7 Layer Dip – Muy Bueno

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Upgrade your game-day hosting with this effortless yet delicious easy vegetarian 7-Layer Dip! Made with just seven simple ingredients, this Mexican-inspired dip is a crowd-pleaser that takes mere minutes to assemble.

In 2014, Colorado’s Own Channel 2 graciously invited my kids and me to showcase our delectable seven-layer bean dip cups alongside some cherished Super Bowl sweet treats. Though the segment is no longer available on their site, fear not! You can access all the recipes in one convenient spot: Dips & Sweets for your Football Party.

Speaking of 2014 — don’t miss out on this video on YouTube making Individual Seven-Layer Dips with my littles. It’s such a sweet time capsule brimming with delicious memories! Where have the years gone?

What is 7 Layer Dip?

Refried beans, sour cream, guacamole, pico de gallo, cheese, black olives, and green onions! Seriously, who doesn’t love seven-layer dip? It’s so easy to make — you don’t have to cook a thing! Just shred your cheese, slice your green onions, layer your ingredients, and voila!

Nervous about double dippers? Make individual 7-layer Mexican dips in mini mason jars to guarantee no double-dippers ruin the fun! Make a bunch of cups in advance, screw on the lids, then refrigerate and pull them out as needed. For all my busy mamas out there, they make a great after-school snack too.

Ingredients & Substitutions

See recipe card below for the full recipe.

Refried Beans: Homemade refried beans are easier to make than you might imagine, but this 7 layer dip recipe is all about ease. Feel free to swap in your favorite can of refried beans instead or substitute with black beans if you prefer. 

Sour Cream: For a layer of creamy, tangy goodness use sour cream or crema Mexicana. You’re welcome to use full-fat Greek yogurt if you’d like to go a little lighter.

Guacamole: In my opinion, it’s not game day unless there’s guacamole. My classic recipe is always a hit, but you can certainly swap in my Hatch green chile guac or dreamy avocado lime crema instead.

Salsa: Pico de Gallo (salsa fresca) is bright, fresh, chunky, and mild. Of course, you’re welcome to swap in any of your favorite salsa recipes instead, like salsa roja or salsa verde.

Cheddar and/or Monterey Jack Cheese: You can’t go wrong with these crowd-pleasing favorites. While I generally recommend shredding your own cheese (it’s cheaper and usually tastes better), this is one spot where the pre-shredded kind is welcome.

Canned Black Olives: I’ll admit the briny flavor of olives isn’t for everyone. That said, it’s one of my favorite layers!

Green Onions: For added color and a bit of allium sharpness. In a pinch, you can swap in finely diced red onions. 

How to Make 7-Layer Dip

This Easy 7 layer dip recipe comes together in just a few simple steps.

Bean layer: Spread refried beans in a large serving dish or a spoonful in mason jars. I definitely recommend you use wide-mouth jars so you can get your chips in! 

Sandwich your guac: Next, layer the sour cream followed by the guacamole and salsa. The acidity of both the sour cream and salsa, plus the protective barrier they form by keeping any air out, is what keeps your guacamole nice and fresh looking even if you prep your layered dip in advance.

Add fresh garnishes: Top the dip off with cheese, chopped olives, and green onions.

Serve with tortilla chips.

Optional Variations 

As much as I love this recipe just the way it’s written, there are tons of other 7-layer dip combos. Here are just a few to consider:

Meaty 7-Layer Taco Dip: Just because I’m not one for meat in my 7-layer Mexican dip doesn’t mean you can’t be. Picadillo, shredded brisket, or chicken tinga make great choices. Add it on top of the refried bean layer — if it’s 8 layers, I don’t think anyone will complain!

Vegan 7-Layer Dip: If you’re hosting plant-based folks, make sure to help them feel included. You can either use vegan sour cream and cheese or replace those layers with vegan favorites like grilled corn or cowboy caviar.

Healthy 7-Layer Dip: Give your dip a light makeover by swapping in Greek yogurt for sour cream and using low-fat refried beans.

Nacho 7-Layer Dip: To give your dip a nacho vibe, use Tex-Mex queso instead of shredded cheese and pickled jalapeños instead of olives.  

Hot 7-Layer Dip: I’ve heard of folks baking their dip and serving it hot. If you’re going this route, switch up your layering a bit. I recommend using beans (topped with meat if you’re so inclined) followed by cheese and a cooked salsa. Bake until warmed through, then top with your fresh ingredients (e.g. guacamole, salsa, green onions, and cilantro).

Serving & Topping Suggestions 

Tortilla Chips & Veggie Sticks: Offer a mix of crunchy tortilla chips and fresh veggie sticks (carrots, celery, bell peppers) for dipping. 

Customizable Cup Layers: Set up a DIY station where guests can choose their layers, including options for meat lovers. That way, if you have multiple food allergies or preferences in the crowd, everyone will be happy. 

Expert Tips & Tricks

7-layer dip order. Beans on the bottom, guacamole sandwiched between salsa and sour cream, and all the fresh goodies on top. 

Get a jump on prep. Assemble the night before in a large bowl or in individual mason jars and refrigerate. 

Shred like a pro. A food processor fitted with a grating blade makes short work of shredding block cheese.

Storage Instructions

I suggest enjoying this dip within the first 24 hours for optimal freshness, any leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3 days.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can 7-layer Mex dip be made ahead of time? Can it be frozen? Yes, it can be made ahead of time. That said, I don’t recommend freezing it. Fresh items like pico de gallo and green onions don’t do well in the extreme cold, and the sour cream’s consistency can get a little funky. Does Mexican 7-layer dip have cream cheese? Mine does not, but I’m sure some do! Does this 7-layer bean dip recipe need to be heated? Nope. It’s delightful straight from the fridge or at room temperature. Can you make a 7-layer dip with ground beef? Absolutely. I personally don’t like meat in mine, but if you want to go for it, you’ve got my full support! I think it’s best on top of the refried beans, as they’ll help the meat stick to the chips.

More Easy Appetizer Recipes

If you make this recipe, please let me know! Leave a ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ rating on this recipe below and leave a comment, take a photo and tag me on Instagram with #muybuenocooking.

Seven Layer Dip

Upgrade your game-day hosting with this effortless yet delicious easy vegetarian 7-Layer Dip! Made with just seven simple ingredients, this Mexican-inspired dip is a crowd-pleaser that takes mere minutes to assemble.

Yield: 12 servings
Prep Time: 5 minutes minsTotal Time: 5 minutes mins

Spread refried beans in an even layer in the bottom of your serving dish. Next, layer the sour cream followed by the guacamole and salsa. Top the dip off with cheese, olives, and green onions.Serve with tortilla chips.

Assemble the night before in a large serving dish or in individual mason jars and refrigerate. 
I suggest enjoying this dip within the first 24 hours for optimal freshness, any leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3 days.

Calories: 138kcal, Carbohydrates: 7g, Protein: 5g, Fat: 11g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 5g, Cholesterol: 18mg, Sodium: 323mg, Potassium: 178mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 3g, Vitamin A: 388IU, Vitamin C: 6mg, Calcium: 144mg, Iron: 0.3mg

Course: Appetizer, SnackCuisine: American, Mexican, Tex-Mex

Photography by Jenna Sparks.Originally published: January 2014. 

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