Suzanne Hollander, MS, RD

As a dietitian, home cook, and enthusiast of all-things-delicious, I'm often asked, "so what do YOU eat?" Here's a blog to answer that very question! My hope is that you'll find (even just a little) inspiration from some of my favorite recipes, restaurants, party-ideas and food musings for your own happy, healthy, food-loving lifestyle.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Healthy Artichoke Dip

The Artichoke and Spinach Dip appetizers at restaurants are alarmingly high in calories, saturated fat and sodium. If we assume the Applebee's portion serves 4 people, the dip with the chips come in at 330 calories, 22 grams of fat (6 grams saturated fat), and 655 mg of sodium. That's about a third of your recommended fat and sodium intake just from this appetizer. Yikes!

I decided to try out a healthy take on this appetizer favorite, substituting white beans for all the creamy condiments that go into the standard version. I used kale in place of spinach just for a change of pace. The nutrition facts below are without chips/crackers/veggies for dipping, but you can already see a stark difference! 

The Nutrition Rundown: The bean substitution lowers fat and boosts fiber, to save you calories and make you feel satisfied. A sizzling sprinkle of cheese over the top gives all the flavor, without the over-the-top calories of the standard cream-filled version. If you're watching your waistline, try veggies for dipping in place of chips or crackers. 

Healthy Artichoke Dip

Serves 8-10

4 cloves garlic
12oz can low sodium white cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
1 cup chopped kale leaves, stems removed
Juice of 1 lemon
2 Tbs white wine vinegar
½ tsp salt
½ tsp black pepper
12 oz fresh or frozen artichoke hearts, steamed (frozen steam easily in microwave)
2 Tbs olive oil
¼ cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Pulse garlic cloves in food processor for a few seconds until chopped. Add beans, kale, lemon juice, vinegar, salt, and pepper and pulse until pureed. Add artichokes. With food processor running, pour in olive oil slowly through hole at top of food processor and blend until well combined—artichokes do not need to be fully pureed.
  3. Add dip to 9x9 inch baking dish. Bake 10 minutes. Remove from oven, add Parmesan to top and place under broiler for 2-3 minutes, until cheese is golden brown. 
  4. Serve warm with whole grain crackers, tortilla chips or crudités. 

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