Cream Cheese Onion Dip is made with beautifully caramelized onions and fresh parsley added to a creamy and flavorful dip base. This caramelized onion dip recipe is a huge hit at every party and every game day food spread!   

Complete your party spread with more of my amazing appetizers and easy dip recipes! My Pepperoni Dip and Layered Taco Dip recipe are always a hit with kids and adults! Then add in my Cream Cheese Dip for a fresh fruity option. Your party guests will love them!

Onion dip in a bowl with ruffled potato chips around the bowl.

Why This Recipe Works

  • Best onion dip. Either you like onions or you don’t. That’s what I’ve observed at least. I have a bit of an obsession with onions! A creamy, flavorful dip with fresh parsley dispersed throughout, this chip dip is absolutely addicting! Served alongside some salty potato chips you have yourself a party food hit!
  • Perfectly caramelized onions. Some people see caramelizing onions as a daunting task (did you know it takes about 40 minutes?) — but don’t worry! I’ve got you covered! I’m going to share all of the tips and trips to getting the perfect caramelized onions. Spoiler alert: IT’S NOT HARD! You just need a little patience.
  • Easy onion dip. After hearing it takes 40 minutes to caramelize onions, you’re probably shaking your head at this! But you really don’t have to stand by the stove the whole time you are caramelizing the onions! Then simply toss the other ingredients together and you are done! This cream cheese onion dip really is easy peasy. 

Ingredient Notes

Caramelized Onion Dip ingredients on a light gray background.
  • Yellow Onions: Slice the onions 1/8 inch thick. This will help them cook easily because they aren’t too thick (which would take longer) and they aren’t too thin (which would cause them to stick to the pan).
  • Olive Oil: Use olive oil! Don’t cook the onions in butter. Olive oil has a higher smoking point so it won’t burn as quickly as butter will. 
  • Sour Cream: Doing a cream cheese and sour cream onion dip will give us the perfect creamy deliciousness in while providing a dimension of flavors.
  • Cream Cheese: Be sure to use room temperature cream cheese so it will incorporate better into the creamy base. 
  • Worcestershire Sauce: This adds a bit of saltiness and flavor depth to this delicious dip!
  • Fresh Parsley: I love fresh parsley in this homemade onion dip recipe! It adds a bright green color to the dip and a fresh flavor. 

Step-by-Step Instructions

  1. Cut the onions. Take the peels off 3 onions and slice onions in half length-wise. Then slice into 1/8-inch slices. Using a mandolin helps!
  2. Caramelize the onions. Heat a large skillet over medium low heat with 2 T olive oil. Add the sliced onions. Keep on medium-low heat and cook for 40-45 minutes, stirring occasionally. Once caramelized, remove from the heat and set aside. (The picture below is at about the halfway point in the caramelization process.)
Partially caramelized onions in a black skillet.
  1. Combine dip ingredients. To a large bowl, add 8 oz softened cream cheese, 1 cup sour cream, 1/3 mayo, 1/4 tsp salt, and 1 1/4 tsp Worcestershire sauce. Stir to combine. 
  2. Chop the onions. Take the caramelized onions and cut them into bite-sized pieces. Chop the fresh parsley.
  3. Add onions and parsley. Add the chopped sweet caramelized onions and the chopped fresh parsley to the cream cheese mixture. Serve this homemade caramelized onion dip with your chip of choice. Enjoy!
Fully caramelized onions with tongs grasping some of the onions.

Recipe Tips

Slice the onions 1/8-inch thick. This thickness works wonderfully because they aren’t TOO thin but they still have some substance without being too thick. If you choose to slice them thinner than 1/8″ thickness just remember that thinly sliced onions burn faster and stick to the pan so be careful.

Use olive oil rather than butter when caramelizing onions. Olive oil has a higher smoking point than butter. Butter also tends to burn easily, so I opt to use olive oil when cooking onions and the results are always phenomenal!

Use a 12-inch cast iron skillet. I love to use my enamel cast iron skillet because it distributes the heat evenly. The bigger pan size gives more room for the onions to be near the hot surface. Hello faster cook time!

You’re going to be tempted to turn up the heat. DON’T do it. Keep the temperature around medium-low and don’t change it. Onions will burn and once they burn, there is no going back. Caramelizing onions is the process of slowly coaxing the flavor out of the onions. It takes a long time for the onions’ sugars to caramelize.

Blonde-colored onions are achieved around 20 minutes of cooking (the halfway point pictured above). This is about the point of doneness for French Onion soup.

Stir the onions every few minutes to prevent them from sticking to the bottom of the pan and from coloring too much in one place.

You can serve this party dip with potato chips, tortilla chips, bagel chips, or pita chips. 

Make Ahead, Storing, and Freezing

You can definitely caramelize the onions ahead of time! Caramelize them a day or two in advance and store them in an airtight container in the fridge. I wouldn’t let the onions sit in the fridge for longer than 2 days before making the cream cheese onion dip and serving it. 

Store this homemade French onion dip in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days. 

I don’t recommend freezing any leftover dip. It is dairy-based so once frozen and thawed it will separate and create a grainy texture. 

Recipe FAQs

What kind of onion should you use to caramelize?

Any onion will caramelize. I use the yellow onion as they tend to caramelize more readily.

How to tell when onions are fully caramelized?

It takes about 40-45 minutes to caramelize onions. When finished the onions should be a rich brown color, soft but not mushy.

What are caramelized onions?

Sautéing and slowly cooking onions draws out the natural sweetness in them as the natural sugars in the onion caramelize. The end result is sweet onions that are tender and delicious! They become a deep golden brown color and add an intense and wonderful onion flavor to countless recipes from soups, to meats, and breads.

Can onion dip go bad?

Yes! Everything goes bad eventually. This cream cheese French onion dip has sour cream, cream cheese and mayo that will go bad. This onion dip will last for up to 7 days, but it will be best when enjoyed before 4 days since making it. 

Onion dip in a bowl with a ruffled potato chip dipping into it.

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5 from 8 votes

Cream Cheese Onion Dip

This caramelized onion dip made with cream cheese and sour cream is the perfect party food for any gathering! It's flavorful and delicious! 
Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 45 mins
Total Time: 1 hr
Servings: 15 servings

Ingredients
 

  • 3 yellow onions - thinly sliced (1/8″ thick)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 8 oz cream cheese - softened
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons fresh parsley - chopped (you can add more if you’d like)
  • potato chips - for serving

Instructions
 

  • Slice onions in half length wise and then slice to 1/8″ thickness. I used a mandolin which made it fast and easy.
  • In a 12 inch skillet over medium-low heat add the olive oil and onions. Stir occasionally. Keep the heat at the medium-low setting, you don’t want to get overzealous and use too hot of heat and then burn the onions. 
  • Caramelizing onions takes about 40-45 minutes. You want the onions to be a rich brown, soft but not mushy.
  • Once the onions have caramelized, remove from heat. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl combine the cream cheese, sour cream, mayo, salt, and Worcestershire sauce. Using hand beaters, cream the mixture until it’s a smooth consistency. 
  • On a cutting board, slice the onions so that they are bite sized pieces. 
  • Add the onions and fresh parsley to the cream cheese mixture and stir to combine. Serve with potato chips!

Notes

Store covered in the fridge for 3-4 days. 
Cook low and slow or else the onions will burn! Caramelization will take about 40 minutes. 
Use olive oil and NOT butter. Olive oil has a higher smoking point so it won’t burn as easily as butter will. 

Nutrition

Calories: 132kcal (7%)Carbohydrates: 3g (1%)Protein: 1g (2%)Fat: 12g (18%)Saturated Fat: 5g (25%)Cholesterol: 26mg (9%)Sodium: 129mg (5%)Potassium: 83mg (2%)Sugar: 1g (1%)Vitamin A: 365IU (7%)Vitamin C: 2.9mg (4%)Calcium: 38mg (4%)Iron: 0.2mg (1%)
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
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