“Un-Cheese” Dip (Without the Cheese!)

Cheese is one of my favorite things (next to chocolate), and I probably eat some form of cheese most days of the week…cheddar, feta, mozzarella, bleu…I love them all!

One thing my husband and I love to do is order queso at a Mexican restaurant…I have no self control! We don’t do this very often, but when we do, I eat too much and usually feel bloated, wishing I had enjoyed it in moderation versus licking the bowl…

While I am not vegan, I do enjoy switching out animal based foods with plant based foods wherever I can! This recipe uses raw cashews, nutritional yeast, peppers, and tahini to create a similar alternative to dairy cheese dip.

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What’s Nutritional Yeast?

Nutritional yeast is a vegetarian dietary supplement rich in vitamin B-12 with a faint cheesy flavor–similar to Parmesan. It is a single-cell organism grown on molasses and then harvested, washed, and dried with heat to make the yeast inactive (meaning it has no leavening properties).  According to the USDA Nutrition Database, 1/4 cup serving contains 60 calories, 8 grams of protein, 0.5 grams of fat, 5 grams of carbohydrate, 3 grams of fiber and numerous vitamins and minerals including iron, niacin, vitamin B 12, and other B vitamins. Nutritional yeast is one of the few plant-based sources containing vitamin B 12 without fortification.

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What I love about this dip?

A typical serving of traditional queso at a restaurant is 2 tablespoons with 60 calories, 4 grams of fat (mostly saturated fat), 3 grams of protein and no fiber.

Traditional Queso Nutrition Facts (according to MyFitnessPal)

Serving Size: 2 Tablespoons
Calories 60
Total Fat 4 g
Sodium 200 mg
Total Carbohydrate 2 g
   Fiber 0 g
   Sugar 2 g
Protein 3 g

Vitamin A: 2%   Calcium: 8%

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My “Un-Cheese” Vegan Cheese Dip has just 64 calories per 1/2 cup serving with 3 grams of fat (mostly unsaturated, heart healthy fats), 3 grams of protein and 1 gram of fiber. What a nutritional win!

  “Un-Cheese” Nutrition Facts (Tracked in MyFitnessPal)

Servings: 8 servings Serving Size: ½ cup
Calories 64
Total Fat 3 g
Sodium 149 mg
Total Carbohydrate 8 g
    Fiber 1 g
    Sugar 2 g
Protein 3 g

Vitamin A: 9%   Vitamin C: 20%   Calcium: 3%   Iron: 5%

 

You can eat over twice the amount of traditional queso when swapping to “Un-Cheese” dip with less saturated fat, sodium and more fiber, Vitamin A, Vitamin C and Iron. It’s a nutritional win!

You can get the full PRINTABLE recipe below. Make sure you tag me @livebetterwithkatdetter in you creations!

 

Un-Cheese Dip

  • Servings: 8 servings
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup raw cashews
  • 1-4 ounce jar of pimentos
  • 1/4 cup Nutritional Yeast
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 3 Tbs cornstarch
  • 1 Tbs lemon juice
  • 1 Tbs tahini
  • 1 can (15 ounce) of Rotel (I use mild because my palate is weak) 🙂
  • 2 cups of water, divided

Directions:

  1. Soak cashews in 1/2 cup of water for at least 30 minutes.
  2. After cashews have been soaked, add them to a high powered blender with pimentos, nutritional yeast, salt, onion powder, cornstarch, lemon juice, tahini, Rotal, and the remaining 1 1/2 cups of water.
  3. Blend until smooth.
  4. Add mixture to a sauce pan and simmer for ~10 minutes until un-cheese gets bubbly and thick.
  5. Serve with fresh veggies or your favorite dipping chip! Would also be good on salads and tacos.
  6. Enjoy!

 

I hope you love this dip as much as I do! While enjoying “the real stuff” is good every now and then, finding healthier, more nutrient dense options THAT TASTE GOOD is the way to go.

 

Until Next Time,

Happy Chewing!
Katrina Detter, RD, LDN

Registered Dietitian

Follow me on social media!

@livebetterwithkatdetter

 

 

 

References:
  1. Ndb.nal.usda.gov. (2019). Food Composition Databases Show Foods — LARGE FLAKE NUTRITIONAL YEAST, UPC: 039978025463. [online] Available at: https://ndb.nal.usda.gov/ndb/foods/show/45360902 [Accessed 6 Jun. 2019].
  2. Myfitnesspal.com. (2019). Calorie Chart, Nutrition Facts, Calories in Food | MyFitnessPal | MyFitnessPal.com. [online] Available at: https://www.myfitnesspal.com/food/calories/mexican-cheese-dip-441450166 [Accessed 6 Jun.
  3. Myfitnesspal.com. (2019). Free Calorie Counter, Diet & Exercise Journal | MyFitnessPal.com. [online] Available at: https://www.myfitnesspal.com/recipe/view/67379228593837 [Accessed 6 Jun. 2019].

St. Patty’s Pancakes

What better way to begin St. Patrick’s Day celebrations than to make green pancakes!

I used my almond & oat flour pancake recipe and adjusted the wet ingredients so I could add…wait for it…

SPINACH! Yes, I went there. If there is any way I can add veggies to my meals, I go for it. Best part? You can’t even taste it, but you’re still benefiting from the vitamins, minerals, and fiber spinach has to offer.

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St. Patty's Pancakes

  • Servings: 2 servings
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 1/2 cup oat flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2/3 cup almond milk, unsweetened
  • 1 cup spinach, fresh
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened apple sauce
  • 1/4 cup dark chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. Preheat skillet to ~300 degrees.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, add almond & oat flour, baking powder, salt and  cinnamon.
  3. In a blender, add almond milk and spinach and blend until all spinach is in liquid form.
  4. Pour almond milk & spinach into dry ingredients. Then add vanilla and unsweetened apple sauce.
  5. Mix well,  but leave a few lumps.
  6. Fold in dark chocolate chips.
  7. Spray skillet. Add 1/4 cup of batter onto skillet and cook ~3-5 minutes on each side. *Cook slowly to prevent burning on the outside and uncooked in the middle.
  8. Serve with your favorite toppings! My favs: berries, peanut butter, banana, and a splash of black berry syrup!

 

What’s your favorite type of pancake?

 

Until Next Time,

Happy Chewing!

Katrina Detter, RD, LDN

Registered Dietitian Nutritionist

Follow me on social media!

Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube: Live Better with Kat Detter

Instagram: @livebetterwithkatdetter

Apple Nachos

One of my favorite ways to eat apples, these nachos do not disappoint! 

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These apple nachos will fill you up and provide fiber, protein, complex carbs and healthy fat so you have a completely balanced sweet treat, dessert, or midday snack.

Did I mention how simple it is? Takes less than 5 minutes to have a nice treat for you and your family. Best part? These are items you probably already have in stock!

 

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Apple Nachos

  • Servings: 1 serving
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients:

  • 1 fresh apple, washed (I usually use Pink Lady, Fuji, or Gala)
  • 1-2 tablespoons natural peanut butter, unsweetened
  • 3 tablespoons mini dark chocolate chips (I like Lily’s chocolate if I have it in stock)

Directions:

  1. Wash and slice apple into strips.
  2. Place apples on a plate. Drizzle natural peanut butter on top. (Tip: If peanut butter is thick or too stiff, microwave for ~10-15 seconds)
  3. Top with chocolate chips and serve!
  4. Enjoy!

**Keep it simple or add more toppings such as coconut flakes, chopped nuts, or granola.

 

Treat yourself and your family to this fun sweet treat! If you have kids, this is a fun little recipe to get them involved in the kitchen.

 

What is your favorite way to eat apples?

 

Until Next Time,

Happy Chewing!

Katrina Detter, RD, LDN

Registered Dietitian Nutritionist

Follow me on social media!

Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube: Live Better with Kat Detter

Instagram: @livebetterwithkatdetter

Kat’s Kitchen: Refined Flour & Sugar Free Blueberry Muffins

Reminiscing over blueberry season…luckily for me, I stocked up at the blueberry farm this past summer, so I have tons of frozen berries to put to good use.

…And so I am sharing my refined flour, refined sugar, and artificial sweetener FREE blueberry muffins. You guys, I am not kidding…these are the BEST muffins I have ever made. You gotta try them!

In this recipe, I use several of my baking hacks from last week’s blog–check it out here. 

Below is a step-by-step recipe demonstration video to show you how simple this recipe is. Enjoy muffins for breakfast or a mid-day snack! Full, printable recipe below video.

 

 

Refined Flour & Sugar Free Blueberry Muffins

  • Servings: 10 muffins
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

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Ingredients:

  • 1 medium ripe banana, mashed
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened original almond milk
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup almond flour
  • 1/2 cup oat flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • dash of cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
  •  1 cup frozen blueberries

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Mash 1 ripe banana in mixing bowl. Add almond milk, vanilla, unsweetened applesauce, and maple syrup and combine well.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine almond flour, oat flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and unsweetened coconut flakes. Tip: I used whole almonds & old fashioned oats and blended until flour-like consistency–it is cheaper than purchasing pre-ground at the grocery store.
  4. Combine wet & dry ingredients and mix–try not to over-mix to prevent tunneling (air pockets in muffin).
  5. Fold in blueberries.
  6. Spoon in 2 tablespoons in greased muffin tins.
  7. Top with extra blueberries and coconut flakes.
  8. Bake at 375 degrees for 30-40 minutes. ***Muffins are done when cooked all the way through.
  9. Store in refrigerator for up to 1 week.
  10. Enjoy for breakfast or mid-day snack!

 

I hope you all are enjoying the cooking demos. Cooking, baking, and developing recipes are therapeutic for me, so I want to share my passions with you! Don’t forget to tag me in your creations!

 

 

Until Next Time,

Happy Chewing!

Katrina Detter, RD, LDN

Registered Dietitian Nutritionist

Follow me on social media!

Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube: Live Better with Kat Detter

Instagram: @betterwithkatdetter_rd