Spotlight Recipes: Picnic Salads

Picnic season has arrived. Fire up the grill, toss on the hamburgers and steaks and don’t forget about those scrumptious side salads. Instead of gobs of fat and oodles of calories, here are delicious (and healthy) versions of the classics.
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Photo by: Sang An

Sang An

Picnic season is here! Fire up the grill for burgers, chops or chicken, and don’t forget about those scrumptious side salads. Instead of serving up sides with gobs of fat and calories, try these delicious (and healthy) versions of the classics.

New Takes on Classics:

Toby Amidor, MS, RD, CDN, is a registered dietitian and consultant who specializes in food safety and culinary nutrition. See Toby's full bio »

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Spotlight Recipe: Waldorf Salad

This creamy sweet salad always screams summer to me, but with apples at the their ripest, now is a great time to enjoy a Waldorf Salad, which is made lighter with low-fat mayonnaise and yogurt.

Spotlight Recipe: Rainbow Chopped Salad

Taste the rainbow and get your daily dose of vitamins from this simple chopped salad.

Spotlight Recipe: Black Bean Salad

This deliciously simple dish is the perfect picnic side. Amazingly, there’s no oil or other fat added to it -- meaning it's fat-free. Instead, you get tons of fiber from the beans, corn and other veggies. A touch of pineapple adds a sweetness to combo, too.

Spotlight Recipe: Simple Salad Dressing

Make a batch of this simple salad dressing and use all week to top salads, dip veggies or marinate chicken, fish or vegetables.

Spotlight Recipe: Balsamic Melon Salad

Add a little spice to fruit with this scrumptious salad. Balsamic vinegar adds flavor without racking up calories and keeps this recipe at under 140 per serving. Serve with a sandwich, an omelet or even as dessert.

Spotlight Recipes: Chutney

Chutney is a simmered-down or pureed combo of fruit (or veggies), spices and herbs. Instead of deep frying or drowning your fish, pork or meat in heavy sauces, opt for a tangy bite of chutney instead.

Spotlight Recipe: Michelada

Want something more exciting than bottled beer for your game-day bash? If your friends are Bloody Mary fans, this Mexican cocktail might be a winner. Lime and hot sauce liven up the flavor without adding calories.

Spotlight Recipes: Granita

Dig in to these delicious frozen treats that are reminiscent of Italian ices. Granita’s are harder in texture than sorbets and contain less sugar. To make a granita, cook up a simple sugar (combo of sugar and water) and add flavors such as coffee, mint, juice and wine along with fruit. Once the mixture has begun to freeze (it takes about 3 hours), scrape the ice crystals every so often as they start to form. Once frozen, scoop and serve.

Spotlight Recipes: Gazpacho

Enjoy a refreshingly cool (and super healthy) soup this summer. Traditional gazpacho is a pureed mixture of fresh tomatoes, sweet bell peppers, onions, celery and cucumbers but don’t be afraid to get creative. Shake things up—blend a batch of watermelon, red pepper or white grape gazpacho instead.

Spotlight Recipe: Katie's Mediterranean Grain Salad

Here is a basic Mediterranean Grain Salad. It's versatile dish -- make it with couscous, wheat berries or quinoa. Or try it with a medley and reap all their whole-grain benefits.