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Healthy Picnic Side Dishes

9 tasty veggie-based additions to your summertime spread

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You don't have to go too far out of your comfort zone to replace the standard macaroni and potato salads with fresh ingredients this summer. These pickles, relishes and salads add color and flavor to any picnic, without the carbs and fat of many classic sides.

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Close up of green beans and tomatoes, Cookstr recipes for picnic sides (Ray Kachatorian/Blend Images/C)

Fresh green bean and tomato salad is a healthy and tasty side dish for any picnic or barbecue. — Corbis

1. Warm Potato-Tomato Salad With Dijon Vinaigrette

by Michael Chiarello

Lighten up traditional potato salad with diced tomatoes and a creamy mustard vinaigrette.

Per serving: 218 calories, 1g saturated fat, 4g protein, 3g fiber, 189mg sodium

2. Quick Kimchi

by Cecilia Hae-Jin Lee

This Korean recipe does take two days, but it's made with some basic pantry ingredients, including salt, garlic cloves and chili powder. You'll also need daikon — an Asian radish — and napa cabbage.

Per serving: 11 calories, 0g saturated fat, 2g carbohydrates, 1g protein, 1g fiber, 119mg sodium

3. Gingered Cucumbers

by Ann and Scott Goodfellow

A unique cucumber side dish, not unlike a quick pickle, that's a little bit sweet, a little bit umami and redolent with fresh ginger. You can make it a day or two before serving.

Per serving: 22 calories, 0g saturated fat, 4g carbohydrates, 1g protein, 0g fiber, 98mg sodium

4. Papaya and Arugula Salad

by Anne Byrn

This salad is easily doubled or tripled to serve a large group, and can be refrigerated for up to six hours before serving. Papaya provides lovely flavor and texture, alongside red onion and kalamata olives.

Per serving: 102 calories, 1g saturated fat, 8g carbohydrates, 1g protein, 2g fiber, 382mg sodium

5. Green Beans With Tomatoes

by Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall

This summery combination can be served warm or cold. Serve it with a spread of other picnic salads or alongside grilled meats at a barbecue.

Per serving: 94 calories, 1g saturated fat, 15g carbohydrates, 3g protein, 5g fiber, 305mg sodium

6. Roast Pencil Leeks

by Nigella Lawson

This is a super-easy side dish made with baby leeks — or, if you can't find those, large scallions — that's delicious at room temperature, especially with grilled meat.

Per serving: 97 calories, 1g saturated fat, 8g carbohydrates, 1g protein, 1g fiber, 399mg sodium

Next page: Vegan pâté, old-fashioned relish and tangy miso dressing. »

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GARLIC OIL VEGGIES: Everyday Food editor Sarah Carey shows you how to make infused garlic oil and uses it to dress up steamed veggies.

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