Mexican 5-Layer Dip
Photo: Michael Waring
By Julie O'Hara
Hands-on time: 40 minutes
Total time: 3 hours, 45 minutes (includes soaking and cooking of beans)
You save: 60 calories, 5.5 g total fat, 4.5 g saturated fat and 479 mg sodium
- 1 cup dried pinto beans
- 3 medium tomatoes, seeded and chopped (about 2 1/2 cups)
- 1 small white onion, chopped (about 3/4 cup)
- 2 to 3 jalapeño peppers, seeded and chopped (about 1/3 cup)
- 3/4 packed cup fresh cilantro leaves, chopped, divided
- Juice of 2 limes, divided
- 1/2 tsp sea salt, plus additional to taste, divided
- Fresh ground black pepper, to taste
- 2 ripe avocados, pitted and peeled
- 6 oz reduced-fat cheddar cheese, grated (about 1½ cups)
- 1 1/2 cups reduced-fat sour cream
- Rinse beans in a colander and pick through, discarding any debris or small stones. Place in a medium saucepan and add enough water to cover beans. Bring to a boil over high heat and cook for 2 minutes. Turn off heat and let beans rest for 1 hour. Drain beans in a colander and rinse. Wash saucepan, return beans to saucepan and add enough water to cover by 2 inches. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low to maintain a steady simmer. Cover and cook for 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until beans are very tender. Reserve about 2/3 cup cooking liquid, drain beans and set aside to cool. (Alternatively, cover and refrigerate beans in their cooking liquid for up to 4 days. Reserve 2/3 cup liquid and drain before proceeding with recipe.)
- In a medium bowl, combine tomatoes, onion, jalapeños and about two-thirds of cilantro. Squeeze juice of 1 lime over tomato mixture and season, to taste, with salt and black pepper. Set aside.
- In a food processor or blender, combine avocados, remaining cilantro and remaining juice of 1 lime. Purée until slightly chunky. Season with salt and black pepper, to taste. Set aside.
- Place beans and 1/3 cup reserved cooking liquid in a food processor (or use a powerful blender or mash by hand with a potato masher). Process until you have a slightly chunky purée, adding additional cooking liquid, 1 tbsp at a time, as needed to reach desired consistency. Add 1/2 tsp salt and black pepper. Pulse several times to combine. Transfer beans to a 9 x 13-inch casserole dish or large glass bowl and spread into an even layer.
- Sprinkle cheese evenly over beans. Dollop scoops of avocado mixture over cheese and use a spatula to spread into a thin layer. Dollop scoops of sour cream over avocado and spread into a thin layer. With a slotted spoon (to drain any liquid), spread tomato mixture evenly over sour cream. Serve immediately or cover and chill for up to 4 hours.
Nutrients per 1/4-cup serving: Calories 86, Total Fat 4.5 g, Sat. Fat 1.5 g, Carbs 8 g, Fiber 2 g, Sugars 1.5 g, Protein 4 g, Sodium 87 mg, Cholesterol 8 mg
Although cooking the beans in this recipe adds greatly to the overall cooking time, this step doesn’t require much of your attention and may be done in advance. Prepare the pintos up to 4 days ahead and assemble the dip up to 4 hours before you’re ready to serve. That way, you’ll be ready to feed a hungry crowd with no last-minute scrambling!