Low-Calorie Side Dish Recipes

Find healthy, delicious low-calorie side dish recipes including low-calorie bean, potato and vegetable side dish recipes. Healthier recipes, from the food and nutrition experts at EatingWell.

Staff Picks

Radish, Celery & Cucumber Salad

Rating: 4 stars 2
It's worth using that special bottle of olive oil and seeking out Parmigiano-Reggiano, which is bolder than basic Parm, for this simple salad. Use a mandoline to shave the veggies if you have one.
By Alanna Lipson

Macaroni Salad with Creamy Avocado Dressing

Rating: 5 stars 1
Give classic pasta salad a fresher, more flavorful spin. This fast pasta dish calls for avocado to replace some of the mayonnaise, which makes it extra creamy. Whole-wheat elbow macaroni and fresh vegetables lighten up this healthy pasta salad that you'll be making all summer long.
By Carolyn Casner

Baked Parmesan Zucchini Curly Fries

Rating: 4.5 stars 10
This healthy recipe combines two bar food favorites--fried zucchini and curly fries--into one tempting package. Serve these baked zucchini fries with a simple dipping sauce made with ranch dressing and marinara sauce for a crowd-pleasing appetizer or a side dish for burgers, chicken or pizza. No matter what you serve them with, they're a fun way to eat more vegetables for kids and adults alike.
By Robin Bashinsky

Loaded Cauliflower Casserole

Rating: 5 stars 19
You'll never want to eat roasted cauliflower any other way once you try this tasty recipe. Bacon, sour cream and sharp Cheddar cheese coat good-for-you cauliflower in deliciousness for an easy side that will make everyone actually want to eat their vegetables.
By Carolyn Casner

Caprese Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms

Rating: 4.5 stars 11
We've taken the key ingredients of the popular caprese salad--tomatoes, fresh mozzarella and basil--and piled them into portobello mushroom caps to make a delicious and satisfying vegetarian main dish.
By Carolyn Casner

Quick Cucumber Kimchi

Rating: 4 stars 9
While slowly fermented cabbage and pungent garlic are the ingredients most people associate with kimchi, there are dozens and dozens of other versions of Korea's national dish, featuring all manner of vegetables, such as these quickly pickled cucumbers with just a trace of garlic.
By Jamie Purviance

Mexican Corn (Esquites)

Rating: 5 stars 1
This street corn dish, known as esquites, is served in cups instead of on the cob for all the flavor of elote without the mess.
By Breana Killeen

Pureed Broccoli Soup

Rating: 4.5 stars 24
In this easy broccoli soup recipe, broccoli cooks together with onions, celery, garlic and fresh herbs and is puréed into a delicious creamy soup. Try this healthy broccoli soup alongside grilled cheese sandwiches or as a starter for a simple dinner.
By EatingWell Test Kitchen

Chickpea Snack Salad

Take 5 minutes to toss together a fiber-rich chickpea and tomato salad for a satisfying snack.
By Andrea Mathis, M.A., RDN, LD

Japanese Cucumber Salad

Rating: 4.5 stars 6
This Japanese-inspired cool, crisp salad is as elegant and well balanced as it is simple.
By Jessie Price

Spinach Salad with Warm Maple Dressing

Rating: 4.5 stars 3
Pure maple syrup adds body and rich flavor to the dressing, providing a perfect counterpoint to the smoked cheese.
By EatingWell Test Kitchen

Green Salad with Edamame & Beets

Rating: 3 stars 9
This big salad is a feast for the eyes and an everyday way to incorporate nutrient-rich beets and plant-based protein from edamame (green soybeans). If you're not a fan of cilantro, mix in freshly chopped basil or dill instead.
By Katie Webster
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Inspiration and Ideas

Low-Calorie, Whole-Grain Recipes
Whole grains provide a healthy boost of vitamins, minerals, fiber, antioxidants and phytonutrients. Whole grains are also rich in carbohydrates—the body's main fuel supply—so we need a fair amount daily to feel satisfied. Our low-calorie, whole-grain recipes are delicious ways to get more whole grains into your diet. Try our low-calorie quinoa recipes, barley recipes, bulgur recipes, wheat berry recipes, farro recipes, wild rice recipes and more for a satisfying whole-grain recipe.
Steamed Fresh Green Beans

Steaming (but not for too long!) is a foolproof way to get perfect, crisp-tender green beans, every time. This easy recipe is a great starting point for other flavors or preparations, like adding cooked green beans to a salad.