5 Spring Sides for a Healthier Easter Feast — Sensational Sides

Turn your Easter celebration into a healthy feast of fresh spring produce.
By: Emily Lee
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ALEX_G_ARUGULA_STRAWBERRY_SALAD_H.jpg

ALEX_G_ARUGULA_STRAWBERRY_SALAD_H.jpg

Photo by: Matt Armendariz ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Matt Armendariz, 2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Whether you’re serving a juicy glazed ham or a stately crown roast of lamb this Easter, you can count on a filling — and most likely meaty — main dish. If you’re determined to save room for dessert, your best bet is to keep the side dishes light by showcasing fresh spring produce. Your local farmers market will likely have an ample selection of asparagus, peas, and arugula and other fresh greens at this time of year, so make the most of it while the short season lasts.

Here are a few dishes to help turn your Easter celebration into a feast of spring produce:

At first, strawberries probably seem out of place in a green salad, but the sweet fruit helps to balance arugula’s peppery flavor. Give it a try this Easter and soon you’ll be looking for other ways to use strawberries outside of the dessert realm.

Roasted Asparagus_11.tif

Roasted Asparagus_11.tif

Food Styling: Jamie Kimm Prop Styling: Marina Malchin

You need only olive oil, salt and freshly ground black pepper to enhance fresh asparagus. Top the roasted spears with toasted pine nuts for an invigorating crunch. Chopped parsley and lemon zest are nice as well if you have them on hand.

FNK_ORANGE_GLAZED_CARROTS_H_.jpg

FNK_ORANGE_GLAZED_CARROTS_H_.jpg

Photo by: Matt Armendariz ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Matt Armendariz, 2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Carrots are available at most grocery stores year-round, but you'll find they reach peak freshness during the spring. Orange juice and dill are the secret ingredients of this easy side dish that showcases vitamin-rich carrots.

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RISOTTO_PEAS_015.tif

Photo by: Antonis Achilleos

Antonis Achilleos

Give risotto a spring spin by adding fresh peas and leeks to the broth before stirring in the ham and pesto.

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KO_FN_02SnapPeas1_023.tif

Photo by: Kana Okada Prop Stylist: Marina Malchin 917 751 2855 ©Kana Okada 2012

Kana Okada Prop Stylist: Marina Malchin 917 751 2855 , Kana Okada 2012

Crispy pancetta and sauteed garlic are the perfect complements to leeks’ mild, onionlike flavor. Tender snap peas are also at their peak at this time of year. Toss in a few to amplify the dish’s vibrant green hue.

For more festive Easter sides, check out these recipes from our friends:

Elephants and the Coconut Trees: Vanilla Pudding with Fruit Jam Topping

FN Dish: 5 Side Dishes That Are More Important Than the Easter Ham
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