This Pizza Dip with Pizza Dough Balls is easy to make, served piping hot, and is a complete appetizer (dip and dippers included). It is cheesy, packed with pepperonis, marinara sauce, and banana peppers with a drizzle of hot honey. Everything you love about pizza, let’s make it!
Why You’ll LOVE Pizza Dip and the Pizza Dough Balls!
- This recipe uses garlic butter pizza dough balls as dippers. Other recipes use rolls or crackers, but nothing beats pizza dough for a pizza dip.
- It is an all in one appetizer- dip and dippers included. What is even better is they bake together in one skillet.
- Unique flavors- pepperoni, hot honey, banana peppers, garlic butter. I know it sounds wild but it is the perfect balance of salty, sweet, rich, and spicy. You can always trade any of the toppings out to make this your own unique pizza dip.
Ingredients You Need For Pizza Dip and Pizza Dough Balls
For the Pizza Dip …
- Cream Cheese: Full fat works best and make sure it has been brought to room temperature.
- Sour Cream: Also make sure it is at room temperature.
- Mozzarella Cheese
- Cheddar Cheese: I like to use sharp cheddar for this recipe.
- Pizza Seasoning: If you do not have any you can make your own or use 1/2 teaspoon oregano, 1/4 teaspoon basil, 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, 1/4 teaspoon salt.
- Pizza Sauce: Feel free to use store-bought or homemade. You can also substitute this for pasta or marinara sauce.
- Mini Pepperonis: These are the best because they are small and everyone gets pepperoni in every bite. The bigger ones work but they are gone quick since there are fewer.
- Pepperoncinis: I recommend the mild variety in this recipe.
- Hot Honey: I recommend making your own with my Hot Honey Sauce recipe or you can use store-bought which is more expensive and not as good in my opinion.
For the Garlic Butter Pizza Dough Balls …
- Pizza Dough: I buy frozen pizza dough balls from Aldi’s most of the time. I also like to make No Knead Pizza Dough from Two Purple Fig’s because it is an overnight dough that is so easy to prep and make. Just make sure they are thawed in the refrigerator overnight and then brought to room temperature before rolling.
- Butter: Make sure it is melted so you can spread it on your pizza dough balls easier.
- Garlic Powder: You can also used finely minced garlic too.
How To Make Pizza Dip With Pizza Dough Balls
This is a short summary of the steps, the recipe card will have all the details.
- Form pizza dough balls into 1 inch balls and place them around the perimeter of a lightly greased skillet or large baking dish.
- Whip together cream cheese, sour cream, part of the mozzarella cheese, cheddar cheese, and pizza seasoning. Spread it into the center of your skillet.
- Spread a generous layer of pizza sauce on top of the creamy mixture.
- Sprinkle on mozzarella cheese.
- Top with the toppings, mini pepperonis and pepperoncinis.
- Brush melted butter on top of the pizza dough balls and sprinkle with garlic powder.
- Bake until bubbly and golden brown.
- Drizzle on the hot honey and serve while it’s piping hot!
5 Tips for Making the BEST Pizza Dip with Pizza Dough Balls
This dip and the pizza dough balls are fairly straight forward but I do have a few tips and tricks to making it even better.
- Microwave the pepperonis for 15 to 30 seconds on a paper towel lined plate. This pulls grease out of the pepperonis so it doesn’t pool on top of your pizza dip. Nobody wants to eat grease, yuck!
- Room temperature cream cheese and sour cream will give you the smoothest and creamiest dip. If it is cool it tends to get clumpy and not incorporate with the other ingredients.
- Frozen pizza dough needs to be thawed in the refrigerator overnight. The next day you will want to leave it sit out with the cream cheese and sour cream before forming it into pizza dough balls. When they are room temperature they bake up better and crispier.
- Fully bake the dip. The cheese should be fully melted, the dip bubbling, and the pizza dough balls will be golden brown.
- Make just the pizza dip if you want to skip the pizza dough balls. Cook the dip in a smaller skillet or baking dish and possibly for less time (just keep an eye on it). Serve your dip with texas toast, crostinis, crackers, veggies, etc.
Pizza Dip Variations
My go to version of pizza dip includes pepperonis, pepperoncinis, and hot honey, but you can make this your own. Here are a few more ideas for you!
- Instead of pepperoni, use sausage, bacon, ham, chicken, smoked pork. Just make sure your protein is cooked first.
- Add other veggies: Quick Pickled Jalapenos, onion, olives, bell peppers, crushed garlic cloves, mushrooms, etc.
- Try a unique cheese combination: feta, pepper jack, other cheddars, etc. Don’t omit or trade out the mozzarella though, it is iconic for pizza.
- Top your pizza dip with ranch, regular honey, parmesan cheese, red pepper flakes, or a garlic sauce.
- Go crazy: make it a ham and pineapple pizza dip, add anchovies, fried basil, spinach, the possibilities are endless!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)
You can if you want, but I do not recommend it. It can be an odd texture and leaves an unpleasant aftertaste. For best results stick with full fat cream cheese for this pizza dip.
Yes, just don’t pop it in the oven until you are ready to serve it. Assemble the dip with the rolled pizza dough balls in your skillet and throw it in the refrigerator covered with aluminum foil or plastic wrap. Remove it from the refrigerator and allow it to sit at room temperature for a couple hours before baking.
You can always use pasta sauce or marinara sauce. I like to doctor it up with some more dried oregano and basil to give it pizza sauce flavor.
If you have leftovers, store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 7 days. If you wrap the skillet or dish with aluminum foil or plastic wrap it will keep for 4 days. Reheat any leftovers in the microwave until warm and melty.
More Appetizer Dip Recipes You Might Enjoy:
- Jalapeno Artichoke Dip
- Butter Bean Hummus
- Olive Dip
- Ricotta Dip with Roasted Grapes
- Fried Dill Pickle Dip
- Maple Pumpkin Fruit Dip
- Dunkaroo Dip
- Pecan Pie Dip
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Pizza Dip with Pizza Dough Balls
- 13.5" cast iron skillet; or other large baking dish
- 1 cup cream cheese; full fat, room temperature (1, 8 ounce block)
- ½ cup sour cream; room temperature
- 2 cups mozzarella cheese
- ½ cup cheddar cheese
- 1 teaspoon pizza seasoning**
- 1 cup pizza sauce
- ½ cup mini pepperonis
- ⅓ cup pepperoncinis; mild
- ¼ cup hot honey***
Garlic Butter Pizza Dough Balls
- 2 pizza dough balls*; room temperature
- ¼ cup unsalted butter; melted
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- Preheat oven to 400 °F and lightly grease a large cast iron skillet.
- Divide pizza dough into 30 to 40 pieces and roll into even balls.
- Place pizza dough balls around the perimeter of the skillet and set aside.
- Using a whisk, hand mixer, or stand mixer, whip together cream cheese, sour cream, ¾ cup of mozzarella cheese, and the cheddar cheese until smooth and creamy.
- Evenly spread the mixture in the center of the skillet keeping the outer edge higher than the center (this will keep the marinara sauce contained).
- Carefully pour the marinara sauce over top of the cheese mixture.
- Sprinkle on the remainder of the mozzarella cheese and lightly press it down into the marinara sauce.
- Top with mini pepperonis and pepperoncinis.
- In a small bowl combine the melted butter and garlic powder. Lightly brush it over the pizza dough balls.
- Bake for 35 to 45 minutes or until the cheese is fully melted, the dip is bubbling, and the garlic butter pizza dough balls are golden brown.
- Drizzle with hot honey and serve immediately.
Storing & Reheating Information:
- In an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 7 days. If wrapped with aluminum foil or plastic wrap it will keep for 4 days.
- Reheat any leftovers in the microwave until warm and melty.
Helpful Tips For This Recipe
- Microwave the pepperonis for 15 to 30 seconds on a paper towel lined plate.
- Make just the pizza dip if you want to skip the pizza dough balls. Cook the dip in a smaller skillet or baking dish and possibly for less time (just keep an eye on it).
- Try other toppings: bacon, mushrooms, pepper jack cheese, red pepper flakes, fresh basil, bell peppers, sausage, ranch dressing, etc.
Metric conversions are calculated automatically. I cannot guarantee the accuracy of this information.