I love a 7 layer dip in theory, but this Tex-Mex party appetizer often looks a whole lot better than it tastes. The classic recipe consists of canned refried beans, jarred salsa, store-bought guacamole, sour cream, pre-shredded cheese, and canned black olives layered in a glass dish. I prefer to make my 7 layer dip entirely from scratch so that each layer is as delicious on its own as it is scooped up with the other elements. This version is made with garlicky fork-mashed black beans, cool sour cream, shredded sharp Cheddar, chunky homemade guacamole, crisp sweet corn, and salsa fresca. It’s a bit more time consuming to make than the semi-homemade kind, but the payoff in freshness and flavor is 100% worth it.
If you’re short on time, good quality pre-shredded Cheddar cheese, such as Cabot, can be used, as well as canned corn. The dish can be made a day ahead of time, but be sure to allow 1 hour for it to sit out at room temperature prior to serving, or it will be too cold to scoop. Either way, you may want to lay out a spoon with the dip for ease of serving.
What You’ll Need To Make 7 Layer Dip
Step 1: Prep
Before getting started with the recipe, I suggest prepping the scallions, garlic, jalapeño pepper, and lime juice. These ingredients are divided up between the layers, and you’ll be glad to have them handy and ready to use.
Step 2: Make the Salsa Fresca
In a medium bowl, combine the tomatoes, half of the dark green scallions, half of the minced jalapeño, 2 tablespoons of the lime juice, ¼ teaspoon of salt, and the sugar.
Mix well and set aside.
Step 3: Make the Black Beans
Heat the olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat, and add all of the light scallions.
Cook, stirring frequently, until softened, about 2 minutes. Measure out ¼ teaspoon of the minced garlic and set aside in a medium bowl (you’ll use this for the guacamole). Add the remaining garlic to the skillet and continue cooking for 30 seconds more. Do not brown.
Add the black beans, ½ teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon of the cumin, and water and continue cooking for about one minute.
Off the heat, mash the beans with a fork or potato masher until they have a chunky puréed texture. Set aside. (The bean mixture may taste salty; that’s okay.)
Step 4: Make the Guacamole
To the medium bowl with the reserved garlic, add the avocados, the remaining dark green scallions, the remaining jalapeño, ½ teaspoon salt, the remaining ½ teaspoon cumin, and the remaining 2 tablespoons lime juice.
Mash with a fork until blended but still a bit chunky.
Step 5: Assemble the Dip
Spread the black bean purée into an even layer in an 8-inch glass baking dish.
Spread the sour cream evenly over the black bean layer.
Sprinkle half of the cheese over the sour cream.
Spread the guacamole over the cheese.
Add the remaining cheese evenly over the guacamole.
Sprinkle the corn over the cheese.
Transfer the salsa to a fine sieve and drain. This is an important step that prevents the 7 layer dip from becoming watery.
Top the corn layer with the salsa.
Serve the dip immediately or refrigerate for up to 24 hours. If chilled, allow 1 hour for it to sit out at room temperature prior to serving. Lay out a spoon with the dip for ease of serving.
Leftover dip keep well in the fridge, covered in plastic wrap, for a day or two, but you may notice that the dip releases a little moisture after resting in the fridge. This is easily fixed by blotting the liquid with a paper towel. Because the guacamole is covered with cheese, corn, and salsa, it should stay green.
You May Also Like
- Salsa Verde
- Black Bean and Corn Salad with Chipotle-Honey Vinaigrette
- Chicken Nachos
- Restaurant-Style Salsa