“Slow Cooker Big Party Cheese Dip” is a thick, spicy party dip that is guaranteed to please. I found it on the GroupRecipes.com Website when I was searching for a hot hors d’ oeuvre that I could bring to a potluck party. This recipe, submitted by “Candymonkies,” makes a large quantity, so you may want to halve the ingredients if you’re not serving it for a large gathering; in fact, I added the words, Big Party, to the title, because this recipe makes so much that you need to serve it at a big party unless you want a ton of leftovers.

Here’s what you need:

  • 1 lb. 95% lean ground beef (Note: Although 95% lean ground beef is more expensive than fattier varieties, I think it really is a necessity in this recipe so that you don’t end up with a crock full of excess fat and grease floating about.)
  • 1 lb. bulk Italian sausage
  • 16 oz. pasteurized processed cheese (Velveeta), cubed
  • 11 oz. can sliced jalapeno peppers, drained
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 8 oz. cheddar cheese, cubed
  • 8 oz. cream cheese, cubed
  • 8 oz. cottage cheese
  • 8 oz. sour cream
  • 8 oz. can diced tomatoes, drained
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Here’s what to do:

  • Brown the ground beef and the Italian sausage in a large skillet over medium-high heat, stirring to break up the meat; then drain and discard the fat.
  • Transfer the meat to the slow cooker and add all of the other ingredients.
  • Cover and cook on high for 1½ to 2 hours or until the cheeses are melted. Don’t lift the cover until finished.
  • Stir before serving. Serve with crackers or tortilla chips (the thicker the better).

The recipe didn’t specify the size of slow cooker to use, but I used my oval 5-quart model, which was more than adequate. When I was ready to serve the dip, I transferred a large portion to a chafing dish, which kept the dip warm and bubbly throughout the party. It’s also worth noting that this is a dense, heavy mixture, so make sure to use thick chips. Thin, flimsy chips will break when you dip them, causing a big mess in your crock pot or serving bowl. Thanks for the great recipe, “Candymonkies.”