35 Best Summer Cocktails

Here are the best summer cocktails, from classics to frozen drinks to mixers with gin and vodka. Let summer drink season begin! When it’s summer, there’s nothing better than a fruity, herby or frozen drink in hand! There’s a great variety of summer cocktails that play on the flavors of the season: sweet watermelon and juicy peaches, herbaceous mint and basil, and bright berries. Even better: icy summer drinks are the perfect way to beat the heat. Here are all the best summer cocktails to try! We’ve got classics like the minty Mojito and the tangy margarita, and frozen drinks like daiquiris and pina coladas. There’s also gin and vodka cocktails, and fun fruity spins like watermelon cocktails and peach margaritas. Really: we want to drink them all. Want specific liquors? Go to Summer Vodka Cocktails, Summer Gin Cocktails or Summer Rum Cocktails. And now…the best summer cocktails! More types of cocktails There are lots more great cocktail recipes to try outside of these summer cocktails! Here are some of our best summer drink collections: Sour Cocktails All the very best sours: Boston Sour, Sidecar, even the Margarita and Mojito. Lemon Cocktails or Lime Cocktails The best cocktails to make when you’re craving citrus! Includes so many classics. […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

Here are the best summer cocktails, from classics to frozen drinks to mixers with gin and vodka. Let summer drink season begin!

Summer cocktails and summer drinks

When it’s summer, there’s nothing better than a fruity, herby or frozen drink in hand! There’s a great variety of summer cocktails that play on the flavors of the season: sweet watermelon and juicy peaches, herbaceous mint and basil, and bright berries. Even better: icy summer drinks are the perfect way to beat the heat.

Here are all the best summer cocktails to try! We’ve got classics like the minty Mojito and the tangy margarita, and frozen drinks like daiquiris and pina coladas. There’s also gin and vodka cocktails, and fun fruity spins like watermelon cocktails and peach margaritas. Really: we want to drink them all.

Want specific liquors? Go to Summer Vodka Cocktails, Summer Gin Cocktails or Summer Rum Cocktails.

And now…the best summer cocktails!

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Summer cocktails

Best Summer Cocktails (Mojito & More!)


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (8 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 1 drink
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

Here’s a classic mojito recipe, perfectly balanced with lime, rum and fresh mint! This iconic Cuban cocktail is refreshing and just sweet enough.


Ingredients

  • 3 mint leaves, plus additional for garnish
  • 2 tablespoons (1 ounce) lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon (1/2 ounce) maple syrup or simple syrup
  • 4 tablespoons (2 ounces) white rum
  • 1/2 cup soda water

Instructions

  1. In a cocktail shaker, muddle the mint leaves with the lime juice and syrup. (Here’s how to muddle mint.)
  2. Add the rum and fill the cocktail shaker with ice. Shake until cold.
  3. Place ice into a glass, and strain in the liquid. Top off the glass with soda water. Garnish with additional mint leaves.
  • Category: Drink
  • Method: Shaken
  • Cuisine: Cocktails

Keywords: Summer Cocktails, Summer Drinks, Summer Vodka Cocktails, Summer Gin Cocktails

More types of cocktails

There are lots more great cocktail recipes to try outside of these summer cocktails! Here are some of our best summer drink collections:

Last updated: May 2021

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

10 Tasty Mocktail Recipes

Here are all the best mocktail recipes to try! These non alcoholic cocktails make virgin drinks just as delicious as the real thing. Looking for mocktail recipes? Turns out, you don’t need alcohol to make a tasty drink! In fact, you can make mixed drinks that are just as delicious as a signature cocktail: with no alcohol at all. Here are all our tricks to building stellar mocktails: both free-form drinks and virgin drinks based on classic cocktails. You’ve just got to have a few tricks in mind when building your drinks: so they don’t just taste like fruit juice! Here’s what to know. What is a mocktail? A mocktail is a non alcoholic cocktail: a mixed drink without the liquor! Mocktails are the perfect choice for people who are pregnant or avoiding alcohol. With a little know, you can make drinks that are just as tasty as the real thing. Looking for mocktail recipes? Scroll down to the list of our top mocktail recipes: virgin drinks based on the classics. Or, keep reading for how to make a free-form mocktail using a few tips we’ve learned through experimentation. Tips for how to make a mocktail How to make a […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

Here are all the best mocktail recipes to try! These non alcoholic cocktails make virgin drinks just as delicious as the real thing.

Mocktail recipes

Looking for mocktail recipes? Turns out, you don’t need alcohol to make a tasty drink! In fact, you can make mixed drinks that are just as delicious as a signature cocktail: with no alcohol at all. Here are all our tricks to building stellar mocktails: both free-form drinks and virgin drinks based on classic cocktails. You’ve just got to have a few tricks in mind when building your drinks: so they don’t just taste like fruit juice! Here’s what to know.

What is a mocktail?

A mocktail is a non alcoholic cocktail: a mixed drink without the liquor! Mocktails are the perfect choice for people who are pregnant or avoiding alcohol. With a little know, you can make drinks that are just as tasty as the real thing.

Looking for mocktail recipes? Scroll down to the list of our top mocktail recipes: virgin drinks based on the classics. Or, keep reading for how to make a free-form mocktail using a few tips we’ve learned through experimentation.

Tips for how to make a mocktail

How to make a mocktail? It’s easy to mix something together: but often with no alcohol it ends up testing like fruit juice. Instead, here are a few tricks for adding complexity to the flavor of your free-form mocktails:

  • Use bubbly mixers. Soda water, tonic water, and even ginger ale or ginger beer and great for adding lift to your mocktails with carbonated bubbles. When in doubt: add bubbles!
  • Consider a “mock” alcohol to add complexity. Here’s a cool mocktail trick: a teaspoon or two of caper juice or pickle juice can taste like alcohol! It sounds weird, but it actually works. Our Virgin Margarita recipe below has a hint of pickle juice, which gives a finish that tastes oddly like tequila.
  • Try fancy simple syrups. Layering flavors helps mocktail recipes taste interesting instead of one-note. Try a homemade syrup like Mint Simple Syrup, Ginger Simple Syrup, Rosemary Simple Syrup or Lavender Simple Syrup.
  • Consider non-alcoholic bitters. A few dashes of bitters add herbal complexity to cocktails. There are some non-alcoholic brands that you can experiment with for mocktails, too!
  • Load up on fancy garnishes and clear ice. It’s all about presentation! The fun thing about our cocktail recipes is not just that they taste good: they look beautiful, too! Try clear ice, artisan style crystal clear ice that makes your drink look like it came from a fancy bar. Depending on the drink, load up on cocktail cherries, citrus wedges, or fresh herbs.

Best mocktail recipes!

Ready for some mocktail recipes? These are all non alcoholic cocktails that are virgin drinks based on classics from the Margarita to the Mojito!

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Virgin margarita

Top Mocktail Recipes: Margarita & More!


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (11 votes, average: 4.82 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 1 drink
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

This virgin margarita recipe tastes as good as the real thing! This non-alcoholic mocktail is irresistibly tasty with a secret ingredient.


Ingredients

  • 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 ounce (1 tablespoon) fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon maple syrup or simple syrup
  • 1/8 teaspoon pickle juice (optional but recommended!)
  • 3 ounces tonic water
  • For the garnish: Lime wheel, clear ice

Instructions

  1. Cut a notch in a lime wedge, then run the lime around the rim of a glass. Dip the edge of the rim into a plate of flaky sea salt (or for a festive look, use Margarita Salt).
  2. In the serving glass, stir together the lime juice, lemon juice, maple syrup, and pickle juice (adds just the right funky flavor to mimic tequila). Add the tonic water and ice. Garnish with a lime wheel and serve.
  • Category: Drink
  • Method: Stirred
  • Cuisine: Mocktails

Keywords: Mocktail, Mocktails, Mocktail recipe

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

20 Mother’s Day Recipes

These tasty Mother’s Day recipes are simple but packed with flavor, from fluffy scrambled eggs to baked oatmeal to showstopping waffles! With Mother’s Day around the corner, we wanted to share a few of our favorite Mother’s Day recipes with you! We’ve included highlights in our brunch category: cozy baked banana oatmeal, soft, pillowy eggs with goat cheese, bright strawberry coconut smoothies, and so many more! Check out the links below for more Mother’s Day recipes. On Mother’s Day Before sharing these Mother’s Day recipes, a quick aside: we do know that Mother’s Day can be a tough day for many. It can be emotional remembering a dear mom or child who is no longer with us, or experiencing the heartache of yearning to be a mother. Know that our thoughts are with you! Many of you know Alex and my story and know that Mother’s Day has been a hard day in past years. However, it’s been getting easier each year: especially after finally becoming a mother with the birth of our son Larson. Our thoughts and hearts are with each of you in whatever situation you find yourself. And now: our best Mother’s Day recipes! Looking for more […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

These tasty Mother’s Day recipes are simple but packed with flavor, from fluffy scrambled eggs to baked oatmeal to showstopping waffles!

Soft Scrambled Eggs with Goat Cheese and Asparagus

With Mother’s Day around the corner, we wanted to share a few of our favorite Mother’s Day recipes with you! We’ve included highlights in our brunch category: cozy baked banana oatmeal, soft, pillowy eggs with goat cheese, bright strawberry coconut smoothies, and so many more! Check out the links below for more Mother’s Day recipes.

On Mother’s Day

Before sharing these Mother’s Day recipes, a quick aside: we do know that Mother’s Day can be a tough day for many. It can be emotional remembering a dear mom or child who is no longer with us, or experiencing the heartache of yearning to be a mother. Know that our thoughts are with you! Many of you know Alex and my story and know that Mother’s Day has been a hard day in past years. However, it’s been getting easier each year: especially after finally becoming a mother with the birth of our son Larson. Our thoughts and hearts are with each of you in whatever situation you find yourself.

And now: our best Mother’s Day recipes!

Looking for more brunch recipes?

Here are a few more brunch recipes we love:

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Blueberry waffles

Mother’s Day Blueberry Waffles


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (1 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 4 waffles or 2 large Belgian waffles

Description

These fluffy blueberry waffles are about to become everyone’s favorite! Topped with a quick blueberry sauce, they’re brunch perfection on a plate.


Ingredients

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 4 tablespoons butter, melted (substitute coconut oil for dairy-free)
  • 1 1/4 cups milk (substitute non-dairy milk for dairy-free)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 2/3 cup fresh or frozen blueberries
  • 1 recipe Quick Blueberry Sauce, for serving
  • Greek yogurt, Homemade Whipped Cream or Yogurt Whipped Cream, for serving (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the waffle iron to the high heat setting.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix the all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and kosher salt until thoroughly combined. In another bowl, whisk the egg. Then stir in the melted butter, milk, vanilla, and maple syrup. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix gently until just combined. Stir in the blueberries.
  3. Immediately, add the batter into the center of the waffle iron and let it spread it to within 1/2-inch of the sides, then cook according to the waffle iron’s instructions. Remove the cooked waffles and place them on a baking sheet without stacking. Make the waffles to order, or place cooked waffles in a 300°F oven to keep warm. Serve with Quick Blueberry Sauce. (As a note, these blueberry waffles stick to the waffle iron a bit more than a standard waffle, so make sure to clean it afterwards.)
  4. Cooked waffles can be frozen; place them in a plastic bag and remove the remaining air with a straw before sealing. To reheat, remove from the freezer and lightly toast in a toaster.
  • Category: Brunch
  • Method: Waffle
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: Mother’s Day recipes, Mother’s Day brunch

Last updated: April 2021

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

25 Top Valentine’s Day Dinner Ideas

Looking for recipes to stay in and cook? These Valentine’s Day dinner ideas make a great date night or romantic dinner! What’s better than a night in for Valentine’s Day? Here at A Couple Cooks we love dinner out, but there’s something cozy about staying in and cooking up a dinner for the people you love. Whether it’s a romantic dinner for two or a dinner with the whole family, there are so many ideas to make a special meal! And even better: many of them are just as easy to make. Here we’ve compiled all our favorite Valentine’s Day dinner ideas for cozy night in! Every recipe has a bit of a romantic vibe…though it works for the whole family too. Of course: you don’t have to use these on Valentine’s Day either! You might find some favorites in this list that work for any day of the year. And now, Valentine’s Day dinner ideas for a night in! More romantic recipes Need more romantic recipe inspiration? We’ve got you. Here are a few more ideas that would be perfect for Valentine’s Day: Impress your date with Pesto Salmon with a glistening green sauce Share a big bowl of […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

Looking for recipes to stay in and cook? These Valentine’s Day dinner ideas make a great date night or romantic dinner!

Valentine's day dinner ideas

What’s better than a night in for Valentine’s Day? Here at A Couple Cooks we love dinner out, but there’s something cozy about staying in and cooking up a dinner for the people you love. Whether it’s a romantic dinner for two or a dinner with the whole family, there are so many ideas to make a special meal! And even better: many of them are just as easy to make.

Here we’ve compiled all our favorite Valentine’s Day dinner ideas for cozy night in! Every recipe has a bit of a romantic vibe…though it works for the whole family too. Of course: you don’t have to use these on Valentine’s Day either! You might find some favorites in this list that work for any day of the year.

And now, Valentine’s Day dinner ideas for a night in!

More romantic recipes

Need more romantic recipe inspiration? We’ve got you. Here are a few more ideas that would be perfect for Valentine’s Day:

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Valentine's day dinner ideas

Valentine’s Day Dinner Ideas (Mug Cake & More!)


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (7 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 2 minutes
  • Cook Time: 2 minutes
  • Total Time: 4 minutes
  • Yield: 2 servings
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

This is the absolute best chocolate mug cake recipe! Here’s how to make a mug cake in under 5 minutes that’s insanely fudgy. 


Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons Dutch process /dark cocoa powder (or standard cocoa powder)
  • 2 tablespoons sugar (granulated or coconut)
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 pinch kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons milk of choice
  • 2 tablespoons neutral oil
  • 2 tablespoons dark chocolate chips (non-dairy as desired)

Instructions

  1. Mix: In a 12 ounce* microwave-safe mug, mix the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, baking soda and salt. Stir in the milk and oil. Add the chocolate chips and stir once.
  2. Microwave: Place a paper towel under the mug in the microwave, then cook on High 60 seconds. Check for doneness: if it’s still gooey and wet on top, microwave another 20 seconds, then another 10 seconds. It done when the top looks cooked and springs back when you touch it (it will still appear moist but will be springy). The exact timing depends on the microwave: ours works well with 60 seconds, then another 30 seconds. 
  3. Cool: Important: wait for 2 to 3 minutes for the cake to cool down from piping hot to warm. Don’t taste right away: it doesn’t taste right. But cooling a few minutes does the trick! Top with whipped cream or ice cream and serve warm. 

Notes

*It also works in an 8 ounce mug (shown in the photos), but it may spill a bit over the sides (hence the paper towel).

  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Microwave
  • Cuisine: Dessert

Keywords: Valentine’s Day Dinner Ideas

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

15 New Years Drinks & Cocktails

Here are the best New Years drinks to ring in the new year! Try everything from sparkling New Years Eve cocktails to cozy brunch drinks. Ready to ring in the New Year? New Years is the perfect time to celebrate with a signature drink! There are lots of options for classy cocktails: whether you love sparkling wine or want something a little more outside the box. And don’t forget about New Years Day: there are lots of great brunch cocktails for enjoying the morning after. Here are all the best New Years drinks and cocktails to try! Try the classic champagne cocktail as a New Years Eve drink, or a round of Bloody Marys or mimosas for cozy New Years cocktail for brunch. And we’ve got just about everything in between. Let’s get mixing! And now…the best New Years drinks and cocktails! A few more drink options Need a few more ideas? Here are a few more unique champagne cocktails that are a little outside the box…but still perfect for the New Year: Try an Old Cuban Cocktail: it’s one part Mojito, one part French 75, and all parts delicious. Go for a Pineapple Mimosa: fruity and tropical, with a creamy coconut […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

Here are the best New Years drinks to ring in the new year! Try everything from sparkling New Years Eve cocktails to cozy brunch drinks.

New Years drinks and cocktails

Ready to ring in the New Year? New Years is the perfect time to celebrate with a signature drink! There are lots of options for classy cocktails: whether you love sparkling wine or want something a little more outside the box. And don’t forget about New Years Day: there are lots of great brunch cocktails for enjoying the morning after.

Here are all the best New Years drinks and cocktails to try! Try the classic champagne cocktail as a New Years Eve drink, or a round of Bloody Marys or mimosas for cozy New Years cocktail for brunch. And we’ve got just about everything in between. Let’s get mixing!

And now…the best New Years drinks and cocktails!

A few more drink options

Need a few more ideas? Here are a few more unique champagne cocktails that are a little outside the box…but still perfect for the New Year:

Want recipes too? Try our 20 New Years Eve Recipes, from shrimp cocktail to black eyed pea dip.

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New Years Drinks

New Years Champagne Cocktail (& More Drinks!)


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (6 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 1 drink
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

The Champagne Cocktail is a classic drink that’s festive and elegant: the perfect for New Years drink! The sugar cube makes it sparkle.


Ingredients

  • 1 sugar cube
  • 5 dashes Angostura bitters
  • Squeezed lemon peel
  • 5 ounces champagne (10 tablespoons)
  • For the garnish: Lemon twist

Instructions

  1. Make the lemon twist garnish, if using.
  2. Add a sugar cube to bottom of a champagne flute. Add 5 dashes of bitters to the sugar cube. Use a vegetable peeler to peel off a small strip of lemon skin. Squeeze the lemon skin into the flute to release the oils.
  3. Fill the glass with champagne and serve immediately: watch how the sugar cube makes the bubbles sparkle! Garnish with a lemon twist if desired.
  • Category: Drink
  • Method: Poured
  • Cuisine: Cocktails

Keywords: new years drinks, new years eve drinks, new years cocktails, new years eve cocktail

More cocktails

Looking for more drinks outside of these New Years cocktails? We’ve got 200+ cocktails for every occasion:

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

45 Best Thanksgiving Recipes

Here are all the best Thanksgiving recipes to add to your table! These fresh and healthy spins on the classics are absolutely full of flavor. Thanksgiving is the top food holiday of the year, and we take it very seriously around here. Looking for Thanksgiving recipes? We’ve put together a list of the best of the best recipes to make your table shine. The approach? Our recipes are full of colorful vegetables, seasonal flavors and cozy vibes. You’ll find recipes for all types of diets: vegetarian and vegan Thanksgiving recipes, gluten free spins, and overall healthier spins on classics. You’ll find gourmet green bean casserole made from scratch, and pumpkin pie made with not one ounce of butter. But the overwhelming theme here? Each recipe is absolutely, undeniably delicious. Pick from this list of Thanksgiving side dish recipes, main dish ideas, desserts and holiday drinks: your family will thank you later! Let’s get started. And now…our top Thanksgiving recipes (everything but the turkey)! More Thanksgiving inspiration We’ve got lots more lists of great ideas for Thanksgiving entertaining! If you didn’t see something that fits your fancy, pick from one of the following: Vegetarian Thanksgiving Main Dishes Want to skip the […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

Here are all the best Thanksgiving recipes to add to your table! These fresh and healthy spins on the classics are absolutely full of flavor.

Best green bean casserole

Thanksgiving is the top food holiday of the year, and we take it very seriously around here. Looking for Thanksgiving recipes? We’ve put together a list of the best of the best recipes to make your table shine. The approach? Our recipes are full of colorful vegetables, seasonal flavors and cozy vibes. You’ll find recipes for all types of diets: vegetarian and vegan Thanksgiving recipes, gluten free spins, and overall healthier spins on classics. You’ll find gourmet green bean casserole made from scratch, and pumpkin pie made with not one ounce of butter.

But the overwhelming theme here? Each recipe is absolutely, undeniably delicious. Pick from this list of Thanksgiving side dish recipes, main dish ideas, desserts and holiday drinks: your family will thank you later! Let’s get started.

And now…our top Thanksgiving recipes (everything but the turkey)!

More Thanksgiving inspiration

We’ve got lots more lists of great ideas for Thanksgiving entertaining! If you didn’t see something that fits your fancy, pick from one of the following:

  • Vegetarian Thanksgiving Main Dishes Want to skip the turkey? Pick from these tasty vegetarian Thanksgiving main dishes, from risotto to pot pie.
  • Healthy Thanksgiving Side Dishes For a holiday that’s all about food, there can be a whole lots of lifeless mashed potatoes and brown mushy stuffing. But guess what? Thanksgiving side dishes can be vibrant, good-for-you, and drop dead delicious.
  • Vegan Thanksgiving Recipes Some of the best, tastiest holiday recipes can be plant based and vegan! Holidays like Thanksgiving can be hard to manage for families with a variety of eaters. Here’s a list that shows plant-based recipes can be showy and celebratory, too!
  • Instant Pot Thanksgiving Recipes The Instant Pot is a genius extension of your kitchen for holiday cooking. While your oven and stovetop are occupied cooking other things, the Instant Pot can be making up a monstrous batch of mashed potatoes or one of these other tasty sides!
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Mashed sweet potatoes

Mashed Sweet Potatoes (& More Thanksgiving Recipes!)


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (No Ratings Yet)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 6 to 8
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

These mashed sweet potatoes are at the top of our Thanksgiving recipes! Go savory with garlic and fresh chives. For the remaining Thanksgiving recipes, scroll up!


Ingredients

  • pounds sweet potatoes
  • pounds Yukon gold potatoes
  • 1/2 cup milk (or dairy free milk for vegan)
  • 1 garlic clove, grated
  • 2 tablespoons chopped chives
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Fresh ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. Peel and dice the potatoes.
  2. Place the Yukon gold potatoes in a large pot and cover with 3 to 4 inches of water; add a generous amount of kosher salt. Bring to a boil, then add the sweet potatoes after 5 minutes. Boil 10 to 15 minutes more until both types of potatoes are tender. Drain and reserve 1/2 cup of the water. Return the potatoes to the pot. 
  3. In the pot, pour back the 1/2 cup water to potatoes. Add the grated garlic (you can grate it right in), milk, kosher salt, chopped chives, and fresh ground black pepper. Mash until the desired consistency is reached. Serve immediately.
  • Category: Side Dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: Thanksgiving recipes

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

Top 5 Spritz Recipes

Here are the best spritz recipes to try! Liquor, soda and sparkling wine make these bubbly drinks, from the classic Aperol spritz to more unique spins. The most refreshing cocktails on the planet? Meet the Spritz family! A spritz is a cocktail that’s a blend of sparkling wine (usually Prosecco), bitter liqueur, and soda water. The most famous spritz of all is the popular Aperol spritz, a classic cocktail on the list of IBA official cocktails. But there are many ways to make this bubbly drink by varying the liquor! Here are our top 5 must-try spritz recipes! Start with the classic with Aperol, then branch out to bitter Campari, fruity St Germain and cool, crisp Lillet Blanc. There’s something for everyone! And now…the best spritz recipes to try! What’s the spritz ratio? The classic spritz ratio is present in all of the recipes above. The basic idea is to use the following quantities of each ingredient: 3 parts sparkling wine (Prosecco or champagne) 2 parts liqueur 1 part soda water Once you’ve memorized this ratio, you can use it to make endless variations. You can do them with any type of liqueur: feel free to get creative! Let us know what you try […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

Here are the best spritz recipes to try! Liquor, soda and sparkling wine make these bubbly drinks, from the classic Aperol spritz to more unique spins.

Spritz recipes

The most refreshing cocktails on the planet? Meet the Spritz family! A spritz is a cocktail that’s a blend of sparkling wine (usually Prosecco), bitter liqueur, and soda water. The most famous spritz of all is the popular Aperol spritz, a classic cocktail on the list of IBA official cocktails. But there are many ways to make this bubbly drink by varying the liquor!

Here are our top 5 must-try spritz recipes! Start with the classic with Aperol, then branch out to bitter Campari, fruity St Germain and cool, crisp Lillet Blanc. There’s something for everyone!

And now…the best spritz recipes to try!

What’s the spritz ratio?

The classic spritz ratio is present in all of the recipes above. The basic idea is to use the following quantities of each ingredient:

  • 3 parts sparkling wine (Prosecco or champagne)
  • 2 parts liqueur
  • 1 part soda water

Once you’ve memorized this ratio, you can use it to make endless variations. You can do them with any type of liqueur: feel free to get creative! Let us know what you try in the comments below.

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Aperol spritz

Aperol Spritz


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (5 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 3 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 3 minutes
  • Yield: 1 drink
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

The classic Aperol spritz is worth the hype! It’s light and bubbly, with hints of citrus and herbs: one of the most refreshing mixed drinks of all time.


Ingredients

  • 2 ounces (4 tablespoons) Aperol, chilled
  • 3 ounces (6 tablespoons) Prosecco or other sparkling wine, chilled
  • 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) soda water
  • Ice (try clear ice!)
  • For the garnish: orange wedge, a straw if you like

Instructions

  1. Add the Aperol to a glass filled with ice and stir. Top with the sparkling wine and soda water.
  2. Squeeze in the orange wedge and stir gently, then serve. Serve with a straw to minimize dilution!

  • Category: Drink
  • Method: Stirred
  • Cuisine: Cocktails

Keywords: Spritz

More summer drinks

The cocktails above are perfect for summer! They’re bubbly and light, perfect for lazy afternoons, pool parties, or dinner parties on the patio. Need more ideas? Here are some more easy breezy summer drinks:

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

15 Best Margarita Recipes

The BEST margarita recipes to impress everyone! The classic recipe has just 3 ingredients, then try all the variations: frozen, jalapeno, mango, & more. The margarita is at the top of our list of great cocktail recipes you should know. Crisp, cool, tart and refreshing, they’re one of the most popular and versatile drinks of all time. From late night drinks to a dinner party to brunch, there’s no time that’s not better with a margarita in hand. Here we’re sharing how to make a margarita: the classic way, and then our very favorite variations! Frozen, skinny, pitcher, beer, jalapeno margaritas…even margarita mix! There are countless ways to change up this incredible drink. And now…the best margarita recipes! How to make a margarita There’s nothing better than a classic margarita! It’s tart, with just the right bite from the tequila and scent of orange from the Cointreau. Did you know the classic margarita has no added sugar? Many bars and mixes load it down with sugar. But that strays far from an authentic margarita. The margarita is a classic alcoholic drink on the list of International Bartender Association’s IBA official cocktails. This means that there’s an “official” definition of this drink: […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

The BEST margarita recipes to impress everyone! The classic recipe has just 3 ingredients, then try all the variations: frozen, jalapeno, mango, & more.

Best margarita

The margarita is at the top of our list of great cocktail recipes you should know. Crisp, cool, tart and refreshing, they’re one of the most popular and versatile drinks of all time. From late night drinks to a dinner party to brunch, there’s no time that’s not better with a margarita in hand. Here we’re sharing how to make a margarita: the classic way, and then our very favorite variations! Frozen, skinny, pitcher, beer, jalapeno margaritas…even margarita mix! There are countless ways to change up this incredible drink.

And now…the best margarita recipes!

How to make a margarita

There’s nothing better than a classic margarita! It’s tart, with just the right bite from the tequila and scent of orange from the Cointreau. Did you know the classic margarita has no added sugar? Many bars and mixes load it down with sugar. But that strays far from an authentic margarita.

The margarita is a classic alcoholic drink on the list of International Bartender Association’s IBA official cocktails. This means that there’s an “official” definition of this drink: the ingredients and approximate quantities are always the same. Here’s what’s we’ve found is the perfect formula:

  • 1 1/2 ounces tequila
  • 1 ounce Cointreau
  • 3/4 ounce lime juice

3 steps to make a margarita

Once you’ve got the ingredients, here are the steps:

  1. Rim the glass with salt. A classic margarita has salt on the rim. Why? The salt enhances the sweet and sour flavors in the drink!
  2. Shake in a cocktail shaker. Take that tequila, Cointreau and lime juice and shake it together in a cocktail shaker with 4 ice cubes.
  3. Strain into a glass. Add ice if serving on the rocks. The margarita is often served in a lowball or Old Fashioned glass, though of course you can use the classic margarita glass too. If you’d like to serve it on the rocks, throw in a few ice cubes (use Clear Ice for a stunning look).
Skinny margarita

Best tequila for a margarita

Here’s the key to how to make a good margarita: buy a good tequila! A cocktail is only as good as the alcohol you use. Instead of recommending a specific brand, look for a mid-price range tequila (or a high end one, if your budget allows). The price is typically an indicator of quality. The other tip: use tequila reposado instead of blanco! Because it’s aged, it has a more interesting flavor. Here’s the difference between these types of tequila:

  • Tequila blanco (or “new” tequila) has been aged less than 2 months and has a strong, straightforward flavor.
  • Tequila reposado (“rested” in Spanish) is aged longer, from 2 to 12 months. It has a more nuanced flavor, with notes of oak and vanilla.

How to make a salt rim

The salt rim is essential to how to make a margarita. The salt enhances the flavors in the drink, and gives it that classic look. Try our Margarita Salt for a colorful flair: lime zest and orange zest add beautiful orange and green. Here’s how to make a salt rim:

  • Spread on a plate: Spread the kosher salt, flaky sea salt, or margarita salt on a plate in an even layer.
  • Wet the glass with a lime: Take a lime wedge and cut a notch in the middle: then slide it around the rim of the glass. This perfectly moistens the glass rim without having to use your fingers!
  • Rim the outside edge only: Tilt the glass so that only the outside edge goes into the salt. You don’t want it on the inside where it can fall into the drink. Shake off any loose salt into the sink.

Try clear ice to look like a pro!

Want a professional look to your margarita? Add clear ice! It will make your drink look like it came from a trendy bar, but you can easily make it in your own home. All you need is a small cooler and 24 hours. Go to How to Make Clear Ice.

Virgin margarita
Clear ice makes for a stunning cocktail.

This margarita recipe is…

Vegetarian, vegan, plant-based, dairy-free and gluten-free.

Print
Margarita

The Original Margarita Recipe


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (10 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 1 drink
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

The best margarita recipe! Here’s how to make a classic margarita on the rocks with 3 simple ingredients: lime, Cointreau and tequila (no added sugar!).


Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 ounces (3 tablespoons) tequila blanco or reposado
  • 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) Cointreau
  • 3/4 ounce (1 1/2 tablespoons) fresh lime juice
  • Kosher salt or flaky sea salt, for the rim
  • For the garnish: Lime wedge

Instructions

  1. Cut a notch in a lime wedge, then run the lime around the rim of a glass. Dip the edge of the rim into a plate of flaky sea salt (or for a festive look, use our Margarita Salt).
  2. Place all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with 4 ice cubes and shake until cold.
  3. Strain the margarita into the glass with the salted rim. Fill the glass with ice and serve.

  • Category: Cocktails
  • Method: Shaken
  • Cuisine: Mexican

Keywords: Margarita recipes

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

28 Day Mediterranean Diet Meal Plan

Here’s a monthly Mediterranean diet meal plan! It’s got lots of recipes and inspiration, planning ideas, and a meal planning calendar download. Need healthy food to cook this month? We’ve got answers. Here at A Couple Cooks, Alex and I have spent years honing our method for how to eat healthy meals every day, not just here and there. We made it our MO, wrote a cookbook called Pretty Simple Cooking, and have devoted our careers to helping connect people to healthy recipes. But how to do you do it…every day? Here’s our new 28 day Mediterranean diet meal plan, designed to do exactly that! The goal of this plan is to help you make a sustainable practice of cooking and eating healthy food at home. In the process, we hope you’ll become inspired and find a handful of recipes you’ll make again and again. (If you like: Subscribe to our newsletter for new weekly recipes.) Is this Mediterranean diet meal plan right for you? This Mediterranean diet meal plan is right for you if you eat a variety of foods but want to focus on veggies. This meal plan includes fish, shellfish, vegetarian, and plant based / vegan recipes. If […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

Here’s a monthly Mediterranean diet meal plan! It’s got lots of recipes and inspiration, planning ideas, and a meal planning calendar download.

Mediterranean Diet Meal Plan

Need healthy food to cook this month? We’ve got answers. Here at A Couple Cooks, Alex and I have spent years honing our method for how to eat healthy meals every day, not just here and there. We made it our MO, wrote a cookbook called Pretty Simple Cooking, and have devoted our careers to helping connect people to healthy recipes. But how to do you do it…every day?

Here’s our new 28 day Mediterranean diet meal plan, designed to do exactly that! The goal of this plan is to help you make a sustainable practice of cooking and eating healthy food at home. In the process, we hope you’ll become inspired and find a handful of recipes you’ll make again and again. (If you like: Subscribe to our newsletter for new weekly recipes.)

Is this Mediterranean diet meal plan right for you?

This Mediterranean diet meal plan is right for you if you eat a variety of foods but want to focus on veggies. This meal plan includes fish, shellfish, vegetarian, and plant based / vegan recipes. If you eat exclusively vegetarian or vegan, choose from one of the following meal plan options:

If you have a very specific diet or health condition, consult a medical professional to understand whether these recipes are right for you.

What makes our Mediterranean diet meal plan different?

One problem with standard meal planning calendars and weekly meal plans is that they offer no flexibility. Many meal plans call for cooking something new every day of the week. They’re overwhelming with the amount of food prep! Many also don’t account for your schedule: what if Monday nights I have a weekly meeting where I eat dinner? Or this Friday night I’m going out with friends?

Here’s what makes our Mediterranean diet meal plan different:

  • It focuses on dinner ideas. Dinner is the main meal where Alex and I cook and get the majority of our nutrients for the day. Our approach is this: Go big on dinner. Go super simple on breakfast and lunch. At the bottom of the meal plan you’ll find lists of healthy breakfast ideas, snack ideas, and lunch ideas.
  • The approach: Pick 3. Each week, we offer 3 healthy dinner ideas. You can make them on any day that week! This encourages you to customize the ideas based on your schedule and particular tastes, and to eat up leftovers.
  • Repeat your favorites! Offering only 3 dinner ideas encourages you to make dinner ideas you liked from previous weeks.

What if this meal plan doesn’t work for me?

It’s possible this meal plan might not work for you – and that’s ok! This meal plan might provide too much flexibility for you. There might not be enough options. Or, you might not like the style of these recipes. This meal plan is not for everyone, but it’s an outline of how Alex and I cook on a weekly basis.

Run out of dinner recipes? We’ve got hundreds! Here are some places to browse:

Download: Mediterranean diet meal plan spreadsheet

To make our Mediterranean Diet Meal Plan tangible, we’ve created a downloadable meal planning calendar for you! It’s our Meal Plan spreadsheet, where you can copy in your meal planning ideas for each week. Simply download the spreadsheet and then copy in the links to the recipes for each week below. Here’s the download!

Mediterranean Diet Meal Plan

Before you start: here’s how to use our Mediterranean Diet Meal Plan!

  • Pick at least 3 dinner ideas. Alex and I don’t cook every night! We make enough for leftovers and eat them throughout the week, sometimes re-purposing them in new ways. For this meal plan, pick 3 days that you want to cook dinners. Fill in the other days with eating leftovers, “clean out the fridge” meals, or allowing for meals out. If you need more healthy dinner ideas for that week: pick another one of our other Dinner Recipes, or our 28 Day Healthy Meal Plan and 28 Day Pescatarian Meal Plan.
  • Fill in breakfast, lunch, and snacks ideas. We like to keep breakfast, lunches, and snacks SUPER simple. If possible, things that don’t use recipes are great: like carrots and hummus, English muffins with peanut butter, yogurt with fruit. Doing this, we save our cooking energy for dinner.
  • Copy the links into your Mediterranean Diet Meal Plan spreadsheet. Using a spreadsheet makes things much more tangible than just using a list! Once you’ve taken stock of what nights you’ll have time to cook, fill in your dinner ideas accordingly. We suggest filling out the meal plan on the weekend (Sundays seem to be good for many people).
  • Read the meal prep planning notes. Below each week of healthy dinner ideas, we’ve included some meal prep planning notes to help with ways to make ahead or prep in advance.

Dinner Ideas Week 1

*Pick at least 3 dinners to cook at home and copy them into your Meal Plan spreadsheet on the days for Week 1! On days you’re not cooking, use up leftovers or do “clean out the fridge” meals, and allow for meals out.

  1. Salmon with Capers (30 minutes) + Pesto Quinoa
  2. Mediterranean Couscous Bowls (30 minutes)
  3. Vegan Fettuccine Alfredo (25 minutes) + Easy Arugula Salad
  4. Quick Garlicky Shrimp Couscous (15 minutes)
  5. Leftovers from above*

*Meal Prep Plan Notes

  • Salmon: If using frozen salmon, make sure to refrigerate the night before. It’s an easy recipe so not much can be made in advance. (The caper butter could be, but you’ll have to re-melt it anyway.) You can make the quinoa in advance and refrigerate: wait to mix it with the pesto until the day of serving.
  • Couscous Bowls: You can make the tahini sauce and chickpeas in advance and refrigerate until serving. You could make the couscous in advance, but it cooks so fast it works the day of. For gluten-free, substitute quinoa or rice. You could make a big pot of quinoa and use it in the Salmon, Couscous Bowls, and Shrimp Couscous. Of you’re serving with couscous, you could make extra if you’re planning to make the shrimp.
  • Vegan Fettuccine Alfredo: Make the sauce in advance and refrigerate until serving. Reheat and serve with fresh cooked pasta for a quick and easy meal. Make the salad while the pasta boils.
  • Shrimp & Couscous: This one is lightening fast. If you’re using frozen shrimp, throw it in the refrigerator the night before. If you have leftover couscous or quinoa from the above meals, it will be even faster.
Salmon with capers
Salmon with Capers is a simple preparation with big flavor.

Dinner Ideas Week 2

*Pick at least 3 dinners to cook at home and copy them into your Mediterranean Diet Meal Plan spreadsheet on the days for Week 2! On days you’re not cooking, use up leftovers or do “clean out the fridge” meals, and allow for meals out.

  1. Easy Sheet Pan Dinner (45 minutes)
  2. Lentil Sloppy Joes (30 minutes)
  3. Nicoise Salad (40 minutes)
  4. Make again! 1 or 2 favorite dinner ideas from Week 1
  5. Leftovers from above*

Meal Plan Prep Notes

  • Sheet Pan Dinner: Chop the veggies in advance, then just pop them in the oven the day of serving. Or, you can roast them in advance and just reheat in a 350 degree oven until heated through, about 10 to 15 minutes. You also can make the rice or quinoa in advance and reheat prior to serving.
  • Lentil Sloppy Joes: Cook the lentils in advance, then make the sauce the day of. Even better, make the entire filling in advance (it tastes better as it sits). If you’re serving with Pickled onions, make those in advance too.
  • Nicoise Salad: This classic French salad has lots of components, but they can all be made ahead! Make the hard boiled eggs, beans, potatoes, and lemon vinaigrette in advance and refrigerate until serving. Make sure to let the dressing come to room temp before serving.
Nicoise salad
The classic French Nicoise Salad is 100% Mediterranean diet.

Dinner Ideas Week 3

*Pick at least 3 dinners to cook at home and copy them into your Meal Plan spreadsheet on the days for Week 4! On days you’re not cooking, use up leftovers or do “clean out the fridge” meals, and allow for meals out.

  1. Shrimp Marinara (30 minutes) + Arugula Beet Salad
  2. Best Damn Lentil Soup or Curry Lentil Soup (45 minutes)
  3. Best Chickpea Burgers (40 minutes)
  4. Make again! 1 or 2 favorite dinner ideas from Week 1 or 2
  5. Leftovers from above*

Meal Plan Prep Notes

  • Shrimp Marinara: If you’re using frozen shrimp, throw it in the refrigerator the night before. You can use purchased marinara sauce or make the Easy Marinara in advance. For the arugula salad, use store-bought boiled beets for easiest prep.
  • Lentil Soup: You could make the entire soup in advance and refrigerate: it saves well. (Leftovers also freeze well.) Or you could chop the veggies in advance to speed up prep.
  • Chickpea Burgers: These save well! Make the entire burger in advance and refrigerate or freeze until serving. Consider making a double batch. You can also make the shiitake bacon in advance. For gluten-free, serve without the bun or on a salad with tahini sauce drizzle.
Chickpea burgers
These Best Chickpea Burgers are super satisfying.

Healthy Dinner Ideas Week 4

*Pick at least 3 dinners to cook at home and copy them into your Mediterranean Diet Meal Plan spreadsheet on the days for Week 4! On days you’re not cooking, use up leftovers or do “clean out the fridge” meals, and allow for meals out.

  1. Lemon Dill Salmon (20 minutes) + BEST Steamed Broccoli
  2. Easy Chickpea Curry (20 minutes) + Basmati Rice
  3. Tuscan Soup with White Beans (30 minutes) + crusty bread
  4. Make again! 1 or 2 favorite dinner ideas from Week 1, 2 or 3
  5. Leftovers from above*

Meal Plan Prep Notes

  • Salmon: If using frozen salmon, make sure to refrigerate the night before. You can make the lemon dill sauce in advance and refrigerate. The broccoli comes together quickly and you can make it while the salmon bakes.
  • Curry: This one is quick to put together, but you could chop the veggies in advance and refrigerate. Make the Basmati Rice in advance. To reheat: place in a pan with a splash of water and simmer until it’s heated through and moist.
  • Tuscan Soup: This soup is pretty quick to whip up, but you could chop the vegetables in advance and refrigerate to save a few minutes on prep.
Easy Chickpea Curry
Easy Chickpea Curry is quick and full of flavor.

Healthy Breakfast Ideas Weeks 1-4

Here are lots of simple ideas for healthy Mediterranean diet breakfasts! Pick any of these to eat throughout the week and copy them into your Meal Plan spreadsheet. We’ve offered quite a bit of options to account for your breakfast tastes and style. Do repeats as much as you’d like!

PB&J oatmeal toppings
Best Oatmeal with peanut butter is a breakfast that sticks!

Healthy Snack Ideas Weeks 1-4

Pick any of these to eat throughout the week and copy them into your Mediterranean Diet Meal Plan spreadsheet.

Stuffed dates
Easy Stuffed Dates are a filling snack

Healthy Lunch Ideas Weeks 1-4

Lunches can be hard, especially if you’re eating at your desk! Again, our philosophy for lunches is: keep them very simple, without a recipe if possible. Pick any of these to eat throughout the week and copy them into your Mediterranean Diet Meal Plan spreadsheet.

Simple chickpea salad
Simple Chickpea Salad takes just 5 minutes and is perfect for desk lunches.

Did you like this Mediterranean diet meal plan?

We’d love to hear your feedback on this Mediterranean diet meal plan: let us know in the comments below (or click the heart below). And let us know if you have any questions!

For more recipes like these: try our cookbook, Pretty Simple Cooking!

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

20 Best Vegetables to Eat Today

We’ve all heard, “Eat more vegetables.” But how to do it? Here are the best healthy vegetables to get into your diet, and recipes for how to eat them! We’ve all heard the refrain: Eat more fruits and vegetables! But what does that really look like? And what are the healthiest vegetables to eat? Well, we’ve got answers. Alex and I are cookbook authors of a vegetarian cookbook and our website has over 1,000 recipes for how to make plants taste delicious. But today, we wanted to delve into this question: What are the best vegetables to include in a healthy diet? After lots of research, we’ve compiled a list of the 20 best vegetables to include in your everyday. The great news? There are so many ways to make them taste delicious. With each vegetable, we’ve included our top recipes for making it taste good. (And you can click the “Get Recipes” button to get even more recipes.) Ready to get started? Want more ideas? Try our Cruciferous Vegetables Guide The best vegetables to eat in a healthy diet? More resources Looking for more resources on how to eat more veggies? Here are a few more of our favorite […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

We’ve all heard, “Eat more vegetables.” But how to do it? Here are the best healthy vegetables to get into your diet, and recipes for how to eat them!

Vegetables
This Rainbow Vegetable Sandwich is a tasty way to eat lots at once!

We’ve all heard the refrain: Eat more fruits and vegetables! But what does that really look like? And what are the healthiest vegetables to eat? Well, we’ve got answers. Alex and I are cookbook authors of a vegetarian cookbook and our website has over 1,000 recipes for how to make plants taste delicious. But today, we wanted to delve into this question: What are the best vegetables to include in a healthy diet?

After lots of research, we’ve compiled a list of the 20 best vegetables to include in your everyday. The great news? There are so many ways to make them taste delicious. With each vegetable, we’ve included our top recipes for making it taste good. (And you can click the “Get Recipes” button to get even more recipes.) Ready to get started?

Want more ideas? Try our Cruciferous Vegetables Guide

The best vegetables to eat in a healthy diet?

More resources

Looking for more resources on how to eat more veggies? Here are a few more of our favorite resources for eating lots of veggies:

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes