Light Spring Recipes

by Jackie on March 14, 2014

Nothing says spring like light, healthy salads!  Celebrate the fresh flavors of spring with these delicious salad recipes made with fresh vegetables of spring.


Warm Snow Pea & Chicken Salad



1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast, trimmed

1 14-ounce can reduced-sodium chicken broth

3 tablespoons rice vinegar

3 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce

3 teaspoons toasted sesame oil, divided

2 tablespoons tahini, or cashew butter

1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 pound snow peas, trimmed and thinly slivered lengthwise

2 tablespoons chopped cashews



1.Place chicken in a medium skillet or saucepan and add broth; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer gently until cooked through and no longer pink in the middle, 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a cutting board to cool. Shred into bite-size pieces. (Cool and refrigerate the broth, reserving it for another use.)

2.Meanwhile, whisk vinegar, soy sauce, 2 teaspoons sesame oil and tahini (or cashew butter) in a large bowl until smooth.

3.Heat the remaining 1 teaspoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add ginger and garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in slivered peas and cook, stirring, until bright green, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to the bowl with the dressing.

4.Add the chicken to the bowl with the peas; toss to combine. Serve sprinkled with cashews.


Watercress & Sugar Snap Salad with Warm Sesame-Shallot Vinaigrette



8 ounces fresh sugar snap peas, trimmed (about 2 cups; see Tip)

2 large bunches watercress, woody stems trimmed (4 ounces or 4 loosely packed cups)

2 tablespoons peanut oil, or canola oil

4 large shallots, thinly sliced into rings

2 tablespoons rice vinegar

2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup crumbled hard, aged goat cheese , or Asiago cheese



1.Bring a small pot of water to a boil. Add peas and cook until bright green, 30 seconds. Drain in a colander and rinse with cold water until cool. Transfer to a large bowl, add watercress and toss to combine.

2.Heat peanut (or canola) oil in a medium nonstick skillet over low heat; add shallots and cook very slowly, stirring frequently, until golden brown, about 15 minutes. Stir in vinegar, sesame oil and salt; cook until fragrant, about 10 seconds. Pour the warm dressing over the peas and watercress; toss well. Top with cheese and serve.


Chopped Salad



1 teaspoon garlic, minced

2 teaspoons shallots, minced

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano

2 teaspoons dried parsley

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 cup red wine vinegar

1 1/3 cups olive oil, mild flavored

3 tablespoons parmesan cheese, grated



1/2 head iceberg lettuce, chopped into 1/8 inch wide strips

1/2 head romaine lettuce, chopped into 1/8 inch wide strips

12 leaves basil, chopped into fine strips

3 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded

1 cup garbanzo beans

4 cups tomatoes, seeded and diced

3 cups turkey breast, diced

1/2 cup salami, cut into thin strips

2 tablespoons scallions, chopped



1. For salad, toss together the ingredients in a large bowl and chill in your refrigerator.

2. For dressing, whisk together ingredients in a small bowl and chill for an hour.

3. Just before serving, toss dressing with salad and serve.



Health Contributor at Creative Bioscience
I'm a fitness nut. I know what you're thinking, one of these people who has never been fat a day in her life, and can eat whatever she wants. The truth is I struggled with my weight growing up and lived in a household where everything seemed to be fried. Once I got away from home I realized I had the choice to eat and exercise how I wanted. I've gained a lot of insight into working as a personal trainer, and feel I can relate to others that were in my situation. I think if I can do it then you can to, and if you want to start kicking butt then hop on board and lets get started.

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