7-Layer Dip

5 from 1 vote
50 minutes
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This healthier 7-Layer Dip is a party and game day classic!  I’ve made it fresher, lighter and healthier by making a few simple adjustments!

Photo of Healthier 7-Layer Dip in tall glass bowl with blue corn chips and beer in the background.

I probably shouldn’t admit this while posting a recipe for 7-Layer Dip, but I’ve never been a big fan of them.  Most call for convenience products like canned refried beans, packaged taco seasoning and prepared guacamole.

As you already know, convenience products are often loaded with salt, additives and they just taste processed.

Healthier 7-Layer Dip has lots of fresher and lighter ingredients!  You’re going to love serving it at your game day gathering–or any gathering.

How to make a Healthier 7-Layer Dip:

  • Layer #1 – Start by making your own refried beans for the first layer.  Although I do start with canned red kidney beans, I prefer to use reduced-sodium beans.  Drain and rinse them well.  The benefit of using low-sodium products is you’re able to adjust the salt level yourself.  Heat a small amount of olive oil, add the beans and briefly saute.  I then add salsa, ground cumin, garlic and salt and black pepper to taste.  Heating the beans makes them easier to mash; a potato masher is all you need.
  • My Black Bean Dip would also be great for the first layer.
  • Layer #2 – Combine light sour cream or yogurt, minced scallion and chopped fresh jalapeno pepper.
  • Layer #3 – The third layer which consists of avocado, lemon juice, a scallion, cilantro, hot sauce and salt and black pepper goes into a food processor to blend.  I like to leave it a bit chunky for extra texture.
  • Remaining Layers:
    • Reduced-fat cheese
    • Fresh lettuce
    • Tomatoes
    • Sliced black olives

Serve with baked tortilla chips or whole-grain tortilla chips for a better-for-you party favorite!

Photo of Healthier 7-Layer Dip glass serving bowl on colorful placemat with chips scattered around the bowl and beer in the background.

More great, easy appetizer recipes:

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7-Layer Dip

5 from 1 vote

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By: Carol | From A Chef’s Kitchen
This Healthier 7-Layer Dip has lots of fresher and lighter ingredients!  You're going to love serving it at your game day gathering–or any gathering.
Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Course Appetizers and Snacks
Cuisine Southwestern / Mexican
Servings 8
Calories 230 kcal


First Layer

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 cans (15-ounce) red kidney beans - drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup salsa
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 cloves garlic - minced
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper - to taste

Second Layer

  • 1 1/2 cups light sour cream - or low-fat yogurt
  • 3 scallions - minced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper - minced

Third Layer

  • 2 avocados - pitted
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 scallion - minced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • hot sauce - to taste
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper - to taste

Fourth Layer

  • 1 1/2 cups shredded 2% Mexican blend cheese

Fifth Layer

  • 2 to 3 cups shredded Romaine lettuce

Sixth Layer

  • 2 plum tomatoes - chopped

Seventh Layer

  • 1 can (4-ounce) sliced black olives - drained


First Layer

  • Heat olive oil over medium-high heat in a skillet or saute pan. Add the beans and saute 2 to 3 minutes. Add the salsa, cumin, garlic and salt and black pepper. Remove from heat. Using a potato masher, mash the beans. Let cool then place in the bottom of a large glass bowl.

Second Layer

  • Combine sour cream or yogurt, scallion and jalapeno in a bowl and mix well. Carefully layer over the bean layer.

Third Layer

  • Combine avocado, lemon juice, scallion, cilantro and salt and black pepper in a food processor or blender. Pulse to combine, leaving a bit chunky. Carefully spread over the sour cream layer.

Fourth Layer

  • Add the cheese.

Fifth Layer

  • Top with shredded lettuce.

Sixth Layer

  • Top with chopped tomato.

Seventh Layer

  • Top with sliced black olives.


MAKE AHEAD:  Can be assembled up to the shredded lettuce layer 1 day ahead of time.  Cover and refrigerate.  When ready to serve, add the lettuce, tomato and black olives.


Serving: 1 | Calories: 230kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 28mg | Sodium: 317mg | Potassium: 503mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 1661IU | Vitamin C: 13mg | Calcium: 329mg | Iron: 1mg

These are estimated values generated from a nutritional database using unbranded products. Please do your own research with the products you’re using if you have a serious health issue or are following a specific diet.

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Recipe Rating


  1. I don’t own a potato masher but reading this recipe makes me want to run out to a yard sale and get one. I’m intrigued by the idea of making my own refried beans – so much healthier than the canned version. The dip looks fabulous – I can’t wait to try it.