Spicy Greek Yogurt Dip for Vegetables

Chobani Greek Yogurt
Greek Yogurt Dip with Chipotle

This dip is made with Greek yogurt! The taste and calories are lighter using Greek yogurt than using a mayonnaise or cream based dip. Plus, you will get a quick protein boost because Greek yogurt has more protein than regular yogurt. What better way to enjoy a dip without feeling the guilt. The flavor of the chipotle sauce gives you the right kick to start your party anytime. It is an easy recipe of three ingredients. All you need is cut up vegetables to serve.

In a blender add a cup of Chobani non-fat plain Greek Yogurt with half can of chipotle chile sauce and ½ cup of any salsa. Blend and serve with fresh veggies.

Recipe adapted from: http://www.chobani.com/culture/recipes/chipotle-dip/.

Nutrition info for 6 servings: 35 calories, 0g total fat, saturated fat 0g, trans fat 0g, 0 mg of cholesterol, 330 mg sodium, 4 grams of carbohydrates, 0 g dietary fiber, 3 g sugars, 4 g protein.

Easy Hummus

A can of garbanzo beans can make a delicious dip for your snack or for a tasty appetizer. Serve with fresh cut up vegetables or simply with tortilla or pita chips. Place everything in a food processor or blender and blend until smooth. Usually tahini paste is used but I don’t have it so peanut butter can give it the same consistency. It will be ready to serve or store in the fridge until the party start. Salud!

1 can garbanzo beans, drained
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
Juice of 1 lemon
2 garlic cloves
1 Tbsp peanut butter
1/8 Cayenne pepper or to taste
Ground sea salt to taste

This recipe makes about 1.5 cups. Nutrition information for 2 tablespoons: 80 calories, 6 grams total fat, 1 gram saturated fat, 0mg cholesterol, 280mg sodium, 6grams carbohydrates, 1gram dietary fiber, 1gram sugar, 2grams protein.

Popcorn

One cup of air popped popcorn has 31 calories! Now that is a light but filling snack. If you don’t have a hot air popper machine, just cook it in a pot with some oil (to cover the pan) and a touch of salt. When the oil is hot add the corn (about 1/2 cup) and cover with the lid. When you hear the “pops” start, begin shaking the pot. I usually lower the heat, so that I don’t burn the popcorn. Then, slowly open the lid. Instead of salt, you can add paprika, chili powder, or garlic powder.

Source: USDA nutrition database.

Beans, lentils and peas

One of the best plant protein foods in the world is beans. They are so diverse, delicious and economical that they shouldn’t be overlooked. Let the kids sort them out for you, and then cook a pot of gold.

There are many reasons to include them daily in your diet. They are complex carbohydrates that are high in fiber. Beans helps to lower your cholesterol and to reduce your risk for developing heart disease and diabetes.

Canned beans can be used as well, especially when you don’t have a lot of free time. You can add them to soups, stews, or chili. It is important that you drain and rinse them before using them because that will help remove a large portion (about 36%) of the sodium they are cooked with.

If you experience bloating, cramps, or gas, soak the beans overnight. Make sure that you rinse them thoroughly, drain them and then add fresh, clean water before cooking. Cook them thoroughly, and then enjoy! Remember not to add salt to beans until they are soft.

A half cup of beans provides 104-120 calories, 8-9 grams of fiber, and 7 to 9 grams of protein. They also contain these important vitamins and minerals: iron, potassium, magnesium, manganese, copper, and folate.

One way to spice up your beans is to make it the Latin way: add a “sofrito” after beans are made to give them flavor.

Sofrito for beans:
1 tbsp of olive oil
1-2 garlic clove, minced
1/3 cup onion, chopped
1 tomato, cut in quarters1/2 cup of cilantro leaves, chopped
1 tsp salt
1/2 sweet bell pepper or 1 jalapeño, chopped

Sauté all ingredients in olive oil and let it simmer until all liquid is evaporated. When ready, add this to the pot of gold, ops sorry, pot of beans. Salud!

 Sources: USDA database; Bush Brothers & Company; Mayo Clinic.