Home Ec

Home Ec: 10 Healthy Meals From Your Garden

by Grace Bonney

Earlier this month, I wrote about the things that scare me most, and one of them related to the way my image (weight, dress, etc.) could negatively affect my business. I thought long and hard about being open with that fear, because it’s one that I still struggle with on a pretty deep level. But since we’ve been upstate, I’ve been better about trying to get outside more, walk more and eat healthier food in way that lets me feel good about myself, no matter what the scale says. Those healthy decisions to hike before I open my laptop or eat veggies instead of yet another processed something-bar for lunch have had a really positive effect on my mood and overall well-being lately.

So for today’s Home Ec I thought I’d share some healthy recipes that are not only good for keeping you and your family feeling good inside, but that are based around things you can grow in your own (or find from a local) garden. Even if you don’t have space or time for a garden, these recipes will hopefully inspire meals based around veggies that are both filling and easy to find at most grocery stories or farm stands. xo, grace


This post and the Home Ec section are brought to you by Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day. Visit the Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day Home-Grown Inspiration section featuring 20 DIYs, including seven from Design*Sponge!

Valery's caprese salad is as garden-eating as it gets. Fresh basil, mint and tomatoes make for a wonderful summer meal or snack and they look gorgeous on the plate to boot.
A healthy watermelon salad is a great summer meal or treat. If you want something more substantial you can add grilled chicken or tofu to accompany it.
This green bean salad is my go-to any time of the year. I am going to try (operative word being "try") to grow green beans in our yard this year, so fingers crossed, I can grow most of this out back if I'm lucky.
This tomato tatin is one of the most beautiful, delicious and elegant garden-based recipes. It's a real show-stopper at the table and tastes so rich and full of summery flavor.
I love spring peas in anything. ANYTHING. I put them in eggs, sandwiches (egg salad!) and every pasta imaginable, so I love this recipe that combines peas with fresh mushrooms. For me this is the perfect hearty breakfast, but it would be perfect for any time of the day.
Gabi Dalkin always creates wonderfully healthy recipes that make me feel like it's always summer and time to make something from the garden. This recipe uses quinoa as a base, but you could easily leave that out for something lighter or to use as a side. The roasted broccoli is my favorite part (if you've never roasted broccoli, please try this - it's a totally rich, nutty flavor) and is a great way to try something different with broccoli when it's fresh from the garden or farm.
This delicious freekeh salad uses cooked and raw brussels sprouts (my favorite), grapes, and pickled raisins for a totally unexpected - but delicious - meal. I'm not someone who ever feels satisfied with a salad as a meal, but this one actually does the trick. It's delicious.
Ok, these sweet potato crisps aren't a meal (although they could be in our house) but they are so delicious and if you've got sweet potatoes growing out back, this is a great way to turn them into a tasty snack.
If you want to leave meat out of the equation entirely, this smoked paprika potato and green bean salad is SO filling and delicious. Just grab a handful of beans and potatoes from the farm stand or grocery store and the rest will be in your pantry.
These healthy gluten-free waffles come with a delicious strawberry basil topping that you can easily make with ingredients from a local farm stand or grocery store.

Suggested For You


  • These are beautiful and sound yummy! A fave hot humid day variation on the watermelon caprese is to mix the melon with feta cheese, kalamata olives, and basil or mint. You will probably want to add some salt (really!) and sherry or white wine vinegar or lemon juice are optional. The salty sweet juiciness is perfect in the heat.

  • That plate at the beginning is just perfect. I have a small organic garden in which I grow veggies. It is unbelievable how better the taste of my veggies than the ones we buy from stores.

  • Wow! Just looking at the amazing photo you have for the Green Bean Salad makes me wanna try it! What a great article Grace! Excellent pictures. I am heavy into gardening and have always found great satisfaction and taste in growing my own veggies. Thanks for the share!

  • They all look delicious. I particularly like the Caprese salad with basil and cherry tomatoes. When I make it myself I always make sure to sprinkle it with quality extra virgin olive oil for full Mediterranean flavor.

  • This is awesome especially with summer around the corner. I love gardening and I’m going to try the sweet potato crisps for my babies!