Quick Meal Ideas for Spring
Here are some quick and easy spring salads that use the great tastes of the spring produce season. Made with a minimum of preparation time and just a few simple ingredients, they are easy to prepare and make great meals in minutes.
From Asparagus Rice Salad, Marinated Artichoke Spinach Salad, Tomato Pesto Pasta Salad, or Strawberry Avocado Salad to name a few, you will find a wide variety of delicious spring salads to choose from.
More salads will be added, so keep checking back to see all the new flavorful spring salad additions.
page 2Citrus Crabmeat Salad
• 2 cups cooked crabmeat - flaked
• 3 cups baby spinach leaves
• 1 cup pineapple (fresh, frozen (thawed), or canned in juice (drained)) – cut into bite-size pieces
• 1/2 cup red radishes – halved and thinly sliced
• Bottled light balsamic vinaigrette – to taste
Step 1: Place the crabmeat, spinach, pineapple, and radishes in a mixing bowl.
Step 2: Drizzle the vinaigrette over the salad and toss well, adjusting the dressing to suit your taste.
Optional Additions: Try adding some crumbled goat cheese or some cubed avocado pieces to this quick spring salad for a little extra flavor.* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Quick Meal Idea:
- For a simple presentation, serve salad on a bed of thinly sliced tomatoes along with toasted focaccia bread spread with low-fat cream cheese.
Rice Noodle Salad with Tamari Almond Dressing
• 2 cups cooked rice noodles or rice pasta spirals
• 1 cup fresh snow peas – raw or lightly steamed
• 1/4 cup red onion – thin quarter-moon slices
• 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes - halved
• 1 tbsp almond butter (smooth style)
• 1 tbsp sodium-reduced tamari soy sauce
• 1 tbsp fresh squeezed lemon juice
Step 1: Cook rice noodles or pasta according to package directions, drain, and place two cups in a mixing bowl
Step 2: Add the snow peas, onion, and tomatoes to the noodles/pasta.
Step 3: In a smaller bowl, combine the almond butter, soy sauce, and the lemon juice and mix well.
Step 4: Add the dressing to the salad ingredients and toss well to combine. Add more lemon juice or soy sauce, if needed, to taste.
Optional Additions: Try adding some crispy cooked, crumbled bacon (soy bacon for vegetarians) or some sliced almonds.* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *Quick Meal Idea:
- Serve salad on fresh salad greens along with a bowl of your favorite soup or with a side of shredded cabbage and diced apples tossed with some olive oil, lemon juice, and salt and pepper.
________________________________________________________Strawberry Avocado Salad
• 2 cups strawberries – cored and cut into chunks
• 1 avocado – peeled, pitted and diced
• 1/2 cup plain low-fat yogurt
• 1/2 tsp lemon zest
• 1/4 cup walnut pieces
• 3/4 cup cinnamon graham crackers – crumbled
Step 1: In a mixing bowl, combine the avocado with the yogurt and lemon zest.* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Quick Meal Idea:
- To serve this spring salad, either in clear glass bowls or parfait glasses, place some of the crumbled graham crackers on the bottom, then a layer of the avocado mixture, then a sprinkling of the walnut pieces, then a layer of strawberries, some graham crackers, avocado mixture, walnuts, and then top with strawberries and a sprinkling of the graham crackers.
________________________________________________________Tomato Pesto Pasta Salad
• 3 cups cooked rotini pasta
• 1 cup tomatoes (cherry, grape or plum) cut into small chunks
• 1 cup peas (fresh or frozen) – lightly steamed until crisp-tender
• 1/2 cup red onion – diced
• 3/4 cup low-fat sour cream
• 1 tbsp prepared tomato pesto
Step 1: In a mixing bowl, combine the cooked pasta, tomatoes, peas, and onion.
Step 2: In a small bowl, combine the sour cream with the pesto.
Step 3: Add the sour cream mixture to the salad ingredients and combine well.
Optional Additions: Try adding some chopped fresh mint or some fresh lemon zest to this salad.* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Quick Meal Ideas:
- Serve salad on a bed of mixed salad greens with grilled or baked salmon steaks.
- You could also serve salad with a side of steamed yellow squash and spinach dressed with a little olive oil and lemon juice.
Marinated Artichoke Spinach Salad
• 1 cup marinated artichoke hearts – drain (reserve liquid)
and roughly chop
• 1 cup carrots - shredded
• 1/2 cup seasoned croutons
• 4 cups baby spinach leaves
• 1 tbsp lemon juice
• 2 tbsp reserved liquid from artichokes
Step 1: In a mixing bowl, combine the artichoke hearts, carrots, spinach, lemon juice, and reserved liquid from the artichokes.
Step 2: Salt and pepper to taste.
Step 3: As you serve each salad, top with some of the seasoned croutons.
Optional Additions: Try adding some cooked, shelled shrimp pieces or, for vegetarians, try adding some flavored baked tofu cubes to this spring salad.
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Quick Meal Ideas:
- This salad makes a great topping for warm or cold cooked pasta. Simply mound salad on top of your pasta and add some fresh grated parmesan cheese over the top. Serve with warm garlic bread and you have an easy lunch or dinner meal.
- Try serving salad spooned into grilled Portobello mushrooms and serve along with broiled chicken.
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