Cheesy Spinach Artichoke Dip

I need to take a dish to a gathering… what to take? Maybe my old standby chips & salsa? Eeehhh, I’m kind of tired of that! Something easy like a veggie tray? Too blah! A bottle of wine and some cheese? Could be fun, but I’d rather drink the wine and eat the cheese while making something yummy! Man….it’s so nerve-racking. But I can do  this! Let’s think it out…I know the hostess LOVES artichoke dip. OK, that’s a start … oh … wait… there’s a recipe in the appetizer section of the Betty Crocker Cook Book…Hot Artichoke Dip. BUT…I want to jazz it up a little bit. So… let’s see what the pantry or refrigerator has in it…hmmm a tub of spinach and a box of cream cheese…both from Sam’s…yup we actually thought we would eat 20 lbs of spinach and a hundred blocks of cream cheese…before they went bad!! Can you say delusional? So I will somehow work those ingredients into this recipe! Oh, oh, oh!!!! And I think in honor of St. Patty’s Day I will make it green! Yes really!!!

Hot Artichoke Dip By Betty Crocker

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup mayonnaise or salad dressing OK, remember my post the other day? When I said I was going to lighten up the recipes…well I did here. I dropped this to ¼ cup
  • 1 (8 ounce) package light cream cheese, softened – This is my addition to make it more creamy!
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese I used ¼ cup of freshly grated
  • ¼ cup grated Romano cheese – I added Romano for a little extra cheesy flavor
  • 4 medium green onions, chopped (1/4 cup) I skipped this
  • ½ teaspoon dried basil – cause I LOVE BASIL!!!
  • 1 can (14 to 15 oz) artichoke hearts, drained, cut into small pieces
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic salt
  • ¾ cup chopped spinach, I used fresh and blanched then drained it. To make the dip green, puree it in a blender or Magic Bullet
  • ¼ cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • Crackers or cocktail rye bread, if desired I used Blue Corn Tortilla Chips and a loaf of french bread thinly sliced

Directions:

  1. In ungreased 1-quart microwavable casserole, mix all ingredients except crackers. I combined all ingredients except the mozzarella and the cracker/chips/bread.
  2. Cover tightly; microwave on Medium-High (70%) 4 to 5 minutes, stirring after 2 minutes, until hot. I sprinkled mine with the mozzarella and garnished with spinach leaves and heated in the microwave for 7 minutes. Can also be baked in oven for about 20-25 minutes, or until bubbly.
  3. Serve warm with crackers. Or tortilla chips* and french bread thinly sliced and toasted under the broiler for a couple minutes.

So… I was hoping that everyone would like it, but since I’d never made it before and I tweaked the recipe slightly…. I was a little…OK a lot …scared!!!! But it smelled wonderful when it was cooking! And it looked amazing when I took it out of the microwave. Now for the taste test…drum roll please…IT WAS AWESOME!!! I loved it and I think everyone else did too! The dish was all but licked clean when I brought it home! That’s a good sign!

Friends Rating: 5 Forks!!!! YAY!!!

*I just have to tell you about these chips I found at Target…they are ORGANIC Blue Corn Chips with Flax Seed!!! They are AWESOME!!!!

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