When I first went vegan, I knew nothing about vegan cooking. I relied on the few cookbooks that existed at that time, specifically Vegan with a Vengeance and Vegan Planet, and the culinary genius of a couple of friend.
The assumption I made when I went vegan was that the lifestyle would feel restrictive. I would be saying goodbye to most of my favorite foods (I lived on eggs and cheese), spending the rest of my life eating vegetables and cardboard. What I learned, almost immediately, that my assumption was completely and utterly wrong.
Veganism is not about restriction. It’s about finding creative and resourceful ways to take the animals out of your favorite foods.
I first learned this lesson at a vegan Super Bowl party. I was newly vegan, a couple months in, and celebrating the 2nd biggest food holiday with 6 of my favorite vegan friends. We were all fairly new to veganism and were fully into impressing one another with our vegan culinary skills. I still remember that incredible spread of BBQ tofu skewers, towering nachos, nut-based cheeses, double chocolate football shaped cupcakes, and so much more. But what I remember most vividly about that Super Bowl Sunday spread was a warm creamy and tangy vegan spinach artichoke dip.
While my friends were watching the big game, I must have eaten half that dip as I lingered around the food admiring all the incredible food. It was then that I realized the whole world of exciting cuisine that was opening up to me.
In the past 11 years, I’ve made this recipe a handful of times for various parties. And each time, without fail, I always get the inevitably question, “this is vegan?!”
I rarely share recipes like this on the blog. As you will see, it contains a couple store bought vegan alternatives (cream cheese and sour cream). Not only do I personally prefer sharing and eating recipe with whole food ingredients, I also recognize not everyone has access to these items. However, while I want to promote whole food diets, I also want to offer recipes for people who may be new or transitioning to the vegan lifestyle and are looking for veganized versions of their favorite comfort foods.
This vegan spinach artichoke dip made my transition to veganism a whole lot easier and I hope that it does the same for those of you who are on the same journey I was 11 years ago. For you, you will love the creamy comfort of this warm dip that makes veganism feel a whole lot easier while impressing your omnivorous friends.
I know now that veganism is not, in any way, about restriction or deprivation. It’s about compassion, life-giving foods, and the joys and creativities of creating new and exciting recipes out of the foods we know and love.
Impress all your friends with this extra creamy and rich vegan Spinach Artichoke Dip - a warm dip or spread that is perfect for your next party.
- 1 (10 ounce) package of frozen spinach, thawed and drained
- 1 (14 ounce) can of artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
- 1/2 cup vegan sour cream
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 8 ounces vegan cream cheese
- 3/4 cup vegan parmesan + more to sprinkle on top
- 1/4 tsp pepper
Preheat the oven to 375.
Drain all the excess water out of the thawed spinach and place in a large bowl with the vegan sour cream, artichoke hearts, and garlic. Stir to combine.
Add vegan cream cheese, 3/4 cup vegan parmesan, and pepper. Stir again until all the ingredients are evenly distributed.
Transfer the dip into an 8" cast iron skillet or similar sized baking dish. Bake for 25 minutes until light brown and bubbling slightly underneath.
Turn oven to broil and broil for 2-3 minutes to get the top a slightly darker brown. Remove from oven and serve immediately with a toasted baguette or crackers.