Kentucky Benedictine Spread or Dip

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Ratings (22)
  • Total: 10 mins
  • Prep: 10 mins
  • Cook: 0 mins
  • Yield: 2 cups spread (4 portions)
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
238 Calories
22g Fat
7g Carbs
4g Protein
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This Benedictine spread with cucumber can be used as a dip or a sandwich and canape topping. It was created by Jennie Carter Benedict, a cookbook author, caterer, and restaurateur. She operated a Louisville restaurant and tea room, Benedict's, in the early 20th century. It's a simple combination of cucumber, onion, and other ingredients, and it is an excellent appetizer to serve a Kentucky Derby gathering. 

Some versions are made green with spinach or parsley, and some use green food coloring to get the vivid green color. The original recipe uses 3 tablespoons of cucumber juice and 1 tablespoon of onion juice instead of grated cucumber and onion, and it includes a pinch of cayenne pepper.


  • 1 large cucumber
  • 8 ounces cream cheese (softened)
  • 2 tablespoons grated sweet (or yellow onion)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (to taste)
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper (freshly ground)
  • 1 tablespoon mayonnaise
  • Optional: dash green food coloring

Steps to Make It

  1. Peel the cucumber and scrape out the seeds. Grate the cucumber coarsely. Put the grated cucumber in the bowl of a food processor with the cream cheese, grated onion, salt, pepper, and mayonnaise. Pulse until smooth. Add a drop or two of green food coloring to get a vivid green color. Alternatively, mix the ingredients with an electric mixer.

  2. Spread on sandwich bread or use it for canapes. 

  3. Thin with sour cream to make a dip for vegetables.

Tips and Variations

  • Flavor the dip with about 1 tablespoon of finely chopped fresh dill.

  • Use minced green onions instead of sweet or yellow onions.

  • Add a dash of hot sauce or a pinch of ground cayenne pepper.

  • Add a few tablespoons of finely chopped fresh parsley to the food processor with the cream cheese and cucumber.