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Classic Creamy Spinach Dip with a Fraction of the Calories and Fat

What is it about creamy dips that makes even the most composed among us lose all sense of control? Leave me alone in a room with a bowl of my girlfriend’s homemade creamy spinach dip and a loaf of bread – just 10 minutes. That’s all I need to polish the whole thing off. No regrets. until 20 minutes later, when my brain has finally caught up with my mouth and cries, “Stop with the spinach dip already!” But by then it’s too late.

usually, it’s not just me crowding around the dip. Dips are the perfect snack to feed a crowd. and a great dip can even carry on the conversation. When you can’t think of anything else to say, just throw in, “This dip is so good, what’s in it?” and your girlfriend will casually reply, “oh, just a cup of mayo, a cup of sour cream, some spinach and some other stuff.”

a cup of what? But it’s spinach dip! Isn’t it supposed to be healthy? Would you sit there at a party and scoop spoon- fuls of mayo into your mouth? I didn’t think so. But these dips can be almost that bad. Don’t be fooled by the health halo of the green spinach specks.

The good news is you can have your dip and eat it too (maybe not with reckless abandon, but at least with a little less guilt). The brilliant cooks in the EatingWell Test Kitchen have done it again. They’ve figured out how to make a delicious, creamy spinach dip with reduced-fat cream cheese, nonfat yogurt and low-fat cottage cheese instead of full-fat cheese, mayonnaise and sour cream. It will save you a whopping 84 calories and 10 grams of fat per 1/4-cup serving when compared to traditional versions.

Oh, and no need to eat an entire loaf of bread: serve our creamy spinach dip with some pita chips and crunchy vegetables.

CREAMY SPINACH DIP

Serves 10.

Prep Time: 15 minutes Total Time: 15 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 small shallot, peeled
  • 1 (5-ounce) can water chestnuts, rinsed
  • 1/2 cup reduced-fat cream cheese (Neufchatel) 1/2 cup low-fat cottage cheese
  • 1/4 cup nonfat plain yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 6 ounces baby spinach
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives

Instructions:

Pulse shallot and water chestnuts in a food processor until coarsely chopped. Add cream cheese, cottage cheese, yogurt, lemon juice, salt and pepper, and pulse until just combined. Add spinach and chives and pulse until incorporated.

Recipe nutrition:Per 1/4-cup serving: 53 calories; 3 g fat (2 g sat, 1 g mono); 10 mg cholesterol; 4 g carbohydrate; 3 g protein; 1 g fiber; 206 mg sodium; 105 mg potassium

Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin A (15 percent daily value). 0 Carbohydrate Servings.

Exchanges: 1 vegetable, 1/2 fat

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