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  • Writer's pictureGina Greenlee, Author

Power Recipe #1: Warm Brussel Black Bean Dip

Brussel Sprouts
Cyrus Crossan on

I can cook. More often, though, I prefer to assemble. What’s the power in this recipe besides a nifty blogpost headline?

· Ridiculously simple to prepare

· Vitamin-and fiber-rich

· Low cost

· Additive-free


1 pound bag of these (frozen):

Brussel Sprouts

A can of these:

Black Beans

A tub of this:

Trader Joe's Zhoug Sauce

“Zhoug (pronounced ZhOOg) is a cilantro-based sauce/condiment. Importantly, it’s a spicy cilantro-based sauce/condiment. It’s been likened to “Middle Eastern pesto” – a comparison that, in our opinion, completely shortchanges the originality of this spicy, fragrant, flavorful creation.”

I couldn’t agree more with the opening of this Trader Joe’s article. When I first tasted zhoug I thought, this is what pesto should taste like. Meaning, pesto is an incredibly vibrant green and yet the taste doesn’t match its zing.

Not so with zhoug.

“The ingredients are straightforward: cilantro, canola oil, jalapeño peppers, chili flakes, garlic, cardamom, sea salt, and cumin seeds, “writes Trader Joe’s.” Our label reads ‘very spicy,’ and this is very true.”

My tip: if you don’t like super spicy foods, use less. If you don’t like spicy foods at all, this isn’t your recipe. Alternatively, prepare this dip for someone you love who loves spicy and cilantro. (Two kinds of people on planet Earth: those who love cilantro and those for whom it tastes like soap.)

“Traditionally served alongside hummus and falafel…its uses are only limited by your culinary imagination,” says Trader Joe’s.

Since my discovery, I put it on EVERYTHING.

◊ ◊ ◊


One of these:

Microwave and Stove


Potato Masher


In microwave-safe bowl, cook Brussel sprouts for 5 minutes (they need to be soft enough to mash).

Empty beans into a separate microwave-safe bowl. Heat for 2 minutes.

Combine ingredients into one big bowl. Mash.

Add a healthy dollop of zhoug – think serving spoon size. (Roughly three tablespoons).

Mix well.

Get you some chips, pita slices or your favorite crunchy snack and go to town.

Also, try it plain as a low-carb snack, a sandwich spread or as a salad dressing over a bag of broccoli slaw or artesian greens.

Power up, ya’ll.


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