20 Spring Veggie Recipes to Wake You Up From Winter Hibernation
For all those feeling like “I can’t even look at another root vegetable rn”: these are for you.
Photo by Brayden Olson
Spring is so poetically ephemeral, isn’t it? The transition from slushy, dull winter to hot-and-humid summer is usually short and sweet (if a little muddy). The produce we look forward to most as the harbingers of springtime are equally flighty. If you blink, you’ll miss ramp and fiddlehead harvesting time. If you wait too long, the English peas and fresh apricots will be gone before you know it. Winter is a long, potato-fueled hibernation period, and you should wake up out of it in the most delicious way possible. We’ve collected our favorite spring-forward recipes for you here to help remind you what a world with a little color in it looks like.
Anastasia Cole Plakias, founder of rooftop gardening company Brooklyn Grange, knows her veggies. She showed us this super simple and versatile recipe for yogurt-and-greens wraps, tied together with chives for a pretty little afternoon snack.
This herbaceous salad has got enough butter, ricotta, and crispy ham to make even vegetable haters eat their greens.
You don’t have to bury green beans in gloopy canned soup to give them flavor—we promise. These snappy greens are dressed in honey, roasted garlic, and lime to keep things light.
Bright, juicy English peas and dandelion leaf pesto are here to shake you out of your winter carbo-loaded hibernation.
Green on green on green! Literally! An herby, lemony salsa verde drizzled over spring peas and zucchini. Remember what it was like when the world had color in it?
Spring veggies lend themselves so perfectly to quick weeknight dinners, particularly because lots of them just need a super quick hit of heat to get them ready. No slow roasting come this time of year. With a seasoned and whipped goat cheese spread, basil pesto, and a thick slice of crusty toast, all you need to do is throw an egg on top for a complete meal.
Slough off the starchy, cheesy, potato-y food coma you’ve been in since November with this extraordinarily simple salad. We don’t know about you, but our bodies are kind of missing green things right about now.
Finding the first morel mushrooms of the season is an indicator that spring has done been sprung. Since they’re not cultivated like other grocery store mushrooms, and, according to forager lore, they don’t start to appear until the soil reaches 50 degrees, they’re a good sign that warmer days are here.
If it’s warm enough to put away the puffer coat, it’s warm enough to grill. New to artichokes? Watch Samin Nosrat of Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat break it down over on VICE Video.
With an array of herbs and a hearty dose of anchovies and lemon zest, this super easy salad will help you ease back into longer days and warmer temperatures.
Spring doesn’t have to mean leaving pasta in the past, but brighten it up a bit. Leeks, ricotta, lemon, and peas will have you feeling so fresh and so green.
Ok, so yes, it is the beginning of artichoke season, but you can make this quick and tasty spread any time of year, because it calls for frozen, not fresh, artichokes. But it’s still in the spirit of things.
Fresh, creamy burrata and peppery baby arugula dressed in balsamic vinegar alone sounds like a pretty bangin’ snack, but with some juicy tomatoes (or something else that might be in season now—like wild mushrooms) this is truly a treat-yo-self kind of snack.
With asparagus, ramps, and spring mushrooms, this quick side is like spring on a freaking plate.
If you have no idea what to do with one of these mysterious curlicues, fret not—we’ve got three different preparations of the baby ferns in one dish for you, and all of them are delicious.
If you’re lucky, you might live in a place where early ramp season and peak oyster season overlap. If so, give this low-key fancy oyster preparation a try.
This might be more of a summer dish, but still. Apricots are one of the first stone fruits to ripen, and since we’re usually deprived of fresh fruits like this all winter long, don’t mess with them too much. Throw them on the grill for a bit of a char, then on top of a ricotta-smeared crostini for an easy app.
Want to preserve the taste of spring a little longer? Make a big batch of this nettle pesto and freeze small portions of it for spreading on sandwiches or drizzling over pasta for months to come.
Following the old adage that “things that grow together go together,” these savory, garlicky fritters use stinging nettles and three-cornered leeks, both wild spring edibles. The leeks are like an invasive, West Coast version of the ramp, so the other foraged spring allium is a good substitute for East Coasters.
Meal-prep it, or take it to a picnic potluck—either way, this quick and easy tabbouleh is the perfect way to use up all those extra spring herbs.