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6 Make-Ahead Paleo Dips and Spreads for a Quick Snack

Make these satisfying high protein paleo dips and spreads and store them in your fridge for a quick paleo snack you can spread on anything and eat on the go.

1. Garden Herb Cashew Cheese Spread

Cashew spread is kind of the closest thing to cheese on the Paleo diet. The raw, vegan, dairy-free spread is thick and creamy, perfect for smearing over Paleo crackers or dipping with vegetables and makes the best high protein low carb paleo snack. The cashews should be soaked overnight so that they have enough time to soften.

Garden Herb Cashew Cheese Spread

Ingredients:

1 cup raw cashews
3/4 cup canned coconut milk
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp freshly ground pepper
2 tbsp fresh chives, chopped
1 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
1 tsp fresh thyme leaves

Instructions:

1. Place the cashews in a glass bowl. Add a pinch of salt and enough water to cover them by about an inch. Cover the bowl with aluminum foil and let sit overnight at room temperature.

2. Drain and rinse the soaked cashews. Place in a food processor and blend until a paste forms. Add the coconut milk, lemon juice, garlic powder, salt, and pepper and combine until smooth. Stir in the chives, parsley, and thyme with a spatula. Transfer to an airtight glass container and refrigerate for 2 hours before serving.

Servings: about 2 cups
Difficulty: Easy

2. Bacon and Onion Dip

This popular paleo dip is a great snack for parties and gatherings. Salty bacon and caramelized onions add a lot of flavor to the simple recipe. Cashew cream is used as the base; the cashews need to soak for at least one hour beforehand. The dip can be served at room temperature or chilled.

Bacon and Onion Dip

Ingredients:

1 cup raw cashews
2 slices bacon
1 large yellow onion, thinly sliced
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup Paleo mayonnaise
1 tbsp olive oil
Pinch of chili powder
Fresh parsley, for garnish

Instructions:

1. Soak the cashews in a bowl of water for at least one hour.

2. Place the bacon in a pan and cook until crisp. Set aside on a paper towel-lined plate and crumble into pieces, reserving one tablespoon of the bacon fat.

3. Turn the heat down to low. Add the onion to the pan and sprinkle with salt. Cook until golden brown and caramelized, about 35-40 minutes. Add a dash of olive oil if necessary. When there are 5 minutes remaining, add the garlic to the pan. Then remove the pan from heat and cool for 5 minutes.

4. Drain and rinse the soaked cashews. Place them into a food processor and blend until a paste forms. Add the mayonnaise, olive oil, and chili powder and pulse. Add the cooled onions and pulse until the dip reaches desired consistency. Stir in half of the bacon. Top with the remaining bacon and parsley to serve immediately, or refrigerate to serve chilled.

Servings: approximately 1 1/2 cups
Difficulty: Medium

(Also try: Paleo Buffalo Chicken Dip)

3. Macadamia Nut “Ricotta” Cheese

Mild and sweet macadamia nuts make an ideal substitute for ricotta cheese. This dairy-free and Paleo-friendly recipe first soaks the nuts for a couple hours and then processes them in the blender. You can even add your favorite flavoring to the finished cheese, such as rosemary, basil, or sundried tomatoes. Use the “cheese” as a dip with fruits and vegetables, or substitute it in recipes where you would normally use ricotta.

Macadamia Nut Ricotta Cheese

Ingredients:

2 cups macadamia nuts
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 cup water

Instructions:

1. Place the nuts in a bowl and cover with water. Soak for two hours, then drain and rinse.

2. Add the soaked nuts and all of the remaining ingredients to a food processor and blend until smooth. Scrape down the sides as necessary. Chill before serving.

Servings: about 1 1/2 cups
Difficulty: Easy

(You may also like: Homemade Paleo Cashew ‘Cheese’)

4. Roasted Red Pepper Dip with Basil

This colorful, flavorful dip has a wide variety of uses. You can use it as a spread for sandwiches and wraps, serve it alongside chicken, or dip veggies and crackers into it for a snack. You can make your own roasted red peppers or simply use the version from a jar. Adjust the amount of olive oil in order to achieve the consistency desired.

Roasted Red Pepper Dip

Ingredients:

1 12 oz. jar roasted red peppers, drained
1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes, sliced
1/4 cup walnuts
1 clove garlic, peeled
6 leaves fresh basil, roughly chopped
1-3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp red wine vinegar
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
Salt, to taste

Instructions:

1. Place all of the ingredients into a blender or food processor. Blend until smooth. Adjust salt to taste. Serve immediately or chilled.

Servings: 4
Difficulty: Easy

5. Almond Cheese Spread

Dairy-free “cheese” made from blanched almonds is perfect for dipping with veggies and crackers, or for incorporating into Paleo recipes. Using ground nuts in place of cheese won’t taste exactly like the original, but it does make a spread similar in texture and taste. After the last step in the recipe, the almond cheese is a blank slate that you can add your favorite flavors to, whether it’s savory, sweet, or spicy.

Almond Cheese Spread

Ingredients:

1 cup blanched almonds
1/2 cup water
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3 tbsp lemon juice
1 clove garlic, peeled
1/2 tsp salt

Instructions:

1. Place the blanched almonds in a bowl, cover with water and soak overnight.

2. Drain and rinse the soaked almonds. Place into a food processor with the remaining ingredients and process until smooth, 2-4 minutes. Scrape down the sides as necessary.

3. Transfer the mixture to a fine mesh strainer lined with a nut-milk bag or cheesecloth and place over a bowl. Allow to drain at room temperature for at least 8 hours. Remove the thickened spread from the cheesecloth, squeezing out any excess water. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Servings: about 1 cup
Difficulty: Medium

(Pair with: Protein-Packed 5 Seed Crackers)

6. Roasted Vegetable Dip

This tasty roasted vegetable dip is perfect for crackers, wraps, sandwiches, or for dipping with even more veggies. The vegetables that make the base of this dip include zucchini, bell pepper, red onion, and garlic. Roasting the vegetables adds a complex layer of flavor to the otherwise simple dish.

Roasted Vegetable Dip

Ingredients:

2 medium zucchini, sliced
1 red bell pepper, roughly chopped
1 small red onion, roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic, peeled
1/4 tsp chili powder
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, divided
1 tbsp lemon juice

Instructions:

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Place the zucchini, bell pepper, onion, and garlic into a large bowl and toss with one tablespoon of olive oil. Transfer to two rimmed baking sheets in a single layer. Sprinkle with chili powder, salt, and pepper. Bake for 25 minutes, turning once.

2. Transfer the vegetables to a food processor. Add the remaining olive oil and lemon juice. Puree until smooth, scraping down the sides with a spatula. Serve warm or chilled.

Servings: 3-4
Difficulty: Medium

The Best Paleo Crackers and Chips for Dipping:

Homemade Paleo Tortilla Chips
Easy Homemade Sweet Potato Chips
Nut and Seed Crackers
Sesame Crackers

More Popular Paleo Snacks:

17 Bite-sized Low Carb Paleo Snacks for Weight Loss
11 High Protein Pre-Workout Paleo Snacks

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