22 Healthy Sides to Pair with a Bowl of Soup
While the soup is simmering, make one of these healthy side dishes to go with it. Whether it’s a fresh salad, a crunchy breadstick or slice of crostini, these side dishes will complete your meal. Recipes like Kale Salad with Balsamic & Parmesan and Homemade Breadsticks with Chard are delicious and work well with chowders, stews and more.
Kale Salad with Balsamic & Parmesan
In this healthy kale salad recipe, you massage the dressing into the kale, tenderizing the leaves and infusing the salad with sweet balsamic flavor. Creamy pine nuts and salty Parmesan cheese added at the end balance the flavors. Enjoy this salad on its own as a side dish or add cooked chicken, shrimp or steak to make it a full meal.
Pear & Camembert Crostini
Up your appetizer game with this fruit-topped cheese crostini recipe. Warm preserves give the pears a shiny glaze and prevent them from browning.
Basic Green Salad with Vinaigrette
Make a larger batch of this basic vinaigrette to have on hand for salads throughout the week.
Pea, Pancetta & Tarragon Crostini
Up your healthy appetizer game and make this veggie-topped crostini recipe instead of go-to bruschetta. If you can't find tarragon, any soft herb, such as basil or dill, works well too.
Apple & Cheddar Side Salad with Mustard Vinaigrette
This salad is easy and festive--the perfect healthy addition to your holiday table. The no-sugar-added dressing blends well with the sweet notes of apple and sharp Cheddar cheese, and crunchy pecans round out the dish.
Homemade Breadsticks with Chard
Flecks of chard bring an earthy sweetness and festive look to these twisted breadsticks. Spinach would also work.
Goat Cheese Crostini with Mushrooms & Brown Butter
Serve these savory herbed crostini with a big green salad. Looking for a heartier meal? Top each toast with a poached or fried egg.
Asparagus & Baby Kale Caesar Salad
Traditional Caesar salad gets a nutrition and flavor boost with the addition of crisp asparagus and dark, leafy baby kale in this healthy recipe. Use arugula or mixed greens for the salad if baby kale isn't at your market.
Chive & Garlic Breadsticks
Skip kneading or mixing when you start with prepared pizza dough in this healthy homemade breadstick recipe. This recipe calls for chives and garlic, but try your favorite toppings to personalize. For a crispier texture more like grissini, roll the breadsticks long and thin and bake until golden.
Baby Mixed Green Salad
This salad is made with baby mixed greens, onions and mushrooms and dressed with a simple lemon, vinegar and herb vinaigrette. It's perfect as a side salad, but top it with some chicken or salmon and you've got a great main dish.
Goat Cheese Crostini with Fig Compote
Here, dried figs are simmered in just enough liquid so they soften into a thick jam. Try stirring the leftover compote into your yogurt or oatmeal the next day.
Little Gem Wedge Salad with Blue Cheese & Herb Dressing
Little Gem lettuce is like a cross between romaine and butterhead. It's perfect for making an updated take on the wedge salad in this healthy recipe. If you can't find Little Gem, use half a romaine heart for each serving. You can order Point Reyes Original blue cheese online from pointreyescheese.com or substitute another raw-milk blue cheese.
Massaged Kale Salad
Here a pungent garlicky dressing is infused into kale by massaging the greens and the dressing together with your hands. Any type of kale will work in this kale salad recipe, just remember to remove the tough stems before you start.
Cheesy Zucchini Breadsticks
Shredded zucchini, eggs and cheese combine in this easy recipe for low-carb cheesy breadsticks like you would get from the pizzeria, but healthier! Dip this gluten-free appetizer in marinara or pico de gallo for even more flavor.
Watercress Salad with Grapes, Blue Cheese & Pecans
This salad formula will never let you down: toss leafy greens with fruit, cheese, nuts and a simple vinaigrette. If you can't find watercress, try substituting arugula, baby spinach or baby kale.
Peach & Bacon Crostini
For an easy party appetizer, pick the best seasonal fruit you can find and let the grill lend a smoky backbone to these delicious crostini.
Herb & Arugula Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette
This light basil, parsley and arugula salad recipe is tossed with a tangy balsamic vinaigrette. It's great with pizza or as a light side salad.
Grissini (Piedmont-Style Breadsticks)
Crunchy on the outside and slightly soft in the center, these easy homemade breadsticks are a good way to use your sourdough starter. Substitute 1 tsp. of fresh starter for the active dry yeast, adding it with the olive oil and malt syrup. No barley malt syrup? Use molasses instead.
Mixed Greens Salad with Blood Oranges
Bitter greens are balanced with a honey-orange dressing in this quick and satisfying salad. Serve with garlic shrimp, grilled chicken or cheese toast to round out a meal.
Radicchio-Red Onion Side Salad
This easy-to-make salad combines radicchio and baby spinach. The honey-mustard dressing combines nicely with the taste of red onion and sweet pear--making it the perfect summer side dish.
Roasted Beet Crostini
The entire beet plant--roots, stems and greens--can be used in this stunning appetizer. The beets are roasted then pureed with goat cheese for a creamy ruby-red spread. The greens and stems are sautéed with olive oil and garlic for the topping.