July 4th Brownies and Layered Taco Dip! Recipes for Your Holiday

Independence Day often means fun backyard barbecues and picnics with family and friends. Unfortunately that also tends to mean that you’ll be surrounded by unhealthy food choices tempting you to fall off the wagon and abandon your health and fitness goals. Don’t let temptation win. Instead make any number of these healthy picnic recipes for your celebration.Enjoy a healthy long holiday weekend and enjoy!! 

Cream Cheese Swirl Brownies
Makes: 16 Brownies

For Brownies:

  • 1 avocado
  • ½ c unsweetened applesauce
  • 3/8 c maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 egg white
  • ¼ c almond flour
  • ¼ c soy flour
  • ½ c unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tbsp hemp seeds

For Cream Cheese Swirl:

  • 4 oz Neufchatel (low fat cream cheese), softened
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 egg


  • Preheat your oven to 350˚ and spray a 9×9 square pan with your favorite nonstick spray.
  • In a food processor, blend together the avocado, applesauce, maple syrup, and vanilla until no lumps remain and the mixture is smooth. Scrape the avocado mixture into a mixing bowl and whisk in the eggs.
  • Add the flours, cocoa, salt, baking powder, and hemp seeds, and stir briskly until the mixture is smooth.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the cream cheese filling ingredients until very well blended.
  • Spread about 2/3 of the brownie batter in the prepared pan and top with all the cream cheese mixture. Dollop the extra brownie batter on top of this and spread it a little to give the brownies a marbled effect.
  • Bake your brownies for around 25-28 minutes, depending on your oven. The brownies are done when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean or with a few crumbs attached. Don’t overbake them or you risk turning the cream cheese filling into a baked egg custard! It’s ok if the cream cheese is still a little gooey when you take them out.
  • Let cool completely, cut into 16 squares, and enjoy! 

Nutrition Facts:

Serving Size 1 Brownie

  • Calories 110
  • Calories from Fat 60
  • Total Fat 6.7g
  • Saturated Fat 2.1g
  • Cholesterol 36mg
  • Sodium 157mg
  • Potassium 140mg
  • Carbohydrates 10.2g
  • Dietary Fiber 2.2g
  • Sugars 6.3g
  • Protein 4g

10 Layer Taco Dip
Serves 8


  • 6 cooked, cooled servings of ISOPASTA Penne (10.56 oz dried)
  • 1 c Fat Free Fromage Blanc
  • ½ c salsa
  • ½ c red onion, diced small
  • 1 can black beans
  • 2 avocados, diced
  • 1 can diced mild green chilies
  • 1 c sliced black olives
  • 1 c shredded pepper jack cheese
  • 2 tomatoes, diced
  • ¼ c cilantro, chopped


  • In a small bowl, stir together Fromage Blanc and salsa until blended.
  • In a large clear glass bowl, layer penne, salsa sauce, onion, beans, avocados, chilies, olives, cheese, tomatoes, and cilantro. Enjoy!

Nutrition Facts:

Serving Size 1 Serving

  • Calories 561.5
  • Calories from Fat 205.3
  • Total Fat 22.7g
  • Saturated Fat 8.6g
  • Cholesterol 33mg
  • Sodium 557.5mg
  • Potassium 1137mg
  • Net Carbohydrates 33.7g
  • Sugars 4.4g
  • Protein 44.6g
Zeke Samples