“Pumpkin” Cheese Dip

"Pumpkin" Cheese Dip

“Pumpkin” Cheese Dip

My friend Amy has been talking about baking a dip inside a pumpkin for awhile now. She really likes fun presentations for parties. I do, too. The idea is to serve this for Thanksgiving dinner. She wanted to test it out first, though, to be sure it would work. Thanksgiving Day is no time to be testing out a recipe.

Since she was coming over to dinner the other night, I surprised her by putting this one together.  It worked out great, and now Amy has directions for making her own cheesy stuffed pumpkin.

It really is simple and could be filled with any number of combinations of cheesy goodness. I have included the one I made that night, and my recipe for Spinach and Artichoke Dip, which we will have at my family’s Thanksgiving dinner this year.

You just get a pie pumpkin, about 2-3 lbs. Cut off the lid and scoop out the seeds, like you would if you were making a Jack -o-Lantern. Wipe off the outside and then just fill it up with the dip mixture. Put the lid back on, bake for an hour, and you are good to go. The fun part is scraping some of the cooked pumpkin in with the cheese dip. More detailed directions follow.


So here is the recipe for making the cheesy filled pumpkin. I think it is simple enough to serve anytime, not just on a holiday. Enjoy!!


“Pumpkin” Cheese Dip


Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut off top of pumpkin. Cut in at an angle, so top will fit like a lid and not fall in.  Set top aside. Scoop out seeds and clean out any stringy bits*.  Set pumpkin on a baking sheet. Combine cheese filling of your choice and place inside the pumpkin.  Place the top of the pumpkin back on the pumpkin, and place in oven. Bake for 1 hour. Remove pumpkin and place on heat proof dish. I used a glass pie plate. Remove lid. Serve with crusty bread or crackers.


Smoky Cheese Dip

8 oz. cream cheese, cubed

4 oz. extra sharp cheddar cheese, shredded

8 oz. bacon, cooked and crumbled

½ c. sour cream

¼ c. mayo

¼ c. chopped parsley

½ t. cumin

Pinch of nutmeg

½ c. hulled pumpkin seeds

In medium bowl, stir together all ingredients, except the seeds. Place this mixture in the pumpkin when ready to bake. Don’t add the pumpkin seeds until right before serving. Stir them in a little, if you like.



Spinach  and Artichoke Dip


1 (12-14 oz.) can artichoke hearts, drained and coarsely chopped

10 oz. package frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry

8 oz. cream cheese, cubed

4 oz. shredded cheddar cheese

½ c. diced onion

¼ c. Italian dressing

Dash of hot sauce

In medium bowl, combine dip ingredients, stirring to combine. Place in pumpkin when ready to bake.


* You can rinse off the seeds, lightly salt them and toast them, if you like. Then serve with the pumpkin dip. If you aren’t interested in eating them- please put them outside for the birds to eat.



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