13 Simple, Healthy Dishes Packed With Spring Flavor

Courtesy of Half Baked Harvest

There is something magical about farmers markets in springtime. The stalls are filled with blooming and fragrant flowers. The mood naturally is light and positive. And, there’s an overwhelming amount of fresh produce. Asparagus, peas, strawberries, rhubarb—everywhere you look there are bright and colorful fruits and vegetables. Spring in the farmers markets also brings out a home cook’s childlike curiosity as each year, new cult ingredients—ramps, green garlic, fiddlehead ferns, morel mushrooms—are piled high in the stands. Whether you’re a seasoned cook looking for innovative ideas or a novice in need of inspiration, we encourage you to enjoy all that this season has to offer. Head to your farmers market, chat with the purveyors, return home with your new ingredients, and experiment with one of the following easy spring dishes that showcase just how delicious this season can be.

Courtesy of Love and Lemons

Spring Broccolini and Kale Quinoa Bowls

Broccolini is a hybrid vegetable that was first made in 1993. It’s a cross between broccoli and Chinese broccoli with a more mild, earthy flavor. Note that broccolini should not be confused with broccoli rabe, which has leafy greens and is similar to mustard or turnip greens. Give the vibrant green veg a try by adding it to a heavy vegan quinoa bowl.

Get the recipe on Love and Lemons.

Courtesy of Dash of Savory

Pork Chops With Morel Mushroom Sauce

Morels are a funny-looking mushroom with a honeycomb-like shape that is covered in nooks and crevices. They are a preferred spring vegetable to many foodies who love them for their rich meaty flavor. This recipe pairs them with pork chops, fresh chive blossoms, and a cream sauce. To make the meal more nutritious, substitute chicken broth for the cream.

Get the recipe on Dash of Savory.

Courtesy of Blue Apron

Spring Miso Ramen

Ramen is a trendy dish right now, so why not impress your friends or family with a spring variation of the pipping hot noodle soup? It’s filled with bok choy, fresh English peas, and scallions.

Get the recipe on Blue Apron.

Courtesy of Andrew Scrivani for The New York Times

Penne With Peas and Parmesan

Although frozen peas are a staple in some houses, there is nothing quite like the real deal. It’s the best and only time to enjoy peas. It can be a hassle to shell them, but it’s worth it when making fresh peas with penne pasta. The resulting dish is full of the delicate grassy flavors of spring.

Get the recipe on The New York Times.

Courtesy of Half Baked Harvest

Pea and Aspragus Burrata Pizza

Give pizza a spring makeover with this recipe that has you cover the dough with a lemon pepper basil vinaigrette rather than a traditional tomato marinara sauce. Layer on burrata, sugar snap peas, asparagus, and feta. After it’s charred in the oven, add ribbons of prosciutto and lots of fresh herbs. Paired with a glass of Lillet on ice and you’ve got an appetizer that’s ideal for entertaining.

Get the recipe on Half Baked Harvest.

Courtesy of Love and Lemons

No-Bake Sweet Pea Enchiladas

Vegetarian enchiladas are a crowd-pleasing meal and this creative variation combines fresh peas with finely chopped carrots. Serve with guacamole, salsa, and all the fixings and you’ve got a healthy, but scrumptious Cinco de Mayo menu.

Get the recipe on Love and Lemons.

Courtesy of Williams-Sonoma

Chicken Breasts With Fava Beans

Fresh fava beans are fleeting at the farmers markets, so when you come across them, don’t hesitate to scoop them up. For a literal spring chicken, serve them sauteed with skinless boneless chicken breasts and a light white wine sauce.

Get the recipe on Williams-Sonoma.

Courtesy of Dash of Savory

Steamed Artichokes With Lemon Parsley Butter

Although there are plenty of fancy artichoke recipes out there, I like in-season globe artichokes like my dad used to prepare them: eaten leaf by leaf with your hands with a simple dressing of lemon and butter.

Get the recipe on Dash of Savory.

Courtesy of Abby Hocking for Food & Wine

Cream of Celery Soup

Often times a recipe will call for one or two stalks of celery and unless you have kids who devour celery stalks with peanut butter, it can be tedious to figure out ways to use up all that celery. When that’s the case, make this delectable celery soup that gets a bright green flavor from the addition of lots of parsley and spinach. To make the soup more fit-friendly, use nonfat milk instead of cream.

Get the recipe on Food & Wine.

Courtesy of Bobby Lin for Food52

Pea, Asparagus, and Fava Bean Salad

Want the pure incarnation of spring on a plate? Make this genius salad that combines crisp peas, tender shaved asparagus with lots of spring herbs (mint, parsley, pea shoots, chives, sorrel, etc.), and shards of pecorino cheese. Dress the salad with your best extra-virgin olive oil and finishing salt, then enjoy!

Get the recipe on Food52.

Courtesy of Love and Lemons

Sesame Broccoli and Shiitake Stir Fry

Combine fresh spring veggies with brown rice pasta to make a scrumptious and savory stir-fry. The sauce is a finger-licking good mixture of tamari, rice vinegar, lime juice, garlic, honey, ginger, and sesame oil. Delish!

Get the recipe on Love and Lemons.

Courtesy of Melina Hammer for The New York Times

Burrata With Snap Peas and Shiitakes

We’ve never met a vegetable that doesn’t pair well with creamy decadent burrata cheese. This recipe combines the cheese with mushrooms and peas. Serve with lettuce cups instead of bread for a carb-free, but filling meal.

Get the recipe on The New York Times.

Courtesy of the View from Great Island

Leek and Potato Soup

There are thousands of leek and potato soup variations on the internet, but we like this one because it doesn’t involve cream, and it lets the pure flavor of spring’s leeks shine. For added richness, drizzle with sour cream before serving.

Get the recipe on View from Great Island.

What dishes do you make to celebrate spring?