5 Delicious, Diet-Friendly Uses for Roasted Garlic Salsa

Fresh salsa

Of all the different types of salsa available, roasted garlic salsa is a perennial favorite.

What’s the difference between garlic and roasted garlic? The latter has a subtler, sweeter flavor than raw garlic, making it a worthy addition to all kinds of recipes. The best thing about it is how easy it is to make, too; essentially, all you have to do is wrap up a head of garlic with some olive oil and pop it in the oven for a while, then squeeze the roasted garlic cloves out of their skins. Then you’ll have plenty for a batch of homemade roasted garlic salsa. And if even that seems like too much work, you can always pick up a jar at your local grocery store — salsa nutritional facts are pretty encouraging, with even store-bought versions of cooked or fresh salsas coming in somewhere around 20 measly calories per serving.

But how can you use that yummy salsa, besides scooping it up with crunchy fried tortilla chips? Here are five delicious and diet-friendly ideas:

  1. In Chicken, Tuna or Potato Salad

    In any type of “salad” that involves mixing something with mayonnaise, salsa can be used both as a way to add flavor and cut down on calories. Instead of making your next chicken, tuna or potato salad with mayonnaise, try it with half sour cream and half roasted garlic salsa.

  2. On White and Light Fish Filets

    Summer is the perfect time of year for filets of white or light fish like cod and haddock, but these types of fish are sometimes a little lacking in flavor. Try topping them with a creamy salsa with an intense garlic flavor for both some much-needed moisture and a little pizazz.

  3. In Garlic Salsa Compound Butter

    If you like to top off your grilled or pan-fried meats with a pat of butter, then a salsa compound butter will add all the flavor you need. Just combine salsa and softened butter, roll into a log (look up a video on how to use a combination of wax paper and plastic wrap to minimize the mess), and store in the freezer. You can carve off thin slices whenever you need a little extra spice without going overboard.

  4. On an Easy Raw Vegetable Pizza

    Greasy delivery pizza isn’t very appetizing when the weather’s hot — and it’s not going to get you ready for swimsuit season, either. Instead, try a raw version on a pre-baked whole-wheat pizza crust, switching out tomato sauce for salsa and fatty toppings like pepperoni for crunchy summer vegetables.

  5. In a Lean Turkey Meatloaf

    Turkey is a leaner alternative to pork or beef for meatloaf and meatballs, but it can get a little dry and tasteless. Combat that by mixing a relatively spicy garlic salsa into your meat before baking; it’ll add just enough of a kick without being overwhelming.

What is salsa — particularly roasted garlic salsa — great with? Share your ideas in the comments.

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