There’s a lot to love about summertime. Warm weather, longer days, fun events and weekend trips. But let’s be real — one of the best parts of summertime (or anytime, for that matter) is the food. We’re currently reaching midsummer, meaning seasonal produce is at its flavorful peak. What better time to utilize some of those fresh veggies than in the form of home-cooked meals? If there was ever a “right” time to whip up some vegetarian dishes, we say summer would be it. Try out one of these vegetarian summer recipes this week, and celebrate summer the best way possible: with delicious, tasty bites.
Fries are a vegetarian-friendly side dish. But because they’re made with white potatoes, it’s better to treat them as a guilty pleasure than a regular meal staple. The trick to making them less unhealthy is to swap white potatoes for sweet potatoes, a much healthier option that still packs the crunch and satisfaction of standard fries. Sweet potatoes are a great source for both vitamin C and vitamin A. They also provide manganese, which helps promote collagen production for healthy skin. Plus, they’re full of antioxidants. Oh, and they taste great. You won’t miss french fries once you try these. We promise.
This is one of those recipes that could turn even the most stubborn meat-lover into a veggie-eating convert. It’s hearty enough to be a meal on its own, but it can also work as a side dish. Either way, the combination of quinoa, black beans and corn make for a filling, flavorful dish. We love that it utilizes corn, the most summery vegetable of them all (with tomatoes coming in a close second).
Here’s another recipe that features corn, plus tomatoes. Looking for a creamy pasta dish without the dairy? Meet your new go-to. This recipe is not actually vegetarian — it’s vegan, so it doesn’t use any animal byproducts, like eggs or dairy. Flavors of fresh basil, tomatoes and garlic come together to create a delicious, tasty meal that’s perfect for a quick summer dinner. Tip: We recommend adding some pine nuts into the mix, too.
Next, here’s another recipe featuring avocados. Can you tell we love them? There’s a lot to love about the stone fruit: it’s chock-full of healthy fats that keep you feeling full. They’re also a great source of vitamin C. This vegetable quesadilla with guacamole is full of flavor and, of course, cheese. The guac takes it from good to great. This one will be in your summer dinner rotation, for sure. Pro Tip: Make these quesadillas with the black bean and corn quinoa recipe above, and have yourself a Tex-Mex-inspired dinner fiesta.
The combination of basil, mozzarella cheese and tomatoes never fails. It’s great enough on its own. But put it between two slices of hearty, crunchy bread, and it’s a next-level lunch or dinner dish that will please even the pickiest of eaters. You can also swap fresh basil for pesto, and add a drizzle of balsamic vinaigrette for some added flavor. This recipe uses ciabatta bread, but we also love it with sourdough or even a french baguette. There’s really no wrong way to make this sandwich, so don’t be afraid to get creative with it.
Want more recipes? Check out these other summer vegetarian recipes we’ve posted about previously: