5 Lightened Up Summer Potluck Dishes

Summer potlucks don't have to undo all of your hard work at the gym. Try these lighter takes on summer side dishes for your next backyard barbeque.

1. Potato Salads

If mayonnaise is on your do-not-eat list, try these potato salad recipes made with olive oil instead.

Savory Spanish Potato Salad

Olive oil, red wine vinegar, and garlic make up the dressing for this colorful red potato salad, while olives, shallots, bell peppers, and parsley make it one of the prettiest party dishes of the summer.

Savory Spanish Potato Salad
Photo by lutzflcat.

2. Coleslaw

Coleslaw recipes usually start out with loads of fresh cabbage and crispy vegetables, but then it all gets smothered with heavy mayonnaise dressings sweetened with way too much sugar. Try lightening things up with these vinegar-dressed slaws with just a touch of sugar to balance the tartness.

Calico Slaw

Crunchy cabbage, crisp apples, snappy bell peppers, carroty carrots are tossed with an apple cider vinegar dressing. Like a few other reviewersgale1234 thought it needed just a touch more dressing to moisten all the ingredients.

Calico Slaw
Photo by bd.weld.

3. Better Beans

If you love beans with your summer barbecue, but super-sweet baked beans take you way over your sugar threshold, try going in a savory direction instead.

Best Black Beans

15 minutes is all you'll need to pull this side dish together. Perfect for party procrastinators.

Best Black Beans up close in a white bowl with cilantro

4. Pasta Salad with a Twist

We love Italian-inspired pasta salads, but try branching out into Asian-style noodle salads for a light and refreshing change.

Vietnamese Rice-Noodle Salad

You can add grilled shrimp, chicken, or tofu to this salad to make it more substantial. A few reviewers used soy sauce instead of fish sauce, and they still raved about it.

Vietnamese Rice-Noodle Salad
Photo By Allrecipes Magazine.

5. Chips and Dip Done Right

Appetizers are a big part of summer party menus, but all that snacking and grazing before the main meal can really tank your diet. The answer? Crispy vegetable chips and good-for-you dips.

Baked Zucchini Chips

simple7355 says the key to getting these zucchini chips just right is to cut them thin and raise the oven heat.

1133856 Baked Zucchini Chips Photo by lutzflcat resized
Photo by lutzflcat.

Spiced Sweet Roasted Red Pepper Hummus

Reviewers says you can adjust the amount of spices to suit your tastes. Jenny even roasted her own peppers to make this protein-rich dip.

Spiced Sweet Roasted Red Pepper Hummus
Spiced Sweet Roasted Red Pepper Hummus | Photo by larkspur.


Treat your beach body to summer desserts under 250 calories.

Try 5 healthy dips that won't bust your yoga pants.

Need guilt-free snacks for your TV binge? We've got you covered.

Was this page helpful?
You’ll Also Love