Thanks so much for all your recipes, which we use frequently.

    • — Jamie on November 14, 2022
    • Reply
    • Hi Jamie, It’s the 8-inch skillet. Enjoy! 🙂

      • — Jenn on November 14, 2022
      • Reply
  • Hi Jenn!
    I need a “sure thing” dip for book club tomorrow and hopefully this is it! Did you use mild or sharp cheddar? Also, I don’t have anything to keep it hot….will it be ok when it gets to room temperature? Love your recipes. Thank you!

    • — Doreen on November 13, 2022
    • Reply
    • Hi Doreen, I used sharp but either will work. It’s excellent at room temp – in fact, I could eat it with a spoon!

      • — Jenn on November 13, 2022
      • Reply
  • Hi Jenn, what happened to the previous artichoke spinach dip recipe on your site? It was similar to this but used frozen artichokes and Monterey Jack cheese and was baked. It was delicious!

    • — Linda on November 11, 2022
    • Reply
    • Hi Linda, I’ll email it to you. 🙂

      • — Jenn on November 11, 2022
      • Reply
      • That’s great! Thanks 🙂

        • — Linda on November 11, 2022
        • Reply
      • Hi Jenn, I’m making this one for the second time and it is delicious – I’m going to double it and if I have leftovers will definitely try it on pasta. Could you also email me the old version as well (see below) to try.
        I make so many of your amazing dishes. Also doing your cocktail sauce for Superbowl with the Artichoke dip. Store bought sauce will never compare to yours. Thanks for making me look like a great cook.

        • — Barbara Ahern on February 10, 2024
        • Reply
  • This dip is delicious! My only suggestion would be, instead of tortilla chips, use the toasted pita chips found in Chef Jenn’s recipe for feta dip. It is an amazing combination! (Could you post a link to that recipe?)

    • — Ann on November 10, 2022
    • Reply
    • Glad you enjoyed, Ann! The homemade pita chips are here. 🙂

      • — Jenn on November 11, 2022
      • Reply
  • Hi Jenn😊, I just made this dip recipe, DELISH!!! As always, straight forward, easy to follow directions, ingredients that you probably already have, turned out perfectly as described. I Love that you can make it ahead and reheat. Will Definitely become part of our regular “offerings”.
    Thanks again for another delicious recipe!

    • — Marnie on November 10, 2022
    • Reply
  • This looks delicious! Would this be a good dip to serve with veggies? If so, does it have to stay warm?

    • — Calley OHenley on November 10, 2022
    • Reply
    • Yes I think it’d be good with just about anything! 🙂 It’s best warm with chips (you can keep it in a mini crockpot), but it’s also perfectly delicious at room temp, especially if you’re serving with veggies.

      • — Jenn on November 10, 2022
      • Reply
  • Can I use fresh spinach and if so how much?

    • — Kelly on November 10, 2022
    • Reply
    • Yep, I’d start with about 1-1/2 pounds and cook it down with a bit of water. You’ll need about 1-1/2 cups of steamed chopped spinach (though it will seem like much less once you squeeze all the liquid out).

      • — Jenn on November 10, 2022
      • Reply
  • What if I swapped out the cream for full-fat coconut milk? I do Paleo and am willing to cheat on the cheese/flour parts, but all that cream is a no-no.

    • — Nan on November 10, 2022
    • Reply
    • Hi Nan, Technically it should work, but the flavor will definitely be a bit different. I’d love to know how it turns out if you try it!

      • — Jenn on November 10, 2022
      • Reply
  • Can this recipe be made in advance and if so, how many days before reheating to serve?

    • — Donna on November 10, 2022
    • Reply
    • Yep, I think 3 days ahead is fine and you can reheat on the stovetop. Enjoy!

      • — Jenn on November 10, 2022
      • Reply
  • Can I substitute fresh spinach for frozen spinach. If so, can what is the quantity you suggest?

    • — Karen H on November 10, 2022
    • Reply
    • Hi Karen, You can definitely use fresh. I’d start with about 1-1/2 pounds and cook it down with a bit of water. You’ll need about 1-1/2 cups of steamed chopped spinach (though it will seem like much less once you squeeze all the liquid out).

      • — Jenn on November 10, 2022
      • Reply
    • Can you use frozen artichoke hearts?

      • — Pat on November 10, 2022
      • Reply
      • Hi Pat, You can but you made need a squeeze of lemon, as canned artichokes have a bit of acidity.

        • — Jenn on November 10, 2022
        • Reply
  • I’ve made this, both as a dip and with pasta, and it is exactly like the old restaurant version. I say “old version” because the new ones have cream cheese and I don’t care for that in my dip. This recipe is so much better with real cheese. This is also a huge hit for pot-luck gatherings. I’ve received so many compliments when I’ve brought this dip.

    • — Christina on November 10, 2022
    • Reply
  • Delicious!!!!! I’m so incredibly happy that this recipe uses neither mayo nor sour cream – so many of them do. This is by far the tastiest and easiest recipe I’ve found for a beloved favorite. Thank you!

    • — Megara on November 10, 2022
    • Reply

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