Svelte Green Goddess Dip

Svelte Green Goddess dip takes the cool and creamy herbal classic and lightens it up a bit. Anchovies add a hit of umami, while low-fat sour cream keeps it velvety.

A light-blue gravy boat filled with svelte green goddess dip

Those of you with an herb garden will find this low-calorie green goddess dip recipe easy to make—the recipe turns a bundle of freshly clipped herbs into a delicate green, creamy sauce. The perfect dippers to go with it are garden-fresh vegetables such as asparagus spears, baby carrots, radishes, and cucumber.–Diane Morgan

*Can I use full-fat mayo?

Let’s be clear about one thing, shall we? This is not The Original Green Goddess Dip. We can’t imagine that was ever dubbed “svelte,” in any incarnation or any era. This tweaked rendition, though not quite classic, is definitely svelte. Or rather, svelte-inducing. Of course, if you prefer to use full-fat sour cream and mayo rather than low-fat, we’re not about to stop you. We may, though, remind you that while thick-cut, kettle-cooked potato chips are tempting, virtuous vegetables become vixen-like when swiped through this super creamy dip.

Svelte Green Goddess Dip

  • Quick Glance
  • (2)
  • 15 M
  • 15 M
  • Serves 12 | Makes 1 1/2 cups
5/5 - 2 reviews
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In the work-bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade, process the anchovies, garlic, scallions, parsley, cilantro, dill, tarragon, basil, vinegar, salt, sugar, and pepper until finely chopped. Stop the machine once or twice to scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula.

Add the sour cream and mayonnaise and process until smooth. Scoop into a serving bowl, cover, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour to allow the flavors to meld. (This dip can be prepared up to 2 days in advance. Cover and refrigerate. Remove from the refrigerator 10 minutes before serving.) Originally published September 20, 2010.

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Recipe Testers' Reviews

Absolutely the very best! With a houseful of runners here this weekend, the Green Goddess dip and salad dressing was just perfect. It got a thumbs up from everyone and requests for the recipe. No one would change a thing (we used the full-fat version). This will be one of the house specials here.

I made the “voluptuous” version of this dip, using full-fat sour cream and mayo, not because I thought the low-fat version would be bad, but because the full-fat ingredients happened to be sitting in my fridge. It was fantastic. Having so many different flavors going into it, one might think the dip would taste muddled or that there would be a clash, but it’s beautifully balanced and bright. Great with vegetables or crackers.

It’s also not too thick to use as a salad dressing. My husband tried it over a salad and loved it. Even though I didn’t try the low-fat ingredients, I have a feeling that the dip would still be very good because there’s so much herbal flavor. Definitely a keeper.


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  1. I made this dip many times in the early 70’s always to rave reviews. Difference is there wasn’t light mayo or sour cream then and the only herbs the recipe called for was parsley and dill. Not having a food processor then—if there were any I’d never heard of one—I simply made it in a blender, and would chill it overnight for the flavors to blend. Still remains one of my favorite standbys, with lots of fresh vegetables on ice. The 70’s weren’t so bad in some ways!

  2. Sorry, this dressing might be good, but it is not Green Goddess. Too many people radically change the recipe and call it something it’s not. Green Goddess was created at the Palace Hotel in San Francisco to honor George Arliss, the lead actor in the movie The Green Goddess. Arlis and cast were staying at the Palace when the chef created the dressing for Arliss. Here is the real Palace Hotel recipe. Californians, there is no avocado or cilantro (nor dill or basil) in it:

    Green Goddess Dressing

    1 tablespoon anchovie paste
    1 cup mayonnaise
    1 cup plain yogurt
    1 green onion, chopped
    4 teaspoons chopped parsley
    2 teaspoons chopped chives
    1 Tablespoon apple cider vinegar
    1/4 teaspoon dried OR 1 teaspoon cut, fresh tarragon

    Put in a blender and keep it going until blended very smooth, about 1 minute. Very simple and delicious. This recipe is also very popular in Europe as a dressing for Belgian Fries.

    1. T., thank you for the comprehensive story behind Green Goddess Dressing and of the role it played at the Palace Hotel. When we asked our recipes testers to put the dish through its paces, and then later decided to post it, we thought, like the author, that by calling it Svelte Green Goddess Dressing, it was clear it wasn’t the classic. But I see we weren’t clear enough and didn’t tip our hat to the original. Thank you for the reminder. I’ll make sure something is added to the LC Note to address this. (As far as changing the title, we’d have to do battle with a publisher!)

  3. We have a Thanksgiving/Christmas recipe that uses Green Goddess dressing. Unfortunately, it entered our holiday repertoire in honor of the vegan boy, so we end up buying vegan green goddess dressing. This sounds so much better. Hmmm maybe the kid will be un-vegan by Christmas.

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