Healthy spring meals are on my mind! Almost overnight, winter gave way to warmth and sunshine. Like every year, when it happens, it happens almost instantly. With the arrival of warmer weather, I’ve been reflecting on our meals, recipes and nutrition routines and settling into our favorite, healthy recipes for spring.
Our bodies evolved to follow the seasons. We naturally sleep more in the dark, winter months and move less. When the warm sunny months arrive, we are more active for more hours each day, motivated by the extra energy shared by the sun. So, too, our food follows an evolution and cycle throughout the year.
Asparagus season is a flash in the pan
The season is so short that we take advantage of seasonal, organic asparagus while we can. We toss it in olive oil and balsamic sprinkle with salt and grill (or cook in a hot oven) for a few minutes. Here are two of our favorite asparagus recipes:
Asparagus edamame salad
This simple, easy salad of edamame, sliced radishes and blanched asparagus is easy and delightful.
We’re eating gluten free, but I promise to try out this delish pasta recipe with a gluten-free substitute and report back!
Green salads are a daily staple
Twenty years ago, I took my first cooking class. Some of you may remember old Portland favorite Caprial Pence. One of my main takeaways from that class was this: Don’t buy your salad dressings at the store if you can help it. The reason being that they can be packed with extra ingredients and stabilizers that are simply unnecessary.
Easiest salad dressing recipe
This simple, one-bowl salad is my go-to for a fast, healthy, scratch-made salad dressing.
While these two salads feature kale, you could easily substitute spinach or any hearty green.
Hearty, lunch-worthy salads
I love to eat salad for lunch because 1) I feel good and 2) I get veggies in for the day, even if dinner goes sideways.
Other kinds of salads
We enjoy making bigger batches of non-green salads to enjoy for a couple days, pairing with an easy protein or eating on their own. These are a couple of our favorites:
Shredded sweet potato chipotle black bean salad
It can easily be vegan and can also double as a main dish. I use it frequently for meat-free meals.
We love keeping a generous supply of this simple salad ready to eat in our refrigerator. It can be paired with nearly anything.
The grill is our favorite preparation for simple, easy protein sides with our spring and summer meals. We often marinade in olive oil, salt, and a rotating ingredient of choice depending on the kind of protein. Balsamic for chicken, lemon for salmon, etc.
I love and use my battery operated instant meat thermometer to cook protein sufficiently, but not over cook it.
Protein is a side, and a portion is the size of a deck of cards. We fill the bulk of our plates with veggies from the options above.
Last but not least, tacos are a spring and summer staple in our home.
Tacos 5 ways – coming soon!
Fish, pork, veggie, chicken, the sky really is the limit for us. Check back soon or sign up below to get our family’s take on tacos it straight to your inbox.
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Author Lee Carson is a writer, health advocate, principal and co-founder at Hyatt Training. She believes in a minimally processed whole-foods approach to nutrition, and loves sharing ways to use food and movement as catalysts and tools for optimal health. Learn more about Lee, or get in touch with her by emailing us at Go@HyattTraining.com.
Hyatt Training is a team of certified, enthusiastic and innovative personal trainers and physical therapists in Portland, Oregon. To read more nutrition-related posts like this one, follow this link.