Tag Archives: Summer Squash

Seasonal Pizza

My husband and I are pizza lovers. (Is there anyone who isn’t?!) In the past we would order in or go out for pizza, or occasionally we would enjoy a Kashi frozen pizza. But last December when I was testing recipes for We Can Cook, I made pizza at home and we really loved it. (The only other time I have ever made pizza at home is on Passover when I make matzo pizza.) Although I didn’t make the dough from scratch, it was still really fun to make the pizza – rolling out the dough, choosing the toppings, and seeing it turn into a delicious meal. Not to mention that it was so much cheaper than getting it ready made!

Last week when I made the cucumber soup I decided to make pizza to round out the meal. I had beautiful farm-fresh cherry tomatoes, basil, summer squash, and some leftover roasted broccoli on hand as toppings. I bought the whole wheat pizza dough from Trader Joe’s, divided it in two to make two pizzas, topped each crust with tomato sauce, part-skim shredded mozzarella cheese, and veggies, and watched it cook. Ten minutes later we had two Nutritioulicious pizzas (plus enough for lunch leftovers).

pizza recipe

Margarita Pizza with Cherry Tomatoes and Basil

healthy pizza

Summer Squash and Broccoli Pizza

If you’re going out for pizza, be sure to check out my tips for how to make it a healthy slice!

Have you ever made pizza at home? What are your favorite pizza toppings? 

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Cooking With Summer Squash and Tomatoes

This past weekend I had a handful of heirloom tomatoes and some summer squash from my CSA share, so I did a quick search online for something different to make using the produce.

cooking with summer squash  cooking with heirloom tomatoes

I found a great recipe for Moroccan Chicken on Martha Stewart’s Everyday Food website. The recipe was for one, but I more than doubled it so that Andy and I would both be able to enjoy it (and have leftovers too!) and I made it with quinoa instead of couscous for the additional nutrition benefits.

moroccan chicken recipeWe liked the recipe, but I think it needed some more spices to make it more traditional Moroccan cuisine. It was certainly quick and easy to make and a great use for our fresh veggies.

How do you like to cook with summer squash and tomatoes?

Spaghetti Squash Primavera

Last week I told you all about summer squash — the different varieties, the nutritional benefits, and how to use it. I’ve also told you a little bit about some of the winter squash varieties. Surprisingly, the Barefoot Organics CSA grew winter squash in the summer, and I found a spaghetti squash in my box a couple of weeks ago. (Most produce you can find year round in a supermarket, but it’s surprising to see typical fall and winter foods fresh from a farm in the summer!)

I decided to make the spaghetti squash into a simple meal, similar to some of my other pantry dinners. I couldn’t cut through the squash, so I roasted it whole on a baking sheet for about 45 minutes (I did this the day before I used it). The next night I removed it from the fridge, cut it open, and using a fork, separated the flesh, which is in the form of spaghetti. I heated up the “spaghetti” in the microwave, and in the meantime sauteéd some zucchini and onions in a pot. I then added tomato sauce and cannelloni beans to the sauteéd vegetables warmed it up.

Once everything was warm, I plated the meal: Spaghetti squash topped with sauteéd zucchini, cannelloni tomato sauce, and some grated cheese. A nutritioulicious™, balanced meal in no time! Andy was shocked at how amazing it tasted (another case of a healthy, yet flavorful meal) and never knew that squash could be used in place of pasta!

Spaghetti Squash PrimaveraNutrition Facts for 1 cup of roasted spaghetti squash: 42 calories, 0.5 g fat, 0 g saturated fat, 10 g carbohydrate, 2 g fiber, 1 g protein, 0 mg cholesterol, 28 mg sodium.

Have you ever used spaghetti squash before?

Using Summer Squash

Yesterday I told you about the different types of summer squash and their nutritional benefits. Whether or not you have made summer squash before, I wanted to share some different ways to cook with it and use it:

  • Grill it. Toss sliced squash with olive oil, salt, and pepper and grill until cooked and browned on both sides. Below is a picture of some summer squash I grilled for dinner one night.
  • Grilled Summer Squash

    Grilled Summer Squash

  • Sauté it. Heat vegetable oil in a shallow pan over a medium-hot flame. Once the oil is hot, add sliced squash and let cook for a couple of minutes. Using a spatula, move the squash around the pan and continue cooking until cooked through and browned on both sides. Below is a picture of yellow squash, onions, green beans, and kale being sauteéd together.
  • Sauteéd squash, onions, string beans, and kale

    Sauteéd squash, onions, string beans, and kale

  • Add summer squash to a stew. I like to add zucchini to ratatouille with bell peppers, onions, tomatoes, mushrooms, and chicken.
  • Make zucchini bread or muffins.
  • Make summer squash soup. Much lighter than winter squash soup, and if served chilled it is perfect for the hot days of summer.

How do you enjoy summer squash?

Summer Squash Basics

One of the most common vegetables you’ll find at the supermarket or farmers markets during the summer is summer squash. Unlike winter squash, summer squash has a higher water content and is not a starchy vegetable, making it lower in calories. There are different types of summer squash, including:

  • Zucchini — commonly green & similar in shape to a cucumber
  • Green Zucchini

  • Yellow Summer Squash — often used interchangeably with zucchini
  • yellow squash

  • Pattypan Squash — yellow or green in color, small and round with scalloped edges; more tender and delicate than other summer squash varieties
  • patty pan squash

All summer squash varieties are good sources of vitamins A and C, manganese, magnesium, and potassium, nutrients that are involved in heart health, preventing arthritis, and keeping your skin beautiful.

Nutrition Facts for 1 cup sliced, cooked summer squash: 36 calories, 1.6 g protein, 8 g carbohydrate, 2.5 g fiber, 0.5 g fat

Coming up: Ways to use summer squash!