Now that spring has sprung, you might notice lots of fresh, in-season produce at your local grocery store or farmer’s market. Asparagus, now in-season, is a wonderfully nutritious, non-starchy vegetable. It is packed with vital nutrients like fiber, antioxidants, folic acid and vitamin K. These types of veggies can  help with weight management, as they are very low in calories and very high in fiber, said Meaghan Butler, RD, a registered dietitian.

The high fiber content of the asparagus in this salad recipe helps to keep you feeling full, without going over your daily calorie budget. Try adding in more starchy vegetables to your diet with this heart healthy salad recipe!

Asparagus, Tomato and Feta Salad (yield: 7 servings)

Ingredients:

Vinaigrette:

  • 6 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1 clove garlic , minced
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Salad:

  • 2 lbs fresh asparagus (preferably medium thickness), tough ends trimmed, remaining diced into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 (10.5 oz) pkg. grape tomatoes, halved
  • 2/3-cup chopped walnuts , toasted
  • 4 oz feta cheese , crumbled (scant 1 cup)

Instructions:

  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Meanwhile prepare vinaigrette – add vinegar to a small saucepan, bring to a boil over medium heat and allow to boil until reduced by half, about 3 minutes. Pour into a jar or bowl, add olive oil, dijon mustard, honey, garlic and whisk to blend while seasoning with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
  2. Add asparagus to boiling water and allow to boil until tender crisp, about 4 – 5 minutes. Meanwhile fill a medium mixing bowl with ice and cold water. Drain and immediately transfer asparagus to ice water, let rest about 10 seconds then drain asparagus well. Transfer to a bowl with tomatoes and walnuts. Drizzle vinaigrette over top and toss lightly. Sprinkle over half of the feta then plate and top with remaining feta (just so the feta doesn’t brown from tossing with all the dressing).

Source: Cooking Classy

Nutrition Facts:

  • Calories: 200
  • Sodium: 0 mg
  • Total Carbohydrates: 11 g
  • Total sugars: 7 g (Incl. 2 g added sugars)
  • Protein: 7 g

Eating healthy is just one great way to keep your heart in good shape!

Meaghan Butler, RD, LDN

Meaghan Butler, RD, LDN

Registered Dietitian

Meaghan is a registered dietitian and outpatient diabetes educator at Adventist HealthCare Washington Adventist Hospital.

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