Spinach and Basil Pesto Spread

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I love a good pesto sauce, but it’s always been one of the things that my kids (and honestly, my husband) aren’t usually very excited about.  And let’s face it…pesto sauce can often be very oily, high in calories, and can sometimes be a bit ‘in your face’ in flavor.  So, I needed a way to satisfy my pesto craving in a little more healthy fashion, while not listening to anyone complain.  Isn’t this the basis for fifty percent of the new recipes created by moms?  I’m just over here looking for a way to eat what I want, without continually expanding my waistline, and without having to listen to anyone gripe about it!  This Spinach and Basil Pesto Sauce fits the bill on all fronts.  You can freeze it too, and have fresh basil flavor all year round! ~Tracy

Ingredients:

  • 1 c. fresh basil leaves
  • 2 c. fresh baby spinach
  • ½ c. chopped walnuts
  • ½ c. shredded parmesan cheese
  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced
  • ¼ c. plain nonfat Greek yogurt
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. black pepper
  • ½ tsp. lemon juice

Combine all ingredients in a food processor.  Pulse until the mixture becomes smooth and creamy, pausing occasionally to scrape down sides.

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Use this pesto as a spread with cream cheese or just by itself on a cracker.  It also works wonderfully on pizza and with grilled chicken.

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This recipe makes approximately 1 ¼ cup and is 2 WW Freestyle Points for a 2 Tablespoon serving.

Spinach Basil Pesto Spread

Spinach Basil Pesto Spread

Ingredients

  • • 1 c. fresh basil leaves
  • • 2 c. fresh baby spinach
  • • ½ c. chopped walnuts
  • • ½ c. shredded parmesan cheese
  • • 2 large cloves garlic, minced
  • • ¼ c. plain nonfat Greek yogurt
  • • 1 tsp. salt
  • • ½ tsp. black pepper
  • • ½ tsp. lemon juice

Instructions

  1. Combine all ingredients in a food processor. Pulse until the mixture becomes smooth and creamy, pausing occasionally to scrape down sides.
  2. Use this pesto as a spread with cream cheese or just by itself on a cracker. It also works wonderfully on pizza and with grilled chicken.

Notes

This recipe makes approximately 1 ¼ cup and is 2 WW Freestyle Points for a 2 Tablespoon serving.

https://foursistersdish.com/2019/08/08/spinach-and-basil-pesto-spread/

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Creamy Cilantro Sauce

One thing I have missed since I started eating healthy (most of the time) is sauces.  Sauces – especially creamy ones – are often high in calories/Weight Watcher points.  When you have a tight points budget each day, you don’t want to waste points on things like sauces.  For this reason, I have started creating my own sauces.  I can make them in small batches, instead of having a large bottle sitting around until after its expiration date; I can make them as rich or as low-fat as I choose; and I can avoid all the preservatives and additives that are often present in bottled/jarred sauces.

This Creamy Cilantro Sauce is one of my favorite sauce concoctions.  It can be used a veggie or chip dip, a sauce for Mexican dishes (it’s great on tacos!), or a dip for something like these Chicken Fajita Meatballs (photo below)!  The possibilities are endless!  If you need me, I’ll be in the kitchen dipping everything in this sauce.  Best part is, I can enjoy this with NO guilt.  Check out the stats at the end of this post!  Dip, dip, hooray for zero WW point sauce!  ~Erin

Ingredients: 

  • 1 (8 oz.) pkg. fat-free cream cheese
  • 1 (7 oz.) can salsa verde (I use Herdez brand.)
  • ½ tsp. black pepper
  • 1 tsp. celery salt
  • ½ tsp. cumin
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • ½ a bunch of cilantro, stems removed
  • The zest of one lime (optional)
  • 2 T. fresh lime juice – about one squeezed lime

Blend all ingredients in a blender, scraping down the sides occasionally, until smooth.

WW Freestyle Info:  Makes 2 cups of sauce.  Up to 2 Tablespoons is zero points.  3-6 tablespoons is 1 point.  7-10 tablespoons is 2 points.

Creamy Cilantro Sauce

Creamy Cilantro Sauce

Ingredients

    Ingredients
  • ~ 1 (8 oz.) pkg. fat-free cream cheese
  • ~ 1 (7 oz.) can salsa verde (I use Herdez brand.)
  • ~ ½ tsp. black pepper
  • ~ 1 tsp. celery salt
  • ~ ½ tsp. cumin
  • ~ 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • ~ ½ a bunch of cilantro, stems removed
  • ~ The zest of one lime (optional)
  • ~ 2 T. fresh lime juice – about one squeezed lime

Instructions

  1. Blend all ingredients in a blender, scraping down the sides occasionally, until smooth.

Notes

WW Freestyle Info: Makes 2 cups of sauce. Up to 2 Tablespoons is zero points. 3-6 Tablespoons is 1 point. 7-10 Tablespoons is 2 points.

https://foursistersdish.com/2019/01/24/creamy-cilantro-sauce/

Smoked Tuna Dip

Y’all know, from a recent post of mine, that my husband and I recently went on a trip to Grayton Beach, Florida.  Such a lovely little laid-back beach town.  We ate at some great restaurants while we were there, the first of which was called The Red Bar.  It’s a local dive that was packed with tourists and locals alike.  Their menu was a bit of a shock, as it was written on a chalkboard that they bring to your table.  Apparently it changes daily!  They had a couple of appetizers, around 5 entrees, and 2 or 3 desserts to choose from.  One of the appetizers was Smoked Tuna Dip.  Confession:  I didn’t order it; I went for the artichoke dip instead (which was also amazing), but my friend ordered the tuna dip.  Of course she shared, and, OMG, I was hooked.  We proceeded to order Smoked Tuna Dip at every restaurant we visited in the Grayton Beach area for the rest of the weekend.  I guess it’s a Florida thing?  Sadly, we don’t get smoked tuna dip in Oklahoma…I guess that’s due to the lack of fresh tuna.  Bummer.  So, I’ve done the next best thing and developed a recipe using packaged smoked tuna.  You’re welcome.  I mean, it’s not fresh from the sea, but it’s Okie style and, dare I say, it’s just as good!  ~Erin

Ingredients:
  • 2 pouches (2.6 oz. each) smoked white albacore tuna (I do not recommend canned tuna)
  • 2 oz. 1/3 less fat cream cheese, softened
  • 3 T. light mayonnaise
  • 1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • ¼ tsp. liquid smoke, optional (but it makes it more smoky)
  • ¼ tsp. creole seasoning or seasoned salt
  • 2 tsp. smoked paprika, plus a dash for garnish
  • ¼ tsp. garlic powder
  • about a tsp. of fresh lemon juice

Instructions: 

  1. Mix all ingredients until smooth.
  2. Garnish with a dash of smoked paprika.
  3. Serve with pita chips or saltine crackers.

WW Freestyle Info.: This makes 5 servings of ¼ cup each. Each serving is 3 points.

Smoked Tuna Dip

Smoked Tuna Dip

Ingredients

    Ingredients
  • ~ 2 pouches (2.6 oz. each) smoked white albacore tuna (I do not recommend canned tuna)
  • ~ 2 oz. 1/3 less fat cream cheese, softened
  • ~ 3 T. light mayonnaise
  • ~ 1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • ~ ¼ tsp. liquid smoke, optional (but it makes it more smoky)
  • ~ ¼ tsp. creole seasoning or seasoned salt
  • ~ 2 tsp. smoked paprika, plus a dash for garnish
  • ~ ¼ tsp. garlic powder
  • ~ about a tsp. of fresh lemon juice

Instructions

  1. Mix all ingredients until smooth.
  2. Garnish with a dash of smoked paprika.
  3. Serve with pita chips or saltine crackers.

Notes

Weight Watchers Info.: This makes 5 servings of ¼ cup each. Each serving is 3 Freestyle SmartPoints.

https://foursistersdish.com/2018/08/23/smoked-tuna-dip/

 

 

 

Crock Pot Chicken Verde – 3 Ways

This recipe was born of necessity.  I needed lunch for the week and this is what I had in the pantry and freezer.  Well, let me tell you, it was a happy accident because, in just about 5 minutes of prep work, I had this going in the crockpot.  The result is 3 recipes in one! Throughout the week, I ate this as a dip (my favorite way), a soup with the addition of a little chicken broth, and a rice bowl…so versatile, so delicious!  ~Erin

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Ingredients:
  • 1 ½ lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts (I use the individually frozen kind)
  • 1 can (16 oz.) pinto beans, drained & rinsed
  • 1 can (16 oz.) fat free refried beans
  • 1 can (15 oz.) whole kernel corn
  • 1 c. fat free salsa verde
  • 1 can (4 oz.) diced green chiles
  • 2 – 3 T. ground cumin (I used 3 because I love cumin)
  • 1 ½ tsp. garlic salt
  • 2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 2 tsp. onion powder
  • Corn chips, for dipping (I use Good Thins The Corn One – found in the cracker aisle), optional
  • Cooked rice, optional for serving
  • Fat free chicken broth, optional
  • Chopped cilantro, optional
  • Cheese, optional

Instructions: 

  1. Place frozen chicken breasts in the bottom of your slow cooker. (You can use thawed breasts too but keep in mind it may cook faster.)
  2. Pour in beans, refried bean, corn, green chiles, & spices.
  3. Cook on high for 4 hours or low for 8 hours.
  4. Within the last 30 minutes of cooking, remove the chicken, shred, and add back to the slow cooker.
  5. Stir to combine the ingredients.
  6. Three ways to serve: 1. As a dip, serve with chips. 2. Add broth for a soup. Top with cheese, green onions, or chopped cilantro if desired. 3. Over rice; add cheese, green onions or cilantro if desired.

WW Freestyle Info: This is ZERO points. Be sure to calculate your added points if you serve with rice, cheese, or chips.

Chicken Verde – 3 Ways

Chicken Verde – 3 Ways

Ingredients

    Ingredients:
  • ~1 ½ lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts (I use the individually frozen kind)
  • ~1 can (16 oz.) pinto beans, drained & rinsed
  • ~1 can (16 oz.) fat free refried beans
  • ~1 can (15 oz.) whole kernel corn
  • ~1 c. fat free salsa verde
  • ~1 can (4 oz.) diced green chiles
  • ~2 - 3 T. ground cumin (I used 3 because I love cumin)
  • ~1 ½ tsp. garlic salt
  • ~2 tsp. garlic powder
  • ~2 tsp. onion powder
  • ~Corn chips, for dipping (I use Good Thins The Corn One – found in the cracker aisle), optional
  • ~Cooked rice, optional for serving
  • ~Fat free chicken broth, optional
  • ~Chopped cilantro, optional
  • ~Cheese, optional

Instructions

  1. Place frozen chicken breasts in the bottom of your slow cooker. (You can use thawed breasts too but keep in mind it may cook faster.)
  2. Pour in beans, refried bean, corn, green chiles, & spices.
  3. Cook on high for 4 hours or low for 8 hours.
  4. Within the last 30 minutes of cooking, remove the chicken, shred, and add back to the slow cooker.
  5. Stir to combine the ingredients.
  6. Three ways to serve: 1. As a dip, serve with chips. 2. Add broth for a soup. Top with cheese, green onions, or chopped cilantro if desired. 3. Over rice; add cheese, green onions or cilantro if desired.
  7. Weight Watchers info: This is ZERO SmartPoints on Freestyle. Be sure to calculate your added points if you serve with rice, cheese, or chips.
https://foursistersdish.com/2018/03/22/chicken-verde-3-ways/

Pizza Dip

Any time I make this dish, I get numerous requests for the recipe.  It is a true crowd pleaser. What could be better? Pizza, but in a dip! Make this and please the folks at your next get together.  ~Kathy

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Ingredients: 

8 oz. cream cheese, softened

1 clove garlic, finely minced

1 tsp. Italian seasoning

¼ tsp. onion powder

12 – 15 pepperonis, chopped

½ c. pizza sauce

1 c. shredded mozzarella cheese

2 T. sliced black olives

1 green onion, sliced

Instructions:

Combine first four ingredients in a small bowl. Spread into a small baking dish. Top with chopped pepperonis, pizza sauce, cheese and black olives.

Bake at 350˚F for 15-20 minutes, until heated through and bubbly around the edges. Top with green onions.

Serve with garlic bagel crisps or garlic parmesan pretzel crisps.

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Pizza Dip

Pizza Dip

Ingredients

    Ingredients:
  • 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 1 clove garlic, finely minced
  • 1 tsp. Italian seasoning
  • ¼ tsp. onion powder
  • 12 – 15 pepperonis, chopped
  • ½ c. pizza sauce
  • 1 c. shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 2 T. sliced black olives
  • 1 green onion, sliced

Instructions

  1. Combine first four ingredients in a small bowl. Spread into a small baking dish. Top with chopped pepperonis, pizza sauce, cheese and black olives.
  2. Bake at 350˚F for 15-20 minutes, until heated through and bubbly around the edges. Top with green onions.
  3. Serve with garlic bagel crisps or garlic parmesan pretzel crisps.
https://foursistersdish.com/2018/01/16/pizza-dip/
Pizza Dip

Pizza Dip

Ingredients

    Ingredients:
  • 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 1 clove garlic, finely minced
  • 1 tsp. Italian seasoning
  • ¼ tsp. onion powder
  • 12 – 15 pepperonis, chopped
  • ½ c. pizza sauce
  • 1 c. shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 2 T. sliced black olives
  • 1 green onion, sliced

Instructions

  1. Combine first four ingredients in a small bowl. Spread into a small baking dish. Top with chopped pepperonis, pizza sauce, cheese and black olives.
  2. Bake at 350˚F for 15-20 minutes, until heated through and bubbly around the edges. Top with green onions.
  3. Serve with garlic bagel crisps or garlic parmesan pretzel crisps.
https://foursistersdish.com/2018/01/16/pizza-dip/

Spinach Artichoke Dip

If you’ve been looking for the perfect spinach artichoke dip, look no further. This one is rich and creamy with the just right flavor ratios.  It’s the roasted garlic that really puts it over the top. Share with friends at your next gathering or just make a small batch to enjoy for dinner. If you have a crowd, just know that it will go quickly! ~Robin

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Ingredients:

  • 1 head of fresh garlic
  • 7 oz. frozen* or fresh** spinach (usually comes in a 10 oz. package but I just divide after I thaw it)
  • 1 14 oz. can of artichokes (in brine, not oil; my brand of choice is Reese) drained and chopped (I like bigger chunks but do what suits you)
  • 1 10 oz. container of alfredo sauce (I like Classico Roasted Garlic Alfredo)
  • 1 c. shredded mozzarella, plus a bit for topping
  • 1/3 c. grated parmesan, plus a bit for topping
  • 1 8 oz. package of cream cheese, softened
  • Tortilla chips, pita chips, or mini-toasts for serving

Instructions:

For frozen spinach, once thawed, wrap the spinach in a dark colored tea towel (to prevent staining) and squeeze the excess water out into the sink.  If using fresh, cook and drain liquid.

For fresh spinach, julienne first and set aside before you roast the garlic so the edges aren’t overly moist. You do not want your dip to have a green hue.

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Place garlic on a double layer of foil, drizzle with a little olive oil, and close tightly.

Bake about 20 minutes or until soft; remove from heat and open foil, being careful not to burn yourself on the hot oil or garlic.

Once it is cool enough to touch, peel garlic skin away and squeeze the garlic cloves directly into a medium sized bowl; then mash garlic with a fork.

In a medium glass bowl, soften cream cheese in the microwave, then combine with garlic using a fork.

To cream cheese mixture, add spinach, artichoke hearts, Alfredo sauce, and cheeses; then mix well.

Place in an 8” x 8” baking dish, then lightly sprinkle a bit more mozzarella and parmesan on top and bake for 30 minutes or until bubbly.

Broil for up to five minutes after baking if the top hasn’t yet caramelized.  Watch carefully during broiling to avoid burning.

Serve immediately with your favorite chip or mini-toast.

Spinach Artichoke Dip

Spinach Artichoke Dip

Ingredients

    Ingredients:
  • • 1 head of fresh garlic
  • • 7 oz. frozen* or fresh** spinach (usually comes in a 10 oz. package but I just divide after I thaw it)
  • • 1 14 oz. can of artichokes (in brine, not oil; my brand of choice is Reese) drained and chopped (I like bigger chunks but do what suits you)
  • • 1 10 oz. container of alfredo sauce (I like Classico Roasted Garlic Alfredo)
  • • 1 c. shredded mozzarella, plus a bit for topping
  • • 1/3 c. grated parmesan, plus a bit for topping
  • • 1 8 oz. package of cream cheese, softened
  • • Tortilla chips, pita chips, or mini-toasts for serving

Instructions

  1. For frozen spinach, once thawed, wrap the spinach in a dark colored tea towel (to prevent staining) and squeeze the excess water out into the sink. If using fresh, cook and drain liquid.
  2. For fresh spinach, julienne first and set aside before you roast the garlic so the edges aren't overly moist. You do not want your dip to have a green hue.
  3. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  4. Place garlic on a double layer of foil, drizzle with a little olive oil, and close tightly.
  5. Bake about 20 minutes or until soft; remove from heat and open foil, being careful not to burn yourself on the hot oil or garlic.
  6. Once it is cool enough to touch, peel garlic skin away and squeeze the garlic cloves directly into a medium sized bowl; then mash garlic with a fork.
  7. In a medium glass bowl, soften cream cheese in the microwave, then combine with garlic using a fork.
  8. To cream cheese mixture, add spinach, artichoke hearts, Alfredo sauce, and cheeses; then mix well.
  9. Place in an 8” x 8” baking dish, then lightly sprinkle a bit more mozzarella and parmesan on top and bake for 30 minutes or until bubbly.
  10. Broil for up to five minutes after baking if the top hasn’t yet caramelized. Watch carefully during broiling to avoid burning.
  11. Serve immediately with your favorite chip or mini-toast.
https://foursistersdish.com/2017/12/26/spinach-artichoke-dip/

Fiesta Salsa Dip

I first shared this recipe with my sisters at my baby shower, and we recreated it to enjoy many times over. It’s a summer sensation all year long.  Healthy, filling, and full of flavor. It’s great as an appetizer, over grilled chicken, or as a meal on its own. Plus you can eat it on a chip; how can you go wrong? ~Kathy 

fiestadipLogo

Ingredients:

  • 6 Roma tomatoes, seeded and chopped
  • 1 bunch cilantro, chopped
  • 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can white corn, drained
  • 1 can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can black eyed peas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 medium red onion, finely chopped
  • 1 jalepeno, seeded and finely chopped (optional–do more if you like a kick)
  • 1 clove garlic, pressed or finely minced
  • ¼ teaspoon lime zest (optional)
  • 3 avocados, peeled, seeded and chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh squeezed lime juice
  • ½ cup of fat free Zesty Italian dressing (bottled, not powder)
  • Salt to taste

Instructions: 
Combine all ingredients well except the last three. Add lime juice and Italian dressing; then gently fold in avocado. Cover and chill.  Serve with tortilla chips.  

WW Info.:  

Freestyle plan:  2 points per cup

Old SmartPoints plan: 7 points per cup

This recipe serves ten.

Fiesta Salsa Dip

Fiesta Salsa Dip

Ingredients

  • Ingredients:
  • • 6 Roma tomatoes, seeded and chopped
  • • 1 bunch cilantro, chopped
  • • 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • • 1 can white corn, drained
  • • 1 can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • • 1 can black eyed peas, drained and rinsed
  • • 1 medium red onion, finely chopped
  • • 1 jalepeno, seeded and finely chopped (optional--do more if you like a kick)
  • • 1 clove garlic, pressed or finely minced
  • • ¼ teaspoon lime zest (optional)
  • • 3 avocados, peeled, seeded and chopped
  • • 1 Tablespoon fresh squeezed lime juice
  • • ½ cup of fat free Zesty Italian dressing (bottled, not powder)
  • • Salt to taste

Instructions

  1. Combine all ingredients well except the last three.
  2. Add lime juice and Italian dressing; then gently fold in avocado.
  3. Cover and chill. Serve with tortilla chips.

Notes

WW Freestyle Info.: 2 points per cup (Old SmartPoints plan: 7 points per cup). This recipe serves 10.

https://foursistersdish.com/2017/03/04/fiesta-salsa-dip/