Healthy Summer Side Dish Recipes

Find healthy, delicious summer side dish recipes, from the food and nutrition experts at EatingWell.

Staff Picks

Herbed Tomato Gratin

Rating: 5 stars
3
Vegetable gratin recipes often have a crunchy breadcrumb or crouton topping. But summer tomatoes are too gorgeous to hide, so we tucked crusty cubes of bread underneath them instead. Plus, the bread soaks up all the juicy tomato goodness. If you can't find marjoram, fresh basil or oregano makes a good substitute.

Greek Potato Salad

In this healthy potato salad recipe, a white-wine vinaigrette dresses the potatoes, tomatoes, feta and olives. Waxy potatoes, such as red and yellow, make the best potato salad because they hold their shape when cooked. Keep the potato skins on for more fiber and potassium.

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.

Japanese Cucumber Salad

Rating: 4.4 stars
20
This Japanese-inspired cool, crisp salad is as elegant and well balanced as it is simple.

Zucchini & Mushroom Sauté

Rating: 4.67 stars
3
Serve this simple side dish with grilled turkey burgers. Other fresh herbs, like thyme or oregano, work well too.

Easy Steamed Zucchini

This foolproof way to cook zucchini is also the easiest and fastest. Just steam it on the stovetop for a few minutes and you have a healthy vegetable side dish to add to dinner. Toss with a little pesto for extra flavor.

Calabacitas

Rating: 4 stars
7
Enjoy this traditional Southwestern dish of sautéed summer squash, onions and peppers as a side or as a vegetarian filling for tacos.

Quick Cucumber Kimchi

Rating: 4.18 stars
11
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.

Cucumber-Yogurt Salad

Rating: 5 stars
2
A refreshing accompaniment to a main course of meat or fish, this cucumber-yogurt salad also makes a tasty filling for pita bread. If the cucumbers are grated instead of chopped, this mixture can be served as a dip.

Garlic Butter Campfire Corn

Rating: 5 stars
2
This flavorful corn couldn't be easier to prepare. Just cover the ears of corn in a quick garlic-and-chive-flavored butter and wrap in foil and they're ready to throw on the grill at home or over coals at the campsite.

Easy Brown Rice

Rating: 4 stars
4
Here's the only recipe you need to make perfect brown rice every time! This healthy whole grain is great on its own as a side dish, or use it in your favorite recipes calling for cooked brown rice.

Mary's Zucchini with Parmesan

Rating: 4.38 stars
8
Simple and delicious, in this recipe the almost caramelized zucchini are topped with a Parmesan crust. Serve the zucchini like a wedge of pizza, straight from the pan, with the cheese-side up. We named this recipe Mary's Zucchini after the mom of one of our former Test Kitchen managers. It's perfect for just-picked zucchini.
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Inspiration and Ideas

20 Make-Ahead Sides for Your Next Outdoor Gathering
Whether you're grilling burgers and hot dogs or serving up grilled chicken and kebabs, these cool salads and grillable sides are sure to impress your guests.
28 Vegetable Sides That Are Perfect for Summer
From zucchini to corn to cucumbers, these side dishes are bright, fresh and delicious.

Tomato Salad with Lemon-Basil Vinaigrette

Rating: 4.75 stars
8

Seek out several varieties of heirloom tomatoes for this simple salad. Sweeter and juicier than conventional tomatoes, they add the perfect pop of color.