Craving cannolis but don’t have the time to make them? Try this creamy sweet cannoli dip! It mixes up in no time and makes a delicious dessert the whole family will love. It's made with only FIVE simple ingredients!
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I don’t know about you, but between work, kids, and life in general, I don’t always have the time to whip up fancy desserts.
This cannoli dip with mascarpone is just the answer! It’s creamy and perfectly sweet, and other than mixing a few ingredients together it takes very little effort or time to prepare.
All you need are five easy-to-find ingredients to make cannoli dessert dip. Let's take a look at them!
- Mascarpone cheese: A rich buttery cheese that is naturally a bit sweet and tart. It’s made from cream and has a high-fat content which is what makes it taste so good. It's best for that authentic cannoli flavor!
- Ricotta cheese: Another Italian cheese used to make cannoli. It’s not quite as smooth as the mascarpone but balances out the flavor well to make this sweet cannoli dip.
- Powdered sugar: Easily dissolves and melts into the creaminess of the dip making it sweeter without any graininess.
- Vanilla: Adds natural sweetness, warmth, and depth of flavor to the cheese. For the best flavor, use real vanilla extract.
- Chocolate chips: I prefer semi-sweet chocolate chips for the perfect balance of sweetness and chocolate flavor. The mini-sized chips work best as they work better for a dip.
See the recipe card for the full list and quantities of each ingredient.
Need to make some ingredient swaps? Here's what I know works!
- Mascarpone cheese: Mascarpone is best because it’s a bit richer in flavor but you can use cream cheese in place of it for a similar texture and flavor.
- Vanilla: Almond, lemon, or orange extract can all be used in place of the vanilla but note that this will change the final taste quite a bit.
- Semi-sweet chips: You can also use dark chocolate chips for a more intense chocolate flavor.
Want to know how you can make some adjustments to the recipes to make it a bit different? Here are some of my favorites!
- No mini chips? Use regular-sized chocolate chips and cut them into smaller pieces using a knife or food processor.
- Add some nuts. Almonds, pecans, or macadamia nuts would work great! You can mix them in as a replacement for the chocolate or simply sprinkle them on top.
- Love dried fruit? Swap the chocolate for dried cranberries or other dried fruit. Add them at the same time as the chocolate chips.
- Add some spice. Mix in a dash of cinnamon, nutmeg or pumpkin spice to add a more nuanced flavor.
This no-bake dessert dip is made using only a handful of simple pieces of kitchen equipment.
You will need a hand mixer for beating the mascarpone and sugar and a spatula to fold in the chocolate chips. Grab your favorite mixing bowls, measuring cups, and spoons, and you're all set!
How to Make Cannoli Dip
Let's take a look at what goes into making this homemade cannoli dip! Be sure to check the recipe card for all the details.
- Beat the mascarpone cheese with a hand mixer until it’s light and fluffy.
PRO TIP: Be sure to start with the mascarpone and ricotta cheese at room temperature. This will ensure they mix together easily and don’t require too much mixing which may alter the texture.
- Add the powdered sugar and continue mixing until the sugar is well incorporated into the cheese.
- Add the vanilla and ricotta to the mixing bowl next!
- Reduce the speed to low and mix just long enough to combine the ingredients together.
PRO TIP: For a smoother texture strain the ricotta cheese before mixing your cannoli dip. Simply place the ricotta cheese in a cheesecloth-lined colander set over a bowl, cover it, and let it drain in the refrigerator for a few hours or overnight.
- Fold one cup of chocolate chips into the creamy cheese mixture.
- Sprinkle the rest of the chocolate chips on top.
- Serve it up with your favorite dippers!
Have leftovers? Here’s how to store and use them!
- Store in the fridge for 3-4 days. Be sure to mix it up before it again. Do not store in the freezer.
- Use it as a topping for oat flour pancakes and Belgian waffles!
- Take your ice cream over the top by adding some cannoli on dip for a delicious dessert treat.
How to Serve Cannoli Dessert Dip
Are you wondering what to dip in cannoli dip? Well, let me tell you the possibilities are endless! But here are some favorites!
- Serving a crowd? Be sure to offer a wide variety of dippers. You can also add it to a sweet charcuterie board or fruit platter!
- Salty dippers: Try it with pretzel rods, twists, or any other shape pretzels.
- Crunchy dippers: Cinnamon sugar tortilla chips, waffle cookies, graham crackers, or vanilla wafers all work great.
- Top it. Add some additional chocolate chips on top for a decorative touch or you can also add some chopped nuts or crushed cannoli shells.
- Fresh fruit: Strawberries work great or you can also skewer pieces of fruit for dipping.
- Make sure the ricotta cheese and mascarpone cheese are at room temperature before starting the recipe. This will help them blend together more easily and create a smoother consistency.
- Don’t overmix the cheeses. Overmixing can cause the cheese to become grainy and affect the texture of the dip.
- Want a smoother texture? Strain the ricotta cheese before adding it to the mixture.
- Adjust the sweetness to your personal tastes. For a sweeter dip add more powdered sugar and if you prefer less sweetness, reduce the amount of powdered sugar.
Yes, of course! Prepare it up to a day in advance and store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Be sure to give it a good stir before serving.
Yes, most definitely! It’s the perfect dip to make to feed a crowd. Making a double or even triple batch of dip takes very little extra effort!
Yes, you can use low-fat or fat-free ricotta cheese, but it may affect the texture and creaminess of the dip.
No, it is not recommended to freeze this cannoli dip as the texture and consistency may change.
No, whipped cream is not a suitable substitute for mascarpone cheese as they have different textures and flavors.
No, granular sugar will give this recipe a gritty texture. Confectioners sugar is best.
More Favorite Dessert Recipes
Did you try this recipe? Please leave a star rating in the recipe card right below! You can also write a review in the comment section further down the page I always appreciate your feedback. And don’t forget to tag me @freshcoasteats in your photos on social media, I'd love to see your results!
- In a medium sized bowl, use an electric mixer on medium low to beat the mascarpone cheese until light and fluffy.
- Add the powdered sugar and continue mixing until well incorporated.
- Add the vanilla and ricotta and reduce speed to low, mixing just until combined.
- Fold in 1 cup chocolate chips, and sprinkle the remaining ½ cup on top.
- Transfer dip into a serving bowl and serve with your favorite dippers.