Yup, you can have your dip and your health, too. It’s easy to dismiss dip as party food only, to be enjoyed without the goal of actually eating healthy. Well, this dip recipe (that’s honestly more of a meal than a dip) is your game changer. It’s easy to assemble, is chock full of vegetables, protein, and slow carbs, AND includes all of those 5-Layer-Dip essentials: avocado, cheese, and a bit of sour cream. Yes, your favorite game-day appetizer can be your Tuesday night dinner! And let’s not forget that you can always dump any leftovers into a container and pack it for lunch tomorrow.
And, no, I didn’t resort to anything gross like lowfat cheese and fake meat in a misguided attempt to make this healthy. Uh uh. No way. I would never do that to you guys. You deserve better. Instead, I made a few tweaks that shifted this into “healthy enough for everyday”, while still giving you the full fiesta experience that a proper five layer dip should provide.
- The bottom layer is your basic refried beans. Refried beans are essential to a five layer dip, and are a great source of slow-acting, satiating carbohydrate (that also happens to include a bit of protein, too). Beans are considered the world’s #1 longevity food, so there’s that, too. Wowsers, right? To keep things easy, I use canned refried beans. I used fat-free because the other types of refried beans (labeled “traditional”, etc.) are often made with low quality fats that are more harmful than healthful. This is where the avocado layer comes in . . .
- The dip is topped with a generous layer of avocado, which is an excellent source of heart-healthy, anti-inflammatory monounsaturated fat. But wait, there’s more: avocado also is a rich source of potassium, fiber, vitamin K, folate, vitamin C, and more.
- I added a cup of cauliflower rice (store-bought, straight from the freezer) to the ground turkey. This does not change the texture and taste of the meat layer of this dip. It does, however, painlessly add yet another serving of vegetables to your day. Winning!
- Instead of chips, I’ve included some healthier options for scooping up. A few options are red pepper strips, homemade corn tortilla chips (which results in chips made with a healthier fat such as avocado oil), or even Ezekiel sprouted grain tortillas you can oven bake for a sturdy chip. Of course, if you (or your loved ones) have a “from my cold dead hands” relationship with classic store-bought tortilla chips, I’m not going to get in your way. This is a no judgment zone.
- I included some cheese and sour cream in this dip, because, hey, did you even five layer dip if it didn’t include those? I aimed to include enough to satisfy without going overboard. In case you were wondering, yes, a bit of dairy now and then is fine for you, provided you aren’t lactose intolerant. Ideally, opt for grass-fed sources of dairy if possible (but don’t sweat it if that’s not an option). Of course, if you’re lactose intolerant, feel free to subtitute with your favorite dairy-free stand-ins.
I am a big fan of any shortcut that makes a real-food lifestyle easier. Feel free to use store-bought taco seasoning when you make this, but please check the ingredient label for any funny business. You don’t need weird fillers and mystery ingredients in your food. Or you can use what you probably already have in your spice rack, and make my recipe for Taco Seasoning. Keep things easy by passing off the spice recipe to someone else in your household. Hey, if you’re making this incredible five layer dip for them, it’s the least they can do.
If dips are an essential part of your eating life, check out my recipes for 5-Minute Hummus and also Buffalo Chicken Hummus Dip.
generous entree portions (serves more if used as an appetizer)
- 1 lb. ground turkey
- 2 16 ounce cans refried beans, fat-free (see notes above why to go fat-free here)
- 2 teaspoons avocado oil
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1 medium avocado, diced
- 1 cup frozen riced cauliflower (a.k.a. cauliflower rice)
- 1 packet taco seasoning (no junky ingredients; or use my recipe "Taco Seasoning")
- 1/4 cup shredded cheddar or Mexican blend cheese
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- 1 bunch scallions, chopped
- 1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- Heat the avocado oil over medium heat in a medium skillet. Add ground turkey. Stir frequently until browned, continuously breaking up the meat into the smallest possible pieces. You might need to turn up the heat beyond medium for part of the cooking process.
- Add the taco seasoning to the meat, and stir to combine.
- Add the frozen riced cauliflower, and stir to combine. Heat the turkey mixture for about 2-3 more minutes. Set aside.
- Spread the refried beans into a 9x13 baking dish, smoothing out evenly with a spatula.
- Top the bean layer with the turkey mixture. Spread out the turkey mixture so that it's even distrubuted.
- Scatter the shredded cheese over the turkey layer.
- Bake in preheated oven for approximately five minutes, long enough to melt the cheese.
- Allow baked mixture to cool for a few minutes.
- Top with diced avocado, scallions, sour cream, and cilantro.
- Serve with your choice of sides (see dipping options above).