It seems to be me that almost everyone has that one party trick that they can pull out to impress, or at least amuse, a crowd, if and when necessary. Some people can balance a coin on a dollar bill or solve a Rubik’s cube in two moves or walk on their hands for nearly 30 minutes continuously. Alas, I do not believe I have been blessed with any such dazzling skills.
Similarly it seems that almost everyone has that one recipe that they can count on when a “bring a dish to share” occasion arises. And this one I do have covered. Historically, this was always my spinach and artichoke dip. It was easy, tasty, and oh-so-popular. At many, if not most, events that this appeared I was asked to share the recipe. Everyone, including me, always loved it buuuuut unfortunately it was not exactly healthy. Absolutely copious amounts of cream cheese, mozzarella, sour cream and parmesan. And nowadays, I just don’t do dairy. Plus this was always best enjoyed with equally abundant piles of tortilla chips. Which aren’t exactly an icon of nutritional density either.
Fortunately, I have a new version of this classic favorite, which has received literally just as many rave reviews! It is super clean – Paleo, vegan and Whole30 compliant and is the perfect dip for sharing as an appetizer, snack, or as a topper for a main dish. I usually pair it with a big pile of fresh raw veggies, but of course if you need to appeal to a wider audience, it does go equally well with those classic tortilla chips too!
- Frozen Chopped Spinach (thawed) 32 oz (900 mg)
- Raw Cashews 1 cup (150 g)
- Nutritional Yeast .5 cup (20 g)
- Unsweetened Almond Milk .5 cup (118 ml)
- Juice from one Lemon
- Tabasco Sauce 1 TSP
- Artichoke Hearts 14 oz (400 g)
- Fresh Basil (loosely chopped and packed) .5 cup (25 g)
- Scallions 3 each
- Black Pepper .5 TSP
- Sea Salt .5 TSP
- Start by placing the cashews in a small bowl and add enough water to cover them to soak. I recommend soaking overnight for the most creamy result, but you can make it work with only an hour or two if necessary.
- While the cashews are soaking, completely thaw out the frozen spinach.
- Once the spinach is thawed, press out all excess moisture and place in a large mixing bowl.
- Preheat the oven to 350 F (190 C).
- Drain and rinse the cashews, adding them along with the nutritional yeast, almond milk, lemon juice, and tabasco to blender or food processor and then pulse until smooth and creamy. Once desired consistency is achieved, add to bowl with spinach.
- Roughly chop the artichokes, basil, and scallions and add them along with the salt and pepper to the bowl.
- Mix everything until combined and transfer to a glass casserole or baking dish.
- Bake for 25 minutes and then remove from oven.
- This dish is best enjoyed warm and makes a fabulous dip for any and all raw veggies (and/or chips if so desired).