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Take a dip with some fresh fruits this summer

Published 5:08pm Saturday, June 8, 2013

Fresh fruit sweetens summer gatherings.  Anytime I host a get-together, you will find fruit on my table colorfully arranged with some kind of fruit dip.  And what are guests drawn to?  The color of the fruit, as it makes for a beautiful and appetizing display.  Not to mention, simple for the hostess.

Whenever I plan a menu for guests, I just think of MyPlate, because it really is that simple.  MyPlate illustrates the food groups that are necessary for a balanced diet, using a simple visual: the plate.  MyPlate is a tool to plan meals whether you are entertaining or having family dinner.  And by offering tasty options within each food category, you will entice your guests to the table.

How can you be sure those fruits and vegetables look delectable?

Try some of these great ideas.

•Add berries, melon, apples or pears to salads and serve with a light poppy seed dressing

•Add berries or melons to fruit salsas and use them to top fish,  chicken or lean beef

•Arrange fruit by color on a platter or in dishes that are staggered

•Make fruit kabobs alternating colors — pineapple, strawberry, blueberry, kiwi

•Cut melon in slices, then cut out fun shapes with cookie cutters

•Have a smoothie station to make smoothies

June is Dairy Month. Don’t forget to pair cheese with your favorite fruit — it creates the perfect flavor partner.

I had so many tasty fruit dip recipes, I decided to share them all.

Creamy vanilla yogurt dip

All you need

•1 (8 oz.) tub soft fat-free cream cheese

•2 cups vanilla non-fat Greek yogurt
1/2 cup powdered sugar

All you do

Combine cream cheese, yogurt and powdered sugar. Beat with a fork or mixer until light and fluffy. Serve with fresh fruit.

Nutrition information per ¼-cup serving: 71 calories, 0 grams fat, 0 grams saturated fat, 4 mg cholesterol, 143 mg sodium, 11 grams carbohydrate, 0 grams fiber,  11 grams sugar, 6 grams protein.

Better peanut butter dip

All you need

•1 cup Greek non-fat plain yogurt

•3 tbsp. PB2 powdered peanut butter

•2 tbsp. honey

All you do

Combine yogurt, PB2 and honey. Serve with fresh fruit.  Optional: garnish dip with chopped peanuts.

Nutrition information per ¼ cup serving: 79 calories, 0.5 grams fat, 0 grams saturated fat, 4 mg cholesterol, 56 mg sodium, 13 grams carbohydrate, 1 gram fiber, 11 grams sugar, 8 grams protein.

Pineapple yogurt dip

All you need

•1 (8 oz.) tub soft fat-free cream cheese

•1 cup plain or vanilla non-fat Greek yogurt

•1 (8 oz.) can crushed pineapple in juice, drained

•3 tablespoons honey

All you do

Combine all ingredients together and beat until light and fluffy. Serve with fresh fruit.

Nutrition information per ¼ cup serving: 94 calories, 0 grams fat, 0 grams saturated fat, 4 mg cholesterol, 206 mg sodium, 17 grams carbohydrate, 0 grams fiber, 16 grams sugar, 6 grams protein.

Simple cinnamon dip

All you need

2 cups vanilla non-fat Greek yogurt

•1/2 cup powdered sugar

•2 teaspoons cinnamon

All you do

Mix the vanilla yogurt, powdered sugar and cinnamon together. Serve with fresh fruit.

Nutrition information per ¼ cup serving: 77 calories, 0 grams fat, 0 grams saturated fat, 3 mg cholesterol, 18 mg sodium, 15 grams carbohydrate, 0 grams fiber, 14 grams sugar, 4 grams protein.

Follow Jen Haugen’s blog at http://jenhaugenrd.wordpress.com

 


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