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5 Easy and delicious snacks that start with cream cheese

Naomi de la Torre is freelance writer and stay-at-home-mom with two delightful boys, ages three and six. Naomi has an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Arizona, is a self-proclaimed salsa diva, and can make a killer octopus ...

Cream cheese, please?

Do your snacks need a pick-me-up? Are you tired of the same old humdrum? If you need a little more yum-yum in your life, you’ve come to the right place. Read on for the tastiest snacks and appetizers that start with cream cheese. Mmmmmmmm… The power of cheese.

Stuffed mushrooms

1Tortilla Pinwheels

Makes 20 servings

Ingredients

  • 8 ounces cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup spicy salsa
  • 12 flour tortillas

Directions

  1. Mix cream cheese, sour cream and salsa until well combined.
  2. Spread mixture on tortillas.
  3. Roll tortillas tightly like a jelly roll.
  4. Refrigerate for 1-2 hours until firm.
  5. Cut each tortilla roll crosswise into 5 slices.
  6. Serve chilled with a side of guacamole or queso. Enjoy!

2Crab Rangoon

Makes 10 servings

Ingredients

  • 8 ounces cream cheese
  • 1 can crab meat, drained
  • 1 bunch scallions, chopped
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 package wonton skins
  • oil for deep frying

Directions

  1. Use a food processor to blend crab meat, cream cheese, scallions, salt, onion powder and sugar into a lumpy paste.
  2. Place a large teaspoonful of the mixture into the middle of each wonton skin.
  3. Moisten edges and draw up opposite corners to meet and form a package. Be sure all edges are sealed.
  4. Heat oil in a deep pan until it reaches 350 degrees F.
  5. Deep fry until golden brown.
  6. Remove with a slotted spoon and let cool on paper towels.
  7. Serve warm with sweet and sour sauce or plain.

3Stuffed Mushrooms

Makes 6 servings

Ingredients

  • 25 fresh mushrooms
  • 6 slices of cooked and crumbled bacon
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 8 ounces cream cheese at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray.
  2. Clean mushrooms and carefully break off stems. Chop stems extremely fine.
  3. In a large skillet, fry mushroom stems, chopped onion and garlic in olive oil until tender.
  4. Mix together cream cheese, mushroom stems, onion, garlic, Parmesan cheese, black pepper and cayenne pepper to make a thick paste.
  5. Using a teaspoon, stuff each mushroom cap generously with filling.
  6. Arrange stuffed mushrooms on baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes or until tops are golden.

4Smoked Salmon Toasts

Makes 6 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 package Melba toasts
  • 8 ounces cream cheese
  • 12 ounces thin sliced smoked salmon
  • 1/2 red onion sliced
  • 3 tablespoons capers
  • fresh dill

Directions

  1. On a medium sized serving platter, arrange the Melba toasts.
  2. Spread cream cheese generously on each toast and cover with a slice of smoked salmon.
  3. Add a few capers and garnish with a slice of red onion and a sprig of fresh dill.
  4. Refrigerate for 20 minutes and serve.

5Spinach Artichoke Dip

Makes 20 servings

Ingredients

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 small onion, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 (10 ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
  • 1 (14 ounce) can artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
  • 1 (10 ounce) bottle Alfredo-style pasta sauce
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Saute garlic and onion in olive oil until golden.
  3. In a medium size bowl, mix together garlic, onion, cream cheese, Alfredo sauce, mozzarella cheese, Parmesan cheese, spinach and artichoke hearts.
  4. Fill an 8x8 inch baking dish with the mixture.
  5. Cover and bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes or until golden brown. Serve warm with your favorite crackers.

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