Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Celebrate Celery: Tasty and South Beach Diet Friendly Snack Ideas with Celery

Celery with peanut butterIt's more than five years now since I first embarked on my South Beach Diet journey into lower-glycemic eating habits, but I still remember how I looked forward to the snacks during those early days starting the diet. I'm still someone who loves to snack and one of my favorite snack foods is celery, so diet-friendly and a great vehicle for delivering other flavors to your mouth. It's that time of year when some of you are getting ready for bathing suit season, so I thought I'd share a few of my favorite celery snacks to inspire you. Let's start with celery stuffed with peanut butter, definitely something I'd enjoy as a snack any time of day.

If you're eating peanut butter on the South Beach Diet, it needs to be a natural peanut butter, without added sugar. This is my favorite brand, but there are lots of good ones.

Peanut butter is a calorie-dense food, so stick to the 2 T per day serving size if you're dieting. These are short little pieces of celery, but this is enough of a snack to satisfy me when I need something to munch on.

Hummus is also something I love to stuff inside celery, or just eat with the celery as a dipper. This Meza hummus is something I always have in the fridge, but hummus is easy enough to make from scratch, so check the recipe links after the photos if you'd like to make your own.

Dried beans are allowed for any phase of the South Beach Diet, but the newest book (The South Beach Diet Supercharged) recommends starting with 1/3 to 1/2 cup serving per day, so keep that in mind when you're eating hummus as a snack.

This gourmet garlic and herb cheese is something else I absolutely love stuffed into celery. I buy this at Costco, but there are other brands of similar cheese available in most supermarkets or specialty food stores.

Cheese is something you definitely need to use portion control on if you're trying to lose weight. The Le Roule cheese has 7 grams of fat per ounce, with is lower than many similar types of cheese, but I'd consider this to be an occasional treat for a snack.

Here are lots more snack ideas for things that can be eaten with celery. Of course, many of these snacks can be eaten with whole wheat pita chips for phase two or three, if you prefer. (If you have a good suggestion for a snack that tastes good with celery, I'd love to hear about it in the comments.)

Hummus Recipes To Scoop Up with Celery:
Slow Roasted Tomato Hummus from Kalyn's Kitchen
Parsley Hummus from Kalyn's Kitchen
Real Hummus Recipe from The Hummus Blog
Jalapeno and Lime Hummus from Gluten Free Goddess
Very Traditional Hummus from The Perfect Pantry
Edamame Hummus from Life's Ambrosia
Light Zucchini Hummus from Wasabimon
Chipotle Hummus from Andrea Meyers

More Bean Dips That Taste Good with Celery:
White Bean and Artichoke Dip from Kalyn's Kitchen
Julia Child's Brandade á la Soissonaise (Puree of White Beans with Garlic and Herbs) from Kalyn's Kitchen
Ful Medames (Fava Bean Dip) from Fat Free Vegan Kitchen
White Bean Dip from Chez Us
Cannellini Bean Dip from Inn Cuisine
Easy Black Bean Dip from Pinch My Salt
Black Bean Dip from My Columbian Recipes
Lito-Fray Bean Dip from Cookin' with Cyndi

Other Tasty Dips to Eat with Celery:
Greek Yogurt and Cottage Cheese Dip with Dill from Kalyn's Kitchen
Southwestern Ranch Dip from Kalyn's Kitchen
Grandma's Vegetable Dip from Kalyn's Kitchen
Heart-Healthy Shrimp Dip from Kalyn's Kitchen
Caramelized Onion Dip from 101 Cookbooks
Eggplant Dip (Baba Ghanouj) from Simply Recipes
Green Goddess Dip from Serious Eats (use low-fat mayo and sour cream for South Beach version)
Refreshing Radish Spread or Dip from Farmgirl Fare (use low-fat cream cheese for South Beach version)

Fish or Meat-Based Spreads to Enjoy with Celery:
Tuna Mousse or Spuma di Tonno from Kalyn's Kitchen
Deviled Ham Spread from Kalyn's Kitchen
Tuna and White Bean Dip from A Veggie Venture
Salmon Spread from David Lebovitz
Tuna-Chickpea Spread from Serious Eats
Deviled Ham from Umami Girl
Smoked Salmon Spread from Cast Sugar (use low-fat cream cheese for South Beach version)
Crab Spread from Recipe Girl (use low-fat cream cheese for South Beach version)counter customizable free hit
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More to Chew On:


  1. I love stuffed celery. The recipe compilation in this article is awesome!

    Thanks Kalyn *crunch, crunch*

  2. Kalyn, this post couldn't have come at a better time for me. I've been traveling all winter and I know I've put on some pounds. I was just telling my sister that I need to get back on South Beach but I'm a snacker and that's always hard for me. Thanks for this bit of motivation!

  3. I love the cottage cheese, avocado, cilantro dip that's in the Supercharged book. I can only make 1 portion at a time though because I'm sure I could eat a bowlfull!

  4. this reminds me of the 70's. i love it with peanut butter, i can remember parties with cream spreads with pimentos. oh the 70's were so much about entertaining.

  5. My kids and I adore stuffed celery for healthy snacks. Their favorite is peanut butter with raisins on top (aka "ants on a log"), and my favorite is hummus.

  6. Yummy! Thanks for making a whole post out of this!

  7. We do WW so we have to watch the quantities as well, but we like it with cream cheese and low fat peanut butter. But I think our fav is hummus.

    I want to try that La Roule cheese though, sounds yummy.

  8. I love PB with bananas, not celery so much, but this does look good!

  9. You are one of the only people I know that can make celery interesting! I am not such a big celery fan but I love spinach. I'll eat it with anything. Fruit salads, hummus, in smoothies, with yogurt. Really. Just a little obsessed.

  10. As someone else mentioned, this post was perfect timing...and I love the hummus, bean options...I have been a huge hummus kick and your links took me to some great new recipes.

  11. I'm so happy people are enjoying the celery inspiration. It sounds like I need to check into the cottage cheese, avocado, and cilantro dip from The South Beach Diet Supercharged! That sounds good to me!

  12. Celery sticks with cottage cheese, sprinkled with coarse black pepper, has been one of my favorite snacks since childhood. A little goes a long way -- and that's the best kind of snack!

  13. Thank you so much for the link!I love hummus and bean dips.

  14. I like my celery with a cream cheese/salsa dip... of course you have to be careful with the sugar/fat in those, but it's so yummy that I don't miss eating it with chips at all!

  15. yummy ideas...I'll have to try some

  16. Hey just by seeing the photographs my mouth started watering.
    Kalyn,thanks for all the ideas you are giving me for the party coming up next week in my place

  17. Congratulations on your 5 years on the S.B. diet. I am a lapsed SBer but I am trying again. Please keep up the good work and your support of the South Beach diet.
    Thanks again,


  18. Keep those good celery snack ideas coming!

    Richard, I think everyone falls off the South Beach wagon at times, but the trick for me is to go back to phase one for two weeks whenever I've been doing too much indulging. I do allow myself to eat what I want (within reason!) when I'm on vacation or for special occasions, and just go back to phase one if I gain a few pounds. Good luck to you this time around, you can do it!

  19. This post takes me back to my childhood! Celery is such an under-used and under-appreciated veggie, I say!


  20. I love celery and never thought to serve it with Hommus. Thanks for the idea Kalyn.

  21. I love celery stuffed with almost anything! Another good option is to stuff it with egg salad or tuna salad or chicken salad. Thanks again for your recipe links!

  22. I never thought of egg salad in celery; I think that's a great idea!

  23. The funny thing is I couldn't think of a good snack tonight - and now I know what I'll make! Perfect timing. Thanks!

  24. Thanks for new celery snack ideas! Love 'em!

  25. I started South Beach just this past Monday with the guidance of my neighbor. We were supposed to go shopping on Sunday, but didn't make it so I went to work on Monday with absolutely NO snacks. I remembered reading about cottage cheese and celery, so when I hit the salad bar at lunch I made a small container of cottage cheese and chopped celery for an afternoon snack...two flavors I never would have thought to put together, but was very satisfying.

  26. Traci, it sounds good to me! Thanks for sharing.

  27. When I was a little girl my mom would stuff celery with peanut butter or cream cheese and she would ALWAYS put some rainbow sprinkles on. We loved it!

  28. What a fun mom! (Rainbow sprinkles would be a no-no for South Beach Dieters though!)


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