Forgive me, I don’t have a great photo of this recipe. Sigh.
For Christmas, my husband got me something that I’ve been wanting for a long, long time: a point and shoot camera. I love my big Canon with its lenses and power and sharpness. But I wanted something that I could tote around everywhere and capture impromptu shots of the kids anywhere.
The only problem? I am completely inept when it comes to taking pictures with this camera. I can’t seem to get the hang of it to get brilliant, clear, in-focus shots … The photo below? Taken with the point and shoot (and thank goodness, since I hadn’t taken many shots of this dip!). Figures, I can handle a camera with about a billion settings, but the point and shoot eludes me. Am I the only one with this problem?
Okay, onto the dip. I love spinach artichoke dip and have since my very first bite of it years and years ago. The combination of cheese, spinach and artichoke is just delightful — and perfect for a party. Last week, when I wrote about it for Tablespoon, I also decided that it would be great to make for Super Bowl Sunday. This healthier version was a huge hit — Paige, my two-year-old, couldn’t get enough of it (seriously, she kept asking for more … and licking it off the bread).
With ingredients that are a little lighter (reduced fat cheese, milk, etc), and a hearty dose of spinach and artichokes, this recipe is a little friendlier on your waist than some others … as long as you don’t eat it all yourself.
Looking for an appetizer for a crowd? This is fast, easy and won’t disappoint.
Lightened Up Spinach Dip with Artichokes
- 1 8-oz package 1/3-less-fat cream cheese (Neufchâtel), softened
- 1/4 cup reduced-fat mayonnaise
- 4 tablespoons freshly grated Romano cheese , divided
- 1/4 cup reduced fat milk
- 2 cloves garlic , finely chopped
- 2 tsp fresh chopped basil leaves
- 1 9-oz box frozen chopped spinach , fully thawed and drained (press to remove excess water)
- 1 14-oz can artichoke heart quarters , drained and lightly chopped
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray an 8x8 glass baking dish with cooking oil spray.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the cream cheese until it's smooth. Add the mayonnaise, 3 tbsp of the Romano, milk, garlic and basil and beat until well blended. Add the spinach and artichokes to the bowl and beat well.
- Pour the spinach mixture into the prepared pan. Sprinkle with the remaining tablespoon of Romano cheese.
- Place the dish into the oven and bake for 25-30 minutes, until ever-so-slightly browned on the edges and warm throughout. Serve with bread, crackers, tortilla chips or vegetables.
Sarah Walker Caron is a cookbook author, freelance writer and founder of Sarah’s Cucina Bella. She is the author of several cookbooks including The Super Easy 5-Ingredient Cookbook and One-Pot Pasta, both from Rockridge Press. A single mother to two kids in middle school, Sarah loves nightly family dinners, juicy tomatoes plucked fresh from the vine and lazy days on the beach. She also adores reading and traveling.