Big football games mean football-watching parties. (Or this year, again, a more intimate gathering.)

And you know what that means – mayonnaise-based dips, fat-drenched fried chicken wings and maximum use of bacon.

But guess what: Smoked trout fillets pack as much flavor as bacon, with a lot less fat and fewer calories. They’re also easy to find at stores like Trader Joe’s. Even farmers’ markets often have locally caught smoked trout fillets these days. With all the smoky flavor and chunky texture, no one will notice that you skipped the mayo for plain Greek yogurt and lots of lemon juice and zest.

Serve the spread with your favorite whole-wheat crackers, and it will disappear faster than a certain team’s bowl game chances.

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Smoked Trout Spread

From “The Food Lover’s Cleanse,” by Sara Dickerman (William Morrow, 2015).

  • 1 large lemon
  • 2 smoked trout fillets (not canned)
  • 4 teaspoons chopped fresh dill
  • 2 tablespoons plain, nonfat Greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste


  1. Grate the zest from most of the lemon to get about 2 tablespoons. Squeeze out the juice to yield about 1 1/2 tablespoons. Place in a small serving bowl.
  2. Remove and discard the skin from the trout and crumble the fish into small bits, discarding any small bones. (If you want a smoother texture, you could pulse it briefly in a food processor, but chunky makes a better texture.)
  3. Stir in the dill, yogurt and oil and use a wooden spoon or a fork to mash it all together until it’s chunky but spreadable. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Garnish with a little more dill and serve with crackers.

Makes 1 cup, or 8 (2-tablespoon) servings. Per serving: 45 calories; 3.9 g fat; 5.2 mg cholesterol; 74 mg sodium; 2.2 g protein.