Perfect for a crunchy potato chip, a soft pretzel or even a pile of celery sticks, dips don’t often get the credit they’re due, particularly in restaurants. But dips aren’t just for, well, dipping—they can be easily used across the menu. Many restaurants are menuing them as a base for pizzas, a topping for nachos, a stuffing for mushrooms and more.
Some dips, like cheese dips, vegetable dips and guacamole, have seen significant growth—for instance, appetizer cheese dips have grown 15% over the past five years, while vegetable dips have grown 13% and guacamole is up 9%, according to Technomic’s MenuMonitor.
Here are four ways to use popular dips as more than just a condiment.
1. Beer Cheese Dip
Mentions of beer cheese on menus rose 18% across commercial operators in 2017, according to Technomic’s MenuMonitor, and it’s easy to see why—it’s tasty, craveable and familiar. When using a prepared beer cheese base, operators can add the beer of their choice (or offer several types of beer cheese) and serve this delectable app as a soup (by adding chicken or vegetable broth), as a topping for loaded tater tots, as the cheese sauce in a rich beer cheese mac and cheese or as a topping for Irish nachos (loaded waffle fries).
Of course, beer cheese dip can also be used as an unbeatable dip for soft pretzels. Soft pretzels are the perfect pairing for appetizer dips, with their neutral flavor and easily-shareable format. Try offering a build-your-own appetizer with soft pretzels and a selection of dips.
2. Craft Ale Blue Cheese Dip
For diners who like their cheese dip a little sharper, Craft Ale Blue Cheese Dip is the perfect option. Operators can use this prepared dip to jazz up sliders—perfect for sharing with the whole table—or as a dip for veggies.
Made with a Belgium-style white ale and blended cheeses, this dip is also great as a fondue or a sauce for buffalo wings. Want to move beyond apps? This dip can do that, too—used as the sauce for a pizza, blue cheese dip is perfect for creating a buffalo-chicken pizza—just top with pulled chicken or popcorn chicken bites, buffalo sauce and mozzarella cheese.
3. Buffalo Chicken Dip
Customers flock to buffalo chicken and its various preparations; instances of buffalo chicken sandwiches have grown 6.6% year-over-year, according to MenuMonitor, and it’s a delicious option that works well in other formats, too. For instance, menu a Buffalo Chicken Quesadilla for a spiced-up version of this game-day snack, or kick up loaded potato skins by using Buffalo Chicken Dip as the filling and topping them with crumbled blue cheese and scallions.
4) Spinach Artichoke Dip
This party classic has been popular for years and isn’t going anywhere— in fact, 41% of consumers say that if offered, they’d order it at least occasionally, according to Technomic’s 2017 Starters, Small Plates & Sides report. And it’s popular for good reason—it’s delicious and goes well with a variety of foods.
Fresh spinach and flavorful artichokes are blended with Parmesan and Romano cheeses to create a rich and indulgent treat. Try using it as an unexpected nacho topping for Mediterranean nachos—spoon spinach artichoke dip over pita chips, then top with crumbled feta cheese, Kalamata olives, diced tomatoes and artichoke hearts. Spinach artichoke dip is also great as a stuffing for portobello mushroom caps, and it can also be taken beyond the appetizer menu and used as a pasta sauce.
Batch-crafted signature appetizers
JTM’s appetizer dips are batch-crafted using premium ingredients for a high quality, consistent product offering. Whether we’re using authentic artisanal cheeses for our Spinach Artichoke Dip or real American craft beer for our Craft Beer Cheese Dip, JTM takes great pride in providing on-trend, quality products to its customers. These dips are perfect served as a stand-alone appetizer or used as an ingredient in your own signature creation.
Our Bavarian Pretzels are made from a 200-year-old recipe from Muenster, Germany making them true Bavarian Pretzels. Created with unbleached wheat flour and the longest fermentation time in the industry, our pretzels have an authentic appearance and flavor. Taste the difference for yourself!
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