I am looking at my calendar and I am truly stunned. Where is the time going?!
I truly love this time of year, as the cooler air sets in and we begin to celebrate the holidays.
But with the holidays, comes parties. LOTS OF PARTIES!!
And with parties, comes food. LOTS OF FOOD!!
I am constantly whipping up something to take here or there and seem to be constantly nibbling this time of the year. And I am not complaining about it, even it it means I need to do a few more cardio intervals!
At times, though I just need a simple and easy dish to take to gathering–and one that everyone will enjoy! Okay, I need those kind of dishes for EVERY gathering!!
Creamy Apple Dip is my go-to.
This dip is a crowd-pleaser and can be served to gluten-free guests and can be made to suit nut allergies as well. Plus, you need to serve it with apples–hello, healthy food. (So it is totally okay to pig out on this dish then, right?!!)
I am serious, aside from chopping the apples, this dish comes together in seconds. It is perfect for those last minute get togethers or an after school snack to encourage your children to eat more fresh fruit.
And did I mention it is sweetened naturally? It keeps getting better and better.
Are you ready for the recipe?
Okay, don’t blink–you will miss it!!
Caramel Apple Dip (Naturally Sweetened, Gluten-Free, & A Tip on How to Keep Apples from Browning)
- 1 package of Cream Cheese at room temperature
- 1 cup Greek yogurt plain
- 1/3 cup maple syrup
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- chopped dark chocolate and chopped peanuts optional
Combine the cream cheese, syrup, and vanilla until well combined. Top with chocolate and nuts if desired and serve with apple slices.
I know there is no caramel in this dip–crazy, but the maple syrup combined with the cream cheese mimics the flavor of caramel and color of caramel perfectly. It can be our little secret.
Okay, before you ask me how you are suppose to whip this up last minute, if your cream cheese is a solid brick in the fridge, let me give you a wonderful tip.
- Get a bowl larger than the package of cream cheese and fill with hot water, place the foil-wrapped pack of cream cheese in the hot water and let sit for 1-2 minutes. This saves you the trouble of starting a fire if you try to warm up your cream cheese in the microwave before unwrapping it (I am not saying that I misplaced by brain once or twice and did just that!)
Now are you ready for another wonderful tip?
Of course you are!!
How to Keep Your Apples from Browning:
I personally, love to serve this dip with apple slices. You can serve it with pretzels,, strawberries, brownies, well anything really!!
To keep my apples nice and pretty, I slice them up and toss them with pineapple juice quickly and drain away the juice. I do NOT use lemon juice.
The pineapple juice is sweeter than lemon juice but still contains the vitamin C that is needed to stop the oxidation process–why apples go brown. I either pop open a can of pineapple slices in 100% juice and drain the slices and save for a lunch or snack and use the juice for the apples, or I almost always have pineapple concentrate in my freezer. I simply scoop a tablespoon of the concentrate out and heat for a quick second and it works just as well.
My kids totally prefer the taste of apples soaked in pineapple juice to those soaked with lemon juice–and I am willing to be most people would agree with that 🙂
So let this dish be your next party dish. It will not only be EASY, but I have a feeling it will be well loved as well!