Spicing Up Your Summer Meals


It may seem counter-intuitive, but the hottest places across the world tend to eat the spiciest food. Why is this? There are many theories, but there seem to be two prevailing ideas. The first is that hot peppers are useful in preserving food in warm weather where it is otherwise likely to spoil quickly. The second is that spicy food actually cools us down by causing us to sweat. Whatever your reasons are for eating spicy food, here are a few ideas to heat up your plate this summer


Summer Veggie Juice

If you like spicy V8, you can make your own version in about 5-10 minutes with this recipe. With everything from tomatoes to zucchini to cilantro, you’re covering all the bases nutritionally and the jalapeno adds that kick we’ve been talking about. Remember, it’s better to blend your fruits and veggies (as this recipe does) than it is to juice them; this way, you keep all the fiber from these fresh vegetables.


Sweet Potato Taco Salad

With sweet potatoes taking on the starring role in place of meat, this is a vegetarian recipe that could easily be vegan-friendly as well. The chili powder provides a little heat, but a sliced, fresh jalapeno could up the ante if you’re looking for more!


Spicy Shrimp Tacos

The spicy shrimp filling for these tacos meets a sweet complement with blueberry-corn salsa. Remember, a little cayenne goes a long way in this recipe or elsewhere.


Spicy Chicken Quesadilla

Sometimes, it’s just best to keep it simple. You’ll only need 4-5 ingredients from the store for this one; and maybe less if you keep chicken or jalapenos on hand. Fresh avocado as a garnish would make a great addition to round out these quesadillas.


Spicy Zucchini Soup

This soup may make you think of fall, but why not make it now with seasonal, fresh zucchini? There’s not really a solid protein source to make this a true entrée, but this could work well for a quick lunch or alongside grilled meat for an evening meal.