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Crunchy Cucumber Salad

Crunchy Cucumber Salad Recipe

This summer salad is full of vitamin-rich vegetables. It is dressed in a slightly spiced vinaigrette that goes well with the refreshing cucumber. A few nuts sprinkled on top supply healthy plant protein.

Yield: 2 servings

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Ingredients

3 small cucumbers, such as Persian cucumbers

1/8 tsp fine ground sea salt

2 medium carrots, cut into matchsticks

¼ tsp dark sesame oil

¼ tsp unseasoned rice vinegar

¼ tsp sriracha hot sauce

¼ cup raw cashews

Directions

Use a vegetable peeler to cut the cucumbers into thin ribbons. Place the cucumber ribbons in a medium bowl. Sprinkle with the salt and let sit for 10 minutes.

Squeeze the cucumbers to extract excess water and drain. Add the carrots to the bowl.

Add the sesame oil, rice vinegar and sriracha. Stir the salad well. Sprinkle with cashews and serve.

Nutrition information for 1 serving: Calories 130; Total Fat 8.3 g; Saturated Fat 1.1 g; Trans Fat 0 g; Cholesterol 0 mg; Sodium 195 mg; Carbohydrate 12.6 g; Fiber 3.7 g; Sugar 5.2 g; Protein 3.5 g

Creamy Pasta with Summer Squash

Creamy Pasta with Summer Squash Recipe

Pastas with creamy sauces are satisfying, but they are also loaded with calories and saturated fat. By using part-skim ricotta cheese and seasonal vegetables, you can create a healthier meal that mimics traditional favorites.

Yield: 4 servings

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: 15 minutes

Ingredients

1 tbsp olive oil

1/3 cup diced onion

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 ½ cups sliced zucchini

3 cups cooked whole wheat pasta (like linguine)

¾ cup part skim ricotta cheese

1 tsp lemon zest

¼ tsp ground black pepper

2 tsp chopped fresh basil

Directions

Heat the oil over medium-high in a large, deep skillet. Add the onion and garlic, and cook for 3 minutes. Add the zucchini and cook, stirring often, for 7 to 10 more minutes, until the zucchini is slightly tender.

Reduce the heat to low and stir in the cooked pasta. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the ricotta, lemon zest, and black pepper. Sprinkle with the fresh basil and serve.

Nutrition information for 1 serving: Calories 245; Total Fat 8.5 g; Saturated Fat 3.5 g; Trans Fat 0 g; Cholesterol 22 mg; Sodium 278 mg; Carbohydrate 35.5 g; Fiber 5.9 g; Sugar 4.1 g; Protein 10.7 g

Summer Melon Salad

Summer Melon Salad Recipe

Melon contains few calories and it is rich in vitamins A and C. It also has a high water content, which helps to keep you hydrated. This salad is a sweet and salty combination of fresh melon and crumbled feta cheese. It makes an easy breakfast, or serve it as a side dish at your next picnic.

Yield: 6 servings

Preparation time: 20 minutes

Ingredients

2 cups diced cantaloupe

2 cups diced honeydew melon

2 green onions, sliced

2 tsp chopped fresh basil

1/8 tsp ground black pepper

2 tbsp crumbled feta cheese

Directions

Place the cantaloupe and honeydew melon in a bowl. Add the onions, basil and black pepper, and stir well.

Sprinkle with the feta cheese just before serving.

Nutrition information for 1 serving: Calories 48; Total Fat 0.9 g; Saturated Fat 0.5 g; Trans Fat 0 g; Cholesterol 3 mg; Sodium 54 mg; Carbohydrate 9.9 g; Fiber 1.1 g; Sugar 9.0 g; Protein 1.3 g

Tex-Mex Chopped Salad

Tex-Mex Chopped Salad Recipe

This salad uses seasonal ingredients for fresh flavor and beans for protein. Lightly sautéed vegetables and chopped avocado eliminate the need for salad dressing, which decreases total calories and fat. Enjoy it as a side dish at dinner, or take it to work for a healthy lunch.

Yield: 4 servings

Preparation time: 20 minutes

Cooking time: 10 minutes

Ingredients

1 tbsp olive oil, divided

1 ½ cup chopped red bell pepper

½ cup onion, chopped

1 clove garlic, minced

Kernels from 1 ear of fresh corn (about 2/3 cup)

½ tsp chili powder

¼ tsp fine ground sea salt

¼ tsp ground black pepper

1 tsp fresh lime juice

2 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro

8 to 10 cups spring mix lettuce, roughly chopped

1 cup no-salt-added kidney or black beans, rinsed and drained

1 avocado, chopped

Directions

Heat ½ tablespoon of the olive oil over medium-high in a large skillet. Add the bell pepper, onion, and garlic. Cook for about 5 minutes, until the vegetables start to become tender. Add the corn and cook 2 more minutes.

Stir in the chili powder, salt, and black pepper. Sprinkle the vegetables with the lime juice. Remove from the heat and stir in the cilantro and the remaining ½ tablespoon of olive oil. Let cool for 10 minutes.

Divide the greens evenly on 4 serving plates. Top with ¼ cup of the beans. Divide the cooked vegetables into 4 portions and place an equal amount over each salad. Add ¼ of the chopped avocado to each salad and serve.

Nutrition information for 1 serving: Calories 206; Total Fat 9.3 g; Saturated Fat 1.3 g; Trans Fat 0 g; Cholesterol 0 mg; Sodium 196 mg; Carbohydrate 26.6 g; Fiber 8.7 g; Sugar 3.5 g; Protein 7.7 g

Chicken Salad Lettuce Wraps

Chicken Salad Lettuce Wraps Recipe

Traditional chicken salads are often loaded with mayonnaise, but this recipe uses Greek yogurt and brown mustard to reduce the fat and calories without sacrificing flavor. Wrap it with crunchy lettuce leaves to create a meal with fewer calories and carbohydrates than traditional chicken salad.

Yield: 4 servings

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Ingredients

3 tbsp non-fat plain Greek yogurt

1 tbsp light mayonnaise

2 tsp spicy brown mustard

2 cups chopped roasted chicken

2 green onions, sliced

2 tbsp chopped unsweetened dried fruit (such as cherries, raisins, or apricots)

2 tbsp chopped raw walnuts

1/8 tsp ground black pepper

8 small lettuce leaves

Directions

In a medium bowl, make the dressing by stirring together the yogurt, mayonnaise, and mustard. Stir in the chicken.

Add the onions, dried fruit, walnuts, and black pepper and stir well until all ingredients are coated in the dressing.

Divide the chicken salad into 4 servings. Place half of each portion on a lettuce leaf and serve.

Nutrition information for 1 serving: Calories 180; Total Fat 5.9 g; Saturated Fat 1.1 g; Trans Fat 0 g; Cholesterol 60 mg; Sodium 116 mg; Carbohydrate 5.9 g; Fiber 1.1 g; Sugar 3.5 g; Protein 23.5 g

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