Spinach and Artichoke Dip Pasta

I don’t know about you, but I LOVE spinach and artichoke dip. In middle school and high school, I spent a great deal of my time hanging out with a certain best friend eating entirely too much TGIFriday’s S&A dip. Those were the days of volleyballing, swimming, and softballing to burn some of those calories. Now, I need a bit of a healthier alternative. I think this recipe, which I adapted from SmartFoodandFit, does the job quite well.

Spinach and Artichoke Dip Pasta

1 – 14 oz. can of artichoke hearts in water

½ – 1 cup frozen chopped spinach, thawed

1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese (preferably fresh)

Small handful of unsalted almonds (to add a bit of protein)

2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1 – 2 tsp. fresh garlic

1 – 2 tsp. lemon juice (preferably fresh, but bottled works fine)

Salt and ground pepper to taste, and crushed red pepper (optional)

Gluten free and/or whole wheat pasta of choice

The main players

  1. Cook pasta(s) according to package directions. Remember to cook gluten-free pasta al dente.
  2. Place artichoke hearts in food processor with about half a can of its water.
  3. Add remaining ingredients to food processor and pulse until smooth.
  4. Serve over pasta. Add a little crushed red pepper if you are craving some heat.

Variations:

Just for kicks, I wanted to see how it would work as a spread. I spread some of the dip onto the end of a piece of Rudy’s gluten free multigrain bread, and topped with a small amount of low-fat mozzarella cheese. I then baked/broiled it in the toaster oven for about 5 minutes. Yep, it works QUITE well as a spread. I envision is as a bruchetta-esque appetizer for the masses, using regular or g-free baguette or another type of bread. Yum.

The big finish

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