10 Recipes that will Rock Your Summer BBQ

We’ve rounded up 10 recipes that will rock your summer BBQ, potlucks, and picnics! These recipes are Blue Zones approved — and will add a tasty, colorful, and nutritional punch to your summer feasts!

1. Polenta Tart with Garlicky White Bean Spread and Roasted Cherry Tomatoes from Choosing Raw makes a tasty, nutrient-packed appetizer or entree.

Tomatoes are rich in lycopene, an antioxidant that may help protect against cancer and heart disease. Cooking tomatoes helps to improve the ability for your body to use lycopene — so go ahead and roast those tomatoes!

2.  Crazy Sexy Bean Chili from Kris Carr is packed with protein and fiber from all those delicious beans!

Beans are a staple food in all of the blue zones areas! Research suggests that for every additional ~2 tablespoons (20 grams) of beans consumed per day lowers the risk of death by 8 percent. Add some beans — and years to your life!

3.  Grilled Sweet Potato Salad with Roasted Jalapeño Dressing from Alexandra Caspero, registered dietitian at Delish Knowledge, is sure to spice up the party!

Sweet potatoes are rich in beta-carotene — an antioxidant that may help improve immunity and prevent cancer. Pairing beta-carotene-rich foods with a small amount of healthful fats like olive oil, avocados, nuts, or seeds, helps your body to better use this fat-soluble vitamin.

4. The Plantpower Way’s Potato Salad from Rich Roll and Julie Piatt is sure to knock your socks-off! Summer picnics just aren’t complete without potato salad.

Top the potato salad off with some pumpkin seeds for added protein, fiber, and zinc. Pumpkin seeds may even help improve the mood of the guests at your party!

5. Smoky Black Bean Beet Burgers from the Minimalist Baker are made with black beans, quinoa, walnuts, and beets.  Swap out meat for this beat burger at your next grill out!

Walnuts may help improve artery function, therefore, lowering risk for heart disease. Walnuts are a good plant-source of omega 3. Try adding some to your weekly meal routine.

6. Chickpea of the Sea Salad Sandwich from Megan Roosevelt, RD & founder of Healthy Grocery Girl is a great replacement for deli meat and egg sandwiches at your picnics — you could even use it for your everyday lunch!

Chickpeas are rich in a number of health promoting factors — like soluble fiber, resistant starch, and phytonutrients — that have been found to protect against risk of heart disease, cancer, and diabetes.

7. Quick and Easy Lemon Dill Bean Salad from our Blue Zones Recipes pairs great with spinach leaves, chopped broccoli, avocado, and blueberries.

Don’t forget the blueberries! The anthocyanin — a powerful antioxidant found in purple-, blue-, and red-colored fruits and vegetables has been show to delay the brain from aging for up to 2.5 years.

8. Baked Ikarian Chickpeas  from our Blue Zones Recipes  is sure to liven-up your party with fresh mint leaves, chickpeas, and olive oil!

A large experimental research study found that a Mediterranean diet including either nuts or olive oil reduced incidences of strokes, as compared to a low-fat diet. Add a little fat to your diet, but choose more plant-based fats.

9. Vanilla Cherry Nice Cream from Emily von Euw at This Rawsome Vegan Life is perfect for summer desserts because it’s creamy, cold, sweet and hydrating. Oh, plus it’s super good for you since it’s made with just bananas, cherries, and vanilla beans.

study that followed people over a period time found that eating whole fruit — including bananas that are slightly higher in carbohydrate content than other fruits — did not increase people’s risk for Type 2 diabetes.

10. Lemon-Kissed Blondie Bites from Plant-Powered Families are sweetened naturally with dates and are a healthy indulgence to be shared with friends and family. Who says dessert can’t be made healthy!?

Dates, though high in natural sugar, are actually a nutrition-powerhouse packed with vitamins, minerals (like potassium, iron, zinc, and phosphorus), and fiber.

Now who is hungry and ready for a Blue Zones summer feast!? 

 

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