Who else remembers that cool, creamy spinach dip with water chestnuts adding cool, crisp crunch … all served up in sourdough bowl? (*raising my hand* – me too!)

Spinach dip with water chestnuts served in a sourdough bread bowl

Well, that’s exactly what I have here for you today. Except a little different. I hope that’s okay with you. Here’s the scoop:

Did you know the classic cold spinach dip recipe, in the style of many recipes hailing from the mid-to-late 1900s, called for dried vegetable soup mix? Well, maybe you did, but I didn’t! And I don’t know about you, but I don’t exactly keep veggie soup mix hanging around in my pantry.

But I do have onion powder and garlic powder, and I thought maybe those two ingredients too could help make Creamy Cold Spinach Dip nirvana.

Creamy Spinach Dip served in a bread bowl

And you know what? I think I was right! In fact, I even made a point to buy some veggie soup mix so I could compare the two. I made the batch with onion and garlic powders and then another batch with veggie soup mix. We thought the non-veggie-soup-mix version was actually SO much better!

So here I am today in a retro sort of mood, sharing Creamy Spinach Dip with Water Chestnuts.

Creamy Spinach Dip served up on a slice of baguette

How to Make Spinach Dip with Water Chestnuts

This stuff is so easy. Just mix mayo, sour cream (read on for equally delicious vegan and dairy-free options), spinach, water chestnuts, scallions, onion powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper together. Aaand done! Seriously that easy.

For a dairy-free version, I use my cashew sour cream. So good! And to go all the way vegan, go with cashew sour cream and vegan mayo. Done and done.

Serve it up all classic-like in a sourdough bowl and some sliced sourdough baguette on the side.

Close up of a sourdough bowl full of creamy spinach dip with water chestnuts

Now that we’ve got this 1980s-style business settled, I just have to ask: Who exactly did shoot J.R.?

5 from 2 votes

Creamy Spinach Dip with Water Chestnuts

Prep: 15 minutes
Author: Kare
Yield: 12
Classic creamy spinach dip with a water chestnut crunch, minus the veggie soup mix. Easy, super full of flavor, and with dairy-free and vegan options.


  • 1 1/2 cups sour cream (for dairy-free and vegan version, use cashew sour cream)
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise (for vegan version use vegan mayo)
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine-grain sea salt + more to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper + more to taste
  • 1 10-ounce bag frozen spinach, thawed and liquid squeezed out*
  • 1 4-ounce can water chestnuts, drained and chopped
  • 1 bunch scallions (green onions, chopped [discard top 1/3 of green ends]; save a few for garnish)
  • 1 medium loaf sourdough boule
  • 1/2 sourdough baguette (sliced)


  • To a medium bowl, add the sour cream, mayonnaise, onion powder, garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Mix well to combine.
  • Squeeze the liquid out of the spinach and add to the bowl along with the water chestnuts and scallions. Mix well to combine. Taste and add additional salt and pepper if desired.
  • To allow the flavors to develop, place dip in a lidded container and refrigerate for at least one hour, or up to 24 hours.
  • When ready to serve, prepare the sourdough bowl. Use a serrated knife to slice off the top of the sourdough round, leaving enough of the bread to make a “bowl.” Use your hands to pull out the soft center of the bread, leaving the crusty outside. Arrange on a platter along with sourdough baguette slices. Scoop dip into the sourdough “bowl” and use the reserved scallions for garnish. Serve!


* To thaw spinach, I just let it sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes and I’m good to go. You can also place it in the fridge or even microwave it to thaw it out.

Dairy-free option

Use this cashew sour cream. I make a double batch and save the leftover cashew sour cream for chili or quesadillas!

Vegan option

Use this cashew sour cream and vegan mayo.

Note about cashew sour cream and food allergies

I have a relative with a cashew allergy so it always makes me a little nervous when I post recipes like this where you would never guess cashews could be lurking in there! They’re such a versatile ingredient, but that means they can really hide in a lot of things. So if there’s any doubt, maybe make a little “contains cashews” sign for your spinach dip. Nut allergies can be scary and serious, yo!
I used this recipe from Culinary Hill and this recipe from Spend with Pennies as my starting points for this spinach dip recipe.

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