Warm Tomato Basil Dip


There have been quite a few board and card games played around these parts this week. I’ve rocked out at Clue and Cranium Turbo (I especially love the sensosketch cards, aka pictionary-with-your-eyes-closed), but my sister totally dominated at Boggle. New Year’s Eve will be filled with even more game time, most likely of the Pit, Fluxx and Wii varieties.

Game nights call for easy-to-eat-one-handed dips and snacks and appetizers. May I suggest this dip with some crusty baguettes or French bread? It pairs tomato, basil and Parmesan, which is always a winning combination, and it makes plenty for 6, 8 or even 10 people to snack on. Make it, then enjoy while mulling over your next Scrabble move.


Warm Tomato Basil Dip

Prep Time: 1 hour, 30 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Yield: 1 1/2 cups

Warm Tomato Basil Dip

This dip goes great with crusty French bread, carrot slices or pretzels.


  • 3/4 cup diced tomatoes
  • 8 ounces neufchatel or cream cheese
  • 2/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup minced basil
  • Minced or shredded basil, for topping


  1. Set a colander over a large mixing bowl. If the holes are too large and the tomatoes will fall through, line the colander with paper towels. Pour the tomatoes into the colander and allow the juices to drain for at least an hour. If you choose to do this the night before, place the colander and bowl in the refrigerator. Discard the collected juices.
  2. With a fork, mix the cream cheese with the Parmesan, basil and drained tomatoes. Divide the dip between two greased 6-ounce gratin dishes or pour into a shallow 8 to 12 ounce oven-safe dish. Place under the broiler for 10-15 minutes, or until the tops begin to brown. Top with additional basil before serving.

Make Ahead and Storage

The tomatoes can be drained the evening before serving. Just cover the colander and bowl with a piece of cheesecloth and refrigerate overnight.




  1. says

    this looks DELICIOUS! I’m putting it on my ever famous “dip rotation” in 2012! [i’m pretty much known for dip around these parts. For our Wisco vs Nebraska game day party – I made ONLY dips and desserts. dip dip dip dip I LOVE DIP. duh. probably mostly because i REALLY love most of the things you dip with. like bread. and pretzels. and vegetables. I also REALLY like cheese, which seems to be a popular addition to most dips. duh.]

  2. says

    Oh gosh, I’m pretty sure if you put this dip and a loaf of bread in front of me, both would disappear rapidly 🙂 I’m a sucker for anything tomato-basil! I’ll even look past the cream cheese, which I’m not always a huge fan of. Something tells me the other flavors mask it!

  3. Liz says

    This sounds delicious! I always do a whole evening of appetizers for NYE (when I’m off of working 3rd shift that is – which I am this year!) and I’ll be adding this to the list 🙂

  4. NY says

    This makes a great appetizer. Very rich! Also tastes great with chicken, shrimp, or crab mixed in. Also a medium tomato yields about 3/4 cup of diced tomato.
    I had to double all of the ingredients for just 4 people. I used one 8 oz original 1/3 fat cream cheese and then one 8 oz onion and chive 1/3 fat cream cheese.

    For a real savory taste:

    Get Parmesan cheese bagels, olive oil and a little more Parmesan cheese.

    – Set the bagel on a cutting board with the hole up (flat). Cut half inch slices down. No one will ever know you used a bagel.
    – Lightly coat one side with olive oil or butter
    – Sprinkle some cheese on top.
    – Broil for about 5 minutes for a half toasted through bread or put on lower shelf while the dip is broiling for a fully toasted bread.