Creamy Indian-Spiced White Bean Dip – Gluten-free + Vegan

by Beth @ Tasty Yummies

Creamy Indian-Spiced White Bean Dip - Gluten-free + Vegan

I am back home from our trip to California, we landed late last night and I am feeling insanely invigorated. We spent nearly a week out there, exploring neighborhoods and all the different towns, we went to the beach, we celebrated our 5-year wedding anniversary at Disneyland and fell even more in love with everything Southern California has to offer! This was the trip we needed to light that fire under our behinds to get the last few things done before we get our house on the market here in Buffalo and move out west! It is looking like our new home is going be in Long Beach, in a quaint little neighborhood by the beach. We cannot wait to start seriously looking for a house and to get this party started!

We are headed back to California in less than 2 short months for our good friends’ Patrick and Summer’s wedding, so who knows, maybe even by then we will have sold the house and be ready to start the whole process. I really hope so.

Ever since we decided to move out there, I told myself that given we would be living somewhere that has beautiful weather all year long, that I was going to be way more active outdoors. I want to get into running and biking as part of my weekly fitness routine, since both feel like a wonderful compliment to my daily yoga practice. Rather than waiting to get out there to start anew with so many things, I decided on the plane ride home that I was going to get started right away, particularly with the running since I have never really given it a serious shot. I have always found running to be painful and not my favorite way to sneak in exercise. But, the more I have read about running and getting started on a serious plan, it is best to ease your body into it and not try to do too much, too soon, which is probably what I have always done. So, I am going to take advantage of the beautiful spring and summer weather here in Western New York and start my training now, so I can hopefully just hit the ground running (pun intended) whenever we finally get out to the west coast.

Tonight is my first run, I have a good pair of Nike+ running shoes that I bought years ago and only ever wore to the gym, I have a couple of iPhone apps downloaded to help me properly ease into running, so they can tell me when and how I should be running and walking and for how long. I even have a running partner, my hubby, who is ready to get back into running himself. Now, the only thing I have to fear is my annoying low back issues. I tend to keep that all at bay with yoga and an incredible chiropractor, but I am a bit concerned on how the running will affect my back. I have a herniated disc in my low back that is known to cause me issues now and again and from what I have read about running, the pressure and the shock from it can sometimes be a bit hard on that type of injury. Here’s hoping I have strengthened my core and stretched my muscles enough from yoga, that my body can handle it. I really want it to work for me since running seems like the perfect compliment to my lifestyle, especially when we will be living so close to the beach.

My plan, if running and my body can agree on it, is to continue with my daily yoga practice, and getting to at least five 90-minute yoga classes a week, and now adding in 3 days of running. So, every day I will have some type of physical activity going on and on only a couple of days will I have to manage getting to the yoga studio and squeezing in a run, too. Even though yoga doesn’t always have to be a 90-minute thing, I really do prefer to have a practice that is that long and I really enjoy going to the studio. I practice at home on occasion, but I find since I work at home, it can be hard to focus on yoga and not get distracted by everything else around me. That is one thing about running I think I am most drawn to, the change of scenery, being outside and engulfed by nature and the elements and being in control of when, where and how it happens. As long as the weather cooperates and there is a safe and somewhat smooth surface, it seems like you can run virtually anywhere.

Do you like running? Have any tips for someone that is just getting started?

OK, so onto the dip… I made this dip this afternoon as a light snack. With us being gone for a week, I couldn’t wait to get home and get back to eating foods that I prepared. The food is the only downside to traveling for me, eating unprocessed foods that are gluten-free and as often as I can find, also vegetarian, can get a bit tricky when you are away. I did the very best I could and found so many great options, but I still ate so much different than I would ever eat at home. I debated doing a juice cleanse for a couple days after returning home, but with me wanting to start training for running, I didn’t think both were such a good idea, so I decided to start the running and just eat extra light this week. Now that our local farmers market is open for the season, I will definitely be stocking up there on Saturday and doing a lot of juices, smoothies and salads this week. This morning, I made a version of my banana almond butter smoothie for breakfast, adding in a scoop of ground flaxseeds and a scoop of cocoa powder and it kept me full all day. About 3:30pm I realized I hadn’t eaten anything since the smoothie and I had cleaned the whole house and totally unpacked my suitcase. I decided I would make a simple mid-afternoon snack and a creamy white bean dip was calling my name. The bold flavors from the Indian spices were so perfect and subtle and the garlic gave it all a great punch. The white beans made for an incredibly smooth and creamy dip that was delicious on some gluten-free crackers. I wish we had some fresh raw veggies, those would also be great in this dip. That is the other bad thing about traveling, coming home to an empty fridge. If you don’t love garam masala, substitute some yellow curry or another one of your favorite spices. If the heat from the garam masala and the raw garlic is enough, skip the chili powder.

I will check back in tomorrow with a new recipe and to let you know how the running went this evening.

Creamy Indian-Spiced White Bean Dip - Gluten-free + Vegan

 

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{ 23 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Alex@Spoonful of Sugar Free May 18, 2012 at 7:34 am

Congrats on your anniversary, and good luck house hunting!!

As for the running…ehhh…I don’t run that much. I play tennis for three hours a day, which is already some pretty heavy pounding on the joints, so I bike for extra cardio. Much easier on the body, and I think it is so much more fun! Because I bike on trails, in the grass, to places to buy groceries, etc

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2 tastyyummies May 23, 2012 at 3:23 pm

Thanks Alex!

I definitely plan to bike regularly when we get out to Cali, we just sold out bikes here to make room for storage of the stuff that is going. I can’t wait to buy a really nice bike and use it all year long!

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3 Kalinda May 18, 2012 at 10:49 am

We started running a few years ago using The Couch to 5k Plan. It really eases you into it. We even made up our own in between weeks a couple times when we felt we weren’t ready for what was called for next.

Good luck with the running and good luck with the house hunting!

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4 tastyyummies May 23, 2012 at 3:25 pm

Thanks Kalinda, I downloaded a couch to 5K app for my iPhone that has been great for easing me into it all. I have gone three times now. I am really enjoying it. I think since I am working with some back stuff and other injuries I have to be mindful of, I am going to take it very slow in the beginning. I am going to stay on week 1 until I really feel like I can do it with ease.

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5 Jen May 18, 2012 at 12:39 pm

Yes! Take it slow with running. That is absolutely key. I started with Hal Higdon’s 30/30 plan which felt ridiculously tame, but I think it really helped my body get in tune without injury. I also had a goal – I signed up for a race – which motivated me to keep building up. When you are more used to it and getting a nice cadence, you might try running 180 steps per minute (I think this is similar to chi running… you can get coaching), which will reduce impact and might help your back.
I never thought I’d run. I, too, am a yogini first! But now I absolutely love it. When you get to the “zen” place in a long run, there’s nothing like it. Your mind-body background will help you avoid the injury a lot of “no pain, no gain” types succumb to. Have fun and thanks for the recipe – I will try it!

http://www.halhigdon.com/training/51237/rr/Beginning-Runners-Guide-30-30-Plan
http://www.nomeatathlete.com/180-steps-per-minute/

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6 tastyyummies May 23, 2012 at 3:31 pm

Jen, thank you so much for all of the wonderful info. It is all so helpful. Right now I am running using an app that eases you into a 5K. It starts with 3 runs per week and they are 30 minute runs. The app tells you when you warm up, when to walk, when to run (alternating in 90 second increments) and when to cool down. At this point it is about half walking, half running, which is great for me since I am just getting started. I am super intrigued by this 180 steps per a minute thing, since today I experienced some inner knee pain during my run (something that has been going on for a while now, before the running).
I am already seeing the benefits of my regular yoga practice with running, from the meditative qualities to the breathing, these are all things I was never able to find before when I attempted running. Thanks again!

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7 Izabela (yoginiselfportrayal.wordpress.com) May 18, 2012 at 2:15 pm

Hi, I have the same problem;) I am not a runner but I am trying to get into running routine. After my last week run I couldn’t move with my lower back. It almost killed me, so be very careful. I think a lot of has to do with overarching, especially when you are forgetting to keep the core engaged. But yeah, it’s hard to remember. Good luck with your run tonight;)

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8 tastyyummies May 23, 2012 at 3:32 pm

Thanks Izabela! I have definitely been as careful as I can during my runs. I am really focusing on taking it slow, paying attention to my breathing and keeping my core engaged. I hope your back is feeling better. Thanks again!

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9 Katy May 18, 2012 at 9:07 pm

Take it slowly, but set a goal for yourself. It will keep you motivated. I’d suggest that once you can get comfy running 1.5+ miles, you sign up for a 5K fun run. Buffalo has TONS of them in the summer… check out buffalorunners.com for a listing/friend them on facebook. It’s a great community! Just did the GreekFest 5K tonight and enjoyed lots of yummy food and good company.

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10 tastyyummies May 23, 2012 at 3:34 pm

Katy – thanks so much for the motivation and the suggestions. I definitely want to sign up for a 5K at some point, when I feel ready. Thanks for that link, I will definitely check it out.
And how did I never know about the GreekFest 5K? That is my Dad’s church, we also go to the Greek Festival every year for amazing food, to see family and to enjoy all of our amazing traditions.
Thanks again Katy!

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11 Adriana May 19, 2012 at 4:45 pm

Congratulations on your anniversary, Beth!:) I hope you find the perfect house.

I love walking and jogging. I tend to get lower back pain and jogging actually helps. Running at a moderate speed and occasionally increasing or running uphill seems to work for me. While jogging I focus on breathing and keeping a good posture.

If you’re decided on running, it might be good on your back to gradually increase speed and time, as well to start with soft surfaces and gradually move to harder.
http://www.runnersworld.co.uk/general/top-10-running-surfaces/152.html

If running doesn’t get easy on your back, then maybe brisk/power walking is the answer. Maintaining a good posture during walking is important. This is a 12 week program, with tips to help you get the best of it.
http://www.health.harvard.edu/newsweek/A-walking-program-to-try.htm
And this is a video demonstrating power walking.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=55flVWE0wkA&feature=related

I hope it all works out well for you:) Best of luck!

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12 tastyyummies May 23, 2012 at 3:38 pm

Wow Adriana thanks for the awesomely filled comment. So much amazing info and I love the links. Since I started with an app that eases you into a 5K and it alternates with running and walking to ease you into it all, I have been taking it a bit easy when running so I don’t hurt myself before I can even fully enjoy it :) I would say right now though I am doing some running, I am also making sure to jog when I know that is what my body needs. The old me would have tried to super run on day 1 and totally ruin it for myself. These days I really understand the importance of listening to your body, taking it all at your own pace and making sure to leave your ego out of it. Those are some of the best lessons I have learned from yoga and I can already see where they are going to come in handy with running. Thanks again Adriana.

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13 Pamela May 20, 2012 at 1:44 pm

Hey! First of all YUM bean dip. I love it.

Second – running. I’ve been running for about 8 years now and since having my baby girl last year I’ve been easing myself back into it. Here’s some of my own tips for getting into it: http://www.mividacontigo.com/tighten-up/you-just-run-some-thoughts-for-starting-out

Good luck! I mix it up with yoga and running too – I can’t think of a better combination personally :) (Oh and swimming is pretty awesome too).

Also….for some mega inspiration and an AWESOME read, try reading ‘Born to Run’. It’s the best book I’ve read in a long time!

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14 tastyyummies May 23, 2012 at 3:45 pm

Pamela! Wow thank you so so much, that post of yours is amazing and so inspiring.
Being a yogi that tries to practice every single day in some capacity and getting to at least 5 90 minute classes a week, I think I was finally prepared and ready to take on running again. There really are some wonderful similarities and the things that I learned from yoga that have really helped me so much with taking on running is to listen to my body, to take it at my own pace and to make sure to leave my ego out of it. I think these are all key things that I was missing in the past when I tried to take on running.
Thank you again for the wonderful suggestions and thoughts and I cannot wait to check out that book you mentioned!

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15 lou May 21, 2012 at 12:20 pm

yay for getting into running! one suggestion i would make would be to make sure you have good running shoes, fit for your running style, they can make all the difference. some running stores have treadmills set up with a camera on it so based on how you run, the store clerk(running expert) can help you find the perfect pair of running shoes.
i also think starting off slow is really important too. a couple miles is the perfect amount and no need to push the speed right away :)

good luck!!

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16 tastyyummies May 23, 2012 at 3:47 pm

Lou – Thanks so so much for the great suggestions. I didn’t know running stores did that – I know we have a store locally, I think I will have to check it out when the time comes to get new shoes!
Thanks again!

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17 Alyssa (Down To Earth) May 24, 2012 at 6:58 am

I made this dip the other day and it turned out fantastic! I’ve been dipping sweet peppers in it like there’s no tomorrow. Thanks for sharing!

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18 Lindsey May 24, 2012 at 8:07 am

Officially inserting your blog into my Google Reader now. Wow.

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19 Sierra May 24, 2012 at 9:54 pm

Hey! This looks sooo good! What do you use for GF crackers? other than peppers etc

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20 ingrid May 29, 2012 at 4:29 am

Hi Beth, I am also new in running, just started last march. I did a running clinic in the Netherlands here, its called: start to run. In 6 weeks we learned how to run 3 kilomters non stop, building slowly slowy, which is the big challenge indeed! And loving it!!
And the tip I have for you is to check out your shoes. My instructor told us that runningshoes last for a year (when used). But.. the gel inside the shoes also loses its flex or something when they are not used . So please be careful with your back problem, let your shoes be checked out by a pro.
Have fun! And..as always loving your indian food!!

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21 amber June 4, 2012 at 7:05 pm

cool site – found you from eat more green food.
my two cents: I do run, and have the knee pain, IT-band pain, periformis pain, and hamstring pain to go along with all of it. So, my best advice to you – stretch before & after your run. I know that as a yogi, you may feel like you don’t need to stretch w/ running cos you do in in class. Big mistake (take it from me!!!). Make sure you stretch those spots I mentioned. (IT band, hammies, and take care of your knees). What I wish someone would have told me: WALK BACKWARDS! I have been fighting w/ a hammie injury for many months now, and everyone says the two things I do wrong are: not walking backwards, and not icing. (the second part was from my physical therapist). My tight IT band is contributing to some unhappy low back pain, which is made worse by backbends in class. Very sad!

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22 amber June 19, 2012 at 10:04 pm

Hi There Beth,

I’m crazy about white bean dips, I have several recipes on my blog in fact. Your recipe here really caught my eye last week on AFW.

So just a note to let you know I featured your awesome recipe this week on Allergy-Free Wednesdays. Your recipe and other highlights can be seen here: http://www.thetastyalternative.com/2012/06/allergy-free-wednesdays-week-22-june-20.html

I always enjoy your creative, healthy recipes. :-)

Be Well,
–Amber

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23 Mollie Frances June 24, 2012 at 10:24 am

Hi! I found your blog looking for bean dip recipes, it’s great! I linked to it in my post for Greek Layer Dip.

http://www.thealmondflower.com/2012/06/greek-layer-dip-naturally-gluten-and.html

I can’t wait to read more!
Mollie
TheAlmondFlower.com

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