French Onion Dip


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French onion dip is a classic party appetizer made from sour cream, mayonnaise, caramelized onions, garlic, chives and parsley. It’s creamy, full of herbs, and guaranteed to get devoured within minutes of serving!

French onion dip in a bowl

When it comes to creamy party dips, French onion is always a personal favorite. I’ve served this recipe up for decades with either a side of potato chips or vegetable sticks, and it always disappears amazingly fast. Plus, it’s exponentially more flavorful than store-bought options (and doesn’t contain lots of questionable fillers).

This easy homemade version only has five ingredients, and it’s perfect for feeding a crowd – whether that’s a gathering for Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year’s Eve, or a run-of-the-mill backyard get-together. Guests always tout how creamy and delicious it is, and that it’s most certainly worth a second helping!

Ingredients for french onion dip on a table

French Onion Dip Ingredients

There’s just a handful of ingredients in this recipe and a few potential variations, which I’ll mention below:

  • Sour Cream: I always buy organic sour cream for the highest quality, but it’s up to you.
  • Mayonnaise: My mom always added a little mayo in her French onion dip recipe so that’s what I do as well. And you can’t beat homemade mayonnaise for freshness.
  • Caramelized Onions: Golden and sweet caramelized onions add so much flavor. Pro tip: you can make these ahead of time.
  • Chives: Fresh chives are finely chopped for little flecks of green goodness.
  • Parsley: Because more greens and herbs are always better.
  • Salt and Pepper: You can season with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to your liking.

Recipe Variations

While most of the ingredients are fairly standard, I understand not everyone’s a lover of mayonnaise. Therefore, you can always leave out the mayonnaise or substitute with:

  • Greek Yogurt: It maintains the same consistency and adds a lovely tang (with a bonus of probiotics).
  • Cream Cheese: It makes the dip thicker, creamier and cheesier.

Can you use dried herbs for the fresh herbs? I don’t recommend it. They just don’t have the same strength of flavor of freshly chopped herbs.

How to Make French Onion Dip

There’s really only two steps to make the best French onion dip: caramelize the onions and then mix the remaining ingredients together.

Caramelizing the onions is easy… but it does take a bit of time so just remember to plan for that. I’ve got a separate recipe that walks you through how to caramelize onions, step-by-step with a video tutorial. It’s worth the watch.

Caramelized onions in a pan

Mix everything together. After your onions and garlic have caramelized and cooled, add them to a bowl with the sour cream, mayonnaise, chives, parsley, salt and pepper. Stir everything together until it’s creamy and serve immediately with potato chips and veggie sticks or refrigerate.

Ingredients for French onion dip in a bowl

Make the Dip Ahead of Time

The flavor of this dip intensifies and melds together the longer it sits, so feel free to make it a day ahead for a party, potluck, barbecue or gathering. It will also last for up to a week in the fridge if you have any leftovers, though that’s very unlikely. Trust me!

French onion dip in a bowl with a chip

More Dip Recipes and Party Appetizers

Want some more munchies for a party? These recipes are reader favorites!

I hope you enjoy this French onion dip! If you make the recipe, I’d love to hear how it turned out in the comment box below. Your review will help other readers in the community.

French onion dip in a bowl with chips

French Onion Dip (Better Than Store Bought)

5 from 28 votes
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 45 minutes
Total: 55 minutes
Servings: 8 servings
Author: Lisa Bryan


Homemade French onion dip is creamy, flavorful and fresh. Just a handful of ingredients are mixed together for a crowd-pleasing dip! Watch the video below to see how I make it.



  • 2 tablespoons butter or oil
  • 2 medium yellow onions, sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 cups sour cream
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh chives
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh parsley
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste


  • Heat the butter or oil in a large sauté pan on medium heat and add the onions. Stir the onions for 2 minutes, then reduce the heat to low.
    Raw onions in a pan
  • Continue stirring the onions every 2 to 3 minutes, allowing them to caramelize on the bottom before stirring again. If they start to stick or brown, add a few tablespoons of water to rehydrate them and deglaze the pan.
    Caramelized onions in a pan
  • Continue cooking the onions for approximately 45 minutes or until they're cooked to your liking. When there's one minute left on the onions, add the minced garlic and sauté for one minute. For more help with the onions, you can watch exactly how to make caramelized onions step-by-step on my separate recipe post.
    Caramelized onions in a pan
  • Once the onions have caramelized, transfer them to a small bowl and place them in the fridge to cool.
    Caramelized onions in a jar
  • After the onions have cooled, add them to a mixing bowl with the sour cream, mayonnaise, chives, parsley, salt and pepper. Stir everything together until creamy and garnish with additional herbs.
    French onion dip in a bowl

Lisa’s Tips

  • This recipe makes approximately 3 cups of dip. The perfect amount for a party! 


Calories: 203kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 33mg | Sodium: 92mg | Potassium: 126mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 430IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 72mg | Iron: 0.2mg
Course: Appetizer, Snack
Cuisine: American, French
Keyword: Caramelized Onion Dip, French Onion Dip, French Onion Dip Recipe, Homemade French Onion Dip
Did you make this recipe?Mention @downshiftology or tag #downshiftology!

Recipe originally posted June 2019, but updated to include new information for your benefit!

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About the author

Lisa Bryan

Lisa is a bestselling cookbook author, recipe developer, and YouTuber (with over 2.5 million subscribers) living in sunny Southern California. She started Downshiftology in 2014, and is passionate about making healthy food with fresh, simple and seasonal ingredients.

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Recipe Rating


    1. The flavor of this dip intensifies and melds together the longer it sits, so feel free to make it a day ahead for a party. It will also last for up to a week in the fridge.

  1. I made the French onion dip for thanksgiving this year. My family raved about how delicious everything was. I enjoy your recipes very much. I have my family hooked on your website Thank you so much Lisa for your recipes. I am planning on buying your cookbook for Christmas presents this year.5 stars

  2. Made your homemade mayonnaise. Took like 5 minutes to make and it is so good.. Don’t think I’ll buy mayo every again,. thanks so much Lisa. First time making homemade mayo and it was so easy with my immersion stick blender.5 stars

  3. Hi there! I’m just getting ready to make this dip fir the first time so no review yet, but I’m sure it will be fabulous! Have you ever tried it baked in the oven for a warm dip?

  4. I made this for the 4th of July and it was a huge hit!  So thankful that it makes a large amount.  Thank you Lisa for this recipe….I make many of your recipes and my family loves them all.  5 stars

  5. I love that you said to put the onions in the fridge to cool before mixing then with the other cool/cold ingredients. A big cause of food poisoning at BBQ’s and potlucks are large warm bowls of stuff that can’t cool fast enough in the fridge. Hot ingredients must be made cold before mixing into large bowls of cold foods! (it’s not the mayo that makes potato salad dangerous… it’s the warm potatoes combined with the raw ingredients)5 stars

  6. Delicious, I will definitely be making this again.

    I used cream cheese instead of mayo, in a 3:1 ratio (sour cream to cream cheese). This not only satiated but surpassed my craving and expectations, thanks!5 stars

    1. Hi Willima- You can refer to my caramelized onions recipe for the timing. However, every stove cooks different so you can cook it until you feel like onions are caramelized enough.

    2. 45 minutes is about the minimum to caramelize but it can take over an hour. You can brown onions much faster (this is the Maillard reaction, not caramelization), but it takes a while to actually caramelize them! Shortcuts (like a pinch of sugar) won’t really do it faster either, but they can speed up the time until the onions appear brown.5 stars

    1. Hey Kelly- the whole point of this recipe is to make French onion dip from scratch. If you want to make it the old school way, it’s one packet to 16oz of sour cream and it’s on the box.

  7. Hi – what would you recommend as a substitute for the parsley? Or would you just leave it out? This dip looks so good but my fam does not like parsley.  Thanks!


    1. So good, packed with flavor! I am making this for a party tomorrow and the taste is phenomenal. I used curly parsley and that worked great, slightly decreased the amount of mayo as well. May I add that caramelizing the onions was easier than I thought! Thank you Lisa, for giving me another recipe that has turned out wonderful, just like many others of yours that I’ve tried 😁5 stars

  8. Love this dip and all of your recipes, Lisa! I made this one the first time for a Christmas party and remember standing in my kitchen (alone) exclaiming “Mmmm! Oh my gosh… mmmm!!” and promptly putting aside a little (ok a lot!) before taking the rest to the party. I agree with you and others that I’ll never be able to make the packet version again! Today, I had some sour cream leftover from another recipe and knew exactly what to make with it. :) I didn’t have chives but it’s still as amazing as I remembered and a nice treat on an overcast quarantine Easter! Thank you!!5 stars

    1. Hi Nina- I’m so glad everyone enjoyed this for Easter! It’s definitely a great appetizer dip for any occasion, especially holidays :)

  9. So delicious! I was searching for a from-scratch recipe to substitute the boxed version, and this did not disappoint! The carmelized onions really add the perfect amount of flavor, and the fresh herbs add a particular brightness to the dish one can achieve otherwise. I randomly mixed in some mascarpone cheese which I happened to have on hand, and it brought a slightly elevated flavor to the dip. A huge hit, and one I’ll continue to make time and again.5 stars

    1. I’m happy you loved the recipe Stephen! The caramelized onions and fresh herbs really do make it rich and tasty. Love the idea of mascarpone cheese as well. I’ll have to try that myself next time!

  10. I made this dip for our annual Friendsgiving and it was delicious! Instead of using caramelized onions, I used roasted shallots, only because I wanted to be a little extra fancy. But I followed the rest of the recipe to a T and it was terrific. 5 stars

    1. Hi Liz- So glad everyone at your Friendsgiving loved this! Roasted shallots sound just as good in my opinion :)

  11. Hi I just started watching you I have a autoimmune condition along with ibs endometriosis and you said you have autoimmune conditions too . I’m a little confused some people say stay away from dairy nightshades gluten even peanut butter I don’t do dairy but I have not really tweaked my diet but I’m at the point we’re i have got to do something so I don’t keep having flairs I see you do tomatoes sour cream zucchini  so can you tell me  what you think about giving up those things I’ve mentioned  

    1. Unfortunately there’s not a one-size fits all when it comes to diet. We all have unique triggers and sensitivities, so it’s all about doing the work (which can be a lot of trial and error) to figure out what works best for your unique body. :)

  12. This looks so good and simple! I’m ashamed to admit that I often buy premade french onion dip from the grocery store. I think I’ll try this recipe next time!5 stars

    1. Nothing to be ashamed of, we’ve all been there. ;) I hope you love this homemade version more though!

      1. Hi! In this recipe are you using 2 small yellow onions, or the sweet jumbo yellow onions?  Thanks!

    1. I’ve been polishing off quite a bit of this recipe after shooting the video. ;) Those caramelized onions are everything!

  13. Yummmmoooo! This recipe reminds me of one that my mom and I started making many years ago. To this day, I take it to parties and bring home an empty bowl. Can’t go wrong with a classic caramelized onion dip recipe. Just scrumptious! Thanks for sharing :)5 stars

    1. It seems we all have memories of French onion dip as a kid, don’t we? Lol. I hope you enjoy this version Traci!

    1. Yes! My cashew sour cream recipe is a bit thinner though, so just a heads up it will be a thinner consistency. But the flavors should still be great! Let me know how it turns out. :)

  14. Love the simplicity of this delicious staple recipe! Making it for our camping trip this weekend :)5 stars