7 fresh recipe ideas to celebrate the start of spring

Spring starts tomorrow and the new season brings with it more sunshine, more opportunities to spend time outdoors and of course plenty of bountiful produce. Whether you’re an expert home chef or more of a dabbler, spring is the perfect time to visit a farmers market and try out a new recipe that incorporates healthy and colorful food into your menu. After a winter of comfort foods (which we needed a lot of!) and hearty stews it’s time to start thinking fresh and light when it comes to home cooking. Here are seven recipes that will help you celebrate the start of spring — pair them with a beautiful glass of rosé or some fresh limeade to toast to a happy and healthy season.

Grilled Asparagus

Grilled asparagus

Samantha Okazaki / TODAY

Asparagus is one of those healthy greens that’s so easy to cook with just a little EVOO, salt and pepper. This recipe is perfect with a zest of lemon over the top.

Spaghetti with Pea Pods and Lemon

Spaghetti with Pea Pods and Lemon

Zach Pagano / TODAY

This light pasta dish is the perfect springtime dinner — you can use fresh or frozen peas and sub out any shape of pasta you prefer. Some crushed red pepper flakes give it a little kick and you can season it with chopped mint leaves for a fresh taste.

Sautéed Baby Artichokes with Buttery Pan Sauce

Sautéed Baby Artichokes with Buttery Pan Sauce

Vidya Rao

Fresh artichokes are a staple of spring and once you get the hang of trimming them you’ll be a star in the kitchen with this delectable dish. This recipe calls for buttery sauce but artichokes are also delightful with aioli, garlic butter or hollandaise.

Valerie Bertinelli’s Sheet-Pan Baked Salmon

Valerie Bertinelli's Sheet-Pan Baked Salmon

TODAY

Spring has us thinking about lighter meals (and lighter clothes) and this recipe delivers with lots of flavor. Although using fresh herbs makes it feel fancy, the clean-up is so quick with this one pan dish that you’ll definitely put it into your weekly rotation.

Chicken Thighs with Ramps, Peas and Mushrooms

Chicken Thighs with Ramps, Peas and Mushrooms

Zach Pagano / TODAY

If you’ve never cooked with ramps you’re in for a treat — these babies grow during spring and taste like a perfect mix of garlic and onion. This dish has juicy chicken thighs that provide balance to the light spring veggies. Hot tip: for a great sear on the chicken thighs, cook them without moving them around too much.

Faker Spring Pea Risotto

Faker Spring Pea Risotto

Nathan Congleton / TODAY

Instead of fresh peas, this recipe calls for a puree of thawed frozen peas to infuse their flavor throughout the rice. Garnish with fresh pea shoots for the perfect presentation.

Roast Chicken with Fava Bean and English Pea Salad

Roast Chicken with Fava Bean and English Pea Salad

Nathan Congleton / TODAY

Fava beans and peas scream spring and this lovely dish is just the thing to celebrate the vernal equinox. Make two of these chickens at once so you’ll have leftovers.