(Healthy) Recipe Ideas

(Healthy) Recipe Ideas

Long weekend incoming! A little extra time to spend with family, get errands done and cook out. ^_^ Thought it would be neat to share our favorite recipes, healthy options encouraged, to begin the first chapter in our Community Cookbook - Recipes for Summer Weekends. Woman LOL


Do you have a favorite summer recipe you'd like to share? 


I found mine years ago on Allrecipes.com, it's been a summer staple at our house ever since. It's best when it's made right before serving as it can get a bit watery if you prepare it too far in advance. I always go a little heavier on cilantro, add julienned carrot, and cut the sugar by half. If you don't like pepper spice you can omit the jalapeno and it's still delicious! If you DO like spice you can also add a bit of red pepper flake to take it up a notch.


Thai Cucumber Salad



  • 3 large cucumbers, peeled, halved lengthwise, seeded, and cut into 1/4-inch slices
  • 20 g salt
  • 100 g white sugar
  • 120 ml rice wine vinegar
  • 2 jalapeno peppers, seeded and chopped
  • 10 g chopped cilantro
  • 75 g chopped peanuts


  1. Toss the cucumbers with the salt in a colander, and leave in the sink to drain for 30 minutes. Rinse with cold water, then drain and pat dry with paper towels.
  2. Whisk together the sugar and vinegar in a mixing bowl until the sugar has dissolved. Add the cucumbers, jalapeno peppers, and cilantro; toss to combine. Sprinkle chopped peanuts on top before serving.

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Re: (Healthy) Recipe Ideas - Memorial Day Edition!

That sounds delicious! Although I'll probably add a lot more cilantro and maybe a little lime Smiley Wink

Here's something we love to make for cookouts:


🌽  Seasoned/Grilled Corn on the Cob  🌽

Fresh Corn-on-the-Cob (husked)

Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EEOO)

Sea Salt (coarsely ground)*

Black Pepper (freshly cracked)

Garlic Powder

Paprika or Cayenne (ground)

Cilantro (or ANY fresh herbs)

  • Brush a little EEOO on each ear of corn. (just enough so the spices stick - keep it healthy!)
  • Sprinkle with Salt, Pepper, Garlic Powder & Paprika. 
  • Chop up your herbs and sprinkle on the corn. (I use whatever is ready in my garden!)
  • Wrap in aluminum foil, place directly on the grill for approximately 3-5 minutes (turn it once or twice and check it! your grill might be different than mine.)

*I like coarsely ground Sea Salt or Kosher Salt. Because the granules are large, I can really taste them! That means less sodium to get the taste I ❤️.

Re: (Healthy) Recipe Ideas - Memorial Day Edition!

I love all the Trader Joe's recipes that they share on their website and at the "taste-test center" at their stores. There is one recipe that is my staple appetizer I bring to parties and it is always a hit.


What's the recipe you say? It's called the "1 Minute Lentil Salad"! Here's the link to the recipe on the website, but I have also provided it below (with some additional tweaks). Enjoy!


What you will need:

  • 1 package Trader Joe's Steamed & Fully Cooked Lentils, rinsed to remove extra sodium (however, I never rinse them and it tastes great, you can if you want to take out that sodium though)
  • 1 package of Trader Joe's Crumbled Feta
  • 1/2 container of Trader Joe's Bruschetta Sauce (I drain some of the extra liquid, so the dip doesn't get soggy)

How to create the masterpiece:

  • In a medium bowl, combine lentils, feta and bruschetta sauce (after draining to prevent sogginess), then stir. Serve cold. The recipe calls to serve this dip with crackers, but I think the Trader Joe's Organic Corn Chip Dippers are the best choice!

Re: (Healthy) Recipe Ideas - Memorial Day Edition!

My fav recipe is a marinade for flank steak. I learned it form my ex mother in law.  Not sure why it's called a Fajita marinade, but here it goes:



  • 4-5 gloves of garlic crushed
  • 1/4 cup lime juice
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp pepper flakes
  • 1/2 cup of balsamic vinegar or red wine vinegar
  • 2 tbsp of soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup or so cilantro chopped (about 1/2 bunch)


add it all together, let the flank steak marinade for 24 hrs (or overnight, turning from side to side a few times) and then grill to your liking. My son loves it medium rare (135F inside).




Re: (Healthy) Recipe Ideas - Memorial Day Edition!

This is a proven hit whenever we bring this to a BBQ. And by proven, I mean I love it and we always get compliments. And by we, I mean my wife, because she makes it. I just eat it and take credit for bringing it. Smiley Happy





bag of cole slaw mix

pkg Ramon BEEF noodle ( NOT IN THE CUP)

small pack of slivered almonds

1/3 cup oil

¼ cup CIDER vinegar

13 cup sugar

1 tablespoon butter


IN pan, BROWN broken noodles (SET aside flavoring packet for dressing) and almonds in butter

When golden brown, REMOVE & set aside to cool

Then add to cole slaw



MIX together oil, vinegar, sugar & beef flavoring packet

SHAKE well

ADD to slaw salad & TOSS

Re: (Healthy) Recipe Ideas - Memorial Day Edition!

I was just going to say... I am waiting for that BBQ champion recipe from @seichmann8.... but you beat me to it. So are the ramen noodles soft or the dry version? I wanna try this asap. 

Re: (Healthy) Recipe Ideas - Memorial Day Edition!

@nvecsei, they are dry, and you brown them. It really is a delicious slaw, I highly recommend it. Let me know how you like it! And I may give your marinade a try, too. For as much as I grill, I'm embarrassed to say I don't have my own marinade recipe. I tend to lean towards seasonings and pre-made marinades.

Re: (Healthy) Recipe Ideas - Memorial Day Edition!

oh I can't stand store marinades and salad dressings. they are full of sugar and ingredients that you can't pronounce. I love experimenting with rubs/  sauces and dressings. May favorite salad dressing is this:


  • 1 tbs of olive oil
  • 1 tbs of balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 lemon or lime (juice only)
  • 1/4 tsp dijon mustard (or which ever you like, just not the American Yellow mustard, it's too harsh)
  • 1/2 tsp agave syrup (alternatively honey, simple syrup or maple syrup - might need to add more since these are less sweet than agave)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • chilly optional if you like your salad dressing spicy


This is simple, low in calorie and is healthy. Most ingredients are super inexpensive too. 

I use this quantity for a salad of 4+, so it truly is barely any calories per portion

Re: (Healthy) Recipe Ideas - Memorial Day Edition!

I'm always looking for an easy vegetarian option to help mix it up a bit! I eat meat regularly, but sometimes it's nice to eat a vegetarian grilled meal that's still filling. This one will definitely do the trick, and it doesn't take much time either. Food network has a recipe that's fairly close to what I usually do (read here) except I usually top with a marinara sauce instead of balsamic, and skip the bread, but that's just me.


Grilled Eggplant Parmesan



  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 medium tomatoes
  • salt/pepper
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan
  • 1 tbsp fresh basil
  • 8 slices rustic country bread
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella
  • Balsamic vinegar


  1. Stir together garlic and olive oil
  2. Slice eggplant into 1/2-inch-thick rounds**
  3. Slice tomatoes into four 1/2-inch-thick rounds
  4. Brush eggplant/tomatoes with olive oil/garlic mix and sprinkle salt/pepper on both sides and let sit 5 minutes so olive oil fully absorbs into the eggplant
  5. Mix parmesan and chopped basil together in a small bowl
  6. Lightly oil the grill grates, then grill bread slices about 1-minute per side and set aside.
  7. Grill the eggplant and tomato rounds, covered, until grill marks appear, about 4 minutes. Flip the eggplant rounds and place 1 tomato round on top of each. Top each stack with the parmesan-basil mixture and mozzarella. Grill, covered, for about 4 minutes longer.
  8. Garnish the eggplant parmesan stacks with torn basil leaves and drizzle with balsamic vinegar. Serve with bread on the side.

** I don't like skin of the eggplant all the way around on mine, so I usually skin it in stripes. The skin helps keep it together so you don't want to completely remove it, but skinning it in stripes helps the texture, in my opinion!



Re: (Healthy) Recipe Ideas - Memorial Day Edition!

Here's one of my favorites for adding to grilled fish tacos or just as something to dip tortilla chips into:


Black Bean and Mango Salsa


  1. 1 large mango, peeled, pitted and finely diced.
  2. 1 avocado, halved, pitted, peeled and finely diced.
  3. 1 (15-ounce) can no-salt-added black beans, rinsed and drained.
  4. 1/3 cup diced red onion.
  5. 1 fresh jalapeño pepper, seeded and diced.
  6. 1/2 cup cilantro, chopped.
  7. Juice of 1/2 lime.
  8. 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt


Mix all of the above ingredients, except the lime juice, into a bowl together with a big wooden spoon (or just something that won't mash up the avocado too much. Once mixed, squeeze the lime juice over the top as you continuously fold the mixture over and over. This way, you'll get the lime juice spread throughout the salsa and not just in one concentrated area.