The Easiest Appetizer Ever: Corn & Cream Cheese Dip with Cherry Tomatoes

Now that barbecue season is in full swing, I have been revisiting my favorite appetizer and side dish recipes.

Vertical image of a white bowl with a light yellow creamy appetizer topped with sliced cherry tomatoes, with text on the top and bottom of the image.

It’s mid-July at the time of this posting, and I can’t count the number of barbecues that my family has been invited to.

I do not like to arrive empty handed, so I have been busy in the kitchen whipping up salads and desserts. No matter what the occasion, I always like to bring something special to contribute to the meal.

Vertical image of a bowl with a creamy corn appetizer topped with tomatoes, surrounded by lettuce, chips, and more tomatoes.

When pressed for time (and ideas) I have found that you can never go wrong with chips and homemade dip. This corn and cream cheese dip can easily be thrown together the night before your summertime event, or even the morning of.

Vertical image of a white platter with slices of cucumbers topped with a white garnish.

Simply garnish with cherry tomato quarters before you head out, grab a bag of tortilla chips, and you are ready to go. It is also a great addition to pack in your basket or cooler when you are on your way out to the beach or the park for a picnic lunch.

Or, why not serve it in a bread bowl, lettuce boats, or hollowed out cucumbers?

Vertical close-up image of a white bowl filled with a corn cream dip topped with sliced tomatoes and a tortilla chip with a blue background.

I prefer thick and chunky salsas and dips for my chips. Packed with corn and jalapenos, this recipe is spicy and hearty. It really satisfies a hungry crowd.

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Horizontal image of a platter with assorted vegetables and chips, with a dip topped with tomatoes in the center.

Corn and Cream Cheese Dip with Cherry Tomatoes


  • Author: Jennifer Swartvagher
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 4 hours, 10 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings 1x

Description

Summer is all about backyard barbecues and picnics, the perfect time to bust out this corn and cream cheese dip with cherry tomatoes.


Scale

Ingredients

  • 2 cups corn kernels (fresh, frozen and defrosted, or canned and drained)
  • 8 oz cream cheese, room temperature
  • 5 oz shredded cheddar cheese
  • 3 oz shredded pepper jack cheese
  • 3 medium jalapenos, seeded and chopped (approx. 1/3 cup total)
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onions, green parts only 
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, quartered

Instructions

  1. Combine corn, cream cheese, shredded cheese, jalapeno, green onion, sour cream, and mayonnaise in a medium bowl. Stir until well incorporated.
  2. Cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours.
  3. Garnish with the cherry tomatoes and serve.

  • Category: Dips
  • Method: No-Cook
  • Cuisine: Appetizer

Keywords: corn, cream cheese, dip, appetizer, tomato, jalapeno

Cooking By the Numbers…

Step 1 – Prepare Vegetables and Measure Out All Remaining Ingredients

Horizontal image of assorted bright ingredients in glass bowls on a black surface to make a creamy dip.

If you are using fresh corn, remove the kernels from the cobs and transfer to a medium bowl. If you’re using frozen instead, make sure to thaw it and allow it to drain before using it in the recipe. When using canned corn, be sure to drain all of the excess liquid before using.

Seed and chop 3 medium jalapenos using a sharp knife. You should have about 1/3 cup total.

Chop the green parts of the scallions until you have 1/4 cup in total. You can save the white root ends for another use.

Quarter 1/2 cup of cherry tomatoes.

Measure out all of the remaining ingredients as listed on the ingredients list. Room temperature cream cheese is best, since it will be easier to combine with the other ingredients. Remove it from the foil and allow it to soften for a few hours at room temperature.

Step 2 – Make Dip

Horizontal image of white, yellow, and green ingredients unmixed in a metal bowl.

Add the cream cheese, shredded cheeses, jalapeno, green onion, sour cream, and mayonnaise to the medium bowl with the corn.

Horizontal image of a creamy corn mixture in a metal bowl.

Stir until well incorporated, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.

Step 3 – Chill

Horizontal image of a white bowl piled high with a creamy corn dip topped with tomatoes.

Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a lid. Place in the refrigerator and chill for at least 4 hours before serving.

Garnish with cherry tomatoes and serve.

Dive into This Delicious Dip

There are several things that you can serve up with this tasty summertime appetizer to shovel all that creamy goodness into your mouth. My personal favorite is tortilla chips or cucumber rounds. Both are great for dipping, but you can also serve little dollops of it on cucumber rounds for a fancy looking appetizer.

Horizontal image of a platter with assorted vegetables and chips, with a dip topped with tomatoes in the center.

Try lettuce boats for a low-carb take, or you can even serve this up in a bread bowl in place of the classic spinach artichoke app.

Craving a German-style cheesy dip to serve alongside this one for a late-summer Oktoberfest menu? Try our creamy traditional Obatzda, and replace the chips with pretzels.

And if you love the taste of sweet corn, read our round up of the best summertime corn recipes!

For more dips for your party inspiration, here are some of our favorites:

What occasion will you bring this dip recipe out for? Tell us in the comments below, and be sure to rate the recipe as well.

Photos by Meghan Yager, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. Originally published on July 9, 2015. Last updated: September 20, 2019 at 18:49 pm. With additional writing and editing by Meghan Yager and Allison Sidhu.

Nutritional information derived from a database of known generic and branded foods and ingredients and was not compiled by a registered dietitian or submitted for lab testing. It should be viewed as an approximation.

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About Jennifer Swartvagher

Jennifer is an experienced journalist and author. Her work has been featured on TODAY Parents, The New York Times Blog, BlogHer, Scary Mommy, and scores of other parenting and cooking publications.

26 thoughts on “The Easiest Appetizer Ever: Corn & Cream Cheese Dip with Cherry Tomatoes”

  1. Mm-mmm, take out the tomatos in there and this right here sounds incredible. I love making dip, but my ideas for it are pretty much limited to sour cream & herb flavored. I’d love to give a new idea like this one a try. Putting the corn in there is a very neat flavor addition; I’m sure it would add some extra “wow” to regular creamy dip, as well as an interesting texture. This particular veggie has a sort of bursting crunch to it when you bite into it, so definitely would be a unique experience. I like the idea illustrated in one of the images, for putting it on toast as a spread, as well!

    • Probably any spreadable cheese would be good here, except for heavily flavored things like Pimento spread. The flavors might actually work pretty well with something like cottage cheese too.

      This comes at a perfect time though because I’ve got half a package of cherry tomatoes that needed to be used yesterday!

  2. A great and simple idea. With so many choices of cream cheese you can use one with herbs already so you don’t have to season it. I would stir in a spoon of pesto and olive oil to make it less thick and to make the dip go a bit further. Adding roasted peppers finely diced would be an alternative idea instead of tomatoes.

  3. Oh my gosh does this ever sound good! It sounds very similar in ingredients to a jalapeno popper dip I often make. I love the addition of corn here. I really would’ve never thought to pair these ingredients together. There isn’t anything much better than corn in the Summer!

  4. Chips and dip is pretty much my favorite food group hahaha, so i truly can’t wait to try this recipe. I want to add finely chopped purple onions to it and eat it with fritos! Honestly the only dip i’ve ever added corn too was black bean salsa. Thanks for sharing… *belly smile*

  5. What a delicious dip. I have to try this especially since I love jalapeño peppers. All I would need is a good bag of tortilla chips.

  6. This sounds delicious. I made something similar last night, but in a cooked casserole form, and now I’m thinking about making this with my leftover Mexican Oven Roasted Corn. I just need to pick up some tortilla chips and cherry tomatoes, and I’m good to go. This sounds delicious, and I’ll share it at a cookout I’m attending later.

  7. I always say presentation is everything…now I must admit…this presentation here has played on my emotions and cravings, now I need to work out how am going to make this dip in a jiffy…but I must budget first 😉

  8. This definitely looks like one to try. I’d probably use an own label cream cheese to keep costs down as the additional ingredients will provide all the flavour needed. I’d also be tempted to add some finely chopped chilli, just to give the dip a little kick.

  9. Very straightforward and tempting recipe. I love pepper jack cheese, and I bet it adds even more kick to this mixture of flavors. If I’m invited to any cookouts this summer, I’ll have to try this and bring it along.

  10. Huh, this is different. It looks actually really good. I bet you can put just about any vegetable in this mixture. My friend would put olives in hers. I like the cherry tomatoes in this. I might even chop it into tiny and add it.

    “Mattsmom” wants to know a substitute for cream cheese. You could do a vegan homemade recipe for cream cheese.

    !/2 cup of raw cashews soaked for 12-24 hours
    2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
    2 tablespoons of lemon juice
    2-3 tablespoons of water

    -after soaking cashews put everything in a food processor or blender
    =put the mixture in a container lined with cheesecloth
    =tie it closed with string
    -Next you need to hang it inside of a jar or pitcher to strain the excess liquid out so you can use a wooden spoon over top of the jar and tie the string to it. Make sure that it is above the bottom of the jar for drainage. More layers of cheesecloth will make it thinner. One layer will make it thicker
    -Leave in a warm place for 24 hours
    -remove from cloth and use as is or add herbs, vanilla, or sweetener

  11. Hey, so I thought about what you said of never arriving somewhere empty-handed and I realized I always do that! So embarrassing! Well, I was invited to my friend’s house on Sunday and I decided this time I’ll bring something. I looked for a quick recipe and this was it. The only thing I changed was the mayo because for some weird reason I hate mayo, so I just used sour cream. I also seasoned with salt and pepper. Everyone loved it and is definitely going into my favorites!

  12. Jalapenos is a nice touch. They go with just about everything. I’m a huge fan of corn so this is on the top of my list.

  13. My family and I eat cherry tomatoes like they are going out of style. We also love corn. We’ve never given much thought to cream cheese. We have it every once in a while on a bagel. But, other than that, we don’t eat it. This dish sounds very interesting. We might give it a try!

  14. This recipe is tempting and sounds delicious. As a student, this will be extremely helpful as it doesn’t take long to make and sdems pretty straightforward and simple. I absolutely love dips and often don’t have time to go out and buy some, but I’m pretty sure I have all the ingredients in my fridge already . I think it’ll also make a great snack to have for group studies.

  15. Like you, I always bring something when I’m invited somewhere but so far I’ve been only bringing desserts. This dish looks delicious and the recipe sounds easy to make so I’ll be making it soon for my family, we love creamy and spicy spreads and jalapenos are among our favorite chillies. I’m sure it will be a huge hit with my family and I could even bring it along the next time I’ll get an invitation. Thank you!

  16. This sounds delicious! I am interested in maybe using creamed corn and not as much mayonnaise since the corn is already creamed. Not skipping on the cream cheese, because in this household cream cheese is life! Hopefully my garden will have some nice fresh tomatoes to go with this soon!

  17. I love dip-style appetizers and anything that can be spread onto bread or crackers. This looks incredible and I’ve actually never tried anything like it.

  18. Wow this recipe looks tasty thanks for making me more hungry than i already am, this would be a very good dip for nachos or for a fast pizza alternative.
    The great thing about this recipe is that you can stock up on the dip saving you an endless amount of time you would spend stuck in the kitchen trying to whip up something tasty to eat! This is especially true for lazy people.

    I can already imagine eating this with a side of beef.

  19. I would have never come up with this combination, but it’s interesting. Does it taste sweet?

    I think I would make this but perhaps substitute something else for the corn (my husband isn’t big on sweet tasting foods, but he’d like everything else that’s in here).

    It looks really pretty too. I always enjoy serving or bringing food that looks nice.

  20. There’s nothing like cheese and corn together. This recipe looks absolutely divine. I love throwing lunch parties and of late I’ve been quite regular with serving up tiny little bits of toast topped with whatever takes my fancy that day. The more notable ones I’ve done so far include mushroom and cheese, and some sort of guacamole-esque item that I can’t really name. This dip is definitely going to be next!

  21. OH MY GOODNESS!!! Two years ago, we were at my fiances families Christmas gathering, and one of his aunts made a “special corn dip”. I had never had it before and it looked terrible. I was convinced to try it and it was the BEST dip I had ever had in my life! She never gave me the exact recipes with specific amounts, but im SURE this is it! She mentioned corn, sour cream, shredded cheese, jalepenos, and im not sure what else! It did not have tomatoes on it though, but im assuming that *could* be optional.. I WILL be making this, asap!

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