This creamy Whipped Goat Cheese and Herb Dip has been sponsored by California Giant Berry Farms. As always, all opinions expressed are my own.
The start of summer is here and I’ve partnered with California Giant Berry Farms to celebrate with skinny dips!
My contribution to the party is this creamy Whipped Goat Cheese and Herb Dip. With tangy goat cheese, sweet fresh basil, thyme, walnuts, and a hint of cracked black pepper, this savory dip is made even better when served alongside a platter of fresh strawberries.
In addition, Cal Giant has teamed up with a few great produce companies to offer a Skinny Dips Sweepstakes! They’re giving away several VISA gift cards, and one grand prize of a getaway for two at a Sandals Beach Resort. Read further down the post to find out more about the prizes and enter for a chance to win.
Giveaways and great summer dip recipes? Sounds like a celebration to me!
Goat cheese has always been one of my favorite cheeses. It’s creamy and indulgent-tasting, but has fewer calories than many cow’s milk cheeses. The subtle tang of goat cheese lends itself to a variety of food pairings, and I especially love it contrasted with fresh herbs and sweet flavors, like summer strawberries.
To soften the flavor of the dip a bit and give it an ultra-smooth consistency, I add a little cream cheese to the mixture. In terms of fat content, you can lighten the dip as much as you’d like here. It’s equally good made with reduced fat cream cheese as regular.
My personal favorite cream cheese alternative is neufchâtel. It’s stocked right alongside the block-style cream cheese in the grocery store and is very similar in flavor and consistency, with about 1/3 less fat and calories. (Want to learn more about the difference between neufchâtel and cream cheese? Check out this piece from Kitchn.)
Walnuts are naturally rich in antioxidants and bring a great crunch to the dip to contrast the creamy base.
I love to serve this savory dip with an assortment of sweet whole wheat crackers and fresh strawberries, such as these gorgeous berries Cal Giant sent me.
I always judge a good strawberry by how juicy it is. We tasted these strawberries as soon as the shipment arrived at the door (who could resist?). Let’s just say, I ended up changing the shirt I was wearing a few minutes later. They were that delectably juicy.
If you aren’t familiar with California Giant Berry Farms, their extra-large strawberries are non-GMO, all-natural, and perfect for dipping.
Let’s talk prizes! As I mentioned at the start of the post, one Skinny Dips Sweepstakes winner will receive a trip for two to a Sandals Beach Resort of his or her choosing, valued up to $4,000.
In addition to the grand prize vacation, they’re giving away two, $500 VISA gift cards and four, $250 VISA gift cards.
Plus, Striped Spatula readers who enter the sweepstakes will be automatically entered to win an additional $500 VISA gift card. When you enter, you’ll also be able to download an ebook with more skinny dip recipes for summer. Talk about a great giveaway!
You can enter HERE, or by clicking the sweepstakes graphic above until July 7, 2017.
*Striped Spatula is not responsible for the terms or fulfillment of the giveaways.
Whipped Goat Cheese and Herb Dip
This savory whipped goat cheese dip is perfect for dipping with sweet strawberries! For easy entertaining, prep ahead instructions are listed in the recipe notes. In the spirit of skinny dips, I've written the recipe using reduced fat dairy. This dip is equally delicious made with reduced fat or whole cream cheese and milk. Use whichever you prefer!
- 10 ounces goat cheese
- 4 ounces reduced fat block-style cream cheese or neufchâtel, slightly softened
- 1 to 2 tablespoons low fat milk
- 1/4 cup chopped walnuts
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves
- 1/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper, plus additional to taste
- California Giant Berry Farms strawberries, for dipping
- assorted crackers
Place goat cheese and cream cheese or neufchâtel in the bowl of a food processor. Process with 1 tablespoon milk until smooth. Add additional milk a teaspoon at a time and process until desired consistency is reached.*
Transfer cheese mixture to a bowl. Stir in walnuts, basil, thyme, and black pepper until combined. Season to taste with additional pepper. Serve with strawberries and crackers for dipping.**
*Alternately, the cheeses and milk can be whipped together in an electric mixer with the paddle attachment, or in a bowl with a hand mixer.
**To make the dip a day ahead, whip cheeses with milk and store, covered, in the refrigerator. When ready to serve, let stand at room temperature for about 15-20 minutes to soften. Proceed with recipe, stirring in walnuts, herbs, and pepper.