“Healthified” Spinach and Artichoke Dip

Mar 24th
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I don’t have a lot of dips on this site, and that’s because I don’t really make dip. That’s not to say I don’t enjoy it, though, it’s just that most dips are diet snafoos (that can’t be how that’s spelled). Anyways – I love the flavor of spinach and artichoke dip and thought I could find that balance – a dip that still tastes cheesy, creamy, and indulgent but a) doesn’t have mayo, and b) has ingredients that will make my body happy and make me feel good about sharing with my toddler.

Cannellini beans are my favorite beans – who thinks about crap like this? I do. They are by far my favorite bean. They’re creamy and sweet and when blended up, they all but disappear, lending a fabulous texture and tons of fiber. The cream cheese is the only “eh” factor in here when it comes to health, so I was hoping one of you might try this with the new Greek yogurt cream cheese that has less calories and more protein? Thanks that’d be great.

I fed my daughter plenty of this and she loved it and THEN I used up the extra by nestling browned chicken breasts right into the 8×8 inch pan and baking until the chicken was cooked (about 25 minutes). Food – real food. No cream of chicken or ranch seasoning packets. Happy dipping!

Healthified Spinach and Artichoke Dip

Serves 8-10 for appetizer

1 (15 oz) can cannellini (also called Great Northern) beans

1 can artichoke hearts (packed in water), drained

1 shallot

2 garlic cloves

8 oz. lowfat cream cheese

1/4 c. plain yogurt

2 tbsp. parmesan cheese

1/2 tsp. salt

1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper

10 oz. frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry

Topping: 2 tbsp. parmesan cheese

1. In a food processor, pulse beans, artichokes, shallot and garlic until chunky (about 5 1 second pulses).

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2. Transfer mixture to mixing bowl. Without cleaning processor,  add cream cheese, yogurt, parmesan cheese, salt and cayenne pepper. Process mixture until smooth and light, about 20 seconds.

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3. Scrape cheese mixture into mixing bowl with bean mixture. Add spinach. Fold to combine.

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4. Transfer mixture to 8×8 baking pan, spreading evenly into corners. Top with 2 tbsp. parmesan cheese.

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5. Refrigerate if making ahead – or preheat oven to 350. Bake for 30 minutes or until top is golden brown. Serve with celery, carrots, red peppers, and pita chips.

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