3 Perfect Pea Dips to Bring Out for Summer Parties

I can’t seem to decide if it’s the irresistible flavors of these pea-based dips that I like the best, or if it’s their sheer simplicity. The truth is I have been relying on these kinds of quick pea dips for years.

When I need a last-minute appetizer or snack to serve guests, I pull out a bag of frozen peas, cook them briefly to defrost, then pulse them with whatever flavorings I have on hand: garlic, herbs, olive oil, etc. Peas make an interesting base for dips, as they provide creaminess but are much lighter than cooked beans.

Since fresh peas are in season for a short time, I keep frozen on hand. When using them in the dips below, they don’t need to be cooked. If you’re lucky enough to be using fresh peas, simmer or steam them until tender and drain well. These recipes are always a huge hit when slathered over grilled bread or served with crudites.

Pea and Avocado Dip

Makes 1 3/4 cups

1 cup frozen peas, defrosted

1 large ripe avocado, peeled, pitted and diced

1/4 cup fresh lime juice

1/4 teaspoon sea salt, plus more to taste

Add all ingredients to a food processor and pulse until just combined but still chunky. Season with salt to taste. Place in a bowl and serve immediately.

Per 2 Tablespoons:; Calories 30; Fat 1 g; Saturated Fat 1 g; Protein 2 g; Carbohydrates 4 g; Sugar 2 g; Fiber 1 g; Cholesterol 0 mg; Sodium 195 mg

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112119625

Yellow spice

Photo by: Sylwia Kachel

Sylwia Kachel

Curried Pea Dip

Makes 1 3/4 cups

1 tablespoon extra virgin coconut oil

1 onion, diced

Sea salt

1 clove garlic, minced

2 teaspoons mild curry powder

2 cups frozen peas, defrosted

1/4 cup water

1/4 cup thick yogurt or coconut yogurt, plus more to serve

Warm coconut oil in a skillet over medium heat; add onion and saute for 6 to 8 minutes or until golden. Add a pinch of salt and garlic, and cook for another 3 minutes. Stir in curry powder and peas, and cook for 2 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.

Place pea mixture in a food processor with yogurt, puree until smooth and add salt to taste. To serve, transfer to a bowl, top with a spoon of yogurt and stir a few times to create a swirl.

Per 2 Tablespoons: Calories 25; Fat:2 grams; Saturated Fat 0 g; Protein 1 g; Carbohydrates 2 g; Sugar 1 g; Fiber 1 g; Cholesterol 0 mg; Sodium 49 mg

Photo by: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Matt Armendariz, 2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Herbed Pea Dip

Makes 1 1/2 cups

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided

1 clove garlic, minced

Sea salt

2 cups frozen peas, defrosted

1/4 cup chopped fresh dill

1/4 cup fresh mint leaves, chopped

2 teaspoons lemon juice

1/4 cup water

Freshly ground black pepper

Warm 1 tablespoon olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add onion and cook for 6 to 8 minutes or until golden. Add a pinch of salt and garlic, and cook another 3 minutes. Add peas and cook for another minute. Remove from heat and allow to cool.

Place in a food processor, and add herbs, lemon juice, water and remaining tablespoon of olive oil; blend until smooth. Season to taste with salt and black pepper. Place in a bowl and serve.

Amy Chaplin is a chef and recipe developer based in New York City. She is the author of the award winning cookbook At Home in the Whole Food Kitchen. See more of Amy’s recipes at amychaplin.com.

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