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Wow. I am so sorry about that title. But what can you do, it’s the fever talking. Yep. Still sick. Don’t worry, I’m on the mend. I have decreed it. I’ve given my body more than a week to get this shenanigans out of its system and now I’m ready for us all to move on. I’d like my lungs back, please.

The most annoying thing about being sick is that my grand plans for this month were totally neglected. Working out was a total bust, since I could only breathe for roughly half the days since Halloween. And creative cooking was just not plausible in my addled state. But sometimes we just have to muddle through.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Dip

Literally all month I’ve had this grandiose idea for pumpkin pie baked into a cored apple, a technique that you’re likely familiar with if you’ve looked at Pinterest ever in your life. I planned on taking it to a birthday party I helped plan for one of my BFFs on Saturday. But then Saturday came around and I slept through all of the hours I was supposed to be baking.

So, I considered my ingredients, started on a contingency plan, realized I didn’t have time for that either, and in the end accidentally created this very delicious (diet-friendly) Pumpkin Cheesecake Dip.

This dip is incredibly easy to make and has been getting great reviews. I wanted to post it this afternoon for anyone who is freaking out over what to bring to holiday gatherings at the last minute, because it is completely perfect for just such an occasion.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Dip

Prep Time: 10 minutes. Chill Time: 30 minutes.

Ingredients:

    • 1 Cup Reduced Fat Cream Cheese (I used Philadelphia 1/3 less fat)
    • 3/4 Cup 0% Vanilla Greek Yogurt
    • 1 Can Pumpkin (the Puree, NOT the Pie Filling)
    • 2 teaspoons Vanilla
    • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
    • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
    • 2 1/2 Tablespoons Light Brown Sugar
    • 2 Tablespoons Baking Stevia
    • Apple Slices, Graham Crackers, etc. for dipping

The directions are crazy simple. Soften the cream cheese, either by letting it sit out for a while, or pop it in the microwave for 15-20 seconds. If you use the microwave, I recommend measuring it out and putting it in the small or medium sized mixing bowl you’re gonna make the dip in, just to eliminate some mess and hassle.

Using a large spoon, stir the softened cream cheese until it is completely smooth and has the consistency of something like cake frosting. Then mix in the yogurt until the two are blended completely.

Add in the pumpkin, vanilla and spices. Mix them all together into the cream, until you can’t see anymore white or pumpkin, and everything is blended into a nice soft brown-orange.

Finally, add the brown sugar and stevia. You can adjust these to taste, add more, use all sugar and no stevia or vice versa. Those were just the quantities I thought made it taste the appropriate sweetness, personally. I recommend sprinkling in the brown sugar to avoid lumps. Mix well until the sweetener is completely absorbed by the dip.

Scoop it into whatever serving bowl you are going serve it in. I put it in two different small pyrex bowls like the one in the pictures:

This is a half portion

Once you’ve scooped it into the serving bowl, place the bowl in the freezer and let it sit in there for 30 minutes. This will let the cream cheese harden a bit again and the dip will have a thicker consistency. After the 30 minutes, make sure to stir it one last time and check for any little bits of frost that started forming.

Serve with apple slices and graham crackers, or whatever other dipping foods you think sound good!

Feel free to also lick the spoon. It’s totally worth it.

I’m so into this dip because I feel like it seems a lot more involved than it is. Like when you get a really trendy, expensive-looking sweater for 15 bucks at Target…this is the party food equivalent. For one serving, there’s almost no fat at all, the Greek yogurt and cream cheese add plenty of protein, and really the sugar is minimal. Oh also, it tastes delicious. Even though I only included graham crackers in the pictures, I think it is best with apple slices. When I served the second bowl to my family this afternoon my dad suggested Wheat Thins. So I guess it’s very versatile! Basically this dip has no flaws.

Well, whether or not you have pumpkin cheesecake dip, pumpkin pie, pumpkin latte or avoid all orange foods on principle, I hope you have a great Thanksgiving!

-lj

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