Sweet and salty cranberry salsa dip tastes fresh with just a little kick of spice served over a bed of cream cheese that makes this party appetizer dip so addicting! Serve with crackers or our favorite, pretzel crisps.
I first had cranberry salsa dip over cream cheese at a holiday party and I couldn’t stop snacking from it. It’s the perfect fresh tasting salsa, with a hint of lime, sweet, salty and spicy! This party appetizer salsa comes together so easy and fast.
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How Spicy Is Cranberry Salsa?
You can control how spicy you would like the salsa depending on how much jalapeño you use. Scrape out the jalapeño seeds prior to chopping if you don’t want it as spicy (seeds hold a lot of spicy heat). Make sure to wear gloves to prevent the pepper oils from burning your skin. I’ve actually had that happen once! You can add more than one jalapeño if you love spicy food or omit the pepper altogether if you can’t handle the heat.
Do I need to refrigerate cranberry salsa before eating?
Yes, refrigerate cranberry salsa in a covered bowl for at least 4 hours to allow the sugar to help soften and sweeten the cranberries to remove their naturally bitter flavor. Don’t spread over the cream cheese until it has time to marinate otherwise you will have a runny dish. Serve cranberry salsa over the cream cheese after it has marinated for 4 hours first.
How to make cranberry salsa
- Add cranberries, jalapeño, cilantro, green onion into a food processor and pulse until chopped finely. Or chop up ingredients using a manual food chopper. Add to a large bowl.
- Add lime juice & zest, lemon juice & zest, sugars, cumin and salt into cranberry mixture. Mix well.
- Cover bowl and refrigerate for 4 hours or more until ready to serve.
- 30 minutes before ready to serve, set out blocks of cream cheese and allow to soften at room temperature.
- Spread cream cheese evenly across a serving platter. Spoon cranberry salsa evenly across the top of cream cheese, making sure to drain some excess liquid from each spoonful so that the platter doesn’t become a cranberry salsa soup. Serve with crackers or pretzel crisps!
- 12 oz package fresh cranberries
- 1 jalepeno small, diced
- 1/4 cup cilantro diced
- 1/4 cup green onion chopped
- 1 lime
- 1 lemon
- 1/4 cup white sugar
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 8 oz neufchatel cream cheese (1/3 less fat variety)
- Using food processor or manual food chopper, finely chop up cranberries, jalapeño, cilantro, green onion. Add to a large bowl. (Use rubber gloves to protect your hands from the hot jalepeño oils. Scrape out and discard seeds first if you don't want it too spicy or skip the jalapeño if you can't handle spice at all).
- Using a microplane grater, zest lemon and lime and add zest to bowl. Use a juicer to juice lemon and lime, adding approximately 2 tablespoon each citrus juice to the bowl.
- Add sugars, cumin and salt to the bowl and mix until salsa is well blended. Cover bowl and refrigerate about 4 hours. This helps the cranberries break down, soften and remove their naturally bitter taste.
- Before serving, spread blocks of slightly softened cream cheese evenly across a large plate or serving platter. Top with cranberry salsa evenly across the cream cheese, draining some of the juices in the bowl before adding. This helps it not be too watery. Serve with your favorite crackers or our favorite, pretzel crisps! Refrigerate leftovers.