Black bean, Cheddar cheese and cauliflower dips
Photo: John Kernick
Holiday parties usually mean swirling chips in something creamy and decadent. This year, try one of these new, lighter versions of your traditional favorites.
Holiday parties are all about celebration, not deprivation. No one wants to skip the one-bite quiches, mini crab cakes, or bacon-wrapped anything. And when it comes to creamy onion dips and guacamole, you can easily lose track of what you've consumed. Was that one chip, two, or maybe 10? In no time, you've eaten the equivalent of a steak dinner's worth of calories and fat.

This year I decided to break the cycle of overindulgence and regret by creating four delicious yet guilt-free dips. My guacamole makeover is lighter and more refreshing, with blood orange and pomegranate added to chunks of avocado. Silky black bean dip gets its smoky kick from chipotle chilies. And a curried cauliflower spread satisfies the urge for creamy texture without the fat (the secret: low-fat yogurt and sour cream). Replace fried tortilla and potato chips with fresh crudités, and your chip-counting days are behind you.

Smoky Black Bean Dip Smoky Black Bean Dip

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Amber Ale Cheddar Cheese Spread Amber Ale Cheddar Cheese Spread

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Indian-Spiced Cauliflower Dip Indian-Spiced Cauliflower Dip

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Blood Orange and Avocado Salsa with Pomegranate Seeds Blood Orange and Avocado Salsa with Pomegranate Seeds

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Next: 16 veggies to try as dippers, plus a super-simple, guilt-free recipe for baked tortilla chips

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