3 recipes that celebrate fresh spring vegetables

Take your pick. We’ve got recipes to use asparagus, snap peas, leeks, and more.

The recipes in this post were developed by Kate Sherwood, The Healthy Cook, and taste-tested in the Nutrition Action Test Kitchen. Have a comment, question, or idea? Email Kate at healthycook@cspinet.org.

Click here for a printer-friendly version of these recipes.

Spanish Style Snap Peas

Time: 20 minutes
Serves 4.

3 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
1 large carrot, finely chopped
1 stalk celery, finely chopped
1 small onion, finely chopped
½ bell pepper, finely chopped
3 Tbs. tomato paste
¼ tsp. red pepper flakes
¼ tsp. dried oregano
¼ tsp. kosher salt
1 lb. snap peas, trimmed

1. In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Sauté the carrot,
celery, onion, and bell pepper until lightly browned, 5-7 minutes.

2. Stir in the tomato paste, pepper flakes, oregano, and salt. Cook, stirring often, until the tomato paste starts to brown, 2-3 minutes.

3. Increase the heat to high and stir in ½ cup of water. Add the snap peas and cook until hot but still crisp, 1-2 minutes.

Per serving (1 cup):

  • Calories: 170
  • Total fat: 11 g
  • Sat fat: 1.5 g
  • Carbs: 15 g
  • Fiber: 4 g
  • Total sugar: 8 g
  • Added sugar: 0 g
  • Protein: 4 g
  • Sodium: 240 mg

Mushroom Leek Fried Rice

Time: 15 minutes
Serves 4.

1 large leek, white and pale green part only
1 Tbs. + 1 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
½ lb. brown mushrooms, chopped
1 Tbs. reduced-sodium soy sauce
freshly ground black pepper
2 cups cooked brown rice or other whole grain
1 bunch scallions, chopped

1. Quarter the leek lengthwise, rinse it well, then thinly slice it.

2. In a large non-stick skillet, sauté the leek in 1 Tbs. of the oil over medium-low
heat until tender and bright green, 2-3 minutes. Remove from the skillet.

3. Increase the heat to medium-high and sauté the mushrooms in the remaining 1 Tbs. of oil until golden brown, 3-5 minutes. Season with the soy sauce and pepper to taste.

4. Return the leek to the skillet, add the rice and scallions, and stir-fry until all ingredients are hot, 1-2 minutes.

Per serving (1 cup):

  • Calories: 210
  • Total fat: 8 g
  • Sat fat: 1 g
  • Carbs: 31 g
  • Fiber: 3 g
  • Total sugar: 2 g
  • Added sugar: 0 g
  • Protein: 5 g
  • Sodium: 160 mg

Asparagus Salad

Time: 10 minutes
Serves 4.

1 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
2 Tbs. mayonnaise
1 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
¼ tsp. kosher salt
6 cups leaf or butter lettuce
½ lb. raw asparagus, chopped
4 radishes, halved and sliced
¼ cup unsalted pistachios, chopped

1. In a large bowl, whisk together the oil, mayonnaise, lemon juice, and salt.

2. Gently toss with the lettuce, asparagus, and radishes, and top with the pistachios.

Per serving (2 cups):

  • Calories: 140
  • Total fat: 12 g
  • Sat fat: 2 g
  • Carbs: 7 g
  • Fiber: 3 g
  • Total sugar: 3 g
  • Added sugar: 0 g
  • Protein: 4 g
  • Sodium: 170 mg
Photos: Kate Sherwood/CSPI.

The recipes in this post first appeared in the May 2016 issue of Nutrition Action Healthletter.

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