Master this simple grilled eggplant recipe and you'll have the foundation for all sorts of healthy summer dishes. Serve the eggplant slices as a side with grilled chicken, fish or meat; add grilled eggplant to a salad; stuff it into sandwiches; chop it and top pizza with it; stir it into pasta dishes or grain bowls--the possibilities are almost endless.
Greek Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms
A mixture of tomatoes, spinach, feta, olives and fresh oregano gives portobellos a Mediterranean vibe in this healthy stuffed mushroom recipe. Serve these along with chicken, fish or tofu as a super-satisfying side dish, or add a hearty salad and make them the centerpiece of a vegetarian dinner.
Vegan Kale Caesar Salad with Tofu Croutons
Swapping tofu for the bread in these meal-prep Caesar salad bowls bumps up the satiety factor with 18 grams of protein. These crispy tofu croutons originally appeared in Lauren Grant's recipe for Diabetic Living magazine (see Associated Recipes). Lacinato kale, also known as dinosaur kale or Tuscan kale, has flat, dark green-blue leaves--and its tenderness makes it perfect for eating raw, like in this salad.
Spiralized Zucchini Nest Eggs
These impressive-looking zucchini eggs in a nest are actually surprisingly easy to make. There's no frying or poaching required--instead, the eggs are baked right on top of a bed of spiralized zucchini noodles. An herbed cheese mixture adds plenty of flavor and keeps the eggs from running through the zucchini nests. Serve these eggs for a healthy breakfast or brunch.
Anti-Inflammatory Cherry-Spinach Smoothie
This healthy smoothie is not only delicious--it also boosts your daily dose of anti-inflammatory foods. It starts with a base of creamy gut-friendly kefir and includes cherries, which can lower the inflammatory marker C-reactive protein. Heart-healthy fats in avocado, almond butter and chia seeds deliver additional anti-inflammatory compounds to the body, while spinach offers a mix of antioxidants that sweep up harmful free radicals. Fresh ginger adds zing, plus a compound called gingerol, which preliminary studies suggest may improve inflammatory markers of heart disease if consumed daily.