4 Summer Vegetable-Forward Recipes

If you’re a fan of avocado toast, these recipes might be your new favorite veggie-friendly recipes for summer!

There’s no better time than now to take advantage of the bright and colorful produce our local farms have been delivering to Harris Teeter. Seeing the colors pop from the shelves and the array of fruits and veggies available this season, have many of us thinking up recipes to highlight this bounty on the table.

Here are a few tested Summer Vegetarian Fare Favorites – with the colors of the rainbow in every bite, you won’t miss the meat. And, when loaded with healthful nuts, you’ll also stay full -through till your next meal.

Bright Lemon Basil Pesto

Brighten up your classic pesto sauce with bright lemon juice, loads of fragrant basil, plump cloves of garlic, and our little secret… salted sunflower seeds. Serve this with pasta, on top of seafood or chicken or with crostini for dipping. Want to make it Vegan – omit the Parmesan and use Nutritional Yeast instead.

Pro Tip: Make a double batch of the Bright Lemon Basil Pesto and freeze it. It might be just the thing to liven up that batch of noodle soup come winter!

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 8 minutes
  • Total Time: 18 minutes
  • Yield: 2 ¼ cup pesto sauce


  • 2/3 cups Harris Teeter Farmers Market Sunflower Seeds
  • 4 cup loosely packed basil leaves
  • 3-4 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1 lemon – zested and juiced
  • ½ cup grated Harris Teeter Parmesan
  • 1 cup Harris Teeter Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Serve with: pasta, seafood, chicken, eggs, or crostini


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Toss toast on a clean baking sheet and cook for 8 minutes, or until lightly toasted. Do not let them burn, or you will need to start again. Set aside to cool.
  2. In the bowl of a food processor, add the basil, nuts, Parmesan, lemon juice, zest, and a few pinches of salt and pepper. Pulse the mixture a few times. While the processor is running, slowly drizzle in the olive oil in a steady stream. Once the oil has all been added stop the machine and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Continue to pulse until the mixture is smooth and desired thickness is reached. Add up to an additional ¼ cup of oil, if needed.
  3. Use immediately, or store in a resealable container. Smooth the top service and cover with olive oil to coat. This will prevent the basil from browning

Zucchini, Squash, Mint and Farmer’s Cheese Tart with Almonds

Whether your garden is bursting with fresh zucchini – or you just couldn’t help but pick up a few in-season squashes, you’ll find that this cheese and herb tart really lets fresh summer vegetables shine.

  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour
  • Total Time: 1 hr, 30 minutes
  • Yield: 8


  • 1 medium zucchini
  • 1 medium squash
  • 1 sheet from a 2-sheet package of frozen puff pastry, thawed
  • 1 egg
  • 2 Tbsp. HT Traders Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 6 ounces Simple Truth Cream Cheese
  • 3 spring onions, trimmed and finlely sliced
  • Small bunch of mint, chopped
  • Small bunch of Italian parsley, chopped
  • Zest from 1 lemon
  • ¼ tsp. red chili flakes
  • 3-4 ounces Harris Teeter Crumbled Goat Cheese
  • 1 Tbsp. Harris Teeter Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 3 Tbsp. Harris Teeter Farmers Market Slivered Almonds
  • Salt and black pepper to taste


  1. Trim the ends off of the squash and zucchini. Use a vegetable peeler to shave ribbons from top to bottom, rotating the sides as you go. Once you get more core and seeds than ribbons, you have enough from that single squash. Repeat with the remaining squash.
  2. Place a colander over a bowl and add the zucchini. Sprinkle with salt and toss to coat.
  3. Press down on top of the ribbons, repeatedly, over the next few minutes – to get as much moisture as possible out of the vegetables.
  4. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Unroll the pastry sheet. Shape the crust to fit into a 9” tart pan with a bit of overlapping crust. Press the edges to adhere to the sides of the pan, and tuck in extra crust underneath. Prick the crust all over with a fork.
  5. Take the egg and beat it with 1 tsp. of water. Brush the pastry with the egg wash and save the egg wash.
  6. Sprinkle the bottom of the crust with Parmesan. Bake it in the lower third of the oven for 10 minutes. Reduce the heat of the oven to 350 degrees and return to cook for another 8-10 minutes. If at any point during this time, the tart begins to puff up, press down gently with the back of a spoon.
  7. Remove the tart from the oven and turn the heat up to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Mix the cream cheese with the remaining egg wash. To the mixture, add the spring onions, mint, parsley, lemon zest, chili flakes, and salt and pepper. Spoon the mixture out on the tart and spread it into a thin layer.
  8. Arrange the zucchini and squash ribbons on top of the cheese and veggie mixture. Sprinkle the goat cheese over top . Drizzle the tart with olive oil and add a final touch of salt and pepper to taste.
  9. Bake until the pastry is puffy and golden, the cheese has melted, and the veggies have developed a light char, about 15-20 minutes.
  10. While the tart is baking, add the slivered almonds to clean skillet over medium heat. Toast until golden and fragrant, about 8 minutes, being sure not to let them burn.
  11. Once the tart is out of the oven, sprinkle it with the toasted almonds.
  12. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Green Grain Summer Goddess Salad with Lemon Cashew Dressing

Making your own grain bowl at home, not only puts you in charge of selecting your favorite ingredients to highlight, but you also get to mix in as much dressing as you want. We love the combo of hearty pearl barley with fresh spring peas and a lemon cashew dressing for a satisfying mid-day lunch!

  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 4

Lemon Cashew Sauce Ingredients:

  • ½ cup Harris Teeter Farmers Market Cashews
  • ½ cup Harris Teeter Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • ½ cup water
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • Zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Salad Ingredients:

  • 1 cup cooked wild rice blend
  • 1 cup Harris Teeter Peas (either fresh and cooked or frozen and thawed)
  • 1 Hothouse Cucumber, chopped
  • 1 Avocado, cubed
  • 2 cups loosely packed kale salad blend
  • ½ cup Lemon Cashew Sauce
  • 1/3 cup sliced almonds


  1. Combine all sauce ingredients in a blender. Process until smooth and pour into a resealable container to refrigerate until ready to use.
  2. Put the salad ingredients into a large bowl and drizzle with the Lemon Cashew Sauce. Toss until well combined. Garnish with sliced almonds prior to serving, along with extra dressing, if desired.

Katie Harding is the publisher of Forks and Folly . A self-taught cook and die-hard foodie, Katie lives in Charlotte with her husband and three boys. Besides cooking and eating, she loves craft beers, running, and napping.