This homemade vegan French onion dip is a perfect party appetizer or savory snack to munch on in between meals. It is sour cream based, easy to make, with less than 10 ingredients and delicious.
Dips are one of the most versatile appetizers you can serve for a party, for Game Day, for tailgating, for movie night or for snacking on a regular weekday. We also have some up at our sleeves you can try like this 5-minute Hummus, or this Roasted Eggplant Bell Pepper Dip, or this Vegan Queso Dip, or this Vegan Buffalo Chicken Dip.
Ingredients to make it vegan
French onion dip was first made using sour cream and instant French onion soup mix*. So nothing at all to do with French cuisine. 🙂 After it became a popular party dip served with potato chips, crackers or crudité in the United States, several versions came to light with other bases like cream cheese or mayonnaise. However, the original sour cream and onion dip is the version we made vegan here.
It is the essential part making this creamy dip. You can buy vegan sour cream in shops like Follow Your Heart, Tofutti, Good Karma, MayFare in the United States or Dr. Oetker in Europe. PETA here has a list of vegan sour cream brands.
Or you can make yours at home. There are usually two types of recipes 1) a nut or seed-based and 2) a tofu based. We have a vegan sour cream recipe using sunflower seeds. See picture below.
French onion soup
Well, if you have been following our blog, you see that we don’t really like working with processed ingredients. We only use little to none, but at best we try to avoid them if there is a homemade alternative especially an easy one.
Even if you try to find a vegan and gluten-free dehydrated onion soup mix, the ingredients list is just too long. Take this example*. It calls itself organic, vegan and gluten-free, but still has ingredients like maltodextrin, sucanat (type of cane sugar), soy grits (albeit organic), soy and potato flour. At least no preservatives and hard-to-pronounce ingredients.
Replicating a French onion soup base at home is so simple and you only need a handful of pantry ingredients.
- onion powder
- garlic powder
- sweet smoked paprika powder
- veggie broth (I use a veggie cube* with only dried vegetables as ingredients nothing else, no salt, no oil, no sugar.)
- soy sauce or tamari for gluten-free to add a bit of flavor boost (list of 5 gluten-free soy sauce substitutes)
- salt and black pepper
How to make Vegan French Onion Dip
First, peel and chop onion into small pieces. Take a frying pan or stockpot and heat it to medium. Add olive oil and chopped onion and cook them until for approx. 2 minutes (photo #1). Stop right before they begin the caramelize. Now, add 1-3 Tbsp veggie broth and cook the onion until the broth is absorbed or steamed away (photo #2). Repeat this step if the liquid is gone but the onion pieces are not cooked and soft.
It is a bit of like cooking risotto. You add only more veggie broth if the previous amount evaporates but the onion hasn’t cooked yet. Try to work with small increments. At the end, you should have soft and tender chopped onion and little to no liquid. We usually use up to ⅓ cup of vegetable broth at the end.
Now, take a mixing bowl and add the sour cream and the seasoning (onion powder, garlic powder, sweet smoked paprika powder, soy sauce (or tamari for gluten-free), freshly chopped parsley, salt and pepper) (photo #3), finally add the cooked chopped onion (photo #4). Mix and serve. Delicious and easy! Homemade and healthy!
A quick tip: We totally love the bits and pieces in this dip, but you can blend it with an immersion blender if you want the onion to completely disappear.
What to serve with it?
- Have some pita chips, crackers, or even tortilla chips with it for a quick snack.
- Take some flatbread or pita wedges (maybe make our flourless gluten-free tortilla) and dip them in it.
- Cut up some fresh raw veggies into sticks, like carrot, cucumber, rutabaga (Oh so delicious…), celery, or bell peppers and scoop up some.
- This dip is a great addition to any party platters or appetizer boards next to classic hummus or vegan cream cheese.
- You can use it as a spiced up sour cream and drizzle it on top of this Quick Loaded Vegan Nachos, or this Vegan Bean Chili or this Copycat Chipotle Veggie Burrito Bowl or this Copycat Chipotle Vegan Burrito or this Vegan Portobello Fajitas.
- Use it as a spicy, tangy pizza base instead of marinara sauce.
- Serve it with potatoes be it baked, pan-roasted, fried, scalloped or even potato salad.
- Add it to your favorite burger. I bet it would be a tangy addition to this Fajitas Portobello Mushroom Burger.
- Make a savory pancake or crepe or tortilla pinwheels.
Let us know in the comments what is your favorite way to serve it with!
FAQ and substitutions
How long can you store it?
It keeps well in the fridge for 4-5 days for sure. No don’t recommend freezing as whether it is freezable or not highly depends on what kind of dairy-free sour cream are you using.
What can I use instead of sour cream?
You can use any store-bought or homemade cream cheese. We have a delicious Tofu Cream Cheese recipe which you can make in 5 minutes. We don’t recommend using mayo alone only in combination with cream cheese or sour cream as otherwise it will be too heavy.
This Vegan French Onion Dip recipe is egg-free and dairy-free. It is suitable for a vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free diet. Its WFPB-friendly (whole foods plant-based) if you use oil-free sour cream like this one.
More vegan dip and spread recipes
Vegan French Onion Dip
- 1 Tbsp Olive oil
- 1 Onion (medium) 7 oz large!
- ⅓ cup Veggie broth it is up to ⅓ cup depending on much the onion needs
- 1 + ¼ cup Vegan sour cream
- 1 tsp Onion powder
- 1 tsp Garlic powder
- ⅛ tsp Sweet smoked paprika powder optional
- 1 tsp Soy sauce or any of the 5 gluten-free soy sauce substitutes
- 1 Tbsp Parsley (fresh) or dill
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- First, peel and chop onion into small pieces.
- Take a frying pan or stockpot and heat it to medium. Add olive oil and chopped onion and cook them until for approx. 2 minutes. Stop right before they begin the caramelize.
- Now, add 1-3 Tbsp of veggie broth and cook the onion until the broth is absorbed or steamed away.
- Repeat this step if the liquid is gone but the onion pieces are not cooked and soft. It is a bit of like cooking risotto. You add only more veggie broth if the previous amount evaporates but the onion hasn't cooked yet. And one add in small increments. At the end, you should have soft and tender chopped onion and little to no liquid. We usually use up to ⅓ cup.
- Now, take a mixing bowl and add the sour cream and the seasoning (onion powder, garlic powder, sweet smoked paprika powder, soy sauce (or tamari for gluten-free), freshly chopped parsley, salt and pepper), finally add the cooked chopped onion. Mix and serve. Delicious and easy! Homemade and healthy!
- We totally love the bits and pieces in this dip, but you can blend it with an immersion blender if you want the onion to completely disappear.