« Octane Blog

« Return to Blog Home  

Healthy Summer Recipes

Healthy Summer RecipesSummer food options emphasize fresh food and outdoor eating. Take advantage of the variety of seasonal fruits and vegetables, and decrease cooking time, lighten up meals and emphasize nutritious choices. For picnicking or hosting a backyard BBQ, seek simplicity and portability. We’ve shared some of our favorite healthy summer recipes to get you started.

Summer Tomato, Onion and Cucumber Salad (Eating Well)

  • 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper, or more to taste
  • 2 medium cucumbers
  • 4 medium tomatoes, cut into ½-inch wedges
  • 1 Vidalia or other sweet onion, halved and very thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh herbs, such as flat-leaf parsley, chives and/or tarragon

Whisk vinegar, oil, honey, salt and pepper in a large shallow bowl.

Remove alternating stripes of peel from the cucumbers. Slice cucumbers into thin rounds. Add cucumber slices, tomatoes and onion to the dressing; gently toss to combine. Let stand at room temperature for at least 30 minutes.

Just before serving, add herbs and toss again. 

Strawberry Salad with Poppyseed Dressing (Cooking Light)

  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 3 tablespoons light mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons fat-free milk
  • 1 tablespoon poppy seeds
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 1 (10-ounce) bag romaine lettuce
  • 1 cup sliced strawberries
  • 2 tablespoons slivered almonds, toasted

Combine first 5 ingredients in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk. Place lettuce in large bowl; add strawberries and almonds, tossing to combine. Divide salad evenly among 6 plates. Drizzle 1 tablespoon dressing over each serving.

Chicken and Summer Vegetable Tostadas (Cooking Light)

  • 2 teaspoons canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 12 ounces chicken breast tenders
  • 1 cup chopped red onion (about 1)
  • 1 cup fresh corn kernels (about 2 ears)
  • 1 cup chopped zucchini
  • 1/2 cup salsa verde
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro, divided
  • 4 (8-inch) fat-free flour tortillas
  • Cooking spray
  • 3 ounces Monterey Jack cheese, shredded (about 3/4 cup)

Preheat broiler.

Combine first 3 ingredients, stirring well. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Sprinkle spice mixture evenly over chicken. Add chicken to pan; sauté for 3 minutes. Add onion, corn, and zucchini to pan; sauté for 2 minutes or until chicken is done. Stir in salsa and 2 tablespoons cilantro. Cook 2 minutes or until liquid almost evaporates, stirring frequently.

Working with 2 tortillas at a time, arrange tortillas in a single layer on a baking sheet; lightly coat tortillas with cooking spray. Broil 3 minutes or until lightly browned. Spoon 3/4 cup chicken mixture in the center of each tortilla; sprinkle each serving with 1/4 cup cheese. Broil an additional 2 minutes or until cheese melts. Repeat with remaining tortillas, chicken mixture and cheese. Sprinkle each serving with 3/4 teaspoon of remaining cilantro. Serve immediately.

Salmon Burgers (Cooking Light)

  • 1 cup finely chopped red onion
  • 1/4 cup thinly sliced fresh basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 (1-pound) salmon fillet, skinned and chopped
  • 1 tablespoon hot pepper sauce
  • 1 large egg white
  • Cooking spray
  • 8 (3/4-ounce) slices focaccia, toasted

Combine first 5 ingredients in a large bowl. Combine hot pepper sauce and egg white in a small bowl; add egg white mixture to salmon mixture, stirring well.

Divide mixture into 4 equal portions, shaping each into a 1/2-inch-thick patty. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add salmon patties, and cook 3 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness. Serve patties on toasted focaccia.

Chicken Kebabs with Creamy Pesto (Cooking Light)

  • 2 teaspoons grated lemon rind
  • 4 teaspoons fresh lemon juice, divided
  • 2 teaspoons bottled minced garlic
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 8 (1-inch) pieces yellow bell pepper
  • 8 cherry tomatoes
  • 1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 small red onion, cut into 8 wedges
  • Cooking spray
  • 2 tablespoons plain low-fat yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons reduced-fat sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon commercial pesto

Preheat broiler.

Combine rind, 1 tablespoon juice, garlic, oil, salt and pepper. Toss with bell pepper, tomatoes, chicken and onion. Thread vegetables and chicken onto 4 (12-inch) skewers. Place skewers on a broiler pan coated with cooking spray. Broil 12 minutes or until chicken is done, turning occasionally.

Combine 1 teaspoon juice, yogurt, sour cream and pesto. Serve sauce with kebabs.

Peach and Blueberry Cobbler (Eating Well)

  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 cup whole-wheat flour
  • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup reduced-fat milk
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 ripe but firm peaches, (about 1 pound), pitted and sliced into eighths, or 3½ cups frozen
  • 2 cups (1 pint) fresh or frozen blueberries

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Place butter and oil in a 12-inch cast-iron skillet or a 9-by-13-inch baking pan. Heat in the oven until melted and fragrant, 5 to 7 minutes. Meanwhile, combine flour, baking powder and salt in a large bowl. Add milk, sugar and vanilla; stir to combine.

Add the melted butter mixture to the batter and stir to combine. Pour batter into hot pan. Spoon peaches and blueberries evenly over the batter.

Return pan to the oven and bake until the top of the cobbler is browned and the batter around the fruit is completely set, 50 minutes to 1 hour. Cool on a wire rack for at least 15 minutes. Serve warm.

Lemon Pound Cake with Cherry Compote (Cooking Light)

Cake:

  • Cooking spray
  • 3 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour (about 13 2/3 ounces)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup low-fat buttermilk
  • 1 tablespoon grated fresh lemon rind
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh mint
  • 1 tablespoon powdered sugar

Compote:

  • 4 cups pitted sweet cherries (about 1 1/2 pounds)
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract

Preheat oven to 350°.

Coat 10-inch tube pan with cooking spray; dust with 2 tablespoons flour.

Lightly spoon remaining 3 cups flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife.

Combine 3 cups flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a bowl, stirring well with a whisk. Combine 2 cups granulated sugar and butter in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until light and fluffy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition.

Add flour mixture to sugar mixture alternately with buttermilk, beating at low speed, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Add rind, juice and mint; beat just until blended.

Spoon batter into prepared pan; sharply tap pan once on counter to remove air bubbles. Bake at 350° for 45 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes on wire rack; remove from pan. Cool completely on wire rack. Sift powdered sugar over top of cake. Cut cake into 16 slices.

For compote, combine cherries, 1/4 cup granulated sugar, 2 tablespoons water and cornstarch in medium saucepan; bring to a boil. Cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat; stir in extract. Cool. Serve with cake.

Hope you enjoy these delicious dishes above to keep your body fueled!

Filed under:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

« Return to Blog Home