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Sayonara, Salad! 17 Creative Vegetarian Recipes Using Leafy Greens

Arugula Hummus

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Hummus rivals only guacamole in our hearts. Whether you like it spicy or plain, there's no shortage of flavoring options, but none of them deliver a serving of vegetables with the dip! This arugula hummus recipe from Gourmandelle only takes 10 minutes to make and is a great go-to if you're up for adding new flavors to your palette. (Try these Out-of-the-Box Ways to Enjoy Hummus too.)

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Photo: Gourmandelle

Spinach Colcannon Bake

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Who says mashed potatoes can only be eaten during the holidays (with a pool of butter on top)? The Hungry Couple's spinach colcannon bake puts a healthier spin on a traditional Irish dish of buttery potatoes and cabbage. Spinach, potatoes (and, yes, sprinkled with some cheese), all baked together for ooey-gooey goodness? Yes, please!

Photo: Hungry Couple

Miso Soup with Bok Choy

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Turn the Japanese restaurant appetizer into a full-blown meal with this recipe from Popsugar. They've loaded their broth with shiitakes, bok choy, and soba noodles, packing the simple soup with a ton of vitamins and minerals.

Photo: Popsugar

Kale Chips

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That mid-afternoon salt craving hits hard and fast. Skip the vending machine and opt for healthier (but still crunchy and delicious!) kale chips (which you can totally make with other leaves, like swiss chard or mustard greens). Oh She Glows' recipe delivers that sweet crunch in under 30 minutes.

Photo: Oh She Glows

Baked Sweet Potatoes with Mustard Greens

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Mustard greens are loaded with beta-carotene and phytonutrients, but are a rather spicy leaf. Harness that strong flavor by pairing it with something sweet, like your favorite potato. What's Cooking Good Looking tops baked sweet potatoes with mustard greens, leeks, white beans and cilantro tahini and is so delicious, you'll never reach for brown sugar and marshmallows again. (Although we would understand if you swapped it for one of these 10 Healthy Sweet Potato Recipes every once in awhile.)

Photo: What's Cooking Good Looking

Spicy Skillet Turnip Greens

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Turnip greens are crazy high in calcium (one cup cooked provides 20 percent of your daily need!) and an excellent source of vitamins C and E. As for that bitter bite, this recipe from Add a Pinch overrides it with red pepper flakes and a pinch of brown sugar. Plus, it only takes 20 minutes to cook!

Photo: Add a Pinch

Collard Greens Wrap

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If you're trying to cut down on carbs, you should know that a wrap is actually just as caloric as bread. But trading wheat for a leafy kind of wrap saves calories and loads your lunch with nutrients—and collard greens are an excellent source of vitamins K, which supports good bone health, and A, which promotes healthy vision and immune function. While it's an easy swap, mastering the art of a leafy wrap is another matter entirely. This recipe from Honest Fare makes it easy.

Photo: Honest Fare

Sautéed Swiss Chard

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Swiss chard has over 700 percent of your recommended daily vitamin K and over 200 percent of vitamin A. (Plus, it's one of 10 Fresh Veggies and Fruits to Pick Up at the Farmers Market This October.) Upgrade your sautéed spinach with this nutrient powerhouse—Bon Appétit's recipe incorporates garlic with lemon, making this dish the perfect pairing for your lean protein of choice.

Photo: Bon Appétit

Vegan Broccoli Rabe and Cashew Ricotta White Pizza

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Everyone deserves a cheat meal—but if you've already had yours for the week, trick your taste buds with this secretly healthy pizza from Connoisseurus Veg. With broccoli rabe, it delivers a solid dose of greens while the cashew ricotta will put you in vegan heaven. (Try these 15 Vegetarian Recipes Even Meat-Eaters Will Love too.)

Photo: Connoisseurus Veg

Watercress and Scrambled Eeggs

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Eggs are one of the best ways to fuel up in the morning, but you can score more than just a dose of protein with this meal. Add the most vitamin-and-mineral packed green there is: watercress. With Foodily's short list of ingredients and short prep time, it'll leave you feeling energized and ready to take on the day.

Photo: Foodily

Quinoa Tabbouleh

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Fresh, filling, and colorful, The Kitchn's quinoa tabbouleh recipe will leave you loving parsley (if you don't already). Why should you care about the herb? Its rich vitamin content makes it great for keeping your immune system strong, and it helps flush out excess fluid from the body. (Find out The Easy Way to Chop Tricky Herbs.)

Photo: The Kitchn

Beet Greens and Feta Pasta

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You juice the bulb for its great nitrates, but don't be so quick to toss aside those beet greens. They can be used for everything from juice to dinner, like this pasta recipe from Chowhound. The mild flavor of beet greens means you can't even taste the nutrients you're getting (although we reccomend subbing in a whole wheat pasta). (These 10 Unbeetable Beet Greens Recipes are also stellar.)

Photo: Chowhound

Dandelion Greens with Currants and Pine Nuts

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Looking to get crazy with your side dish tonight? This recipe from Sunset uses three things you've probably never paired together (and possibly never even cooked with before): dandelion greens, currants, and pine nuts. Since they're traditionally a bitter green, the dandelion greens' bite is cut by the nuts and olive oil. (Learn why Dandelions (Root, Leaves, and All) Deserve the Superfood Spotlight.)

Photo: Sunset

Grilled Romaine with Avocado Lime Dressing

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There's nothing better than a good BBQ with friends, and just because temps are cooling off doesn't mean it's time to put the grill cover on just yet. Whether or not you'd consider yourself a grill master, this light (yet flavorful) grilled romaine with avocado lime dressing recipe from Kim's Healthy Eats is great as a main dish, or perfect as a healthy side to your main event. (Wondering what else you should serve? These 10 Twists on Grilled Vegetables Make for a Damn Good Cookout.)

Photo: Kim's Healthy Eats

Spiralized Apple and Cabbage Slaw

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Whether you're trying to stay away from starches and carbs or just looking for a light and refreshing lunch, spiralized vegetables are the way to go. This spiralized apple and cabbage slaw from Gina's Skinny Recipes is high in fiber and low in calories (under 100 per serving), while the red and green cabbage in this dish makes it just darn pretty to look at. (Got the spiralizing bug? Try these 12 Sensational Spiralized Veggie Recipes.)

Photo: Gina's Skinny Recipes

Roasted Butternut Squash, Radicchio, and Onion

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On cold days, you want food that'll comfort you—but still leave you comfortable in your pants. Radicchio is super low in calories and packed with antioxidants and vitamin K, providing 212 percent of your daily value for the latter and butternut squash has the highest levels of vitamin A of any other squash (354 percent of your daily value). That means this roasted butternut squash, radicchio, and onion dish from Simply Recipes will leave you and your waistline both satisfied.

Photo: Simply Recipes

Escarole and Cannellini Bean Soup

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You probably pass right over this lettuce-looking green in the grocery store, but escarole is mild in taste, cripy in texture, and nutrient-dense (especially with vitamins A and C). Throw it in Scordo's soup along with some cannellini beans and you've got a simple and satisfying meal.

Photo: Scordo

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