this baked cream cheese dip with glazed pecans has been my go-to party appetizer for years. i think the first time i ever made it was for my apartment housewarming party for my first apartment back in the fall of 2007.
i was so proud of that apartment, having spent weeks working with helpers (thanks helpers!) to paint nearly every square inch of the place (the floor was the only thing that escaped my roller!). i held a little holiday/housewarming party around this time of year almost 10 years ago to show the place off to my friends and coworkers who had been listening to me talk about my new place for weeks. i think this baked cream cheese dip garnered more praise than my freshly painted walls (and it took 0.0127% of the time to complete as the painting did!).
since that housewarming, this dip has accompanied me to new year’s parties, birthday parties, championship game watching parties, and brainstorming sessions. and it’s always welcome. it’s definitely decadent but when it’s sharing table space with raw vegetables, hummus, etc., it all balances out.
and the best part (well, besides the contrast between the gooey cheese and the spiced nuts) is that it’s super make-ahead/freezer/travel friendly. i put details in the notes below the recipe but basically, i have put this dip through every temperature extreme there is and it always ends up delicious. which is super helpful if you’re planning to serve 47 dishes on thursday… just sayin’.
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