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With the seasons changing, you may feel like your dinner, just like your outerwear, needs a bit of adjustment. Here are some simple ways to embrace the freshness of spring on your plate.

Start by eating clean

Spend a day or two eating as cleanly as possible: fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins. For the time being, cut out dairy, animal products, sugar, white flour, and if you’re strong-willed, caffeine. A seasonal bout of clean eating can feel like pressing reset on your system.

Clean up your plate

Adjust the foods you’re eating to match the new lightness in the air. Cheesy casseroles taste just right in the dog days of winter, but with buds on the trees and crocuses popping up, lighter fare is in order. Fill half your plate with vegetables, one quarter with complex carbohydrates, one quarter with lean protein.

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Embrace beans

As for that lean protein, give beans a whirl. Eating legumes in place of beef, chicken or pork is a great way to get the cost of your grocery bill down. Check out these bean recipes for dinner ideas.

Add more color

You know when you’ve been wearing the same black turtleneck for months and you make a trip to the mall for some new running sneaks and the spring selections in the department stores sweep you away on a river of color? Florals and brights fill you with the vigor of the season, and the same is true for your dinner. Make your plate like those window dressings and load up on every color in the rainbow: red peppers, carrots, baby artichokes, and dark green spinach are just a start. Aim for two or three different vegetable colors on your plate at every meal.


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