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Easy Cheesy Pizza Dip



– 1 cup Real California cottage cheese – 2 tablespoons Real California milk – 1 1/2 teaspoons dried Italian seasoning blend – 1 1/4 cups shredded Real California Mozzarella cheese, divided – 3/4 cup pizza sauce or marinara sauce – 8 to 12 slices pepperoni, halved (optional) – 1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh basil (optional) – 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon crushed red peppers (optional) – Pita chips, crostini, or pizza dough crisps, for serving :Pepperoni, Mozzarella, Pizza, Dip, Cheese, Cottage Cheese, Milk
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Prep time: 15 minutes

In the bowl of a food processor, combine cottage cheese, milk, seasoning blend, and 1 cup cheese and pulse to puree.

Transfer to a serving bowl and top with pizza sauce and remaining 1/4 cup cheese. Add pepperoni, basil, if using, and/or crushed red peppers, if using. Serve with pita chips, crostini, or pizza dough crisps.

Makes about 2 1/4 cups.

NOTE: To serve the dip warm, preheat the oven to 375°F. Prepare the dip as directed above, omitting the milk, and arrange it in a shallow ovenproof serving dish or pie pan, omitting the basil. Bake until heated through and the cheese is bubbling, about 30 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes before topping with the basil, if using, and serving.

Recipe and image by Jill Silverman Hough for the CMAB