Favorite Recipes for Mediterranean Diet & Summer Veggies

Going through the fridge the other day, I noticed how different our food is now. It’s a lot more colorful from all the fresh produce in there! I mentioned this observation to my husband as we were making food, and he declared, “YES! I love it!!” My husband used to be on a Keto diet (high healthy fats and protein, low carb). His doctor put him on it, but it was difficult to sustain because staying in ketosis required perfect timing and strict food choices which were often expensive or hard to come by with his lifestyle. My husband was living away from home over the summer with no access to a car, no kitchen to prepare his own meals, and a lot of stress. That situation wouldn’t be so different once he went back to teaching while taking grad school classes during COVID-19. Eating keto became a challenge that didn’t make the cut amongst so many other challenges, so we tried to find a middle ground that could be more effective for us long term.

A Simpler Approach to Food

What we eat now is a lot more flexible, and easy to explain. Basically, more of the healthy stuff and less of the unhealthy stuff. No more macro counts or faithfully tracking what we eat. Just more fruits and vegetables, less meat. Lots of extra virgin olive oil, a lot less butter. More fresh foods in home-cooked meals, a lot less sugar and processed stuff. We can still have meat, and most of it fish—a big plus for all of us because we love fish! With the fresh foods, they are simple and easy to prepare—a big plus for me who’s trying to cook a lot more. If we have birthday pie, it doesn’t blow up the diet. If he has a piece of bread, he’s not suffering tomorrow. We’re listening to our bodies more, because enough ice cream feels fun but too much ice cream makes us feel sick. Since no foods are strictly off limits, we don’t get that crazy craving for them from depriving ourselves, haha it’s weird I know but so true for us! I no longer feel like I have to exercise today because of what I have eaten or plan to eat, so it’s a wonderful relief for me to exercise just for the joy of it! It’s just so much simpler to eat the same dinner together, and feel really good about it because it works for your body.

I find that this simpler approach (more healthy stuff, less unhealthy stuff) is just naturally giving my body what it needs, and my body likes it—whether that’s listening with getting sleep at a certain time, resting or taking a break, or what/when to eat.

This Mediterranean diet included most foods we already were eating or really loved already, but didn’t feel like we could invest in them where we used to include 2 different diets with meats or expensive macadamia nuts and specialty cheeses so there was only room to buy one or two types of fruit, for example. Now we buy these things a lot more: Extra Virgin Olive Oil, red wine vinegar, Kalamata olives, feta cheese, crusty bread—and a lot more veggies, fruits, and fish.

I really do feel like the universe opens up sometimes when things are falling into place. The amazing thing is that we’ve been greatly blessed with our friends and neighbors just giving us a ton of fresh fruits and vegetables from their gardens and family farms! Just out of the blue, really! We are also greatly blessed living amongst so many orchards and farms. I’m no longer afraid to pay more money for beautiful produce at a stand, because we’ve tasted the difference and it doesn’t go to waste. I’ve had so much fun finding new recipes and trying new ways to eat squash hahaha!

Favorite Recipes

Beginner Mediterranean Diet Recipes

Here’s some of our favorite things to eat / make on the Mediterranean diet.

My husband makes a salad that I love. For reference, I did not grow up eating salads and it’s taken years of my salad-loving husband to train me, and this one rocks my world. Spring mixed greens, sautéed mushrooms, hard-boiled eggs, cucumbers, tomatoes, and cubes of feta cheese. Top with olive oil, sliced almonds or crushed pecans/walnuts, optional balsamic vinegar, optional kalamata olives.

Authentic Greek Green Bean Casserole

Greek Turkey Meatball Gyro with Tzatziki Sauce

Broiled Steelhead Trout with Herb, Lemon, and Garlic

For more recipes, see this board:

Super Busy Weeknight Meals

These are the easiest things I’ve been making for Soccer Nights:

Veggie Rolls & Fried Rice (thank you, Costco, and leftover rice!)

Spaghetti or Pesto (from a can/jar works just fine!) with Noodles

Summer Squash & Corn Recipes

These have been my favorite things to eat / make out of the abundance of fresh garden produce.

Instant Pot Summer Soup


Summer Squash and Zucchini with Rice Skillet

Fresh Corn Soup

Omelette with Sautéed squash & tomatoes

Egg Muffins with sautéed squash

Crescent rolls stuffed with sautéed veggies

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