I grew up eating “Mexican food” in Texas, and got used to the “queso,” enchiladas, and anything covered in sour cream. The first time I went to Mexico, I remember thinking that they were doing it “wrong” … I know. I later learned that the Tex-Mex I had been used to eating was a different variety of food all together. “Texas Food Authority” (how do you get that title?!?) Robb Walsh said, “if it isn’t really Mexican food, what is Tex-Mex? The answer has to be regional cuisine.” (college senior Spring Break in Cancun…haha!)
Well, Tex-Mex is not the only Americanized thing I’m going to talk about today. Most Americans realize that Cinco de Mayo is not actually Mexican Independence Day, but did you know that the holiday itself is far more celebrated in the US than it actually is in Mexico? The Director of Centro Civico Mexican said, “It’s really a US day, not a Mexico thing, and that’s fine with us.”
I guess Americans will use anything as an excuse to get in a good celebration, and I don’t want to stop you from doing that. After all, you’re talking to the person who randomly had a giant margarita glass show up at her wedding reception in Puerto Vallarta…(let’s just say our friends wanted to make sure we were having a good time!)
Anyway, back to the recipe. The truth is, I made this as a “healthy seven layer dip.” I actually had six layers in mind … and then I got the “Cinco-de-Layer Dip” idea, and got really excited (I even told Kevin, and I think he rolled his eyes). I ended up with a five-layer version that saves you 175 calories and 13g fat from the traditional version. Once I made the dip, though, I tried to serve it with veggie sticks (like I do with most dips) … and it wasn’t quite “dippy” enough. Truth be told, I ended up eating it as a mini salad, and it’s so healthy that you can do this completely guilt-free!
Kevin still enjoyed his portion as a dip with tortilla chips, so it certainly works that way as well. I don’t know if this dish is Tex-Mex, Mexican, or just plain delicious, but I do know that it would be a great addition to your Cinco de Mayo table this Monday! It’s pretty darn delicious either way, so do what works for you!
Healthy Cinco-de-Layer Dip (or Mini Salad!)
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Keywords: salad side snack dip gluten-free low-carb nut-free vegetarian avocado beans peppers yogurt Cinco de Mayo
Ingredients (2 servings)
- 1 cup chopped lettuce
- 4 Tbsp. plain Greek yogurt
- 4 Tbsp. salsa
- 4 Tbsp. black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 Tbsp. nutritional yeast (you could likely use Parmesan instead)
- 1 tsp. cumin
- 4 Tbsp. cooked quinoa
- 1/4 medium-sized avocado
- 1 small tomato, or 1/2 large tomato
- 4 sprigs fresh cilantro
Layer chopped lettuce on the bottom of individual dishes (each dish needs to hold at least 1 cup). This was home-grown organic lettuce from my rooftop garden!
In a separate bowl, mix together yogurt and salsa. Layer mixture gently on top of lettuce.
Layer quinoa on top of yogurt and salsa mixture.
In another separate bowl, mix together black beans, nutritional yeast, and cumin. Layer mixture on top of quinoa.
In a third separate bowl, gently mix diced avocado, tomatoes, and cilantro. Layer this on top of beans.
Each serving contains 4g fat, 19g carbs, 9g protein.
So tell me in the comments … Do you celebrate Cinco de Mayo? Have you ever had a giant margarita glass show up at your wedding? Favorite Mexican food (or “Mexican food”)?