What’s a party without dip? One that’s missing something, I’d say I’m so glad that my friend Maggie of She Let Them Eat Cake has whipped up this creamy roasted squash and white bean dip to share with us. This is exactly the kind of recipe I can’t stand to walk away from, but at the same time can’t feel guilty dipping into again and again because it’s just so darn healthy too. If you’ve never tried delicata squash, you’re in for a treat: it’s a sweet, creamy variety of winter squash that tastes much like a nutty sweet potato when roasted. Maggie’s gluten-free, vegan, refined sugar-free recipes range from fun and whimsical (Gingerbread Cutouts), savory and ethnic (Mediterranean Creamy Dressing) to practical and nutrient-packed (Zucchini Pancakes).

For more of Maggie’s recipes, visit She Let Them Eat Cake, “Like” her Facebook page, and follow @maggiesavage on Twitter.

I am so excited to be sharing my recipe with you today!  I’ve been admiring Cara’s creations (thank goodness for her cravings and her photography skills) for a long time so it’s an honor to be here for her Clean Eating Cocktail Party.

I love to entertain, and I love going to parties.  Especially when they’re centered around food.  Aren’t they all?

I have always been a big fan of dips on the cocktail party table.  Veggies dips, fruity dips, hummus-inspired dips.  All I need is a fabulous dip recipe, some raw veggies and some gluten-free crackers, and I am a happy party girl.

Going to parties when you’re gluten-free, dairy-free, and egg-free doesn’t have to be tricky.  I always like to bring a nutrient-packed dip so I know there will be something there for me to eat – something that will fill me up and satisfy me.

This slightly sweet, but totally savory White Bean and Roasted Delicata Dip is inspired by one of my favorite root vegetables – have you tried delicata squash yet?  It’s a tiny member of the squash family so it’s easy to cut and roast.  We usually roast ours, as described below, and then eat it beside some protein and a crunchy salad.  It’s a comforting and delicious part of our meal.

This dip goes so well with crackers and on a crudités platter.  And did I mention it makes a fabulous dairy-free pizza spread too?

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White Bean and Roasted Delicata Squash Dip

Yield: 1 1/2 cups

Ingredients:

1 medium sized delicata squash
2 peeled cloves of garlic
1 cup white cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for greasing
1 tablespoon fresh chopped basil
2 tablespoons hemp hearts
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
black pepper, to taste

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Grease a baking sheet with olive oil.

Wash and cut in half one medium-sized delicata squash, remove the seeds. Rub with oil and place on a greased baking sheet. Place one clove of peeled garlic under each delicata half. Bake at 400 degrees until soft (approximately 25 minutes). Let cool to touch.

Scoop insides from roasted squash and place into the bowl of a food processor with the roasted garlic.

Add white beans, olive oil, basil, hemp hearts, and sea salt.

Puree until smooth, adding more oil or water if necessary. Season with black pepper.

Best served at room temperature.