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There’s nothing better than homemade herb cream cheese! Packed with fresh herbs, it’s an easy appetizer or spread for bagels.

Herb Cream Cheese

Sure, you can buy herb cream cheese at the store. But for the very best herbaceous flavor, try homemade Herb Cream Cheese! It’s full of beautiful fresh flavor from bright green chives, dill and basil, punctuated by savory garlic. It’s absolutely worth making it at home, as it gives any appetizer tray a personal touch. Or, whip up a batch for sandwiches or bagels throughout the week! It’s great on a Smoked Salmon Sandwich or as a dip for crackers. (In fact, it reminds us of the Rondele cheese spread my grandma always serves!)

Ingredients in herb cream cheese

This herb cream cheese is full of bright, fresh homemade flavors from fresh chives and dill. It’s best in the summer when herbs abound, but that doesn’t stop us from making it in the dead of winter! It can be expensive to buy fresh herbs in the winter, so you may only want to use one type of herb here: that’s okay! It tastes delicious not matter what you use. The ingredients you’ll need are:

  • Cream cheese
  • Mix of fresh herbs: chives, basil or dill
  • Garlic powder
  • Dried dill
  • Kosher salt
  • Greek yogurt, milk or sour cream (optional)
Herb Cream Cheese

Herbs to use: and a few substitutions!

A few notes on the herbs to use for herb cream cheese! Fresh herbs can be pricey in the winter, so here are some tricks to make this spread simpler:

  • Use just one herb: we recommend chives. So you don’t have to buy separate packages, just use chives! It tastes great too.
  • Grow herbs in the summer. They’re simple to grow in pots so cost effective! See How to Grow Herbs.
  • Use only dried herbs. Substitute ½ teaspoon dried oregano and ½ teaspoon dried basil for the fresh herbs: it tastes different but still good!
  • Either way: don’t leave out the dried dill. It’s worth buying for your pantry and it completes the herbaceous flavor here!
Bagel with herb cream cheese

Making fluffier, spreadable herb cream cheese

This herb cream cheese is fantastic with just cream cheese, herbs and seasonings. The texture comes out similar to regular cream cheese: pretty solid. So if you want it to be fluffier or more spreadable, here are a few options:

  • Add a few tablespoons milk, sour cream or Greek yogurt. This softens it to a more spreadable texture. Add as much as you need to get it to the texture you’d like! If you’re using it more like a dip, you may want it on the softer side (like Rondele cheese spread!).
  • Make whipped cream cheese. You can also make whipped cream cheese: place the cream cheese in a food processor with 1 tablespoon milk and whip until it’s fluffy. Then add the chopped herbs and pulse until combined!
Herb Cream Cheese

Ways to serve herb cream cheese

There are infinite ideas for serving herb cream cheese! Here are some of our favorite ways:

  • Sandwiches like this smoked salmon sandwich
  • Bagels like with smoked salmon and capers
  • Cracker dip with crackers or crostini
  • Veggie dip with carrots, celery or bell peppers
  • Toast with veggie toppings, as an easy lunch

More cheesy dips and spreads

There are lots more cheeses to whip up! Here are a few more cheese dips and spreads we love:

This herb cream cheese recipe is…

Vegetarian and gluten-free.

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Herb Cream Cheese

Herb Cream Cheese

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 1 cup (8 2 tablespoon servings) 1x


There’s nothing better than homemade herb cream cheese! Packed with fresh herbs, it’s an easy appetizer or spread for bagels.


  • 1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened
  • ¼ cup chopped chives, or half chives and half fresh basil or dill
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon dried dill
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons Greek yogurt or sour cream or ½ tablespoon milk, to soften (optional)


  1. Make sure the cream cheese is softened. Leave it out at room temperature for 1 hour, or place it on a plate in the microwave, cook 5 seconds, flip over the block of cheese and cook another 5 seconds. (If it’s not room temperature at this point, cook another few seconds, but air on the conservative side.)
  2. Chop the herbs. Mix everything together in a bowl, adding a little Greek yogurt, milk or sour cream 1 tablespoon at a time if you’d like a fluffier, more spreadable texture (we used 1 tablespoon Greek yogurt).
  3. Whipped alternative: Make whipped cream cheese by adding ½ tablespoon milk and whipping the cream cheese in a food processor or stand mixer. Then add the chopped herbs and pulse until combined.


*You can use any mix of fresh herbs you like, to total ¼ cup. Oregano and thyme also work well. Make it simpler and use just chives for the most economical choice. Make sure to still use the dried dill to complete the herbaceous flavor. You can also substitute ½ teaspoon dried oregano and ½ teaspoon dried basil for the fresh herbs: it tastes different but still good!

  • Category: Essentials
  • Method: Mixed
  • Cuisine: Cheese
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Keywords: Herb cream cheese

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Hi, we’re Alex and Sonja Overhiser, married cookbook authors, food bloggers, and recipe developers. We founded A Couple Cooks to share fresh, seasonal recipes for memorable kitchen moments! Our recipes are made by two real people and work every time.

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  1. Great recipe! I used fresh herbs and eyeballed the measurements, and chose the whipped method. Perfect for an Herby Turkey Sandwich!