Next to the freezer aisle, the refrigerated case of dips is the second greatest section at any Trader Joe's. It holds fast-and-fancy apps for when friends come over, and easy snacks to have on hand when the hungries hit. Look past the classic hummus and you'll find a selection of dips that will make you swoon.
Here are the best dips to buy at Trader Joe's.
1. Spinach and Kale Greek Yogurt Dip, $4 for 16 ounces: Spinach dip-lovers, rejoice! And immediately add a tub of this low-fat dip to your shopping cart. It's packed with two types of greens and a boost of protein, so it's not so bad to eat the whole thing in one sitting. Right?
2. Bacon Cheddar Ranch Dip, $3 for 10 ounces: When I asked a long-time crew member to name his favorite dip, his face lit up and he instantly exclaimed that there was nothing better than this Bacon Cheddar Ranch Dip. He told me it's just the right balance of saltines and tang, and oh-so cheesy. He was right.
3. Vegan Kale, Cashew & Basil Pesto, $4 for eight ounces: You might not usually think of pesto as a dip, but this vegan version is ridiculously creamy and an irresistible partner to pita chips, crackers, and cut veggies. It's also sold in the dip section, so it must be a dip.
4. Three-Layer Hummus, $3.50 for 12 ounces: Why choose just one kind of hummus when you can have three different flavors? In the same container! This ingenious dip includes individual layers of traditional, cilantro jalapeño, and spicy hummus.
5. Artichoke & Jalapeño Dip, $3.70 for 10 ounces: Expect a little bit of a kick, but not too much heat from this ultra-rich, creamy dip.
6. Olive Tapenade, $2 for 9.5 ounces: Here's how to look extra fancy for just two bucks. This green-and-black tapenade is made with a mix of Kalamata and Chalkidiki olives.
7. Zhoug Sauce, $3 for eight ounces: If you love spicy things, this herby dip is going to be right up your alley. If you don't love heat, this dip is still for you: Just tame the heat by stirring a spoonful into Greek yogurt, sour cream, hummus, or guac.
8. Garlic Spread Dip, $3 for eight ounces: Our Food Director turned me onto this when she was talking about the groceries she hoards from Trader Joe's. It works as a dip, but it's also great as a spread for sandwiches or a sauce for vegetables. (And, um, by the spoonful.)
What are your favorite dips at Trader Joe's?