Slow Cooker Spinach Artichoke Dip with Kale
Slow Cooker Spinach Artichoke Dip with Kale is the ultimate party appetizer. It’s creamy, decadent, and loaded with more veggies than anyone will ever realize. Serve it as a drool-worthy chip dip or smear it onto your favorite sandwiches and wraps!
I was out for lunch with some friends the other day and we couldn’t resist ordering a serving of spinach artichoke dip. Let's be honest, there is nothing better than all that creamy, cheesy goodness.
When I got back home, I couldn’t shake the thought that I could easily make a healthier version that tasted just as good. The traditional mayo and sour cream base is loaded with saturated fat, so I’ve swapped in some Greek yogurt to lighten things up and add protein. I added some kale to the mix to amp up the nutrients, and maybe also because I had a bunch of kale that needed to be used… Semantics!
So, how did it turn out? I’m so glad you asked. This slow cooker spinach artichoke dip winded up being absolutely amazing. I’m pretty sure my family wiped the bowl clean before I even managed to ask them how it tasted. Always a good sign!
You can serve this dip as a delicious appetizer alongside pita chips, toasted bread, or raw veggies. Spinach artichoke dip also works wonderfully as a spread for sandwiches and even as a pasta sauce. This mouth-watering dip is creamy, cheesy, and absolutely to die for. You’re gonna love it! Making more than one dip? Consider making this alongside this Healthy Queso Dip or Avocado Ranch Dip.
For this healthy slow cooker spinach dip to come together, you’ll need the following key ingredients:
- Spinach: Frozen is the way to go for this one. It’s easier to work with and packs way more spinach into a small space than you could fit into a shopping cart.
- Kale: Again, it’s best to use frozen kale for the same reasons as above. Just make sure to thaw it first and squeeze out the excess liquid.
- Artichoke hearts: What would a spinach artichoke dip be without the artichokes? Make sure to drain the liquid out before chopping up your artichoke hearts.
- Cheese: Parmesan and mozzarella for the win! The salty nuttiness of the parmesan cheese packs in a lot of flavor while the softer mozzarella adds to the creamy consistency of the dip.
- Greek yogurt. This is my secret weapon for keeping the dip on the lighter side without anyone realizing it. I like to use nonfat Greek yogurt, but low-fat works fine too:
- Sour cream: Another key component of our creamy base, sour cream offers the added bonus of some deliciously tangy flavor that brightens up the dish.
- Mayonnaise: A little mayonnaise goes a long way in giving this dip its signature rich and delicious flavor.
- Garlic and onion: The addition of some fresh garlic and onions adds an amazing flavor profile to this spinach artichoke dip. Don’t skip them!
Recipe Tips and Substitutions
Here are some of my best recipe tips and substitutions to help you make the best slow cooker spinach artichoke dip:
- Switch up the flavor. Add in a dash of cayenne pepper or smoked paprika for a little heat. For a more summery take, add some Dijon mustard instead. The bite of the Dijon is the perfect way to enhance the tangy flavors.
- Use marinated artichokes. While plain canned artichoke hearts work great for this recipe, marinated artichokes just take it to the next level. These typically come marinated in a mixture of oil and herbs, adding tons of flavor to the artichokes.
- Make it vegan. Transform this dip into a tasty vegan appetizer by using a dairy-free yogurt and plant-based cheese for the base.
- Change it up. Customize the flavors to your tastes by adding other ingredients! Great options include crumbled bacon, crushed red pepper, and fresh chives.
- Add tomatoes: Spinach dip is so good with tomatoes. Either add sundried tomatoes to the dip while it cooks or top the finished dish with some diced cherry tomatoes or bruschetta-style tomatoes.
What to Serve with Spinach and Artichoke Dip
This dip is that picture-perfect cheesy dip that goes well with anything you could think of! Go the classic route by serving it with some pita chips, toasted bread, or even your favorite crackers. You could also switch to a low-carb option by pairing this dip with raw veggies like carrots and celery.
Looking for some inspiration? Here are some great pairings for this slow cooker dip:
- Chips and crackers. Chips and crackers are a tried and true pairing when it comes to this dip. Although there are plenty of choices, I love serving it with my Baked Tortillas Chips. These chips are gluten-free, healthy, and super crunchy!
- Bread. This combination tastes so good, expect it to be gone in a flash. Serve this dip with these Two Ingredient Dough Breadsticks and enjoy. Or prepare a bread bowl to serve the dip is for a fun and playful appetizer.
- Crunchy veggies: Since this is a hearty dip, pair it with crunchy vegetables like carrots, celery, bell peppers, endive, cucumbers, or cauliflower.
- Pasta and noodles. To make a complete meal, add some more sour cream and toss it with some pasta. This Spinach Artichoke Pasta has to be one of my favorite meals for dinner. For a lighter, low-carb version, substitute the pasta with some spaghetti squash or zucchini noodles instead.
How to Store Leftover Spinach Artichoke Dip
The best way to enjoy this dip is to eat it right away while it’s still gooey and hot! If your dip begins to cool and firm up, simply pop it into the oven to re-melt the cheese.
Planning to prep your spinach dip ahead of time? Just blend up the creamy base and mix it up with the chopped spinach, kale, and artichokes. Serve it the next day by adding the cheese and cooking it in the slow cooker.
If you have some leftovers (lucky you), store them in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3-4 days. I don’t recommend storing it in the freezer because mayonnaise and sour cream don’t freeze well and tend to curdle.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about this slow cooker spinach artichoke dip with kale recipe:
Can I use fresh spinach instead of frozen for spinach dip?
While I love using frozen spinach for this recipe for the sake of convenience, you can absolutely use fresh spinach in its place. Just make sure that you blanch and dry it properly. Watery spinach can result in a watery dip, and we don’t want that!
What if my spinach dip is watery?
If you end up with a runny dip, you can thicken it up by adding some more of the thicker ingredients like yogurt or cheese. Adding some extra spinach, kale or artichoke hearts can also help to absorb some of the extra moisture.
How do you thaw frozen spinach properly?
To thaw frozen spinach quickly, I like putting it in a strainer and running hot water over it. After that, I like to press it with some paper towels (or squeezing with my hands) to remove as much excess liquid as I can. If you’re not in a hurry, you can simply thaw frozen spinach by transferring it to the fridge 24 hours in advance.
Can this dip be made in advance?
This dip can be made in advance and then simply reheated when it is time to serve. It can be reheated on the stove, in the slow cooker on low, or in the microwave. If the dip looks too thick, simply add a splash of milk or some extra yogurt until it reaches the right consistency.
Slow Cooker Spinach Artichoke Dip with Kale
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- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 onion, diced
- 28 oz canned artichoke hearts, drained (chopped)
- 10 oz frozen spinach, chopped (thawed and squeezed)
- 10 oz kale, chopped (best to use frozen, thawed and squeezed)
- 1.33 cups Parmesan cheese
- 2 cups shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
- 1 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt
- 3/4 cup light sour cream
- 1/4 cup low fat mayonnaise
- Salt and pepper to taste
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- Nutritional Information
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
The Nutritional Values provided are estimates only and may vary based on the preparation method.
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