Poor Santa. But I digress.
So we made our way through that LOVELY experience and I realized I had less than two hours to throw something together. Sure, that sounds like plenty of time. But this two hours included six other errands I had to run. Enter Mr. Crock Pot, the miracle man.
As always, I wanted a crowd pleaser that was "lightened up" a bit. Lord knows how many calories I pack into my diet during the holidays so why not make our splurges less painful! And who doesn't love pizza ;)
- 2 packages (8 ounces each) 1/3 less fat cream cheese, cubed
- 1 can (15 ounces) pizza sauce
- 1 package (8 ounces) sliced TURKEY pepperoni, chopped
- 1 can (3.8 ounces) chopped ripe olives, drained
- 2 cups (8 ounces) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
- Place cream cheese in the crock pot.
- In a separate bowl, combine the pizza sauce, pepperoni and olives; pour over cream cheese.
- Top with mozzarella cheese.
- Cover and cook on low for one hour
- Add in some shakes of Italian seasoning blend (if you don't have this, it's ok! It's basically a lazy persons way of adding oregano, rosemary, thyme, and basil. Most stores carry it in a pre-made bottle, which is exactly what I used.)
- Stir again! Give it a taste.
- Now give it about 20 minutes to relax. Then check the taste and more Italian seasonings!
This whole process took me about two hours.
I wish I could tell you how much seasoning I added, but it was really by taste. I would guess close to 2 tsp? Again, it was hit or miss. A few shakes here, a few shakes there.
Another note? This gets more awesome with time!
As the dip set it became more and more flavorful. I liked it when I first tried it, but LOVED it when I had it three hours after starting. I really suggest giving yourself at least four hours for this dip. The pizza flavor came out more and more as time passed. Again, I made this a "healthy" version but I'm sure it would be even better if you went for the real thing ;)
It's my new favorite, ENJOY!
PS - You might not think this would be good with carrots or any vegetable... but holy buckets! It's great! The perfect cheesy and crunchy bite. Try it. Really!
Source: Taste Of Home