The 12 Best Recipes to Try Using Farmers Market Vegetables in Summer

published Jun 7, 2023
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As fun as farmers markets are, it’s easy to get carried away while loading your tote with fresh veggies. Suddenly, you have heaps of must-use-soon ingredients and a hit of anxiety as you get home. The same goes for monthly subscription boxes where what’s ripe and in-season has to be used quickly. What are you supposed to do?

To help narrow down the possibilities, and save your prized possessions from the trash, here are 12 recipes for using up a variety of farmers market finds during the summer months. Each recipe includes at least three vegetables commonly sold at farmers markets, from corn and peas to carrots and squash. And furthermore, this collection goes beyond tossing your picks with olive oil and then roasting everything in the oven (boring!). Instead, you’ll learn how to whip these ingredients into meals and snacks throughout the day, as it melts gloriously into warm evenings. Read on for these helpful tips.

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Farmers Market Frittata

During the lazy months of summer, it’s a great idea to keep a half-dozen eggs on hand at all times — particularly if you want to make this frittata, which follows a classic formula with two veggies of your choice. Goat cheese rounds out the recipe’s indulgent factor with its creamy tang.

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Snap Peas with Meyer Lemon and Mint

Most people like to eat snap peas raw, but taking the time to pull together this dish might help you to appreciate this ordinary vegetable on another level. Shallots, fresh mint leaves, and lemons added to a pound of snap peas give it more crunch and zest — and not to mention, some amazing aromas. Can’t find Meyer lemons? Any lemon variety will do.

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Fresh and Simple Corn Casserole

This easy-peasy casserole takes those heavy husks of corn you lugged home from the farmers market and transforms them into a creamy, kid-friendly main dish. Pick up some fresh basil leaves, too, for the final touch. You could also add chopped tomatoes before throwing the casserole dish in the oven.

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The Gardener’s Raw Vegetable Salad

This colorful and quick salad is perfect for peak-summer vegetables, such as sugar snap peas, salad greens, yellow squash, zucchini, edamame, and red bell peppers. Toss it with a not-too-creamy dressing born out of pantry staples for an edge, and add some bread on the side.

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Farmers Market Breakfast Bread

This super-flexible breakfast bread recipe folds in any combination of beets, carrots, summer squash, or zucchini into a nine-inch loaf with “a springy, tender crumb.” And because it’s low on sugar, you won’t crash before noon.

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Succotash Salad

In this version of the famed salad tracing back to the Narragansett American Indians in Rhode Island, brightly colored heirloom tomatoes mingle with corn kernels, beans, and fresh basil. It’s a bright and pretty addition to a buffet table during an outdoor movie night.

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Farmers Market Pizza

Chop a minimum of two vegetables — such as bell peppers, red onions, mushrooms, or summer squash — on top of mozzarella and herb-infused ricotta, and you’ll soon have a pizza that’s ideal for backyard dining. Uncork a bottle of wine to pair with your flavors, and dinner is served.

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Farmers Market Stir-Fry

If you want a fun way to use up tomatoes without involving a pasta sauce, turn to this stir-fry. It also incorporates fresh dill and a squeeze of lemon, which are staples of an al fresco market. Rely upon carrots, zucchini, and summer squash to do this recipe right.

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Farmers Market Pasta Dinner

After a day spent outside, relaxing over a pasta dinner crafted from flexible ingredients — such as eggplant, tomatoes, carrots, corn kernels, and either zucchini or summer squash — sounds dreamy. The buttery white-wine sauce is a crowd-pleaser, and you can use either linguine or spaghetti for the job.

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Summer Vegetable Gratin

Turn to this gratin to complement any main dish. Take zucchini, yellow squash, and tomatoes, then weave in Parmesan and breadcrumbs. You’ll also want to bring other farmers-market finds like onions and garlic into the mix! The result is “a rich medley of summer freshness” that’ll add color and crunch to your plate.

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Easy French Ratatouille

Don’t be intimidated by this ratatouille recipe: If you have the patience to chop vegetables — including eggplant, zucchini, bell peppers, tomatoes, and yellow onions — then you can nail it. Toss the vegetables in a pot on the stove and let the recipe do its magic, and by the time a warm evening rolls around, you’ll have a bowl to take outside.

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Summer Vegetable Grain Salad

What makes this grain salad sing — and distinguishes it from the usual veggies-and-quinoa blend — is the pesto vinaigrette that the cucumbers, tomatoes, and bell peppers are tossed in. The salad can be eaten warm or cold, too, making it ideal for long parties.

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