9 Deliciously Easy “Light” Side Recipes
Are you ready for a few side dish recipes? Easy side dish recipes, that is.
Okay, so we talked about creating some delicious side recipes earlier, and now it’s time to see what we can do to create some lighter, healthier, side dish recipes. Because let’s face it, as the weather gets warmer, those shorts and swim suits are beckoning and I don’t want to disappoint. Sigh. Once again it’s time to draw on that New Year’s Resolution (or every day resolution) to eat a little bit better so that we can be a little bit healthier. Not just for our swim suits, or even for our hubbies and kids, but for ourselves. Because at the end of the day Mommas, we’ve got to work on taking care of ourselves as well, right?
So here are some easy, healthy side dishes that you can whip up quick!
#1 Quinoa Salad: This is a side dish that is pretty effortless and definitely fits into our definition of healthy. Quinoa has a ton of protein in its tiny little body, and when combined with the lemon, onion, endive, tomato, and avocado, it creates a really filling and fresh dish. I’d probably just eat it for lunch. 😉 I really recommend having a strainer like this one on hand to rinse your quinoa.
#2 Hassleback Sweet Potatoes: Okay, so I do have a pretty major sweet tooth to contend with. Some days by nine pm I’m dying for a bit of chocolate or something sweet. With the end of Easter and most of the sugar centered holidays, this is a great transition food for me! I love the subtle sweetness of the sweet potatoes with the crispiness that doing them hasselback style provides and pairing it with something savory adds a nice balance. These are definitely an easy side dish and a great way to satisfy that sweet tooth without breaking your healthy streak!
#3 Healthy Cauliflower Rice: Okay, hear me out. I know that you can definitely buy this stuff already prepped and frozen, and there are some days where that’s what I rely on. But there is something really fun about cutting cauliflower up and using my food processor. It doesn’t get enough love as a kitchen appliance. At any rate, since a lot of our favorite dinner dishes rely on rice as the carbohydrate, this is a fantastic substitute! And you know what, my kids don’t even notice that they are eating veggies instead of rice, and I feel a whole lot better knowing we are eating a little bit healthier. This is one easy and healthy side dish.
#4 Baked Green Bean Fries: This is another simple side dish that can replace something with some much needed vitamins. These come out crispy and delicious and a really great substitute for fries. If you’re looking for a gluten free version, try substituting the flour with almond or rice flour!
#5 Spinach and Green Apple Salad: Remember my healthy obsession with salad? This is a great one! Not only does this side dish come together easy, but my kids actually ate it! I don’t know if it was the crunch walnuts or the tart apples, but they ate it up. And I have to say that as far as salads go, this one was a winner. I would definitely say you could add some cooked chicken to this and serve it as a main dish if you’d like.
#6 Maple Roasted Sweet Potatoes: These are amazing and again, a great way to curb that sweet tooth. These have a really deep flavor with the maple and lemon without adding a bunch of additional calories.
#7 Roasted Brussels Sprouts: Okay, I know that most kids and adults will turn their nose up at this side dish. But I swear, brussels sprouts are amazingly delicious. The Barefoot Contessa put this simple dish together and it’s easy-peasy. Salty, crunchy, and ridiculously healthy, these are a sure favorite around our house.
#8 Shaved Cabbage and Brussels Sprout Salad: I know, again with the sprouts! But I swear, as well as they cook, they are also great in a salad. This salad is quick and easy and full of flavor and crunch. Letting it rest in the fridge is key-you’ve got to let the flavors marinate and I promise you won’t regret it.
#9 Sautéed Asparagus with Olives and Basil: This is a really great twist on a classic. The flavor of the asparagus works really well with the tangy-tartness of the olives and rounds out with the scent of the basil. So, if you want to add flavor without adding calories, this is an easy dish to try out.
And there you have it! Nine recipes that are good for your waistline, your heart, and hopefully your soul. These dishes are easy, full of nutrition, and free from guilt. 🙂 Plus, if you’re in the mood to elevate your kitchen a little, World Market has a darling side dish plate that would showcase your side dish game perfect.
Have a good day Mommas! We’ve got this.
Quinoa Salad via FoodNetwork
Hasselback Sweet Potatoes via FoodNetwork
Healthy Cauliflower Rice via FoodNetwork
Baked Green Bean Fries via FoodNetwork
Spinach and Green Apple Salad via FoodNetwork
Maple Roasted Sweet Potatoes via FoodNetwork
Roasted Brussels Sprouts via FoodNetwork
Shaved Cabbage and Brussel Sprout Salad via FoodNetwork
Sautéed Asparagus with Olives and Basil via FoodNetwork