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Recipe Corner - Your Favorites Made Over and Healthy New Ideas

Looking for healthier ideas for your dinner table or snacks on the go? Akron General is here to support you in steps to better health. Search recipes below that have been submitted and shared by people like you and by our team of health and wellness experts.

Submit your favorite recipe to share or to receive a "healthy recipe makeover."

All recipes have been reviewed by our nutritionists and healthy substitutions have been made, where possible.

Strawberry Banana Smoothie
3 cup plain or vanilla soymilk
1 ripe banana
1 cup strawberries

Blend in a blender until smooth.

Servings: 6

Nutrition Information (per serving): 180.6 calories; 4.4 g. fat; 0 mg. cholesterol; 105.9 mg. sodium; 25.6 g carbohydrates; 10.7 g. protein; 2.1 g. fiber

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Grilled Chicken Breasts with Honey Mustard Sauce
4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
3/4 cup white zinfandel wine
1/3 cup honey
3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
3/4 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup water
2 teaspoons cornstarch

Combine wine, honey, mustard, garlic, onion, and salt and pepper in a plastic zip-lock bag. Seal and marinate in the refrigerator for 2 to 4 hours. Remove the chicken from the marinade. Put the marinade in a small saucepan; heat to boiling and boil for 5-10 minutes. Combine water and cornstarch in a small bowl, add to the marinade and stir until slightly thickened. Keep warm. Meanwhile, heat grill until hot. Grill the chicken breasts for 4-5 minutes on each side, until cooked through. Serve the chicken with the honey-mustard sauce.

Makes 4 servings

Health Hint: This is a great summertime meal. You can serve it with fresh vegetables that you put on skewers, spray with fat-free cooking spray, and grill along with the chicken. *If you are on a sodium-restricted diet, you may want to try a different recipe.

Nutrition Information (per serving): 390 calories; 11.6 g. fat; 1.4 g. sat. fat; 73 mg. cholesterol; 2223 mg sodium*; 32 g. protein; 0.9 g. fiber

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Corn Spoon Bread
1 8 3/4 ounce can of corn, rinsed and drained
1 8 1/4 ounce can of cream-style corn
1/2 cup low-fat buttermilk
1 cup non-fat Sour Cream
1/2 cup egg substitute, or 4 egg whites
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 8 1/2 ounce pkg. cornbread mix
1/2 cup low-fat cheddar cheese, shredded

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

In a bowl, mix together the corns, buttermilk, sour cream, egg whites and oil. Add the cornbread mix and blend well. Place in a casserole dish sprayed with fat-free cooking spray. Bake until the center of the spoon bread is just set, 50-60 minutes. Sprinkle with the cheese and bake for another 1-2 minutes, until the cheese melts. Let sit for 10 minutes, then serve.

Makes 10 servings

Health Hint: Most canned foods are high in sodium. In order to reduce your sodium intake, you can use fresh or frozen vegetables, or, as in this recipe, you can drain canned vegetables and rinse well.

Nutrition Information (per serving): 194 calories; 5.8 g. fat; 1.6 g. sat. fat; 21 mg. cholesterol; 448 mg. sodium; 28.4 g. carbohydrates; 8 g. protein; 2.4 g. fiber

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Vietnamese Spring Rolls
Suggested Filling
2 cups finely shredded cabbage
1 large red bell pepper, finely shredded,
or a mixture of bell and hot peppers
6 finely sliced green onions, including green tops
½ cup chopped peanuts
1 to 11/2 cups shredded cooked rotisserie chicken

15 to 20 basil leaves
1 bunch cilantro
15 rice paper disks
A shallow bowlful of hot water

Recommended sauce: Vietnamese Lime and Chili Sauce, recipe available on this site.

Combine cabbage, bell pepper, green onions and chopped nuts in a bowl. Mix well. Place chicken in another bowl. Line up vegetables, meat and herbs near a dish towel spread on a counter.

Fill a wide, shallow bowl with hot tap water. Remove one rice paper disk from package and submerge it in the water for 5 to 10 seconds. Transfer softened disk to the clean dish towel. Arrange about three tablespoons of the vegetables in a strip across the center of the rice paper, leaving a one-inch margin on each end. Top with some of the chicken, then one or two leaves of each herb (tear larger leaves into pieces). Fold rice paper over the filling, tuck in ends, and roll into a tight log. Repeat with remaining filling and rice paper. Serve immediately with dipping sauce or wrap in plastic and refrigerate. Filling may be varied according to taste and the ingredients on hand.

Makes about 15.


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Vietnamese Lime and Chili Sauce
10 cloves garlic, finely minced
Grated zest of 21/2 limes
½ cup plus 2 tbsp. Lime juice
5 tbsp. Distilled white vinegar
3 tbsp. Plus 1 tsp. Nam pla (Vietnamese fish sauce)
½ cup plus 2 tbsp. Soy sauce

7 1/2 tbsp. Sugar
5 fresh small red chilies or 1 or 2 jalapenos (or to taste), seeded and minced, or 1 tbsp. crushed red pepper flakes
11/4 cups papaya or mango nectar or unsweetened pineapple juice

Combine all ingredients in a lidded jar. Keeps for weeks in the refrigerator. Recipe may be cut in half.


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Toya's Salad
2 cups of lettuce (Spring Mix)

1 tomato (roma)

1/3 of a cucumber (diced)

3/4 cup of broccoli

1/3 red onion (diced).
1 slice of cheddar cheese (torn up and sprinkled over salad)
A few slices of red and yellow bell peppers

A pickle on the side

Italian Dressing (a few tablespoons)

Red Wine Vinegar (drizzled over salad)

Preparation: Always wash your veggies first. Sprinkle the cheese last so it doesn't end up on the bottom of the salad. 

Don't forget to switch up your own salad recipe every now and then so you don't get tired of it. Bon appetite!

Servings: 1


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Deviled Crabmeat Salad
3 ounces mescaline salad mix
4 ounces claw crabmeat
1 teaspoon olive oil
Pinch of cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt (optional)

1 ounce Dijon mustard
1/4 cup Alpine Lace Swiss cheese
1 ounce mushrooms, sliced
1 ounce fat-free croutons

In a medium mixing bowl, combine the following: mescaline salad mix, crabmeat and mushrooms. In a small mixing bowl, combine the olive oil, cayenne pepper, mustard, salt and pepper. Mix well with a wire whip. Fold dressing mix into salad mixture and place onto serving piece. Top with cheese and croutons.

Servings: Makes one serving

Nutrition Information (per serving): 308 calories; 14.7 g. fat; 4.8 g. sat. fat; 68 mg. cholesterol; 2253 mg. sodium*; 4.4 g. carbohydrates; 31 g. protein; 1.3 g. fiber

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Taco Dip
12 ounces fat-free cream cheese
1/2 cup fat-free sour cream
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
1/2 cup salsa

2 cups shredded lettuce (optional)
1 cup fat-free cheddar cheese (optional)
1/2 cup diced plum tomatoes
1/3 cup sliced green onion
1/4 cup sliced olives (optional)

Combine cream cheese, sour cream, chili powder, cumin and red pepper in a large bowl; mix until well blended. Stir in salsa. Spread onto a 10-inch serving platter (lined with shredded lettuce, if used) and top with cheddar cheese, tomatoes, green onion and olives. Serve with chips or vegetables.

Servings: 8


Nutrition Information (per serving): 90 calories; 2.5 g. fat; 0 g. sat. fat; 20 mg. cholesterol; 532 mg. sodium; 6 g. carbohydrates; 13 g. protein; 0.7 g. fiber

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Family Fav Meatballs
1 lb extra lean ground turkey breast
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 small onion, diced
1 small green pepper chopped
1 clove garlic, minced or ½ teaspoon garlic powder
1 ½ teaspoons of a savory dried herb (basil, thyme, rosemary, oregano or sage)
3/4 teaspoon dried oregano
3/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 dash hot pepper sauce (Frank's RedHot), or to taste
1 1/2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1/3 cup skim milk
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
½ cup plain whole wheat bread crumbs

Preheat an oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).

Place the ground turkey into a mixing bowl, and season with salt, onion, garlic salt, Italian seasoning, oregano, red pepper flakes, hot pepper sauce, and Worcestershire sauce; mix well. Add the milk, Parmesan cheese, and bread crumbs. Mix until evenly blended, then form into 1 1/2-inch meatballs, and place onto a baking sheet.

Bake in the preheated oven until no longer pink in the center, 20 to 25 minutes.

Servings: 4

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Super-Delicious Zuppa Toscana
1 lb lean turkey sausage
1 1/4 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes
1 large onion, diced
1 tablespoon minced garlic
5 (13.54 ounce) cans low sodium or unsalted chicken broth
6 potatoes, thinly sliced
1 cup evaporated skim milk
½ bunch fresh spinach, tough stems removed

Cook the Italian sausage and red pepper flakes in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat until crumbly, browned, and no longer pink, 10 to 15 minutes. Drain and set aside. Reserve 1 tablespoon fat.

Stir in the onions and garlic into reserved 1 tablespoon fat; cook until onions are soft and translucent, about 5 minutes.

Pour the chicken broth into the Dutch oven onion and garlic mixture; bring to a boil over high heat. Add the potatoes, and boil until fork tender, about 20 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium and stir in the milk and the cooked sausage; heat through. Mix the spinach into the soup just before serving.

Servings: 6

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Low-Fat Chili
1 cup chopped onion
1 stalk chopped celery
1/2 green pepper, chopped
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons olive or canola oil

1 lb. lean ground turkey breast
4 tablespoons chili powder
1 can tomato soup
1 can water (from tomato soup)
1 8 ounce can tomato sauce
2 cans kidney beans, undrained

Heat oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat. Add onion, celery, pepper and salt, and cook for about 5 minutes, until
softened. Add the ground turkey; continue cooking until browned. Add the chili powder; reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes.

In a large pan, combine the soup, water, tomato sauce and beans, add the turkey mixture and bring to a simmer. Simmer, covered for 30-45 minutes.

Nutrition Information (per serving): 324 calories; 12.5 g. fat; 2.8 g. sat. fat; 55.9 mg. cholesterol; 765 mg. sodium; 22 g. protein; 8.2 g. fiber

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Zucchini Bread
1/2 cup egg substitute, plus
one egg white
3/4 cup applesauce
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 cup raisins
2 cups sugar
2 cups grated zucchini
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup crushed pineapple
1 cup chopped nuts

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Lightly grease and flour two loaf pans. Mix all the ingredients and pour into the pans. Bake at 325 degrees for one hour.

Servings: 10-12 per loaf

Nutrition Information (per serving): 206 calories; 4 g. fat; 0.4 g. sat. fat; 197 mg. sodium; 41 g. carbohydrates; 4 g. protein; 0.8 g. fiber

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Freezer Favorites
2 pkg. low-fat graham crackers
1 box fat-free chocolate pudding
1/2 cup reduced-fat peanut butter
1 cup skim milk
1 teaspoon confectioner’s sugar

Mix pudding according to directions on package. Add peanut butter, milk and sugar; mix until creamy. Break graham cracker in half and spread about one tablespoon across the crackers and top with the other half of the cracker. This will make about one dozen. Put in a container and freeze. Take out about 10 minutes before serving. Kids love them!

Servings: 12

Nutrition Information (per serving): 271 calories; 7.1 g. fat; 0.5 g. sat. fat; 0 mg. cholesterol; 372 mg. sodium; 41 g. carbohydrates; 7.3 g. protein; 2.8 g. fiber

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Fresh Strawberry Pie
1 1/2 cups boiling water
2 small boxes sugar-free
strawberry Jello
1 cup ice
1 quart strawberries
Fat-free cooking spray
Light Cool Whip

Combine boiling water and jello; stir until dissolved. Add the ice and stir until melted. Refrigerate about 30 minutes, until the jello is the consistency of unbeaten egg whites. Add the strawberries to the jello mixture and mix thoroughly. Pour into pie pan sprayed with fat-free cooking spray. Top with the Cool Whip or 1 cup of graham cracker crumbs. Refrigerate for 4 hours before serving. You may also use a reduced-fat pie shell, if desired.

Servings: 8

THIS IS A RECIPE FROM PAULINE KENNEDY. SHE SUGGESTS THAT OTHER FRUITS AND TYPES OF SUGAR-FREE JELLO CAN BE USED IN THIS DESSERT. Nutrition Information (per serving): 67 calories; 4.3 g. fat; 0 g. sat. fat; 66 mg. sodium; 10 g. carbohydrates; 1.5 g. protein; 2 g. fiber

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Jalapeno Tortillas
8 ounces low-fat cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup low-fat sour cream
4 1/2 ounces (1 can) diced green chilies

1/2 cup sliced green onions
1 tablespoon finely diced jalapeno peppers
salt and pepper to taste
4 12” flour tortillas

Combine cream cheese, sour cream, chilies, onions, jalapeno peppers and salt and pepper in a bowl. Divide into 4 parts and spread between the flour tortillas. Roll up. May be sliced and placed on a toothpick for an appetizer. Serve with salsa for dipping.

Servings: 4

Nutrition Information (per serving): 305 calories; 10 g. fat; 3.5 g. sat. fat; 27.5 mg. cholesterol; 506 mg. sodium; 41 g. carbohydrates; 14.5 g. protein; 0.3 g. fiber

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Minestrone Soup
1 48 ounce can of fat-free beef broth
2 15 ounce cans cannellini beans, drained
1 14 1/2 ounce can Italian-style stewed tomatoes
1 6 ounce can tomato paste
2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
1 1/2 cups frozen, mixed vegetables
2 cups fresh spinach leaves, cut in strips
2 cups cooked pasta (1 cup uncooked)

Combine broth, beans, tomatoes, tomato paste, sugar and Italian seasonings and bring to a boil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the mixed vegetables. Decrease the heat. Cover and simmer 10 minutes. Add spinach and cooked pasta; heat through and serve. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, if desired.

Makes 8 servings

Health Hint: Spinach, including frozen spinach, is a good source of folate, beta carotene ( vitamin A), vitamin C, and vitamin E.

Nutrition Information (per serving): 201 calories; 1 g. fat; 0 g. sat. fat; 454 mg. sodium;
38 g. carbohydrates; 9 g. protein; 5 g. fiber

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Shrimp and Feta with Angel Hair Pasta
fat-free cooking spray
2 lbs. medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 cups chopped plum tomatoes
1 1/2 cups sliced green onion
1/2 cup sliced ripe black olives
2 teaspoons dried dill
1 garlic clove, minced
4 cups hot cooked angel hair pasta (about 8 ounces uncooked)
1 cup (4 ounces.) crumbled feta cheese

Heat a large non-stick skillet coated with fat-free cooking spray over medium heat. Add shrimp; cook 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in tomato and next 4 ingredients (tomato through garlic); cook 4 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Combine shrimp mixture, pasta and cheese in a large bowl; toss well.

Makes 6 (1 1/3 cup) servings

Health Hint: Antioxidants help to reduce the damage to cells and may help to prevent cardiovascular disease and cancer. Important antioxidants are vitamins C, E, and carotinoids. Tomatoes are a good source of antioxidants.

Nutrition Information (per serving): 400 calories; 10.4 g. fat; 4.4 g. sat. fat; 252 mg.
cholesterol; 606 mg. sodium; 35 g. carbohydrates; 40 g. protein; 2.3 g. fiber

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Raspberry Vinaigrette
1 cup raspberry vinegar
2 tablespoons raspberry puree
1 cup cranberry juice
2 cups canola oil
3 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons teriyaki glaze
1/2 teaspoon salt

Measure all ingredients into mixing bowl and mix well using a
hand blender.

Serving size: 2 tablespoons
Nutrition Information (per serving): 115 calories; 11.25 g. fat; 0.8 g. sat. fat; 0 mg. cholesterol; 50 mg. sodium; 3.7 g. carbohydrates; 0 g. protein; 0.2 g. fiber

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Crispy Potato Chicken
6 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
2 baking potatoes, peeled
spices for chicken
3 tablespoons Dijon Mustard

Rinse the chicken breasts, pat dry. Grate the baking potatoes, then place them in a colander and squeeze out any excess moisture from the shreds. Meanwhile, sprinkle the chicken with your favorite spices. Place the chicken in a shallow baking dish and brush with the mustard. Pat the potato shreds onto the chicken. Bake at 425 degrees for about 30 minutes.

Servings: 6
Nutrition Information (per serving): 201 calories; 3 g. fat; 1.5 g. sat. fat; 75 mg. cholesterol; 269 mg. sodium; 14 g. carbohydrates; 32 g. protein; 1 g. fiber

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Salmon Patties
1 14-ounce can of Bumble Bee Pink Salmon
1 small onion, chopped
1 stalk of celery, finely chopped
16 fat-free, low-sodium saltine crackers
2 egg whites
pepper to taste

Mix all of the ingredients together in a large bowl. Form into patties. Cook over medium heat in a non-stick frying pan. No oil is needed, but you may coat the skillet with fat-free cooking spray.

Servings: 4

Nutrition Information (per serving): 255 calories; 8 g. fat; 2 g. sat. fat; 50 mg. cholesterol; 649 mg. sodium; 18 g. carbohydrates; 24 g. protein; 1 g. fiber

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Skinny ‘Fried’ Chicken
4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
1 1/2 cups breadcrumbs
Mrs. Dash seasoning
Lemon-pepper seasoning
fat-free cooking spray

Trim breasts of all fat and cartilage. Wash thoroughly, do not dry. Moisten chicken under running water. Dredge through the breadcrumbs, coating well. Place on a cookie sheet sprayed with fat-free cooking spray. Sprinkle with both the Mrs. Dash seasoning and the lemon-pepper seasoning; pat into the coating lightly. Season both sides.

Place into an oven preheated to 400 degrees for 25-30 minutes. Do not turn; test for doneness with a meat thermometer. Avoid overcooking.

Serving size: 4

Nutrition Information (per serving): 302 calories; 5.2 g. fat; 1.4 g. sat. fat; 73 mg. cholesterol; 412 mg. sodium; 29 g. carbohydrates; 32 g. protein

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Gwen’s Seafood Chowder
2 cups minced onion
2 teaspoons olive oil
2/3 cup dry sherry
1/2 cup chopped carrots
1/2 cup minced celery
1 cup diced red potatoes, skins intact
1 cup clam juice or fish stock
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 pinch cayenne pepper
1 1/2 cups nonfat milk
1 cup low fat half-and-half
1/2 lb. cooked shrimp
1/2 lb. bay scallops
1/4 lb. red snapper fillets, cut into 1/2” pieces
Herbal salt substitute and pepper

In a large stockpot over medium-high heat, saute onion in oil and sherry until soft. Add carrots, celery and potato and saute for 2 minutes. Add clam juice and cover. Simmer until the potatoes are soft (about 15 minutes). Puree half of the mixture in a blender until smooth, and then return to the pot. Add tomato paste, cayenne, nonfat milk, half-and-half, shrimp, scallops and snapper. Bring to a boil, lower heat to a simmer, and cook for 5 minutes. Taste for seasoning and add salt substitute and pepper, if desired.

Serves 6.

Health Hint: In May of 1985, the ‘New England Journal of Medicine’ published an article that showed that people who consumed 7 ounces of seafood per week had a 50% reduction in death from coronary artery disease.

Nutrition Information (per serving): 285 calories; 7.4 g. fat; 3.3 g. sat. fat; 108 mg. cholesterol; 533 mg. sodium; 22 g. carbohydrates; 28 g. protein; 2 g. fiber

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Apple Harvest Salad
For the dressing:
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 tsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
For the salad:
12 cups mixed salad greens, washed and dried
2 apples, Granny Smith or other tart variety, cored, seeded and cut into thin slices
1/2 cup toasted pecans, broken into pieces
1 cup dried cranberries
4 to 6 oz. crumbled blue cheese
2 Tbsp. chopped red onion

Prepare the dressing by whisking together all of the dressing ingredients, except the oil and pepper. Slowly add the oil in a stead stream to the vinegar mix, whisking constantly. Season with pepper to taste.

Soak cranberries in warm water for 10 to 15 minutes to soften and plump, then drain well.

Toast pecans by placing in a dry skillet or sauté pan over medium heat, stirring frequently, until nuts are warm and toasted.

Toss mixed greens with dressing. Arrange remaining salad ingredients on top of dressed greens and toss lightly.

Makes 6 servings.


Read me at www.ohio.com or check out my blog at www.ohio.com/blogs/lisa. Find me on Facebook or follow me on Twitter @akronfoodie.

This is a wonderful salad in the fall when the apple crop comes in. Feel free to change it up – use pears instead of apples, walnuts instead of pecans, dried cherries instead of cranberries, goat cheese instead of blue, or any combination of the above.

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Forget the Lettuce Salad
1 cup chopped tomatoes, with their juice
1 cup chopped cucumber, peeled and seeded
1 cup chopped bell pepper, green, yellow and red
1 cup chickpeas
1 cup Kalamata or black olives
1/2 chopped green onions
2 Tbsp. chopped fresh mint

2 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
2 Tbsp. chopped fresh basil
1/2 cup feta cheese
1 tsp. minced garlic
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste

In a large bowl, combine tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, chickpeas, olives and green onions, mint, parsley and basil. Season with salt and pepper and toss to combine.

In a separate bowl, whisk together garlic, lemon juice and olive oil.

Add feta cheese to salad.

Pour dressing over salad and toss. You may not need all of the dressing.

Makes 10 to 12 servings.


Read me at www.ohio.com or check out my blog at www.ohio.com/blogs/lisa. Find me on Facebook or follow me on Twitter @akronfoodie.

This salad is great for the middle of summer when the temperatures get so hot there isn’t much lettuce to be had at farmers markets. It’s great cold or at room temperature. The fresh herbs give it a wonderful flavor.

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