Spinach artichoke dip is a quintessential game day snack, and this smoked spinach dip has an extra layer of smoky flavor that brings the classic dip to a whole new level.
It’s creamy, cheesy, and packed full of flavor – plus it only takes about an hour to make and can be prepped ahead of time to save time on the day of the big game.
Smoked Spinach Dip
This recipe is quick and easy to whip up and can be prepared in advance and reheated just in time for the big game.
Ingredients you’ll need
- Spinach: this recipe calls for baby spinach, but you can also use regular spinach. If you opt for regular spinach, just chop it up into pieces before adding it to the pot to wilt.
- Artichoke Hearts: you can use any canned or jarred artichoke hearts for this recipe, but I prefer to use marinated artichoke hearts. They add an extra boost of flavor to the dip.
- Garlic: you definitely want to opt for fresh garlic for this recipe, as opposed to the pre-minced kind in the jar. If you absolutely have to use the pre-minced kind, you want to double the amount in the recipe to ensure you get a nice, bold garlic flavor.
- Cream Cheese: cream cheese adds a nice, creamy, and melty component to the dip. This recipe calls for 2 blocks of cream cheese, but if you want a thicker dip then you can cut it down to 1 block.
- Monterey Jack cheese: I find that Monterrey Jack cheese is a great cheese for all types of dips and queso recipes. You can substitute mozzarella, Gouda, or any mild cheese for this recipe as well. If you’re looking for a stringier consistency, Oaxaca cheese is another great choice.
- Parmesan cheese: to achieve a nice, golden brown topping on the dip, I like to add a bit of grated Parmesan towards the end of the cooking process. You can alternatively use mozzarella, but I find that the Parmesan adds a really unique flavor.
- Seasonings: I keep it simple with just a pinch of salt and pepper, but you can add whatever seasonings you prefer. Red pepper flakes are a great way to add a bit of spice and adding smoked paprika will add an additional smoky element to the dip.
Tools you’ll need
- Smoker or Pellet Grill
- Wood or Wood Pellets
- Large cast iron pan (or aluminum tray)
- Medium-sized pot
- Silicone spatula (or wooden spoon)
- Heat-protecting gloves (or oven mitts)
How to make Smoked Spinach Dip
1. Wilt spinach
The first thing you want to do is to wilt your spinach. It may look like a lot of spinach when it is uncooked, but it will shrink significantly as it wilts.
Add oil to a pot over medium-low heat, and add your spinach. Let it wilt for about 10 minutes, giving it a stir every few minutes.
Add the minced garlic to the pan during the last few minutes.
While your spinach is wilting, you can chop your marinated artichoke hearts into smaller pieces. Depending on your preference, you can leave them larger or chop them more finely.
Once your spinach is a dark green and fully wilted, add your artichoke hearts, salt, and pepper. Give it a good mix until it is all well combined, then remove it from the heat and set it to the side.
2. Add the cheese
Start by chopping your Monterrey Jack cheese into cubes roughly 1½” thick. This will help the cheese melt more evenly on the smoker and make mixing easier at the end.
Place your cubes of Monterrey Jack into a large cast iron pan.
Add the cream cheese next to the Monterey Jack, and then add your spinach & artichoke mixture.
Pour the milk evenly over the top.
3. The smoke
For this recipe, you can use whatever smoker or pellet grill you prefer – the key is to ensure that it can hold a steady temperature of about 300°F.
Once your smoker is preheated to 300°F, place your dip directly on the grates and let it smoke for about 30 to 40 minutes, or until the cheese looks pretty much melted.
The final step is to pull the dip off the smoker and give it a good mix. You want to stir until all of the ingredients are well combined, then smooth out the top with the back of the spatula or spoon.
Sprinkle the grated Parmesan cheese on top and then place it back on the smoker for another 10 to 15 minutes to let the top get nice and golden brown.
You can serve this dip immediately alongside toasted French bread, tortilla chips, crackers, or your favorite vegetables.
If you want to prep the dip in advance, let it cool and then store it covered in the fridge for up to 3 days.
To reheat, simply place it back on the smoker or in the oven at 300°F for about 20 minutes.
Looking for other dips?
- The Ultimate Jalapeño Popper Dip
- Smoked Beer Cheese Dip
- Grilled Buffalo Chicken Dip
- Smoked Queso Dip
Smoked Spinach Dip
- 10 oz baby spinach
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 5 cloves garlic minced
- 6 oz marinated artichoke hearts chopped
- 1 tsp Kosher salt
- 1 tsp black pepper course grind
- 16 oz Monterrey Jack cheese cubed
- 2 blocks cream cheese
- ½ cup whole milk
- ½ cup Parmesan cheese grated
- In a medium pot over medium-low heat, add olive oil and the baby spinach. Let the spinach wilt for about 10 minutes, stirring every few minutes.
- Add the minced garlic for the last 3 minutes of sauteing the spinach.
- Add the chopped artichoke hearts, salt, and pepper and stir until well combined. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool.
- In a large cast iron pan (or aluminum tray), add the cubes of Monterrey Jack cheese, cream cheese, and the spinach-artichoke mixture.
- Pour the milk over the top of the ingredients evenly.
- Preheat your smoker to 300°F and place your dip directly on the grates.
- Let it smoke for 30 to 40 minutes, or until the cheese looks fully melted.
- Remove the pan from the smoker and stir until all the ingredients are well combined.
- Smooth out the top of the mixture with the back of your spoon and sprinkle the grated Parmesan cheese over the top of your dip and place it back on the smoker for another 10 to 15 minutes, until the top is golden brown.
- Serve immediately alongside toasted bread, crackers, tortilla chips or vegetables.