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Serving up Summertime Side Dishes

May 21, 2024

Veggie Quinoa bake in a bowl

There’s no better way to kick off summer — and honor those who gave their lives in service — than creating a commemorative Memorial Day spread that’s worth remembering.

Although the grill and griller often take center stage at most barbeques, burgers, dogs, chicken, and ribs still need fresh and savory side dishes to complement any outdoor party menu.

This quinoa veggie bake and Mediterranean chickpea salad are infused with savory flavors and colorful fruits and veggies. Using seasonal produce, they’re easy-to-make recipes that should be garnished with oversized serving spoons for first and second helpings. You can even add them to weeknight meals all summer long.

Quinoa Veggie Bake

Serves: 8
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 60 minutes

  • 1 pound asparagus, trimmed
  • 3 bell peppers (red, green and yellow)
  • 6 green onions, chopped
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1 medium zucchini
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup quinoa (dry)
  • 2 cups reduced-sodium vegetable or chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted
  • 3/4 cup crumbled feta cheese (preferably low-fat)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Cut vegetables, except tomatoes, into bite-size pieces. Place first five ingredients (asparagus through zucchini) in a 13 x 9-inch baking dish. Add one tablespoon olive oil, garlic, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper. Toss well. Roast 30 minutes or until vegetables are tender.
  3. Add remaining one tablespoon olive oil to a large saucepan. Add quinoa and sauté until brown. Add broth. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and cook, covered, until liquid is absorbed.
  4. Add quinoa to roasted vegetables. Mix well. Sprinkle pine nuts and cheese over top. Cover with foil and bake 30 minutes. Serve hot or at room temperature.
Nutrition Facts Per Serving:
  • Calories: 220
  • Total Fat: 11 grams
  • Carbohydrates: 25 g
  • Sugar: 5 g
  • Protein: 8 g
  • Sodium: 400 mg
  • Fiber: 4 g

Mediterranean Chickpea Salad in a bowl

Mediterranean Chickpea Salad

Serves: 4
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
  • 1 15-ounce can chickpeas, rinsed
  • 1 cup diced cucumber
  • 1 cup chopped tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup chopped olives
  • 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
  1. Mix oil, lemon juice, and pepper together in a large bowl.
  2. Drain chickpeas from the can and rinse under cold water.
  3. Dice cucumber, chop tomatoes, chop olives, and finely chop red onion.
  4. Add cucumber, tomatoes, olives, and red onion into a bowl.
  5. Add dressing and toss.
  6. Top with feta cheese.
  7. Enjoy immediately! Keep in the fridge for up to three days.
Nutrition Facts Per Serving:
  • Calories: 300 kcal
  • Total Fat: 14 grams
  • Carbohydrates: 35 g
  • Sugar: 8 g
  • Protein: 12 g
  • Sodium: 233 mg
  • Fiber: 9 g
  • Healthy Living
  • Nutrition
  • Recipes