Healthy recipes for summer are my favorite! I’ve been blogging about our seasonal recipes and cooking over the last year. This summer I was inspired to take the ultimate seasonal eating plunge and join a CSA. Check out some of our favorite ways to enjoy the bounty of the season with healthy summer recipes while staying organized and on track with meal prep.
New this summer, a CSA subscription
Blooming Junction is one of my favorite nurseries and I’ve been eyeing their CSA for a couple years. This year I took the plunge and signed up for their 20 week CSA. I pick up our share on Tuesday afternoons and I love the big bin of produce I pick up each week. It was picked that morning and it’s in a large tub with no extra packaging, which I really appreciate it! The total cost comes to about $25/week.
As I’ve gotten the hang of using our share each week, I wanted to share a couple things that have helped me have structure (to help with planning and prep) AND be flexible enough to use whatever may be coming out way.
Let it be said, my main reason for never doing a CSA before is that I’m such a planner! CSA or not, I hope the tips in this post will help you to enjoy the benefits of eating seasonally and that you’ll find some new favorite healthy summer recipes.
My two favorite sources for seasonal recipes
1) Blooming Junction offers a complimentary subscription for CSA members to Cook With What You Have. It’s a locally owned blog and recipe site where you can search by ingredient and find several recipes to use.
2) I’ve been a super fan of the original Love and Lemons cookbook since my sister gifted it to me in 2017. With the CSA, I’ve reconnected with this book for some of our very favorite seasonal inspiration since it is organized by ingredient. Here’s a link to her original Love and Lemons cook book.
Love and Lemons
These two bowls and two sauces from Love and Lemons have been a great inspiration and starting point for us. They are infinitely flexible for dietary restrictions and choices. We frequently use Miracle Noodles in our bowls as a lower carb/calorie and gluten-free option.
But the real beauty was that I had leftovers of each sauce. And I found they worked beautifully with any variation of seasonal produce bowl I could create. AND, better yet, they also doubled as a salad dressing (thinning out with water as needed). Since then, I’ve kept a big mason jar of each on hand for whatever fresh produce the week may hold.
*The carrot ginger sauce in the book is very similar to this carrot ginger dressing. In addition to what’s detailed on the link adds a clove of garlic, 2 tablespoons of orange juice (we used mango since that’s what I have on hand), tahini and lemon juice.
Carrot ginger grain bowls
One week our CSA included carrots, and I found this recipe in Love and Lemons. We added some pre-cooked, diced chicken. This recipe isn’t included on her site (book only), but her 15 rice bowl recipes post is great inspiration*.
Peanut noodle kale bowl
That same week, we were overloaded with kale so I made this recipe. On its own, it’s one of my favorite easy, healthy summer dinners.
Cook With What You Have
I love this local resource! While it is a paid subscription (included with the our CSA subscription), it is a wonderful resource if you eat locally and seasonally. I recommend it for its functional, simple and easy-to-follow recipe inspiration.
Seared young fava beans and garlic scapes with lemon
This was the very first recipe we tried from Cook With What You Have.
Grated radish and kohlrabi slaw
This has been a favorite for a salad variation. We pair it with almost any simple, grilled protein.
We frequently grill several chicken breasts on Saturday night and use the leftovers for easier dinner prep during the week. 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.
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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.