Tomorrow’s the 4th of July. For many of us, that means parades, fireworks, swimming, and of course, barbeques. But being surrounded by food and drink doesn’t automatically mean your diet is ruined. Whether you’re manning the grill or just preparing a dish to bring somewhere, make your holiday a healthy one with these great dishes (click the pictures for full recipes):
Summer Vegetable Tart
This delicious appetizer couldn’t be easier: just layer garden-fresh summer veggies like yellow squash, zucchini and fennel over Parmesan and goat cheese in a pre-made pie crust (or make your own if you’re feeling ambitious) and bake. You can make it ahead of time and simply warm it in the oven when you’re ready to serve.
(Image via Chelsea’s Culinary Indulgence)
Blueberry & Strawberry Jicama Salsa
Jicama is a sweet root vegetable that can be turned into amazing salsas and salads. Chop it up and mix it with blueberries, strawberries, cilantro, and red onion for a crunchy red, white and blue salsa. Add a jalapeño pepper for a spicy kick and serve with your favorite tortilla chips.
(Image via Two Peas & Their Pod)
Patriotic Quinoa Salad
Protein-rich quinoa makes this salad as nutritious as it is beautiful. Serve it over a bed of arugula along with fresh berries and adorable watermelon stars.
(Image via Yummy Mummy)
Greek Potato Salad
You won’t find any mayo in this light, refreshing potato salad. It’s dressed in plain Greek yogurt seasoned with dill, garlic powder and salt, and mixed with red bell pepper, cucumber and onion. If you’re just making this for a couple of people, get some presentation points by serving in a hollowed-out bell pepper.
(Image via Peas and Crayons)
Grilled Balsamic Asparagus
This is an easy, flavorful way to incorporate veggies into your 4th of July menu. Marinate some asparagus in balsamic vinegar with oil, garlic, salt and thyme. Throw it right on the grill alongside your burgers and hot dogs and watch it disappear.
(Image via Mom Foodie)
Corn & Avocado Salad
Sweet corn and creamy avocado team up to make this a perfect summer salad, complete with red onion, yellow squash, red bell pepper, cherry tomatoes, and lime juice. This colorful creation is perfect on its own or as a dip for corn chips.
Image via Steph’s Bite by Bite)
Spinach Salad with Cherry Balsamic Vinaigrette
This spinach salad has strawberries, oranges, and a fantastic vinaigrette made with cherry preserves and balsamic and red wine vinegars. For a little extra flavor, try adding toasted walnuts or crumbled goat cheese.
(Image via Heather’s Dish)
Red, White & Blueberry Frozen Yogurt Pie
Is this not an absolutely gorgeous dessert? You would think that something so pretty just has to be bad for you, but the all-natural granola crust (made with coconut oil and agave syrup), frozen yogurt filling and fresh berry topping make this a healthy choice. Oh, and all you need is a toothpick to get that incredible design on top.
(Image via Yummy Mummy)
Strawberries & Fruit Dip
If you’re looking for a light dessert that will still satisfy that sweet tooth, try this creamy fruit dip. Fold hand-whipped cream into a mixture of cream cheese and raspberry preserves, then serve with your favorite berries (or cake!).
(Image via Deliciously Organic)
Cashew Date Cream Stuffed Strawberries
All you need for this deceptively decadent cream is raw cashews and pitted dates. Blend them together with a little vanilla and cinnamon and you’ve got a delicious filling/topping/icing for tons of different healthy desserts. For a patriotic sweet treat, scoop out the insides of a pint’s worth of strawberries, fill them with the cream, then top with a blueberry.
(Image via Virtually Vegan Mama)
Fresh, juicy watermelon is almost synonymous with summer, just like this refreshing Watermelon Fizz. Blend together watermelon with lime juice and ginger ale and garnish with lime wedges and frozen watermelon chunks. Kids will love it; add some gin and adults will, too!
(Image via Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts)
Strawberry Agua Fresca
Love strawberries? Give this amazing Strawberry Aqua Fresca a try. It’s super simple to make—just stir strained pureed strawberries into cold water with a little sugar and lime juice—and the bright red color is a perfect 4th of July fit.
(Image via Eat, Live, Run)
For more light drink options, check out these 11 Cocktails Under 200 Calories
Tell us what you’re cooking to celebrate the 4th!