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The Best Healthy Summer Dishes to Please Any Crowd

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Whether you’re headed to a picnic, a pool party, or a barbeque, one thing is for sure – potluck season is in full swing! And while everyone loves a tray of bars or the midwest classic “snicker salad”, potlucks are a great place to try new, healthier recipes. Below are five options to shake up your summer potluck soirée!

Cucumber And Heirloom Tomato Salad

A refreshing alternative to the oily pasta salads or mayo filled cole slaw.

Butternut Squash Mac & Cheese

That cheesy barbeque staple everyone loves, with hidden veggies!

BBQ Black Bean Burgers

All the protein with more nutrients!

Deviled Eggs

A classic – with fewer calories.

Traditional Grilled Greek Kabobs

A colorful summer staple, that’s loaded with veggies!

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Eating

Easy Blueberry Mini Tarts

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Mini Blueberry Tarts

Ingredients (yields 4 tarts)

Crust

    • 1C raw almonds or 1C almond meal
    • 2T butter, melted
    • 2T brown sugar
    • 1/4t salt

Filling

    • ~6T blueberry jam (homemade or store bought)
    • ~1C fresh blueberries

Method

    1. Preheat oven to 350F and spray tart pans with nonstick cooking spray.
    2. In a small food processor, process raw almonds into almond flour. Then add in brown sugar and salt and pulse. Place mixture into a medium sized bowl and pour in 2T melted butter.
    3. Using a fork, thoroughly mix together the crust ingredients.
    4. Separate crust mixture into four equal sections. Then, evenly pour ¼ of the mixture into a small tart pan and press firmly with a spoon or your fingers. Repeat x 3.
    5. Place tart pans on a cooking sheet and cover with tinfoil. Then, bake (covered) for 15 minutes.
    6. Uncover tart pans and bake for an additional 10 minutes or until the crust begins to brown. Rotate pans every 5 minutes.
    7. Let the crusts cool for about 30 minutes. Then, evenly spread on about ~1 ½ T of blueberry jam (or any kind of jam).
    8. Finally, place blueberries on top of jam. Enjoy!

Nutrition per serving (1/2 tart): 154 calories, 8g fat, 18g carbs (2g fiber, 12g sugars), 3g protein

Gluten-free blueberry tarts

Also check out some of our favorite healthy tart recipes from around the blogosphere:

    1. Strawberry Rhubarb Tartlets
    2. Dark Chocolate Cherry Amaretto Tart
    3. Healthified Blueberry Lemon Tart
    4. Rustic Pear Tart
    5. Very Cherry Tart with Almond Crust
    6. White Chocolate Berry Tart

What is your favorite kind of Tart?

Share in the comments below!

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Diet

4 Outstanding Reasons–and Recipes–to Eat More Blueberries

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Heads up: It’s peak blueberry season. And no doubt you’ve heard that blueberries are totally beneficial super foods with almost magical health benefits. Well, it’s true. They’re considered “brain food,” with the ability to fight toxic proteins, and can harness their crazy-good antioxidants to fight harmful molecules and potential infections (so long, UTIs!). With all these benefits, and the United States’ role as the world’s largest supplier, there’s an entire month— July—dedicated to their greatness. Do you need more reasons to eat them? If so, here goes. Skip to the end for blueberry recipes, if you’re already convinced.

1. Digestive health. Blueberries have high fiber content. Enough said.

2. Weight loss support. That fiber also increases your general sense of fullness, and extends the sensation between meals, reducing overall appetite.

3. Better bone health. Bone structure, strength, and elasticity are all helped by the great combo of iron, zinc, vitamin K, magnesium, calcium, phosphorous, and manganese found in blueberries.

4. Smoother skin. Say so long to some extra wrinkles thanks to the vitamin C that helps collagen improve overall skin texture, and acts as an antioxidant to help prevent skin damage from the sun and pollution.

5. Lower blood pressure. Blueberries contain potassium, calcium, and magnesium, which naturally decrease blood pressure. They do not include sodium, the concerning element connected to a high BP.

Here are five tasty ways to add more blueberries into your diet:

Toss Them in Fresh

A handful can be added to a salad, smoothie, oatmeal, or any number of other meals that could use a boost.

Breakfast: Vanilla Blueberry Yogurt Parfait

Take an idea from above for your first meal of the day, or prepare these delicious single-serving breakfasts.

blueberry parfait

Baked Goods: Lemon Blueberry Yogurt Muffins

Lemon and blueberries are both beneficial for your health. Enjoy the combo in this gluten-free side.

recipes-lemon-blueberry-yogurt-muffins

Snacks: Frozen Red, White & Blue Yogurt Bites

Take a break from Fourth of July activities with these colorful, cool morsels.

blueberry yogurt bites

Dessert: Blueberry Mini Tarts

Enjoy a healthier dessert, and limit your sweets consumed— unless you pop too many!

miniblueberrytartheader

Note: Beware of food that’s blueberry-flavored. It often doesn’t include actual blueberries. We want the real deal! And remember to hold off on washing the “dusty” fruit until you’re ready to eat them (to make them longer-lasting), and watch their juice; blueberries are a natural dye.

Sources: Medical News Today, Health.com and WebMD

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Nutrition

Say Goodbye to Traditional Frying with These Air Fryer Recipes

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By now, you’ve likely heard of the air fryer, but if you haven’t tried any air fried foods—you may be skeptical of the latest kitchen accessory. Air fryers have only been on the market since 2007, but they’ve become explosively popular in the last few years. With that popularity comes an influx of amazing recipes that will make you forget all about traditional frying. The air fryer also cooks food that wouldn’t typically be fried, making it an extremely versatile tool.

How Does it Work?

The air fryer uses hot air to cook your food, rather than hot oil. Hot air is circulated around your food, cooking your food evenly and efficiently without the use of cooking oil. An added benefit, cooking times in the air fryer are roughly 20% faster than traditional cooking methods (busy parents, rejoice!).

What Can You Make with an Air Fryer?

In short, everything! But seriously, that’s the beauty of this kitchen miracle. So many foods can be cooked with using the air frying method, from typically fried foods like tater tots and breaded chicken to less conventional recipes like Brussels sprouts and eggplant parmesan!

We’re sharing some great recipes that will take you from breakfast to dinner that will keep your family full and give your oven and stovetop a break.

Image via Paleoish Krista

Air Fryer Breakfast Cups

These easy-to-make breakfast cups are even easier to eat on the go. Take some stress off your plate in the morning and serve up a plate of these, instead!

Image via Hip2Save

Two-Ingredient Air Fryer Bagels

Two ingredients, that’s all you need to make delicious, homemade bagels.

Image via Courtney’s Sweets

Air Fryer Hard Boiled Eggs

Okay, this one isn’t very fancy but it’s a super easy way to make hard boiled eggs without any fuss. No standing over the stove, just pop your eggs in the air fryer for 15 minutes and let the hot air do the rest.

Image via EazyPeazyMealz

Air Fryer Chicken Wings

If you’re craving chicken wings, but want to avoid the extra calories from a deep fry, these are the wings for you. Bonus: they’re simple!

Image via Recipe This

Best Air Fryer Sweet Potato Fries

Sweet potato fries are delicious, but made in the air fryer—they’re fantastic. This classic recipe gets the air fryer-treatment and you won’t be disappointed with the result!

Image via Tablespoon.com

Air Fryer Basic Chicken Breasts

Baked chicken breast? Forget it! It’s time to try the air fryer method with this dinnertime staple.

Image via Hungry Girl

Air-Fried Ranch Zucchini Chips

These zucchini chips are magic, the moment you set them on the table—they disappear! Give them a try, you’ll see why.

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