beach picnic summer friends food

What Seasonal Ingredients to Add to Your Summer Recipes and Which Ones to Skip

The summer is a time for picnics and fun in the sun! People spend hours relaxing at the beach, hiking in the woods, or working in their yards. Grilling becomes the ideal way to prepare food and summer meals are often fast and on the go. You want to enjoy every minute of sunshine you can and figuring out what seasonal & healthy ingredients and foods can be easily used can sometimes be difficult. It's always a good idea to look to natural alternatives whenever possible! 

Add Fresh Fruit

Adding fresh fruit to your list of quick snacks is an easy and tasty win when it comes to healthy summer recipes! If you prefer dried fruits, make your own version of trail mix and pack it in single-serving containers. Fresh fruits are great for a quick pick-me-up while you are on the go and are easy to take on road trips without having to be refrigerated. Dried fruit is ideal when consumed in small amounts and when mixed with nuts provides a nice mix of textures and flavors. 

woman grabbing fruit in kitchen

Avoid Heavy Sauces

Foods with heavy sauces often are less healthy. From desserts in rich, sugary sauces to entrees with creamy dairy sauces. In the summer heat, these sauces can be replaced with healthier choices. 

For desserts, use a light sauce made with fruit juice or Mānuka honey instead of processed sugar. Heavy dairy sauces can be replaced with an olive oil vinaigrette or herb sauce. A splash of Balsamic vinegar is also a good option, but if you can, avoid the sauces altogether and leave your dishes bare and simple to allow the fresh summer ingredients to shine. 

Add Sea Salt and Black or White Pepper

During the summer, you spend a lot of time perspiring. Salt is needed to replenish and maintain your fluid levels. Don’t forget to drink plenty of water throughout the day. Your body will thank you! There are many herbs and spices you can use to season your foods. Use sea salt or Himalayan salt and black or white pepper. Having moderate amounts of salt in your diet is essential during the hot summer months and adds flavor to your food with the right types of spices. Eating healthy should not mean less flavor. You just need to choose the right types of spices and herbs. Seasoning can make the simplest of meals delicious.

cooking with sea salt

Avoid Processed Foods

Processed cheeses and meats should be limited. Eating these during the hot summer months can slow down the digestive processes and lead to stomach upset. Instead, use freshly sliced meats and fresh cheeses. They are easier on the stomach and taste great! If you are going to start the grill, make sure you use fresh cuts of meat and try to do without the hot dogs.

Peach Iced Tea sweetened with honey

Add Mānuka Honey

Nothing is better on a hot summer day than a tall glass of sweet tea. Instead of using processed sugar, use a small amount of natural, nutritious, Manuka honey. You get the sweet taste as well as an abundance of nutrients that will keep you healthy and active all summer long. Mānuka honey adds flavor and texture to almost everything you add it to. It can be used in desserts, dips, and in beverages. It tastes good and it’s good for you!

There are many seasonal ingredients that you can use to improve the flavor of your food. Making wise food choices will allow you to eat healthy all year long. Mānuka honey from Taylor Pass Honey is all-natural and rich in both taste and texture. It should be one of the staples you keep in your pantry all year long.

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