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10 New Ways to Eat Yogurt That Will Transform Your World

author image Patricia Bannan, MS, RD
Patricia Bannan, MS, RD, is a freelance writer, frequent guest expert on news shows and author of "Eat Right When Time Is Tight." She is passionate about helping people reach their health and wellness goals.

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10 New Ways to Eat Yogurt That Will Transform Your World
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Love yogurt but not in the mood for something sweet? Go with savory yogurt, instead! You’ll begin with a cup of plain yogurt, and then dress it up with a variety of herbs, fruits, vegetables and nuts -- whatever you like. But be warned: Once you try one of our 10 savory yogurt ideas, you’ll never look at packaged, flavored yogurt again. So what are you waiting for? Skip the yogurt aisle and head to the kitchen to start tossing cucumbers, pine nuts and more onto your yogurt.

1. Cherry Tomatoes, Basil, Garlic
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1 Cherry Tomatoes, Basil, Garlic

This refreshing, Caprese-style yogurt is all about the tomatoes — juicy, garden-fresh tomatoes! An excellent source of vitamin C, tomatoes are known for being rich in the antioxidant lycopene, which helps promote skin and heart health. Sweet basil has been found to exhibit anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial and anticancer properties. And garlic is high in a sulfur compound called allicin, which may help protect the heart, boost the immune system and reduce blood pressure. Start by topping plain yogurt with a handful of halved cherry tomatoes, a sprinkling of minced garlic and a few torn basil leaves. Drizzle some extra-virgin olive oil on top and season with sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper.

2. Cucumber, Radishes, Toasted Sesame Seeds
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2 Cucumber, Radishes, Toasted Sesame Seeds

This delightfully fresh yogurt dish is the perfect combination of crisp and tangy. Made mostly of water — 95 percent to be exact — cucumbers offer a hydrating crunch. They’re abundant in fiber and nutrients, including potassium, vitamin C and magnesium. Radishes can also naturally cool your body and aid in digestion. For a final flavor and nutritional boost, toasted sesame seeds offer a kick of umami (or savory taste sensation) as well as some additional protein, fiber and nutrients. You’ll top plain yogurt with some thinly sliced cucumbers and radishes. Sprinkle on toasted sesame seeds (the contrast of black sesame seeds looks particularly appealing in this dish). Squeeze fresh lemon or lime juice on top and season with a dash of sea salt.

3. Roasted Beets, Avocado, Red Onion, Orange Zest
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3 Roasted Beets, Avocado, Red Onion, Orange Zest

Full of earthy flavor, this savory yogurt bowl is as gorgeous as it is hearty. Low in calories, beets offer an array of nutrients and antioxidants that are beneficial for heart and eye health. They also help to protect your skin from premature aging and wrinkles. Avocados brim with nearly 20 vitamins and minerals. They’re also rich in “good” monounsaturated fats, which have been shown to help lower bad cholesterol when eaten in moderation. Begin by topping plain yogurt with a roasted beet (diced or sliced). Add sliced avocado and a few thin slices of red onion. Top with some grated orange zest and season with sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper.

4. Roasted Red Peppers, Capers, Crumbled Parmesan Cheese
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4 Roasted Red Peppers, Capers, Crumbled Parmesan Cheese

This simple yogurt bowl delivers vibrant color and flavor. Bursting with immunity-boosting vitamin C, red peppers also contain vitamin A for eye health and calcium for bone health. Although high in sodium — a little goes a long way — capers are a mainstay in the heart-healthy Mediterranean diet. They’re low in calories and contain an array of antioxidants and vitamins. The brininess of both the capers and Parmesan cheese provide a great counterbalance to the sweetness of the roasted peppers. To make, top plain yogurt with a handful of roasted pepper slices. Add a sprinkling of capers and crumbled Parmesan cheese. Season with freshly cracked black pepper.

5. Cucumber, Dill, Pistachios
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5 Cucumber, Dill, Pistachios

Give your yogurt a refreshing spin with cucumber and dill. Low in calories and naturally hydrating, cucumbers provide vitamin K and potassium for heart and bone health. Some chemicals in dill can help relax muscles and help fight bacteria. For added crunch and nutrition, pistachios are the secret weapon in this dish. They’re one of the lowest-fat, lowest-calorie snack nuts. Plus, nearly 90 percent of the fats found in pistachios are the healthy, unsaturated type. Begin by topping plain yogurt with thinly sliced cucumbers. Toss in roughly chopped pistachios and a few fresh dill sprigs, and season with a dash of sea salt.

6. Arugula, Pesto, Olives
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6 Arugula, Pesto, Olives

Peppery arugula, nutty pesto and buttery olives elevate plain yogurt from blah to amazing. Packed with vitamin A, vitamin C and potassium, arugula also offers an array of health-promoting phytochemicals (or beneficial plant compounds), which help reduce the risk of certain types of cancer. Chock-full of nutrients and healthy fats, pesto is made from basil, olive oil and Parmesan cheese. Important in the Mediterranean cuisine, olives have been linked to better health and a lower risk of chronic diseases. To make, top plain yogurt with a handful of arugula. Add the juice of one lemon, about a tablespoon of pesto (a little goes a long way) and a few sliced Kalamata or green olives.

7. Mushrooms, Feta, Pine Nuts
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7 Mushrooms, Feta, Pine Nuts

This savory yogurt features seared mushrooms topped with creamy feta cheese and crunchy pine nuts. Low in calories, mushrooms provide an array of B vitamins, potassium and vitamin D. Packed with calcium and protein, feta cheese adds a savory kick, while pine nuts pack a crunch. Add a handful of sauteed mini portobello or brown mushrooms to plain yogurt. Drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil, crumbled feta cheese and pine nuts. Season with a dash of sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper.

8. Mango, Lime, Chili Flakes, Sea Salt
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8 Mango, Lime, Chili Flakes, Sea Salt

Chile and sea salt-flecked mangos with a squeeze of lime create a wonderfully tart and bright contrast to unsweetened yogurt. A juicy tropical fruit, mangos are packed with more than 20 different vitamins and minerals. And in fact, one cup of sliced mango provides 100 percent of your daily requirement for vitamin C. For a final zesty kick, chili flakes may help reduce inflammation, boost immunity and stabilize blood sugar levels. Top plain yogurt with a handful of fresh-diced mango, a squeeze of fresh lime juice and half a teaspoon of red chili flakes. Season with a dash of sea salt.

9. Sweet Potato, Coconut, Cilantro, Lime
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9 Sweet Potato, Coconut, Cilantro, Lime

Coconut flakes and sweet potatoes offer a healthy comfort food that’s as nutritious as it is satisfying. Packed with calcium, potassium and vitamins A and C, sweet potatoes are some the most nutritious foods in the vegetable kingdom. Because coconut flakes are a concentrated source of calories, a little can go a long way when it comes to flavor. Cilantro and lime give this dish a Latin kick and provide additional vitamin C and antioxidants for good health. Add about a quarter cup of steamed and diced sweet potatoes to plain yogurt. Sprinkle on thick coconut flakes and extra-virgin olive oil. Add some roughly chopped cilantro and a squeeze of fresh lime juice to taste. Season with a dash of sea salt.

10. Smoked Salmon, Capers, Fresh Dill, Whole-Wheat Bagel Chips
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10 Smoked Salmon, Capers, Fresh Dill, Whole-Wheat Bagel Chips

Inspired by the classic combo of lox on a bagel, this yogurt bowl can be pulled together in just a matter of minutes. Bonus: It’s packed with more protein and less carbs than the original version. Although rich in protein, healthy fats, vitamin B-12 and iron, smoked salmon is also high in sodium, so small amounts are best. Capers, though also high in sodium, provide a savory kick and an array of antioxidants and vitamins. The flavor and medicinal benefits of a few fresh sprigs of dill complete this brunch-inspired classic. To make, top plain yogurt with smoked salmon (cut into bite-size pieces), capers and fresh dill springs. Add a few whole-wheat bagel crisps for the perfect crunch.

What Do YOU Think?
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What Do YOU Think?

Do you have a favorite savory yogurt recipe? Would you be interested in trying any topping suggestions in the article? Share your thoughts and recipe ideas in the comments section below!

Related: 12 Easy, Savory Oatmeal Recipes for Any Time of Day

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