Tag Archives: Dip


Making your own tzatziki is really fun and I love the ability to customize according to taste…which storebought just doesn’t do. I’ve mentioned my love affair with garlic, well I like my tzatziki to reflect that. Perhaps you like a fresher more lemony taste to yours? Or perhaps a different texture? Go nuts there are so many ways to enjoy tzatziki! My favourite? On a ham sandwich instead of mayo. Num! With all the Mediterranean dips I’ve been working on my summer evening Mediterranean al fresco dinning experience is getting closer and closer! I can’t wait!

  • 1 cup no fat greek style yogurt or non fat yogurt strained in cheesecloth overnight
  • 1 small cucumber peeled, seeded, finely grated, and squeezed dry.
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic (less if you are not as in love)
  • 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp fresh dill (optional)
  1. Combine the ingredients in a small bowl and allow to sit for atleast 2 hours. Overnight is best!

Serves four generously (about 1/4 cup). Each serving contains 45 calories, .2 gram of fat, 7.3 grams of carbs, 3.9 grams of protein, and .4 gram of fibre. Great on falafel!

Roasted Red Pepper Bean Dip

You know what one of my biggest vices is? Chips and dip. Oh how I love chips and dip. Especially that perfect regular potato chip with a tasty homemade french onion dip. Tortilla chips with a roasted red pepper dip are another favoured combination. I was introduced to that naughty combination by a friend when I was living in Halifax. Good times. Good thing too since it opens the door to this healthier alternative for me. Instead of picking up a calorie and fat laden treat from the store I just whip this bad boy together in a minute or so and enjoy! It’s so full of fibre I have actually used it as a light lunch on occasion. Such a filling snack!

  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
  • 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 (19 ounce) can white kidney beans, drained
  • 7 ounces of roasted red peppers (if from a jar, drain)
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground pepper
  1. Place all the ingredients in a food processor or blender. Blend until smooth.

Makes 8 servings about 1/4 cup each. Each serving contains 84 calories, .4 grams of fat and 6.2 grams of fibre. Served with toasted whole wheat pita wedges or veggies this snack is absolutely a complete craving buster. I highly recommend this for lunches too. That high fibre content makes me feel so full I usually just have that, some pita, and some veggies then call it a day.

Cheater’s Aoli

A very favourite sauce of mine from the french, provence to be exact. I was introduced to it as a child in switzerland. My parents were there on business and took me along. Oh so garlicky. LOVE! They served it with my steak and frites. Ever since then that’s really the way I always envision it. Since then my version of aoli has gotten even more garlicky. So definitely a warning, if you are not as garlic obsessed as I am you might want to tone this bad boy down. I’ve always made my aoli from scratch, and it really is best that way but these are healthier times. I must resort to an easier method and cut the fat and calories in half. *sniff* It’s all for the best really. It still comes out beautiful and tasty but the purist in me gets a little snobby sometimes hehe.

No, those frites are not fried ofcourse.

  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 tsp powdered mustard
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 7 tbl half the fat mayo
  1. Combine in blender or in my case magic bullet until fully blended and creamy. Allow to sit for 4 hours or overnight. Serve!

Makes 4 servings of 2 tbl each. Each serving contains 68 calories, 6.2 grams of fat, and .1 gram of fiber. This sauce is great with steak and frites as I mentioned, chicken, or even as a really powerful salad dressing. It really does kick caesar’s butt.

The original recipe for those who are curious is:

  • 5-8 cloves of garlic
  • 1/2 tsp powdered mustard
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1/2 cup of olive oil
  1. Combine the garlic and egg whites, slowly add the olive oil until it is emulsified (white and whipped up).
  2. Stir in the lemon juice and mustard. Allow to sit 4 hours or overnight. Serve!

8 servings of 2 tbl each. Each serving contains 128 calories, 13.6 grams of fat and .1 gram of fiber.

As you can see the half the fat mayo really does make this a half the fat recipe in the end. My purist version will just have to be reserved for special occasions. In the meantime though this cheaters version seems to make us pretty happy too.

Spicy Black Bean Dip

Sometimes I feel that need to snack on something that I dip and crunch. I love chips and dip. Sadly, it is a unrequieted love. Oh chips and dip, why do you hate me and my waistline so? I think its jealous lately hehe. Thankfully with all those baked crunchies out there I can investigate dip once more. This went very well with some baked tortilla chips but I can see it going just as well with a baked bunch of pita chips.

  • 1 can (19 oz) black beans
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp curry powder
  • 1 pinch sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp hot sauce
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
  1. Drain the beans but reserve 2 tbl of the liquid.
  2. Saute the onions and garlic until soft and browned.
  3. Combine the ingredients in a blender. Serve hot or cold.

To cool the heat or for just an added creaminess sometimes I stir in a bit of light cheese whiz melted in. So tasty!

This makes approximately eight servings. Each serving is about 1/4 cup, and contains 96 calories, .5 grams of fat, and 6.2 grams of fiber. Great for a fun movie night…perhaps a good thing to eat while watching a few hobbits make their way over to a mountain and drop a ring perhaps? It certainly can be fiery enough!

Dippers, Dining in, and Dives

oooohhhh hungry hungry hobbit. Holiday time is here once again. Temptation is on the table. This holiday weekend plans include a hickory smoked maple glazed ham AND a turkey. Expect to see some leftover recipes soon. Now, just because I’m on a weight loss challenge isn’t going to stop me from making this work. It’s time for some creative management instead of taking a dive.

I’m not talking  cereal management either. I’m a little annoyed by the commercial that has been playing lately of this woman who says to herself  “oh, dinner out with the girls, I’ll want dessert…better skip breakfast.”. Where the cereal then says no! Don’t skip breakfast! Shovel into our sugary cereal with very little to do with the food pyramid and crash later instead! Woooo! Get me some of that!


Yeah, that’s the expression I had too.

May I present an alternative? How about eating some low calorie fruits and veggies throughout the day? Or how about some low fat dairy matched with it helping you complete some of that food pyramid you keep hearing about, while filling yourself up and reserving those big calories for a nice portion controlled take of that super fun dinner later on. To me that just seems more win win, than cereal. Granted we try not to eat more than 500 calories per meal since that is what studies are showing is what the body can burn effectively. I’m sure those few holidays matched with good eating during the day will forgive us just this once.

So how will we do this tasty eating without feeling like a hamster?

The faboo world of dips. It is such a holiday food. This may be a bit of a hamster holiday for some but very worth it. First we start with our dippers. You’ve got your veggie platter. So easy to do with a bit of prep. Celery, carrots, broccoli, peppers, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, go nuts! I find that when you chop up a platter and put it out there, you just can’t help but delve! Fruit platters are great too, especially in the morning as sort of a morning long brunch. Berries of all sort, melons, orange slices, pineapple, apples with lemon juice, starfruit, etc. Then the last of your dipper choices is the fiber. I don’t tend to do this one since it is harder to control but it you feel the need a lot of veggie dips are great for mini crackers. Especially multigrain ones. The best way to handle those is to count out a portion, put them in a bowl for yourself and pick away as you wish. Hurray for grazing. With platters like those you will eat your fruit and veg servings in no time, eat very little in calories and fat, and feel full all day. Leaving you less likely to indulge too much on that naughty dinner you have planned later in the day.

What to have with those veggies to make them more fun? I have a few suggestions. Easy dips that you can make the night before, leaving you more time to be festive.  To control your dip intake I suggest grabbing a ramekin, measuring out your dip for the day, and taking it out each time you indulge in your tasty looking tray. Easy! On to the dip then? Here are a couple of my favourites:

Rancho Dill Dip

  • 2 tsp dill weed
  • 1 package of dry ranch dressing (I chose a zero calorie dry mix)
  • 1 container fat free sour cream
  1. Combine, allow to chill a few hours, overnight is best.

Each serving is 2 tablespoons. Each servings contains 29 calories, 0 fat, and 0 fiber. This can vary based on your sour cream. I made this particular dip to try and imitate a dip served at a restaurant in Halifax. They serve it with their fries and it is immensely popular. Sadly, I cannot compare them side by side anymore but I think I’m getting close!

French Onion Dip

  • French Onion dry soup mix
  • 1 container of fat free sour cream
  1. Combine and allow to chill overnight.

Each serving is 2 tablespoons. Each serving contains 47 calories, 0.3 fat, and 0.1 fiber. Varies on your choice of soup mix and sour cream.

Zesty Italian Dip

  • 1 cup of fat free plain yogurt
  • 1/2 cup fat free miracle whip
  • 1 package dry italian dressing mix (there are zero calorie ones out there)
  1. Combine and allow to chill overnight.

Each serving is two tablespoons. Each serving contains 22 calories, 0.3 grams of fat, and 0 fiber.

This last one is for if you want to get naughty with your fruit…oh you know what I mean. Hush. Usually fruit is tasty enough on its own but if you want to make it more dessert like this might be how you want to go.

Nutella Dip

  • 1/2 cup Nutella
  • 1 container fat free cream cheese, room temp to mix easier
  • 1 tbl skim milk
  1. Combine until it has a bit of airy fluffiness to it.

Each serving is two tablespoons. Each serving contains 81 calories, 3.7 grams of fat, and 0.3 grams of fiber.

Hopefully everyone will enjoy their holidays this weekend with their dippers, dining in, and avoid that dive. I know I will!