Kiwi onion dip is a type of dipping sauce eaten in New Zealand. Often referred to as 'kiwi dip', 'onion dip' or 'original kiwi dip', it consists of a packet of powdered onion soup stirred into a can of reduced cream, which is then left to refrigerate and thicken, and is often then garnished with lemon juice and sometimes parsley. "Kiwi" refers to this being a New Zealand dish as opposed to the dip containing kiwifruit nor any kiwi (bird) products. Served alongside potato chips, crackers, or chopped vegetables, the dip is a popular dish at parties, barbeques, and other social occasions. A small amount of vinegar or lemon juice can be added to the dip for flavour.

Kiwi Onion Dip
TypeDipping sauce
Place of originNew Zealand
Created byRosemary Dempsey
Invented1950s or 60s
Serving temperatureChilled
Main ingredientsPowdered onion soup, reduced cream
VariationsLemon juice, parsley, vinegar
Other informationKiwi onion dip is an iconic dish in New Zealand cuisine, often enjoyed at parties and social occasions.

Kiwi onion dip's creation has been credited to Rosemary Dempsey, a home economist for Nestlé New Zealand in the 1950s or 60s.[1]


The dip has assumed an iconic status in New Zealand cuisine. In February 2019 Nestlé released a campaign bannered "Kiwi as", aligning the dip with canonical moments in New Zealand popular culture.[2] Lauraine Jacobs, a food writer, has said Kiwi onion dip is an “all-time classic”. “My mother made it. My son and his wife make it, and think themselves clever. So now it is the darling of yet another generation."[1] The dip is often missed by New Zealanders living abroad who may not have access to reduced cream, a dairy product only widely available in their home country.[3] In 2019 it was reported cans of reduced cream are commonly found in the suitcases of New Zealanders as they travel overseas.[4]

In April 2019, Countdown supermarket announced the introduction of 'NZ Onion Dip Icecream', a two-litre tub of ice cream flavoured with caramelised onions and reduced cream. The product was later declared by the supermarket to be an April Fools' joke.[5]

In 2022, the Kiwi onion dip with Eta's Salt and Vinegar Ripple Chips is the combined replication challenge for episode six of season one of Snackmasters NZ.[6]

See also



  1. ^ a b Donnell, Hayden (20 February 2017). "Finding Rosemary: In search of the unsung hero who invented Kiwi Onion Dip". The Spinoff. Retrieved 27 April 2020.
  2. ^ Harvey, Megan (12 February 2019). "'The makings of a classic': Nestlé's 'Kiwi as' campaign for onion dip". NZ Herald. Retrieved 6 May 2020.
  3. ^ "There's no taste like home: The foods Kiwis overseas miss most". Stuff. Retrieved 27 April 2020.
  4. ^ Nightingale, Melissa (17 December 2019). "Chainsaws, Kiwi dip and toy guns – what can and can't go on the plane this Christmas". NZ Herald. ISSN 1170-0777. Retrieved 27 April 2020.
  5. ^ "April Fools' prank announces new 'Onion Dip' ice-cream". Newshub. Retrieved 27 April 2020.
  6. ^ "Snack Masters – Season 1, Episode 6". Retrieved 3 June 2024. (registration required)