Weight Watchers Spinach Dip ♥

Weight Watchers Spinach Dip by A Veggie Venture
Today's healthy veggie dip recipe: My variation of the spinach dip from Weight Watchers. Just 1 point (Old Points) or 2 points (PointsPlus) and low carb too.

On warm summer nights, I love that 'gathering moment' before supper. The meat is on the grill, the salad waiting in the refrigerator. In hand is a glass of something cold and wet, occasionally what my sister Adanna calls an 'adult beverage'. These few minutes bridge the day's busy-ness and the evening's relaxation.

So during the summer, I make one homemade veggie dip after another, some quick concoction that will last a few days, one celery stick at a time. This is my adaptation of the Feta & Spinach Dip from Weight Watchers. I've modified it some, starting with 4X the spinach and substituting low-fat sour cream for non-fat sour cream, which I find too gloppy and sweet.

Feta cheese is a brilliant addition to cream-cheese based dips, adding both moisture and 'tang' that really revs up the flavor profile. It's also featured in this tzatziki-ish dip from Kitchen Parade, Cucumber Dip with Feta. If you like feta, you'll love these dips!

PORTION CONTROL for WEIGHT WATCHERS When we simply 'dip' into a common dip dish, it's easy to lose track of how many points we consume. To carefully track points, portion out however many points you've allowed into your own 'dipping' plate, then 'dip' to your heart's content!

REVIEWS
"This was delicious. I added chopped water chestnuts to make it more like the spinach dip recipe (full fat) I usually make." ~ Anonymous
"... tried your recipe and it was a fave amongst the guests." ~ Hummus

WEIGHT WATCHERS SPINACH DIP

Hands-on time: 15 minutes
Time to table: 15 minutes but flavors meld and improve if chilled for a couple of hours
Makes 2 cups

Well-salted water to cover
8 - 16 ounces fresh spinach (see TIPS)

1/2 cup low-fat cream cheese, also called Neufchatel (about 4 ounces)
1/2 cup low-fat sour cream (about 4 ounces)
1/4 cup feta cheese (about 2 ounces)
1 clove garlic
1/4 cup fresh chives
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

CLEAN & COOK the SPINACH Bring the water to a boil. Meanwhile, wash the spinach well under running water, rubbing the leaves with your fingertips if they're at all gritty. If they are really gritty, let soak in cold water for a few minutes, then rinse well until you can no longer feel the grit. To be sure, do a taste test. If the stems are thick, cut them out and discard or compost. Drop the spinach into the boiling water, in batches if need be, and cook until just done but still bright green -- again, a taste test help. Drain well in a colander, press with the back of a spoon to release as much liquid as possible.

MIX the DIP Place the cooked spinach and the remaining ingredients in a food processor and process until light and fluffy and the spinach is evenly distributed.


ALANNA's TIPS & KITCHEN NOTES
The Weight Watchers recipe called for only 2 ounces of fresh spinach, I started with 8 ounces of fresh chard (including the stems, which are cut off after cooking) and next time, would start with even more fresh greens for a more spinach-y and less cream cheese-y dip.
Bags of baby spinach are convenient but the leaves are so tender, they're best for salads, not cooking. A better choice is fresh leaves of curly spinach. I also wouldn't hesitate to use a bag of good frozen spinach for this dip.
Watch for blocks of feta cheese, versus the expensive crumbles.
No fresh chives? Substitute two or three green onions.
Add water chestnuts! This is a great suggestion from a reader, who's made the dip and added chopped water chestnuts to make it more like her usual full-fat spinach dip. The water chestnuts add bulk and crunch, with no added calories! GREAT idea!

A Veggie Venture - Printer Friendly Recipe Graphic



This recipe is so quick and easy that I'm adding it to a growing collection of easy summer recipes published all summer long at Kitchen Parade, my food column. With a free Kitchen Parade e-mail subscription, you'll never miss a one!





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8 comments:

I love that pre-dinner moment too! I do the same thing -- and always have a dip with veggies. This looks great, and great tip for portion control,

Alanna, you just had to send out a spinach dip, didn't you? Not entirely fair, you know. Will have to see if I can get ingredients together and give it a try. I am tired of grocery shopping at our local market (our 'fresh' produce seems to be very tired, the cukes are always or have been frozen and translucent), so it may have to wait until I get to the cities in two weeks.

This was delicious. I added chopped water chestnuts to make it more like the spinach dip recipe (full fat) I usually make.

Julia ~ You're welcome!

Cait ~ Good luck, you remind me how lucky I am to have such good produce so close.

Anonymous ~ Why thank you! And of course, what brilliance to add in the chopped water chestnut, for more bulk and good crunch. I'm going to add your tip to the recipe!

That's a great tip about portioning out your portion of the communal dip. I'm going to start doing that.

Am bookmarking this recipe... perfect for my diet.

MMMMMMMMM,...what a stunning & tasty dip!!

Looks so tempting too, Alanna!

I tried your recipe and it was a fave amongst the guests. I told them to visit your blog if they want to try more of your fabulous recipes. Cheers!

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Thank you for taking a moment to write! I read each and every comment, for each and every recipe, whether a current recipe or a long-ago favorite. If you have a specific question, it's nearly always answered quick-quick. ~ Alanna