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Side Dishes



Little Blue Dynamos: My Love Affair with Blueberries Made a Blueberry Cucumber Salad

blueberries

It’s my favorite time of year: peak blueberry season! If you’re anything like me, you can’t get enough of these little balls of deliciousness. Farmers markets, U-Pick berry fields, or from the local produce store, I can’t gobble them up fast enough.

Peak season is anytime from late June through early September, so I’m even known to buy extra large amounts in bulk and freeze* for the rest of the year. Then I add them to smoothies, pancakes (my favorite recipe is this one), oatmeal, you name it! I even found a way to add these little guys to a savory salad. Don’t believe me? We’ll let you try the recipe for yourself!

blueberry cucumber salad

Why the love affair with blueberries? These little blue dynamos…
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Parmesan Orange Sweet Potato Hash Browns: A 68-Calorie Breakfast Side Dish with Big Flavor

While preparing breakfast for my family one Sunday morning I realized we had only sweet potatoes and not any red skin potatoes — my go-to for a hearty weekend meal. I thought our hopes for hash browns were dashed. However, I decided to give the sweet potatoes a whirl and venture beyond our typical baked sweet potato comfort zone.

sweet potato hasbrown
They shredded easily, and I dressed them up with just a little freshly grated Parmesan and orange zest before browning on the stove top. What I got was a gift from the breakfast Gods and a perfectly crisp, wonderfully flavored complement to an otherwise ordinary meal.
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9 Creative Recipes for Surplus Summer Zucchini

As summer winds down and pumpkin and apple recipes begin to float across the internet, gardeners everywhere are scrambling to make the most of their treasured summer produce.

For most, it means an excessive amount of zucchini to harvest and cook in a very short period of time. If it seems like someone is handing you a home grown zucchini every time you turn around, take advantage of the free veggies and try these delicious and unique recipes.


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Five Healthy Labor Day Recipes Beyond the Barbecue

If you feel like your diet is stuck in a summer rut, don’t wait until after Labor Day to detox. Similar to Memorial Day parties and the Fourth of July cookouts, Labor Day often means an indulgent outdoor gathering featuring rich grilled meats and high-fat side dishes.

This year, to keep things on the lighter side, think beyond the barbecue when you’re planning your menu. Since Labor Day typically marks the unofficial end to summer and the beginning of the school year, it’s a great time to celebrate the season with some of your favorite fresh summer fruits and vegetables.

If you’re tired of turning on the grill to entertain, spend this Labor Day with five delicious healthy recipes for your Labor Day party from food bloggers across the country who plan to get in touch with their patriotic side using plenty of seasonal produce.


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Healthy and Fresh Picnic Side Dishes

On picnics and at barbecues, it isn’t often the main dishes that contribute the most calories to the meal. Side dishes, picnic salads and desserts can all be heavy and high-calorie if you aren’t careful to limit the oil, dairy and other indulgent ingredients.

Make a few simple swaps next time you plan a picnic or outdoor dinner party to shave hundreds off calories off your summer meals.

Dips

Carrot Hummus: Baby carrots are often used as a dipping vehicle for this chickpea-packed Middle Eastern spread, but this recipe incorporates carrots within. Serve over whole grain crackers or whole wheat pita bread – or even with raw veggie sticks for even more nutrition.

Herbed Dip for Veggies: If you want to up your veggie intake at your next picnic, ditch the chips and whip up a dip for your favorite vegetables that uses light sour cream and silken tofu.


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