Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Salad, Side, Vegan, Vegetarian

Craving a Cranberry Quinoa Salad

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This Cranberry Quinoa Salad is vibrant, fresh and intensely colorful. Something about citrus and cranberries screams the holidays. This salad is a fresh take on the classic dish of cranberries and oranges. The sweet pomegranate seeds and orange wedges balance the tart cranberries. The quinoa adds sustenance, while the fresh mint adds flavor. Pair with a roasted chicken (we had orange-citrus and rosemary marinade with this salad and fresh butternut squash), add in nuts for more of a meal, or enjoy with a cup of soup. This salad is a perfect addition to your holiday entertaining — even the colors beckon you to add this to your entertaining arsenal, lunch rotation or just as a fun, colorful and delicious side to any meal.

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Breakfast/Brunch, Dairy-Free, Drinks, Gluten-Free, Low Sugar, Smoothie, Snack, Vegan, Vegetarian

The Green Machine

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I had this Apple, Spinach, Cucumber & Mint Smoothie on a sunny, 86° day. Before you write this off for its quite green color, try this hydrating drink on a hot, summer day.  I originally made this with kale, more celery and no mint, and it tasted like I was drinking grass; the smoothie turned out waaaay too green. However, baby spinach has a much milder taste, and the mint added a fresh kick. When I make this again, I would add frozen banana instead of the yogurt. This was a different take and a welcomed departure from the classic fruit smoothie. Before you dismiss the green smoothie for its color, give it a try!

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Dairy-Free, Entrée, Gluten-Free, Salad, Seafood, Vegetarian

Summer Seafood

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Need a light, fresh and tasty dinner? I found this recipe for a grilled summer salad in Giada De Laurentiis’s cookbook, originally served cold. I wish my apartment had access to a grill, but this was still delicious baking the shrimp and sautéing the vegetables until they were slightly browned. Using the marinade to double as the salad dressing saves time, while maintaining the flavor of the fresh herbs and lemon zest. The creamy avocado balances the acidic flavors of the marinade. Definitely worth a try!

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Dairy-Free, Entrée, Gluten-Free, Local Finds, Salad, Vegan, Vegetarian

Upgrade Your “Salad”

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Farmer’s Market finds make the perfect salad. Upgrade your salad for something fresh, different and a little bit exciting. The walnuts and quinoa add crunch and texture to the salad, while the fresh mint, fizz kale, apples and strawberries add a layer of freshness and a straight-from-the-garden taste. Toss the ingredients together with some olive oil and white balsamic vinegar and viola! A deliciously upgraded summer salad.

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Appetizer, Asian, Better Than Takeout, Entrée, Gluten-Free, Snack, Vegetarian

Spring into Summer with Vegetable Spring Rolls

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These vegetable rolls are super spicy, but so delicious. They’re light and fresh with the mint and basil leaves, while being fiery and savory all at once. I tested them twice, and decided I like the version with the added avocado and cucumber much better than the original recipe. The cucumber gives an extra crunch, and the creaminess of the avocado balances the extreme kick from the sriracha chile sauce. As a snack, lunch or dinner, these vegetable rolls are easy and delicious — so much so you’ll be ready for more before they’re even finished! Continue reading “Spring into Summer with Vegetable Spring Rolls”