Smart Snacks

Craving dip but hesitant to indulge? Here are three healthy-ish snacking platters — with plenty of pantry-friendly substitutions from recipe developer Irene Matys — so now you can easily enjoy these delicious recipes any night of the week using whatever you have on hand.

    

Greek Yogurt and Kale Pesto Dip & Smoked Sea Salt Lotus Chips

Pesto is one of the most versatile fresh sauces. It offers endless flavour possibilities so feel free to switch and swap ingredients. Try substituting the kale in this recipe for arugula, spinach, Italian flat leaf parsley or even use a combination of fresh basil and dill. Replace the pine nuts with pistachios, walnuts, cashews, hazelnuts or even pumpkin seeds.

Serve this dip alongside fresh cut vegetables such as carrots, cucumbers, radishes and cherry tomatoes.

If you’re making the chips and lotus is unavailable, use thinly sliced beets or potatoes using the same preparation and cooking time as lotus but increase the oven temperature to 400F (200C). Also, feel free to use this dip as a healthier, creamy dressing for coleslaw, potato salad or pasta salad.

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Lemony Garlic Butter-Bean Dip with Roasted Rosemary & Sea Salt Turnip Fries

This dip can be made with a variety of other beans — substitute the white beans with navy, cannellini, fava beans or even chickpeas.

Serve it alongside a platter made up of fresh or grilled seasonal vegetables and pita bread as an appetizer.

Use it as delicious spread for grilled veggie, chicken, steak sandwiches or as a burger topping.

You can even spread it on grilled crostini bread and top with diced tomatoes and fresh basil or parsley as a delicious summer bruschetta.

Make it into a creamy dressing by stirring 2 tbsp (30 mL) bean dip with ½ cup (125 mL) extra virgin olive oil and 2 tbsp (30 mL) red wine or apple cider vinegar. Toss with Caesar, garden, pasta or potato salad.

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Squash, Adzuki Bean & Scallion Fritters with Sweet & Spicy Tahini Sauce

A spicy tahini dip is delicious and incredibly easy to prepare. It’s perfect with vegetable fritters in place of chips.

These tasty fritter bites can be made with sweet potato and Yukon gold potatoes in place of the butternut squash. Add additional nutritious, seasonal vegetables by incorporating ½ cup (125 mL) grated yellow or green zucchini into the mixture. Salt the zucchini and let it sit in a strainer for at least 15 minutes to remove excess water prior to adding.

Substitute Adzuki beans with black, pinto, Romano or white beans.

Make this a more substantial dish by serving fritters over greens drizzled with tahini dip as a dressing.

Even try these fritters as a healthier breakfast alternative to sausage, bacon or hash browns served alongside or topped with eggs.

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