Cooking With Greek Yogurt: 7 Savory Recipes to Try

Greek yogurt, a low-calorie source of protein and calcium, proves its versatility in these recipes from The Greek Yogurt Diet: The Fresh New Way to Lose Weight Naturally, by physician and recipe developer Sonali Ruder, DO, and health author Jo Brielyn.

By Sonali Ruder and Jo Brielyn from The Greek Yogurt Diet: The Fresh New Way to Lose Weight Naturally (Hatherleigh Press)
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    Sonali Ruder from The Greek Yogurt Diet

    Florentine Frittata

    Ingredients
    6 large eggs, plus 6 egg whites
    ¾ cup nonfat Greek yogurt
    Kosher salt and black pepper
    ¼ cup chopped sundried tomatoes
    1 tablespoon olive oil
    2 cloves garlic, minced
    3 scallions, chopped plus extra, for garnish
    4 ounces baby spinach (about 4 cups)
    2 ounces goat cheese

    Prep time: 10 minutes
    Cook time: 20 minutes
    Serves 6


    Directions
    Preheat oven to 400°F. Whisk the eggs and egg whites, Greek yogurt, 1 teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper together in a large bowl. Stir in sundried tomatoes.

    Heat oil in a 12-inch oven-safe skillet on medium heat. Add garlic and scallions and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add spinach, and cook 2–3 minutes until just wilted. Season with salt and pepper. Pour egg mixture into the skillet. Cook for a few minutes until the edges start to set. As it cooks, gently push the edges towards the middle with a spatula, allowing the liquid to go to the bottom of the skillet.

    Sprinkle the cheese evenly over the eggs and place the skillet in the oven. Bake 10–12 minutes until cooked and puffed up. For a golden color, broil for another 2–3 minutes. Garnish with scallions and serve.

    All recipes from The Greek Yogurt Diet: The Fresh New Way to Lose Weight Naturally by Dr. Sonali Ruder and Jo Brielyn published by Hatherleigh Press distributed by Random House. © 2014. Photographs © Dr. Sonali Ruder.

    Sonali Ruder from The Greek Yogurt Diet

    Creamy Penne with Shrimp and Spinach

    Ingredients
    12 ounces whole wheat penne
    4 teaspoons olive oil, divided use
    1 pound large (31–35 count) shrimp, peeled and deveined
    3 cloves garlic, minced
    ¼ teaspoon chili flakes
    1 medium yellow onion, chopped
    1 can (28-ounces) crushed tomatoes
    3 cups baby spinach
    1 cup nonfat or low fat Greek yogurt
    ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
    ½ cup chopped, fresh basil
    Salt, to taste
    Pepper, to taste

    Prep time: 5 minutes
    Cook time: 35 minutes
    Serves 6


    Directions
    Cook penne according to package directions until al dente. Drain.

    Meanwhile, heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large pan over medium heat. Season shrimp with salt and pepper and add them to the pan. Cook until just cooked through, 3–4 minutes. Remove shrimp from the pan.

    Heat the remaining 2 teaspoons oil in the pan. Add garlic and chili flakes and cook 1 minute until fragrant. Add the onion and cook 5–6 minutes until softened. Add tomatoes and cook another 8–10 minutes until sauce thickens. Stir in spinach and cook 2 minutes until wilted. Turn the heat to low and stir in yogurt, cheese, basil, and cooked shrimp. Season with salt and pepper.

    Sonali Ruder from The Greek Yogurt Diet

    Tandoori Chicken Kebabs with Cucumber Raita

    Ingredients
    ½ cup nonfat Greek yogurt
    1 tablespoon chopped fresh ginger
    1 clove garlic, chopped
    2 teaspoons garam masala*
    1 teaspoon ground coriander
    1 teaspoon ground cumin
    ¼–½ teaspoon cayenne pepper (depending on how spicy you like it)
    1 teaspoon paprika
    ¼ teaspoon turmeric (optional)
    1 teaspoon kosher salt
    2 teaspoons lemon juice
    2 teaspoons grapeseed, vegetable or other neutral-flavored oil
    4 boneless, skinless chicken thighs (about 18 ounces), trimmed of fat and cut into 1-inch pieces
    Grapeseed or vegetable oil for brushing the grill
    Cilantro leaves, for garnish

    For the Cucumber Raita
    ¾ cup nonfat Greek yogurt
    ½ cup finely diced English cucumber
    1 teaspoon ground cumin
    2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
    1/8 teaspoon kosher salt

    Prep time: 25 minutes
    Cook time: 10 minutes
    Inactive time: 3 hours
    Serves 4


    Directions
    To make the marinade for the chicken, puree all kabob ingredients (except the chicken, the grapeseed/vegetable oil and cilantro) in a food processor or blender until smooth.

    Place chicken and marinade in a shallow glass dish, stirring to coat all of the chicken pieces. Marinate at least 2-3 hours or overnight.

    Heat a grill or grill pan over medium high heat and brush the grill with oil. Thread the chicken onto 8 9-inch-long skewers. If using wooden skewers, soak them in cold water for 20 minutes first. Grill the kebabs for about 10 minutes, turning them over halfway through. Remove them from the grill and serve with cucumber raita and naan.

    To make the cucumber raita, mix all of the ingredients together in a small bowl. Chill before serving.

    *Garam masala is an Indian blend of dried spices commonly used in Indian cooking. Most varieties contain a mixture of spices that includes peppercorns, cloves, cumin, coriander, and cardamom. If you don’t have it, you can leave it out and increase the amount of cumin and coriander in the marinade.

    Sonali Ruder from The Greek Yogurt Diet

    Mushroom Smothered Pork Chops

    Ingredients
    4 pork chops (5 ounces each), about ¾-inch thick
    6 teaspoons olive oil, divided use
    8 ounces cremini mushrooms, sliced
    2 cloves garlic, minced
    ½ cup dry white wine
    2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
    2 teaspoons fresh thyme, chopped
    ½ cup low sodium chicken stock
    ¼ cup Greek yogurt
    Salt and pepper, to taste

    Prep time: 10 minutes
    Cook time: 20 minutes
    Serves 4


    Directions
    Season pork chops with salt and pepper. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large skillet over medium high heat and add the pork chops. Cook 3 minutes, then flip and cook another 3 minutes. Cover the skillet, reduce the heat to medium low, and cook another 5–6 minutes until cooked through. Transfer the chops to a plate and tent with foil to keep warm.

    Heat 2 more teaspoons oil in the skillet over medium high heat. Add mushrooms and cook, stirring often, until lightly browned and softened. Season with salt and pepper. Place the mushrooms on a plate.

    Add the remaining 2 teaspoons oil to the skillet. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add wine and cook until reduced by half. Whisk in mustard and thyme, and then stir in the chicken stock. Cook a few minutes until partially reduced. Take the skillet off the heat and stir in the yogurt, salt, and pepper. Pour the sauce over the pork chops and serve.

    Sonali Ruder from The Greek Yogurt Diet

    Caramelized Onion Yogurt Dip

    Ingredients
    1 tablespoon olive oil
    2 pounds large yellow onions (about 2 onions), thinly sliced
    ¾ teaspoon kosher salt, divided use
    1 teaspoon chopped, fresh thyme
    ¼ cup dry white wine (can substitute water)
    1½ cups nonfat Greek yogurt
    ½ cup reduced fat sour cream
    ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
    ¼ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
    ½ teaspoon salt
    ¼ teaspoon black pepper

    Prep time: 10 minutes
    Cook time: 45-55 minutes
    Serves 12


    Directions
    Heat oil in a large pan over medium heat and add onions. Stir to coat onions with oil. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes, until onions start to soften. Add ¼ teaspoon salt and thyme, and stir to combine. If desired, add about ¼ teaspoon of sugar to help the onions caramelize.

    Continue to cook the onions, stirring occasionally, about 35-45 minutes until they are golden brown and caramelized. As they cook, scrape up the fond (the brown bits) on the bottom of the pan and mix it into the onions. If the onions start to burn or catch on the bottom, add a little wine or water to the pan. Once the onions are done, add the remaining wine to the pan and stir to release the brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Cool the onions, then chop them.

    Mix yogurt, sour cream, garlic powder, Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper in a bowl. Set some caramelized onions aside for garnish and stir the rest into the yogurt mixture. Garnish with reserved onions and serve. For maximum flavor, make the dip a few hours before serving.

    Sonali Ruder from The Greek Yogurt Diet

    Portobello Paprikash

    Ingredients
    1½ tablespoons olive oil
    1 medium onion, finely chopped
    3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
    4 large Portobello mushroom caps, sliced ½-inch thick
    1 tablespoon sweet Hungarian paprika
    1⁄8–¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
    2 teaspoons flour (ex. white whole wheat)
    ¼ cup red wine
    2 plum tomatoes, finely chopped
    1 tablespoon tomato paste
    2/3 cup vegetable or chicken stock
    ½ cup Greek yogurt
    ¼ cup chopped parsley, divided use
    Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste

    Prep time: 10 minutes
    Cook time: 20-25 minutes
    Serves 4


    Directions
    Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat and add the onion. Sauté until tender, 5–6 minutes. Add garlic and cook another minute until fragrant. Turn the heat up to medium-high and add mushroom slices. Season with salt and pepper. Cook 2–3 minutes until they start to soften, stirring frequently.

    Add paprika, cayenne and flour, and stir to combine. Add the wine to the skillet and cook until it is reduced by half. Add tomatoes, tomato paste and stock, and simmer 6–8 minutes until the mushrooms are cooked and sauce is thickened. Season with salt and pepper. Turn the heat down to low and stir in yogurt and 3 tablespoons parsley. Cook another minute until heated through but not boiling. Serve with egg noodles or rice, and garnish with the remaining parsley.

    Sonali Ruder from The Greek Yogurt Diet

    Chipotle Sweet Potato Soup

    Ingredients
    1 tablespoon olive oil
    1 medium yellow onion, chopped
    3 cloves garlic, chopped
    1½ teaspoons minced chipotles in adobo
    1 teaspoon ground cumin
    2 pounds sweet potatoes (about 4 medium), peeled and chopped
    1 quart low sodium chicken or vegetable broth
    2 cups water
    2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
    ¾ cup nonfat Greek yogurt plus extra, for garnish
    Salt and pepper, to taste

    Prep time: 10 minutes
    Cook time: 30 minutes
    Serves 6


    Directions
    Heat oil in large pot over medium high heat and add the onion. Sauté onion 5–6 minutes until softened. Stir in garlic, chipotles, and cumin and cook another minute until fragrant. Add sweet potatoes, broth, water, 1 teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer. Cover and cook 20 minutes until sweet potatoes are cooked. Using an immersion blender, puree soup until smooth. Add ¾ cup yogurt and puree it into the soup. Alternatively, transfer the soup to a blender and puree in batches. Add salt and pepper to taste. To serve, swirl a dollop of yogurt into each bowl and garnish with cilantro.

    About the book:

    For more Greek yogurt recipes, see The Greek Yogurt Diet: The Fresh New Way to Lose Weight Naturally here, or wherever books are sold.

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