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Cream Cheese Shrimp Dip

Cream cheese, cocktail sauce, bay shrimp and crackers. Our retro cream cheese shrimp dip is an old-school classic that’s primed for a comeback.


cream cheese shrimp dip on a platter with triskets and celery

This post is sponsored by our partner Kroger. All opinions are our own. Thank you for supporting the brands that we love.

Not Your Mom’s Shrimp Cocktail (Dip)

We’re going out on a limb with this one. We know. A serious throwback to your grandma’s Christmas parties. At least that’s the way we remember it—a whole table, weighted down with appetizers we’d only see once a year. Think giant, beige nut-coated cheese balls, mountains of cubed ham and cheese, wiggly, day-glo Jello molds and yes, a cream cheese shrimp dip laden with shrimp cocktail sauce.

We’re the first to admit that we totally used to roll our eyes at the lack of effort that a bowl of shrimp dip represented—just three, store-bought ingredients—it was secretly always our favorite dish on the table. So, when our partner Kroger asked us to come up with an easy appetizer recipe that would win you over, shrimp cocktail sauce with bay shrimp over cream cheese got no vetoes.

ingredients for cream cheese shrimp dip in small bowls

All About the Cocktail Sauce Recipe

When it comes to cream cheese shrimp dips we mostly remember a three ingredient dip—store bought cocktail sauce, block of cream cheese and bay shrimp. What would a TMP recipe be if we didn’t elevate it just a little? We phoned a friend who happens to be a chef, and asked him for his best cocktail sauce recipe. Local Portland chef Gabriel Rucker was quick to offer up his cocktail sauce recipe—the very same one that had won our hearts when we first tasted it, spooned over oysters at his restaurant, Canard. What’s the secret? In many ways, it’s a classic cocktail sauce, but what makes it special is the heavy kick of horseradish. YES PLEASE.

If the three ingredient convenience of a cream cheese shrimp dip is what drew you in, we’re sorry. This creamy dip will require just a little bit more work than opening three packages. However, none of our ingredients are obscure—all ingredients can be purchased at your local Kroger store, including a good beer or wine to go along with it, if you’re into that sort of thing. Plus, it’s also a no-cook appetizer—in other words, even with our upgrades, we think it still counts as really, really easy.

ingredients for cocktail sauce is a glass liquid measuring cup
homemade cocktail sauce in a glass liquid measuring cup
cream cheese spread on a plate
cocktail sauce and shrimp over cream cream cheese on a white platter

How to Make Shrimp Cocktail Sauce

All you really need are a few good ingredients to make the best shrimp cocktail sauce recipe. Below is what goes into ours. With a spicy kick coming from both Tabasco and hot horseradish, this is definitely one for the grown-ups. All you need to do is stir, taste, enjoy.

  • Ketchup.
  • Prepared hot horseradish sauce.
  • Worcestershire sauce.
  • Dijon mustard.
  • Tabasco sauce.
  • Applesauce.
  • Lemon zest.
cream cheese shrimp dip on a white platter with triscuits and celery

What to Serve with this Cream Cheese Shrimp Dip

Keep things classic! Do just as your grandma would do—serve our cream cheese shrimp dip with your favorite cracker–we love it with Triscuits or Wheat Thins. Celery also makes a great match if you’re watching your carbs—but who are we kidding? We’re not going for any health awards with this one. Our shrimp dip recipe is just 100% pure nostalgia.

cream cheese shrimp dip on a white platter with triscuits and celery

Tools Needed For the Best Shrimp Dip

More Easy Appetizers to Please a Crowd

Looking for more easy appetizers? Here are a few of our favorites.

Share Your Shrimp Dip!

Snap a photo of your friends and family gathered around your shrimp dip and show us how much everyone loved it! Because we just know they will. Tag us on Instagram using @themodernproper and #themodernproper. Happy eating!

cream cheese shrimp dip on a white platter with crackers and celery
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Cream Cheese Shrimp Dip

  • Serves: 8
  • Prep Time:  10 min
  • Cook Time:  0 min
  • Calories: 172


  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1/4 cup prepared hot horseradish sauce, jarred
  • 2 tbsp worcestershire
  • 1 1/2 tsp dijon mustard
  • 1/2 tsp tabasco
  • 2 tbsp apple sauce
  • 1 tsp lemon, zest
  • 8 oz cream cheese block
  • 3/4 lb bay shrimp, cooked
  • Triscuits
  • celery


  1. In a small bowl mix together ketchup, horseradish, Worcestershire, dijon, Tabasco, apple sauce and lemon zest until smooth.
  2. Press cream cheese block onto a plate or platter smashing it with the back of the spoon until it's doubled in width. Pour cocktail sauce over the cream cheese and top with bay shrimp. Serve with your favorite cracker and celery. Enjoy!

Nutrition Info

  • Per Serving
  • Amount
  • Calories172
  • Protein9 g
  • Carbohydrates13 g
  • Total Fat10 g
  • Dietary Fiber0 g
  • Cholesterol91 mg
  • sodium637 mg
  • Total Sugars8 g

Cream Cheese Shrimp Dip

Questions & Reviews

Join the discussion below.

  • Griffin

    How do you keep this dish from being runny?

    The cream cheese is solid. The sauce is thick but suppose to be "runny". It's basically a sauce over a block of cream cheese. Then you add the shrimp.

  • Jenn

    Loved this! It was nice to do something a little different than just shrimp cocktail.

    Thanks Jenn, glad you enjoyed it!