In the summer, fresh produce is more readily available, and local farmers' markets are almost always fully stocked, making healthy eating easy and delicious. Three of summer's most popular picks are zucchini, tomatoes and corn. These vegetables are the foundation for savory dishes that are nutritious, low-calorie and low-fat - and the methods of preparation are endless.
1) Israeli Couscous Salad with Grilled Summer Vegetables by Alfred Portale: If you need a vegetarian option, consider this recipe. Just grill up an array of fresh summer produce, then toss with couscous and vinaigrette. It's easy and nutritious and packed with fiber and protein. Per serving: 437 calories, 21g fat, 54g carbohydrates, 10g protein, 7g fiber
2) Slow Roasted Balsamic Tomatoes With Baby Leeks and Basil by Jamie Oliver: These tomatoes will satisfy a hunger for fresh summer flavor. It's a fairly simple dish to make with little preparation. If you want an easy-to-make appetizer that you can practically forget about while making the rest of the meal, this is a good fit. Per serving: 153 calories, 5g fat, 25g carbohydrates, 3g protein, 3g fiber
3) Pappardelle With Zucchini, Sultanas and Pine Nuts by Nigella Lawson: Sicily comes to your kitchen in this summer pasta dish. This could easily be served as a lunch or dinner entree, and it's a good alternative to a tomato-based marinara sauce. Combine with a summer side salad for a filling meal. Per serving: 261 calories, 8g fat, 39g carbohydrates, 8g protein, 3g fiber
4) Lobster, Tomato and Sweet Corn Salad With Garlic Vinaigrette by Sheila Lukins: Have a special occasion coming up that needs a great summer salad? Try this recipe, a breeze to prepare with impressive results, and it's rich in protein. This would also be a good choice for a light but luxurious lunch dish. Per serving: 351 calories, 16g fat, 19g carbohydrates, 35g protein, 4g fiber
5) Fresh Corn Chowder by Nina Simonds: Light and naturally a little sweet from the corn, this chowder is a healthy side dish. It is a bit involved in its preparation, so make it on a cooler day. It is said that fresh corn is good for the kidneys, giving you one more reason to chow down on this chowder! Per serving: 109 calories, 1g fat, 18g carbohydrates, 6g protein, 3g fiber
6) Summer Millet Risotto by Barbara Kafka: This dish is a great choice for those who are lactose- or gluten-intolerant. It can be prepared in under an hour, making it a good weeknight dinner. Per serving: 296 calories, 14g fat, 35g carbohydrates, 8g protein, 4g fiber
7) Tamale Style Catfish by Jane Butel: Festive in appearance and taste, this fish entree is great for a party or a weeknight dinner. You can pull it together fairly quickly, and bake time is 15 minutes. Per serving: 252 calories, 11g fat, 23g carbohydrates, 22g protein, 3g fiber
8) Chilled Corn and Red Pepper Soup by Johanna Burkhard: Don't bother with the oven! As long as you have a microwave and a food processor or blender, you're all set to make this refreshing chilled soup that is a great source of protein and extremely low in fat. Per serving: 149 calories, 2g fat, 24g carbohydrates, 9g protein, 3g fiber
9) Andalusian Tomato Salad by Diane Kochilas: This salad could quite possibly be one of the simplest you could ever make. Just layer four ingredients, mix up the vinaigrette, let the salad sit for 10 minutes, and it's done. Make it as an appetizer on a hotter day for a crisp pick-me-up. Per serving: 146 calories, 12g fat, 12g carbohydrates, 2g protein, 3g fiber
10) Zucchini Olive Oil Cake With Lemon Crunch Glaze by Gina Depalma: Zucchini for dessert? You bet! This cake is a more traditional recipe, so it can be a bit time-consuming. But this Italian treat is a good weekend project with a delicious ending. Per serving: 501 calories, 26g fat, 64g carbohydrates, 6g protein, 2g fiber.