This Cranberry Jalapeno Dip is creamy, sweet, tangy, and a little spicy. Serve it up with tortilla chips or whole grain crackers and it’s the perfect holiday appetizer or snack. Always a hit at parties! Easily made in the food processor.
The tangy, creamy vegan cream cheese combined with the tart, sweet, and slightly spicy cranberry salsa is absolutely mouthwatering match.
Pair it with crunchy crackers or crispy chips and it’s flavor and texture dynamite that your holiday guests won’t be able to resist.
Make this Cranberry Jalapeno Dip and watch it disappear!
Ingredients you need
Ingredient notes and substitutions
Cranberries ~ Use fresh cranberries. Dried cranberries won’t work in this recipe.
Frozen cranberries may also be used. Just be sure to thaw them out first.
Jalapeños ~ Remove the ribs and seeds for a mild heat. If you prefer things on the spicy side, you can leave them in.
Onion ~ Red onion has the best taste and texture in this fresh salsa.
Cilantro ~ Cilantro brings a fresh herby flavor. Fresh parsley can be used if you don’t like cilantro.
Sweetener ~ I like coconut sugar, but regular can sugar can be used as well.
Cane sugar is sweeter than coconut sugar, so if you start with just ¼ cup and adjust to your liking.
Cashews ~ You’ll need raw cashews to make the cream cheese part of this Cranberry Jalapeno Dip. Soak them for several hours in hot water to ensure they blend up creamy and smooth.
Extras ~ Fresh lemon juice and apple cider vinegar bring the classic tang that cream cheese is known for.
How to make the recipe
Place all the ingredients for the cranberry salsa into a food processor (1) and pulse until combined, but still chunky (2).
You could eat this salsa as is, but it’s even more delicious mixed with dairy free cream cheese.
Give a quick rinse to the food processor and add the soaked cashews, vinegar, lemon juice, and salt (3).
Press start and drizzle in the water through the top food chute. The mixture will start to become crumbly (4), then pasty (5), and finally super smooth (6). Add an additional tablespoon or two of water, if needed, to achieve a perfectly smooth and creamy texture.
You will have to stop and scrape down the sides periodically to ensure all the ingredients are fully incorporated. Be patient. This process could take up to 5 minutes or so.
Place the vegan cream cheese in a bowl (7), top with the cranberry salsa (8), and mix thoroughly (9).
How to serve
This Cranberry Jalapeno Dip is delicious with tortilla chips, pita chips or whole wheat crackers. You could also serve it with raw veggies, like carrots and celery sticks, crusty slices of baguette, or pretzels.
It’s the perfect appetizer or snack for Thanksgiving, Christmas, and/or New Year’s Eve parties!
This dip will keep well in an air-tight container in the fridge for 3 to 4 days. Some liquid may settle at the bottom of the container. Mix it well before serving if this happens.
You can also freeze this Cranberry Jalapeno Dip. Transfer the dip to a freezer-safe container or plastic bag. It should keep well for up to 4 months.
To serve after freezing, be sure to thaw it in the fridge overnight and mix it well to smooth out any lumps.
Pro tips for success
~ Use fresh cranberries or frozen/thawed cranberries. Do not use dried cranberries.
~ Remove the ribs and seeds of the jalapeño for a mild heat. Leave them in if you like it spicy.
~ Pulse the salsa until chunky. Do not over-processes.
~ Soak the cashews for several hours or even over-night to ensure they blend up perfectly smooth.
~ Blend the vegan cream cheese, stopping to scrape down the sides of the food processor as necessary, until completely smooth and creamy. Add additional tablespoons of water, as needed, to achieve this consistency.
~ After mixing the cranberry salsa with the vegan cream cheese, chill the dip until ready to serve.
Yes, cranberries can be eaten raw. However, fresh cranberries on their own can be very tart and bitter. They are best suited for use in recipes.
Rinse and drain fresh cranberries. Then discard any mushy, shriveled, or green berries before eating them or adding them to recipes.
Store fresh cranberries in the fridge for several weeks. Or freeze them in a freezer-safe bag for up to one year.
Fresh cranberries are high in antioxidants and are a good source of fiber, calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, vitamins E, C, A, K and many B vitamins. [source]
More vegan dips
- Vegan Buffalo Chicken Dip
- Vegan French Onion Dip
- Vegan Queso
- Roasted Red Pepper Dip
- Mexican Bean Dip
- Vegan Cold Crab Dip
- Oil-Free Hummus
I hope you love this recipe as much as we do! If you tried it, please use the rating system in the recipe card and leave a comment below with your feedback.
Be sure to sign up for my FREE Newsletter to be the first to get my NEW recipes! You can also follow me on Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest.
For even more easy family recipes, be sure to check out my cookbook, The Meatless Monday Family Cookbook!
Cranberry Jalapeno Dip
- 12 ounces fresh cranberries rinsed and drained
- 2 small or 1 large jalapeño ribs and seeds removed
- ½ cup diced red onion
- ¼ cup chopped cilantro
- ⅓ cup coconut sugar
- 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
- ½ teaspoon salt
- juice of 1 lime
Cashew Cream Cheese
- 1 ½ cups raw cashews soaked for about 2 hours
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup water plus more as needed
- Place all ingredients for cranberry salsa in a food processor and pulse until combined. Don't over process or you will end up with a puree. You want it to be slightly chunky still. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
- Rinse out the food processor and place all the ingredients for the cashew cream cheese, except the water, into it. Start the food processor and drizzle in the water through the top food chute. Process until smooth, stopping to scrape down the sides as needed to ensure everything gets incorporated well. Be patient as this process could take up to about 5 minutes or so.
- In a large bowl, mix the cranberry salsa with the cashew cream cheese until well combined.
- Refrigerate at least 30 minutes or until serving.
Storage/Freezing This dip will keep well in an air-tight container in the fridge for 3 to 4 days. You can also freeze it. Transfer the dip to a freezer-safe container or plastic bag. It should keep well for up to 4 months. To serve after freezing, be sure to thaw it in the fridge overnight and mix it well to smooth out any lumps.
Nutrition values are calculated using online calculators and are estimates only. Please verify using your own data.
Denise. Hall says
I live in Appalachia which is not overrun with vegans, to say the least. I made this both for a company Christmas lunch and also for a church Christmas party. Everyone loved it. Three people asked me for the recipe. I was going to bring home leftovers (I made way too much) and one of the biggest meat eater friends of mine said “Where do you think you are you going with that? Im taking it home to my family”. LOL. I let her. It was so delicious.
Jenn Sebestyen says
Denise, this is awesome! Thank you for sharing your story. I’m thrilled that everyone loved it!
I was amazed by the cashew cream cheese and totally thrilled that I can have plant-based cream cheese. And the cranberry salsa with it is incredible. The whole famy loves it.
Jenn S. says
That’s awesome, Abo! So glad everyone loves it! Happy holidays!
Yesterday I made just the cranberry relish portion and today I added the cashew cream. It’s fabulous! And what makes it so much better is that both the cranberry salsa by itself and the cream cheese by it self make equally fabulous items in addition to being put together !!! You are genius
Jenn S. says
Tracie – I somehow missed this comment before. I’m thrilled you loved it so much! Thank you so much for your feedback. Happy New Year!!
Omg! The cranberry salsa part w out the cream is delicious!!!!! I made it the night b4 & will add the cream part tomorrow… but wow!!!! So far soooo good! 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟
Jenn S. says
Yay! Glad you are liking it so far. I’m making some today too! Let me know how it all comes together! Happy Holidays!