Latter-day Saint Life

‘People’ features Latter-day Saint chef’s 7-layer guacamole dip


’Tis the season for epic family gatherings, and one Latter-day Saint food blogger has just the thing that will get any feast or gathering started on the right foot. In fact, it’s a recipe so good that has shared it with their readers.

As a magazine food editor turned food blogger, Tara Bench, perhaps best known as Tara Teaspoon, has become immersed in the food culture of New York City as a faithful member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. For more than two decades, she’s worked in the food publishing industry creating recipes and articles and has been a food stylist for various magazines, books, and TV shows. She was the food and entertaining director of Ladies Home Journal magazine. Prior to working at the journal, Tara was a food editor at Martha Stewart Living, Kids, and Weddings magazines. She has appeared on the Martha Stewart television show, The Today Show, and on the Food Network as both a show judge and a contestant.

► You may also like: Former ‘Martha Stewart Living’ senior food editor talks being a Latter-day Saint in the NYC food industry

The five-star guacamole dip featured on can also be found in Tara’s new cookbook, Delicious Gatherings. She explained that for this appetizer, she wanted to create something that was beautiful as well as tasty.

“I wanted a dip that could serve as a centerpiece, so I’ve composed the platter to look impressive,” Tara writes in her cookbook. “It’s a showstopper that’s perfect for dipping your chips into, scooping onto enchiladas, or dolloping on a taco salad. Your taste buds will know what to expect—amazingness!”

Read more about Tara on and find the instructions and ingredients for her guacamole dip below.

Tara Bench’s Seven-Layer Guacamole Dip


  • 1¼ cups sour cream
  • 3 Tbsp. taco seasoning
  • ⅓ cup chopped scallions (from 1 bunch)
  • 1 small jalapeño, finely chopped
  • 5 ripe avocados
  • ½ cup tomatillo salsa (salsa verde) (from 16-oz. jar)
  • 2 Tbsp. fresh lime juice (from 2 limes)
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 cup chopped fresh cilantro, divided
  • 1 large tomato, seeds removed and chopped (1 ¼ cups)
  • 4 oz. cotija cheese, crumbled (1 cup)
  • 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • ¾ cup frozen roasted corn, thawed

1. Whisk together sour cream and taco seasoning in a medium bowl. Cover and chill until ready to use.
2. Toss together scallions, jalapeño, and ¾ cup of the cilantro in a small bowl. Set aside at room temperature, uncovered.
3. Smash together avocados, tomatillo salsa, lime juice, salt and ¼ cup of the cilantro in a large bowl until slightly chunky.
4. Spread guacamole in a thick layer on a large platter. Gently spread taco crema on top in an even layer, leaving a border of guacamole. Arrange a ring of tomatoes near the edge of the taco crema and then a ring of cotija cheese inside the tomato ring. Create a ring of scallion mixture inside the cheese, followed by a ring of beans. Place corn in center. Serve immediately with chips, or cover and chill up to 1 hour.

Delicious Gatherings

From Sunday suppers and weeknight family meals to elaborate buffets for bigger crowds and holiday celebrations, Tara’s recipes include delicious showstoppers and unique takes on comforting classics. You can gather together around savory recipes, including Spicy Maple Sweet Potatoes with Cinnamon Pepitas or the Ultimate Chili con Queso. Then bring on dessert with Chocolate Peanut Butter Puddle Cookies or Maple Hazelnut Pie.

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