Healthy Recipe of the Month

Great Summer Salads

With summer now officially under way, we have a long way to go before the weather begins to cool off again. Having plenty of lighter, cooler options for dinner can help make the heat of summer more bearable. These salads are quick and easy, require minimal or no cooking, and are the perfect way to enjoy all the produce that's in season now. For more great salad ideas, including Grilled Sirloin Salad and Lemony Grilled Potato Salad for those who love to fire up the grill, see the whole collection from Cooking Light.

Arugula SaladArugula, Grape, and Sunflower Seed Salad

By including a variety of ingredients, salads are often a nutritional powerhouse. This recipe provides lots of antioxidants from the grapes, healthy fats and vitamin E from the sunflower seeds and grapeseed oil, and folate and vitamin A from the arugula. A sweet mustard vinaigrette dressing matches both the peppery bitterness of the greens and the sweet juiciness of the grapes. Try this salad topped with salmon or tuna for a healthful dinner.

Ingredients

3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon honey
1 teaspoon maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon stone-ground mustard
2 teaspoons grapeseed oil
7 cups loosely packed baby arugula
2 cups red grapes, halved $
2 tablespoons toasted sunflower seed kernels
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Preparation

Combine vinegar, honey, syrup, and mustard in a small bowl. Gradually add oil, stirring with a whisk.

Combine arugula, grapes, seeds, and thyme in a large bowl. Drizzle vinegar mixture over arugula; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss gently to coat.

Total Per Serving: Calories - 81, Carbs - 13.1 g, Fat - 3.1 g, Protein - 1.6 g, Fiber - 1.2 g..

Source: Cooking Light, May 2008

 

Arugula SaladChicken Cobb Salad

With plenty of chicken, creamy avocado, bacon, and blue cheese, this is the classic entrée salad. Bottled Italian dressing cuts down on time (the whole recipe, including cooking the chicken, takes less than 15 minutes). But if you like, you can whip a quick low-fat vinaigrette for that homemade touch. Serve with a chilled summer soup or sandwich for a light and refreshing meal.

Ingredients

Cooking spray
1 1/2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breast cutlets
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
8 cups mixed greens
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1/3 cup diced peeled avocado
2 tablespoons sliced green onions
1/3 cup fat-free Italian dressing
2 tablespoons crumbled blue cheese
1 bacon slice, cooked and crumbled

Preparation

Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. Add chicken to pan; cook 5 minutes on each side or until done. Cut into 1/2-inch slices.

Combine greens, tomatoes, avocado, and onions in a large bowl. Drizzle greens mixture with dressing; toss gently to coat. Arrange about 2 cups greens mixture on each of 4 salad plates. Top each serving with 4 ounces chicken, 1 1/2 teaspoons cheese, and about 1/2 teaspoon bacon.

Total Per Serving: Calories - 263, Carbs - 8.9 g, Fat - 8 g, Protein - 37.9 g, Fiber - 3.7 g..

Source: Cooking Light, June 2007