Seasonal Salads and Succulent Smoothies


Happy Friday, friends! Hope you had wonderful 4th of July celebrations, if you celebrate the day. This was my third Independence Day in Washington, D.C., but it was the first time I’ve actually observed the day! In the past, there was always an exam looming right after J4, so I didn’t make it out to celebrate. This year, I was lucky enough to catch a front row seat for the (awesome) fireworks display.


Though I didn’t have time to make an appropriately red, white and blue recipe to share with you all (sorry!) I do have some beautiful, bright, and seasonal food to be sharing. This week on vegan lunch at Food52, I mentioned one of my summertime favorites: a berry and avocado salad with fresh greens and hemp seeds.


This is a simple mix of a few cups of mesclun or arugula, a half cup of raspberries and/or blueberries, half a chopped avocado, a tablespoon or two of hemp seeds, and a lemon/orange vinaigrette (2 parts hemp or olive oil, one part orange juice, one part lemon juice, sea salt, pepper, and a teaspoon of sweetener).

The salad is so refreshing–tart, sweet, and creamy, all at the same time.


On the side, a small bowl of red potatoes, roasted in coconut oil, sea salt, and pepper.


I love fingerling and red potatoes at this time of year, and they add flavor and comfort to any meal. Yum! For more of my lunch ideas, don’t forget to tune into the Vegan Lunch column every other Thursday.

Before I go, a special announcement! You may have seen my posts on Facebook on Twitter that my friend Kris Carr is having a 25% off sale on her fabulous Crazy Sexy Juices and Succulent Smoothies ebook.


This is a complete guide to everything you’ve ever wanted to know about juicing and blending–80 pages of information, Q&A, tips and tricks, and 60 tasty recipes. It’s an Adobe Acrobat PDF file that you can download to read on your computer, laptop, iPhone, iPad or iPod touch, so it’s easy to transport and read anywhere. Among those 60 recipes are a few of my own, as well as countless other creative blends. The recipes are sensitive to varying health needs (low glycemic, etc.) and full of variety. I highly recommend this resource, and now’s the time to grab a copy–the sale ends today! Check it out here

Alright, friends. It’s the weekend send off! Hope there is rest and fun in your near future.



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  1. I’ve recently gotten back on a salad kick – although truth be told I never really stopped I just got in a rut – but this.. and so many of your salad recipes are great inspiration. Thank you thank you thank you Gena! You’re simply fabulous…

  2. Wow! This is a super yummy healthy recipe! I love the combination of avocado and delicious berries. This is the perfect salad during summer. It’s totally refreshing! 😀

  3. I’ve really been enjoying making roasted potatoes this summer from all the neat-colored spuds I’ve been getting at the farmers’ market; I especially love the purple and golden ones. Green beans are also delicious roasted with coconut oil, sea salt, and black pepper. I hope that you had a great Fourth of July!

  4. Hi Gena,

    This salad recipe really looks so delicious and refreshing. I can’t wait to try this. I love the combination of healthful fruits and veggies. I’m sure my husband will like it. Thanks for sharing! 🙂

  5. Now that I’ve arrived in Houston, I cannot fathom turning on anything in my kitchen for cooking. I also signed up for my first CSA for tomorrow *squeal!* and if I get berries, I am totally making this Gena. Hope all is well. 🙂

  6. You’ve really been liking your salads lately, Gena! I don’t blame you of course; they’re the most refreshing summer meals!

  7. I love fruit in salads at the moment, especially berries. I bet hemp seeds are a delicious salad-topper too .
    So pleased you got to celebrate the 4th this year.

  8. I’ve never roasted potatoes in coconut oil before! I started roasting everything in coconut oil back when I realized it’s a much healthier oil when cooked at high temperatures as opposed to olive oil. So I guess this means I just haven’t roasted potatoes in forever. And they’re so easy to prep and cook! I’m disappointed in myself for forgetting about them!

  9. That salad looks so delicious! I have rekindled a love for hemp seeds lately – too good!! I’ve been lazy on salads so I’ll have to try this one out! Those potatoes look soo perfectly cooked. Potato cravings have begun!

    Quick questions – in my transition back to vegan I was wondering if there are any foods you consider essential to have in your diet everyday for vitamins etc? Also I’ve noted that I get around 80-100g protein a day on vegan, as someone who trains weights would you say I’m doing good? (Sorry to ask all the questions I just want to make my transition into veganism sustainable and as nutritious as possible! )

    • I strongly recommend you make an appointment with your dr and explain your change in diet and request to have bloodwork done, including iron, vitamin d, b vitamins etc as well as testing albumin/pre-albumin (this will show if you body is absorbing and utilizing proteins). The bloodwork is very helpful since everyone’s body is so unique. My own not so great health insurance even covered everything beyond the co-pay. Iwas unaware of my own severe vitamin d deficiency until i had tests done.

      • Thanks for the advice! I haven’t completely transitioned yet but when I did have my blood taken very recently I was not devoid of anything. However when I was last vegan I was anaemic (however also suffered an eating disorder) so I don’t want that to happen again!

        • Hey Sophie,

          I’d highly recommend picking up a copy of VEGAN FOR LIFE — it goes over recommended amounts of all of the essential micro and macronutrients, and it’s very digestible/easy to read. Let me know if this helps!


          • Thanks Gena! I’ve read a few chapters and wow this is so great. Coming from an eating disorder past you always worry about others thinking your choices to be unhealthy despite the ethics. Thank you!

  10. i have heard so much about kris in the last couple years but never broke down to get it. i am finding i cannot get enough salad, cold dishes and smoothies right now. oh the humidity in pittsburgh, you make my hair huge and my apt uncomfortable!

  11. I’ve really wanted to get Kris’ new book, so that’s kind of perfect timing for that sale.
    Especially since I’ve been all about juices and smoothies lately. I just can’t get enough now that the heat has hit.
    Same goes for salads, and that salad looks perfect!

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