Caramelized Onion Dip

I’ve always been a fan of onion dip, have you? Especially with ruffled potato chips. Most of the flavor in the onion dip with which many of us are familiar comes from a package of dried onion soup, which works if you have only 2 minutes to put together a dip. But if you are looking for something a little more special, you can make your own onion dip from scratch. The key is to caramelize the onions first.

When onions cook for a long time, their natural sugars start to caramelize. The onions lose their harshness, their sweetness intensifies, and they turn a deep, rich brown color, loaded with flavor. If you cook them with a little balsamic and a touch of brown sugar, it not only speeds up the process, but the flavors are even more intense.

This dip is easy to put together. The only thing that takes time is caramelizing the onions, which you can do on a back burner while preparing something else. You can also prepare the onions a couple days in advance if necessary.

I love the way this dip turned out. You know the sign that the dip is good? Your hand reaches for another chip with some dip without you even noticing. And you have to consciously tell yourself to stop. Do you make your own onion dip from scratch? If so, tell us about it in the comments.

Caramelized Onion Dip Recipe

  • Prep time: 5 minutes
  • Cook time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: Makes about 2 1/2 cups of dip


  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 4 cups chopped yellow onions (from about 2-3 onions)
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder


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1 Heat olive oil in a large, thick-bottomed deep pot (I used a 5-quart Dutch oven) on medium high heat. Add the chopped onions and cook until translucent and starting to color, about 10 minutes. If at any point during the cooking of the onions they start to dry out, add a tablespoon of water to the pot. Stir in the brown sugar, balsamic, salt, and pepper. Lower the heat and cook gently, uncovered, for about 25 to 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions are nicely caramelized. Then set aside. (You can caramelize the onions up to 2 days ahead and chill until you make the dip.) Let cool a bit before adding to the other ingredients.

2 In a medium bowl, mix together the sour cream and mayonnaise (a rubber spatula works well for this). Stir in the caramelized onions. Sprinkle with garlic salt and stir to incorporate. Stir in the Worcestershire sauce.

Chill until ready to serve. Serve with potato chips.

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Caramelized onion dip with sour cream and Greek yogurt from Heidi of 101 Coobooks

Caramelized onion dip with cream cheese, sour cream, lemon and chives from Food52


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Showing 4 of 39 Comments

  • DiggingDogFarm

    Looks delicious!
    I can’t wait to try the recipe.
    I like to caramelize onions in the oven, much less babysitting.


  • Barbara

    Just in time for the BG :) Was planning on making a different version of this dip, but after reading yours will have to try this instead! Thanks!

  • Shawna @ CheekyChicFamily

    I’ve made a similar onion dip by Ina Garten. It’s good, but she doesn’t suggest you chop the onions….just slice….it’s messy to eat but SO delicious. I love how you eat your onion dip with Ruffle Potato Chips. That’s the only way my husband thinks onion dip should be eaten. Classic!

  • Bronwyn

    I’ve never made onion dip from scratch but should I ever be requested to bring dip, I shall be making this. Yum!

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