This Healthier Baked Spinach Artichoke Dip features spinach, artichoke hearts, and shallots in a cheesy, creamy sauce lightened up with yogurt and fresh herbs.
Love spinach artichoke dip but want a healthier version that still tastes completely decadent? Then this recipe is for you. How is it healthier? Traditional Spinach Artichoke Dip recipes go heavy on the mayonnaise and/or cheese. This version replaces some of the mayonnaise with greek yogurt, and adds caramelized shallots and fresh herbs to add flavor and lighten the dish. You’re going to want this on the table at your next get-together or holiday meal!
Why Make This Recipe
- Classic but Healthy (ier): My goal with this recipe was to create a hot spinach artichoke dip that cut down on some of the calories and fat in a traditional recipe without using low-fat or fat-free alternatives, like light mayonnaise or low-fat cream cheese. Why? Low-fat and fat-free versions of cheese and other dairy products often include more sugar than the originals, and don’t provide the same texture and flavor. This version loads up on the fiber-rich veggies and herbs, but is still plenty creamy and delicious.
- Easy to Make-Ahead: This dish is perfect for party planning because you can assemble it completely 24 hours in advance, then just bake 30 minutes before party time. Perfect for anyone who wants to get the bulk of the work done ahead of time, so that they can relax and enjoy dinner.
- Artichokes: Canned or jarred artichokes are fine, and you can use artichokes packed in water or oil. Just make sure that you drain them well and pat them dry. Since wet artichokes will lead to a soggy dish, I don’t necessarily recommend using frozen artichokes. (Though if that’s all you have, just defrost them, drain, and dry them the best you can.)
- Spinach: This may seem counter-intuitive, but for spinach, I highly recommend frozen rather than fresh spinach. The reason is that fresh spinach contains a lot of moisture. You’ll need to cook it down, then drain it very well before adding to the dish.
- Shallots: You could use finely chopped red onion instead of shallots.
- Herbs: I like parsley (both flat-leaf or curly are fine) and chives in this dish, but you could also use fresh thyme or scallions.
- Greek Yogurt: I chose greek yogurt for this dish because it is nice and thick and has a great tangy flavor. You could substitute plain regular yogurt that you have drained in a fine-mesh sieve for several hours. If your yogurt is not as tangy as typical greek yogurt, you could also add a ½ teaspoon of lemon juice.
- Cream Cheese: If you must, you can replace the full-fat cream cheese with reduced-fat cream cheese or neufchâtel cheese. Please don’t replace with nonfat cream cheese though—it just won’t give you the same creamy texture when it melts.
- Parmesan Cheese: Use freshly grated instead prepackaged grated cheese whenever possible—it’s always more flavorful. You could replace this with asiago cheese or romano cheese instead if you don't have parmesan on-hand.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit/180 degrees Celsius, then prep your ingredients. Drain artichoke hearts, pat dry with paper towels, and chop roughly. Drain thawed frozen spinach well, pressing out extra moisture with paper towels or a fine sieve.
Finely chop shallots. Chop herbs (if they aren’t already chopped). Mince garlic clove.
Measure out greek yogurt, mayonnaise, and cream cheese so you are ready to add these quickly when the time comes.
Heat olive oil in medium nonstick skillet, and add chopped shallots. Sauté for 5-7 minutes over medium heat, until shallots soften and are beginning to brown.
Add minced garlic and stir for 30 seconds. When you can smell the garlic, add the greek yogurt, mayonnaise, and cream cheese. Stir until the cream cheese melts and makes a smooth sauce, about 1 minute. Turn off the heat and set aside.
In a medium bowl, stir together the artichoke hearts, spinach, and herbs. Now stir in cream cheese mixture. Finally, fold in the parmesan cheese.
Scrape into a small round or oval baking dish. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until dip bubbles around the edges and is beginning to brown. Let cool 10 minutes before serving.
🧐 Recipe FAQs
Yes! This dip is perfect for make-ahead. Prep all of your ingredients, and make the sauce. Then combine ingredients and scrape into your baking dish. Cover with aluminum foil, and put in your refrigerator for up to 24 hours. A half hour before you are ready to bake, take the dish out and let it come close to room temperature. Then bake as directed in the recipe.
If you have leftovers of this dip, they are easy to reheat. Just cover the dish with aluminum foil, keep in the refrigerator, and then take out when you want to reheat it. Remove the foil and reheat in a 375-degree oven for about 10 minutes. You can also scrape any leftovers into a microwave-safe bowl, and reheat in the microwave.
This baked spinach artichoke dip will last for about 3-5 days in the refrigerator. Cover with foil if you intend to eat it within 2 days, or scrape into an airtight container. See above for how to reheat in the oven or microwave.
I would not recommend freezing this dip. Any dips that have a cream sauce base are not a good fit for freezing, as cream tends to separate after having been frozen and then defrosted. But see instructions above for making it ahead of time!
👩🍳 Expert Tips
The biggest “trick” to this recipe is making sure your artichoke hearts and spinach are as dry as possible. Excess moisture in either of these will lead to a watery dip that will just not be as delicious as intended.
This dip goes easily from oven to table, so picking a baking dish that’s pretty enough to serve in will make this a mouth-watering appetizer. If you don’t have a round baking dish, you can use a pie pan or even an 8x8 baking dish. Note that the height of the dip will vary based on what baking dish you choose—if you find you have just a thin layer of dip, check it after only 20 minutes of cooking time.
When you’re ready to serve, there are lots of delicious ways to enjoy this baked spinach artichoke dip. Since this is a healthy version of this traditional appetizer, I’d recommend sticking with that theme and choosing whole-grain options or vegetables wherever possible. Here are a few of my favorite options:
- pita chips
- crostini or crusty bread
- tortilla chips
- carrot and celery sticks
You could also serve this on top of baked chicken breasts for a delicious meal!
Looking to spice things up a bit? You might want to try my Jalapeño Artichoke Dip for your next party! Just as tasty as this one, with some heat from broiled jalapeños!
More Healthy-ish Appetizers
So many delicious appetizers are unfortunately fat, calorie, and salt bombs. Those have their place, don’t get me wrong, but if you’re looking for some new ideas for appetizers that feature healthy real ingredients, here are a few of my favorites:
If you try this Healthier Baked Spinach Artichoke Dip recipe, I would love to hear from you! Leave a comment below—I read them all, and your feedback is invaluable to me. And please follow along on Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook or subscribe to my newsletter. I'd love to inspire you with more delicious, healthy, and seasonal recipes!
- 14 oz can or jar of artichoke hearts
- 6 oz frozen spinach, thawed
- 2 shallots
- 3 T. chopped chives
- 3 T. chopped parsley
- 1 garlic clove
- ¼ c. (2 oz.) greek yogurt
- ¼ c. (2 oz.) mayonnaise
- ¼ c. (2 oz.) cream cheese
- 1 T. olive oil
- ¾ c. (2 oz.) grated parmesan cheese
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit/180 degrees Celsius.
- Begin by prepping all ingredients. Drain artichoke hearts, pat dry with paper towels, and chop roughly.
- Drain thawed frozen spinach well, pressing out extra moisture with paper towels or a fine sieve.
- Peel, then finely chop shallots.
- Chop herbs (if they aren’t already chopped).
- Mince garlic clove.
- Measure out greek yogurt, mayonnaise, and cream cheese so you are ready to add these quickly when the time comes.
- Heat olive oil in medium nonstick skillet, and add chopped shallots.
- Sauté for 5-7 minutes over medium heat, until shallots soften and are beginning to brown.
- Add minced garlic and stir for 30 seconds.
- When you can smell the garlic, add the greek yogurt, mayonnaise, and cream cheese.
- Stir until the cream cheese melts and makes a smooth sauce, about 1 minute.
- Turn off the heat and set aside. In a medium bowl, stir together the artichoke hearts, spinach, and herbs.
- Now stir in cream cheese mixture.
- Finally, fold in the parmesan cheese.
- Scrape into a small round or oval baking dish.
- Bake for 30-35 minutes, until dip bubbles around the edges and is beginning to brown.
- Let cool 10 minutes before serving.
- Perfect for make-ahead! Prep all of your ingredients, and make the sauce. Then combine ingredients and scrape into your baking dish. Cover with aluminum foil, and put in your refrigerator for up to 24 hours. A half hour before you are ready to bake, take the dish out and let it come close to room temperature. Then bake as directed.
- Storing this dip: This dip will last for about 3-5 days in the refrigerator. Cover with foil if you intend to eat it within 2 days, or scrape into an airtight container. Reheat in the oven or microwave.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 163Total Fat: 12gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 17mgSodium: 367mgCarbohydrates: 10gFiber: 4gSugar: 2gProtein: 6g
Nutrition information is provided as a general reference for users courtesy of the online nutrition calculator Nutritionix.