Healthy Recipes for Spring

Fava Beans with Red Onion and Mint. Photo: John KernickFava Beans with Red Onion and Mint. Photo: John Kernickby Epicurious.com

Healthful eating is never so easy as it is in the spring. With fresh fruits and vegetables flourishing, you only need minimal preparation to bring out maximum flavor. From salads to sides, entrées to desserts, here is a collection of our wholesome springtime favorites.

Related: Quick and Healthy Breakfast Recipes for the School Year

Tip: Preventive Medicine

Fresh fruits and vegetables are healthy in part because they contain phytochemicals, or beneficial compounds, such as beta-carotene, folate, and lycopene, which aid in the prevention of cancer.

Lemon Mint Braised Artichokes. Photo: Jonny ValiantLemon Mint Braised Artichokes. Photo: Jonny Valiant
Fresh Starters and Sides
Mixed Greens with Mustard Dressing
Lemon Mint Braised Artichokes
Spring Vegetable and Quinoa Pilaf
Fava Beans with Red Onion and Mint
(Fave con Cipolla Rossa e Menta)
Snow Peas with Toasted Almonds
Fresh Pea and Mint Soup
Butter Lettuce and Radish Salad with Fresh Spring Herbs



Tip: An Apple a Day
There is truth to the old "apple a day" adage, though this time of year, think seasonally and make it a "strawberry" or "artichoke" a day. Beyond having weight-watching benefits, a diet plentiful in fruits and vegetables decreases your risk of stroke and heart attack, helps lower blood pressure, and even guards against eye disease.


Vibrant Main Courses Vegetarian Cassoulet. Photo: Romulo YanesVegetarian Cassoulet. Photo: Romulo Yanes
Vegetarian Cassoulet
Chilled Tomato-Tarragon Soup with Croutons
Sliced Filet Mignon with Fava Beans, Radishes, and Mustard Dressing
Fish Fillets in Parchment with Asparagus and Orange
Halibut on Mashed Fava Beans with Mint
Slow-Roasted Halibut with Shaved Asparagus and Fennel Salad
Fettucine with Peas, Asparagus, and Pancetta


See also: The Epicurious Guide to Easter

Tip: Rich and Thin
Asparagus and artichokes are often associated with rich, luxurious menus, but they're also incredibly nutritious: They are both excellent sources of fiber and contain a host of nutrients, including vitamins C, K, and folate. "Asparagus is a particularly well-rounded vegetable, nutritionally speaking," says Monica Reinagel, chief nutritionist for NutritionData.com, writing in Epicurious and NutritionData's joint newsletter Healthy Dinner Tonight. "It's high in antioxidants A, C, and E, as well as vitamin K (for healthy bones), and has an array of B vitamins for energy."

Pavlova with Lemon Curd and Berries. Photo: Romulo YanesPavlova with Lemon Curd and Berries. Photo: Romulo Yanes Light and Luscious Desserts
Rhubarb and Ginger Brioche Bread Pudding
Cream Puffs with Lemon-Cream Filling
Rhubarb Fool
Pavlova with Lemon Curd and Berries
Vanilla-Poached Apricots with Zabaglione
Lemon-Raspberry Cupcakes


Tip: Start Local
Freshness counts for a lot of flavor, so try to get your fruits and vegetables from as close to the source as you can. Try to shop at local farmers' markets or join a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture). Don't be afraid to experiment and substitute based on what you find at the market.

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