Question: Lately, eating has become downright hard for me. Oops, that’s a typo. Eating is actually downright easy for me, but I tend to overindulge, even with healthy stuff. Any ideas for light, but filling snacks?
Answer: I wish my answer to this was different (e.g. Yes! Here are my favorite calorie-free chips, cookies, fries…) but unfortunately there’s only one way to snack without packing on the pounds: eat veggies. Veggies are bulky, filling if you eat a lot, and very low in calories, so you can snack on them almost endlessly. To make veggie-snacking more exciting, try them with the following healthy dips (just make sure to portion out your dip, as it can add up):
Easy Veggie Dip Recipes
- Tsaziki – One 16 oz container lowfat greek yogurt, 1 hothouse cucumber (shredded & squeezed in paper towel to release excess water) salt, chopped fresh mint.
- Pesto Cheese Dip – 1 cup Low-fat ricotta cheese w/ 2 Tbsp pesto, blended in a food processor or blender until smooth & creamy.
- Buttermilk Blue (or Feta) Cheese Dressing – 1 cup low-fat buttermilk, 1/4 cup crumbled blue or feta cheese, juice of 1/2 a lemon, 2 Tbsp Light Mayo, handful of fresh Italian parsley leaves, chopped — whisk together in bowl.
- Creamy Goat Cheese Dressing – 1 cup low-fat milk, 3 oz soft goat cheese — whisk together in bowl with salt, pepper, and fresh chopped basil
- Caramelized Onion Dip – 16 oz container of nonfat Greek yogurt w/ 3/4 cup caramelized onions (saute 2 large onions over low heat in 1 Tbsp olive oil w/ salt for 15-20 minutes, then add splash of balsamic vinegar & fresh thyme leaves, or 1/2 tsp dried thyme).
- Smoky Bean Dip – in food processor (or bowl), blend 1/2 cup salsa verde, 1 can low-fat refried black beans, 1 tsp cumin, juice of 1 lime, 1/4 cup Light cream cheese, few dashes of hot sauce.
- Spinach Artichoke Dip – 1 can drained artichoke hearts (chopped), one 10-oz bag frozen chopped spinach (thawed & well-drained), 1/2 cup Lowfat mayo, 1 cup Greek yogurt, juice of 1/2 lemon, 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, salt & pepper — put in baking dish, sprinkle with 2 Tbsp Parm cheese, then bake at 350 until bubbly. Can reheat in microwave or eat cold.
- Spicy Nacho Dip – 1/2 cup chipotle or roasted tomato salsa mixed with 1 cup nonfat Greek yogurt and small pinch each of cumin & chili powder. Add chopped black olives & green onions if desired.
Tasty Store-Bought Dips
- Sabra Hummus with Pine Nuts from Costco
- Cilantro-jalapeno hummus from Trader Joe’s (TJ’s)
- Tsaziki from TJ’s
- White bean & basil hummus from TJ’s
- Roasted garlic hummus from Whole Foods (the one in their deli section that’s made in the store)
- Whole Foods Kalamata Olive Tapenade (365 brand in a jar)