Side Dish Recipes

Beet and Pomegranate Jewel Salad

In the deli department, there are many customer favorites.  But one that always stands out to me are the beet salads.  If they are missing from the case, people always ask when they are going to be made again.  I do not blame them, as beets are one of my favorites as well.  Its lovely color,  sweet flavor and nutritional density make it very desirable.  One of my favorite ways to serve them is with citrus fruits, the flavors are perfect together. So, I decided to share with you one of my favorite winter salads featuring red and gold beets!  It is a show stopper that I love to serve to guests.

Salad Side Dish Beginner Easy Dairy-Free Gluten-Free Heart Healthy Paleo Vegan Vegetarian

Fennel Pomegranate Salad

With the hustle and bustle of the holidays, who has time for cooking, especially prep time? It’s nice to have some simple but delicious sides to serve with those sometimes intense main dishes.  This recipe is a family favorite; fresh fennel salad is easy and tasty.   Before I went vegan, I made the salad with simply fennel, pine nuts and parmesan. The pomegranate seeds were the alternative to the parmesan.  It makes the salad vibrantly beautiful and adds a nice tart sweetness.  This side acts as an art piece on the dinner table and gets guests attention. All this talk about fennel and pomegranate makes me crave our Christmas meal.

How to cut a pomegranate:

Cut pomegranate into quarters. In a medium size bowl, fill with water. Place one quarter of the pomegranate into water and slowly pull out seeds. Repeat with all quarters until all of the seeds are removed. Drain the water from the bowl.

Salad Side Dish Beginner Easy Gluten-Free Paleo Raw Salad Vegan Vegetarian

Shrimp Noodles with Thai Peanut Sauce

I love Thai food. The spicy fighting the sweet is something I crave. Here is a versatile dish that can be served hot as an entree or cold as a side dish. The overall heat level is mild. My 3-year-old will eat it, but I wouldn’t say it’s his favorite; it’s my husbands! To heat things up, add red peppers or cayenne pepper. Great with chicken, tofu or just veggies. Enjoy!

Entree Side Dish Easy Dairy-Free

Golden Quinoa Salad

While working in the deli, I often get asked by customers how to prepare quinoa.  It is fairly easy, and cooks up fast. Once you get the hang of it, it is something that can be made often.  The best part about it is it pairs well with just about any flavor. My favorite is combining it with citrus and crunchy nuts for added protein.  I recently came up with a recipe perfect for this time of the year called golden quinoa.  It has plenty of veggies in it and would be a perfect side for a piece of glazed tofu or fish.


Salad Side Dish Beginner Easy Dairy-Free Gluten-Free Salad Vegan Vegetarian

Roasted Mushroom and Leek Salad with Pears and Pecans

When the chilly air starts to hit, I think more about salads that contain warm elements.  I like to combine savory roasted vegetables with sweet things like fruits.  Although there are many different possibilities, I am going to share one which was inspired by a salad that I enjoyed when visiting Montreal last year.  The chef who created it always uses what is in season, or given to him fresh that day, and that day fresh exotic mushrooms and pears were available.  You may think that it sounds like an odd combination, pears and roasted mushrooms, but it was wonderful.  The mushrooms were so flavorful, and the pears so sweet.  They were combined with roasted leeks and crunchy toasted pecans then tossed in a sweet tart vinaigrette.  I love the combination. It is something that most people have not had the chance to try, so I make it for occasions when I have people over for dinner and want to serve something special.  It would be perfect with a holiday meal!

Salad Side Dish Beginner Easy Dairy-Free Gluten-Free Salad Vegan Vegetarian

Tahini Dressed Root Vegetable Slaw

Many people think of slaw as a summer salad, but I believe that there are slaws for every season, depending on what type of vegetables you use in it.  I recently made a root vegetable slaw with carrots, parsnips and rutabagas.  You may not think of eating these veggies raw, but actually they are rather sweet and wonderful.  I dressed it with a silky tahini lemon sauce and topped it off with sesame seeds; it was the perfect side for an autumn meal.  I believe in thinking outside the box when it comes to using vegetables, and this was a nice switch off from the typical roasted or mashed potato.

Salad Side Dish Beginner Easy Dairy-Free Gluten-Free Raw Vegan Vegetarian

Roasted Yam and Edamame Salad

Roasted yams are one of my favorite things.  Although I enjoy them plain, they are also delicious in warm salads. I use it as a main dish because it contains edamame for protein.  When I thought up the recipe, I wanted it to have lots of flavorful elements, so I added sweet cranberries, savory shallots, toasted pecans and a flavorful vinaigrette.  I have served this to a few picky eaters, who were skeptical but once they had finished the salad they loved it!  It is also a delicious protein packed side dish and would be wonderful with a holiday spread.  Enjoy!

Entree Salad Side Dish Intermediate Dairy-Free Gluten-Free Heart Healthy Salad Vegan Vegetarian

Lemon Salmon Quinoa with Mint

Quinoa is a staple dinner item in our house. Its versatile, neutral taste helps to fill any dish. This “filler” packs a healthy punch with flavonoids, antioxidants, omega-3s and an overall nutritinal density. Unlike its grain conterparts, quinoa is known as a complete protein source.  Buying it in Fresh & Natural’s bulk department is the best way to keep the price down and makes you the decider as to how much you need.

No need for the fish oil today! This entree or side dish is loaded with omega-3 fatty acids which are vital for a normal metabolism. Omega-3s have been known to be linked to heart, cellular, joint and mental health benefits. Did I scare you off with the health components of this dish? Don’t be…it’s delcious, even a 3-year-old will eat it. This dish can be served cold or hot as a side dish or an entree. You choose. This is a great side dish to store in the fridge and eat cold throughout the week. The lemon essence brings out the extraodinary, rich flavors of the wild caught salmon and just gets richer with taste as it sits. Great for anytime of the year!

Entree Side Dish Beginner Easy Heart Healthy