Spinach Berry Popsicles with Cereal

Every summer I set a goal to make a lot of ice cream. We love ice cream and it’s a really fun treat during the hot summer months. However, time and planning is never on my side. Instead, we become all about the popsicles. These berry popsicles are a staple for us because they are healthy but manage to curb my major sweet tooth. All it takes is blending a few ingredients together and sitting patiently for the few hours it takes to freeze. There’s a lot of different popsicle molds on the market right now but if you’re really in to making your own, I highly suggest purchasing this set. Read more and see the recipe.

Vegetable Lo Mein

I mentioned quite a bit that I take a lot of inspiration from chefs/restaurants. I love being able to pull different flavors and ideas from those meals then use those to make an everyday recipe. Sometimes, however, the everyday meal stems from the takeout, the guilty pleasure. I have a weakness for Americanized Chinese food but my one complaint is that it never has enough vegetables for me. The ratio is usually 10 parts rice or noodles to 1 part vegetables. This vegetable lo mein is my rendition that flips the ratio to be heavy on the vegetables and lighter on the noodles. The best part, you can easily play around with different vegetables, leaving out ones you might not have on hand. Read more and see the recipe.

White Bean Salad with Pea Shoots and Grilled Bread

Post sponsored by Sub-Zero. See below for more details.

I’m rounding out salad month with inspiration for including salad when grilling out. I love homemade croutons but during the warmer months, it’s not worth heating up the oven. Instead, I like to brush baguettes with a olive oil and grill until crisp. The cubed, grilled baguette is a perfect substitute for croutons and makes for an extremely hearty salad. This white bean salad is exactly the kind of salad I want when grilling out. Read more and see the recipe.

Three Grain Pilaf with Roasted Asparagus

It’s no secret that I love grains as a base for meals but one of may favorite things is to mix grains. It’s not always the easiest given almost every grain has a different cook time but the method below is perfect. I cook the sorghum by itself then add the millet and quinoa. The sorghum adds a nice chewy texture while the millet and quinoa add more heft. This grain pilaf with the roasted asparagus should go on your next picnic menu (or even a work-lunch menu). Or if you’re like me, you can just make it for a light dinner! Read more and see the recipe.

Sesame Soba Noodle Bowl with Edamame

Post sponsored by Cascadian Farm. See below for more details.

No matter how well I plan for a week of meals, I always seem to cut it close before I head back to the market/store. The refrigerator starts to feel a bit bare and usually the last dinner is a ‘toss together whatever I have left’ meal. However, one of my secret weapons is stashed in the freezer: shelled edamame. This sesame soba bowl is a perfect example of why I keep edamame in the freezer. With a few pantry staples, like soba noodles, you’re only 20 minutes away from a solid dinner. Perfect for a quick weeknight dinner or those times when you haven’t made it to the store. Read more and see the recipe.

Braised Potato Salad with White Beans

After being a vegetarian eater at numerous family picnics (that were not vegetarian friendly), I came to really care about side dishes. As in, if I had to eat a side dish, I kind of wanted it to feel like it could potentially be a meal. This potato salad is the result of those feelings. It’s a perfectly wonderful side dish but I was also happy eating it for lunch (read, I ate it for quite a few lunches). The white beans add bulk/protein while the yogurt dressing helps it to feel lighter. And this braising method is my new favorite way to cook potatoes- soft, tender potatoes that hold together with a crisp crust on one side. I couldn’t ask for a better potato. Read more and see the recipe.

Clumpy Granola with Stewed Rhubarb from the cookbook Chickpea Flour does it All

It always feels like I am on the eternal quest to find the perfect granola. A granola that has just the right amount of clumps, not too many ingredients, and works well from yogurt parfaits to a crunchy salad topping. It’s a lot to ask from a granola and while I’ve yet to reach that granola perfection, this clumpy granola recipe comes close. This recipe comes from Lindsey Love’s (Dolly and Oatmeal) new cookbook: Chickpea Flour Does It All. Which as you can guess, contains all recipes that use chickpea flour in some facet. For this granola, the chickpea flour acts as a binding agent, creating the perfect clumpy granola. I loved this technique so much that I updated my minimal 5-ingredient granola to use a bit of oat flour. I’ll never go back to using a granola recipe that requires eggs! Read more and see the recipe.

Curry Split Pea Soup with Carrots

Coming from the midwest, I miss traditional spring. I miss the thunderstorms and the silly quote that ‘April showers bring May flowers.’ And probably what I miss most is having a good excuse to eat soup on rainy days. This split pea soup is my rainy-day spring soup. It’s bright thanks to the yellow split peas and carrots while still being comforting. Serve it over grains or a side of freshly baked pita or naan (my preference). If you have the time and can find the ingredients, I recommend making your own red curry paste for optimal flavor (I just omit the shrimp paste) but play around with how much you add to the soup based on how spicy you make the paste. Read more and see the recipe.

Spring Pasta with Shaved Asparagus

We’re on a bit of asparagus overload right now but it’s allowed us to have quick, healthy dinners without too much cooking. This spring pasta dates back to 2011 but is one of my favorite pasta dishes. I usually like to make homemade whole wheat pasta but when pressed for time, a solid store-bought wheat spaghetti is nice. I typically don’t pair asparagus with basil (primarily because it’s usually too early in the season for me to harvest basil) but this dish is my exception. Also, if you can’t find vegetarian friendly parmesan (there’s notes to help in the recipe), my go-to is this goat cheese sauce. Read more and see the recipe.

Spring Panzanella with Peas

Given the shear amount of recipes I try, there are some I make for the blog or books that I never make again. However, there is a core group that I have a hard time letting go. These are the recipes that I turn to when I want something solid or are the recipes that I just love. This spring panzanella is one of those recipes. While not a traditional panzanella, this salad brings in some of my favorite flavors of spring with fennel and peas. Can’t find pea shoots? You can grow your own. Read more and see the recipe.

Turmeric Tahini Roasted Cauliflower Salad

Turmeric seems to be all the rage right now and with good reason. It adds a beautiful pop of color, a slight earthy flavor, and pairs well with so many other items. This roasted cauliflower salad is a perfect example. The tahini adds a slight sweetness to the roasting cauliflower while the turmeric brings a nice savory balance. I found myself eating the cauliflower right off the sheet tray before I could toss it in the salad. Read more and see the recipe.

Hummus Wrap with Halloumi

Post sponsored by Flatout Flatbread. See below for more details.

With summer approaching, I’m getting into the mindset of meals that require small amounts of cooking, are portable, and feel lighter than my winter fare. Wraps come in handy whether I’m packing a healthier lunch for M or a picnic to go exploring. These hummus wraps are a favorite of mine. A simple salad paired with a layer of hummus and salty-fried cheese (because I believe in a solid balance) all rolled in a light Flatout wrap. It’s the perfect way to pack a healthy lunch without too much effort. Read more and see the recipe.

Shaved Asparagus Pizza with Gorgonzola

When it comes to pizza toppings, I tend to be a bit adversed to cooking the toppings before having to cook the pizza- I only do it if the topping is really better cooked. With this asparagus pizza, by shaving the asparagus, it cooks perfectly with the pizza. Also, if you’ve never shaved asparagus before- it can be fairly easy. I have a quick video below but the key is to find a flat-handled utensil to lift the asparagus off the cutting board. I use a kitchen brush but anything that’s flat will work. Also, look for slightly thicker asparagus- it’s easier to shave! Read more and see the recipe.

Freekeh Omelette with Olives and Feta

One of the best things my family has done is make time for breakfast. Without fail, we make breakfast every morning without having to think about what to make. It’s primarily oatmeal with a few egg dishes mixed in throughout the week. We get variation in fillings and toppings, so we’re never bored. This freekeh omelette is solid example of a weekday egg dish. The freekeh can be cooked ahead of time and the remaining ingredients are no-cook. We always have a jar of pitted kalamata olives stashed in the door of the refrigerator for dishes like this (and pizza). And if you don’t want to bother with an omelette, scrambled eggs are lovely with the freekeh mixture added into the eggs while cooking. Read more and see the recipe.