Posts Tagged 'Picnics'

Choose low-fat side dishes for holiday cook-outs

The Memorial Day weekend is just days away, and most people will be planning cook-outs and picnics. Two popular side dishes are macaroni salad and coleslaw, but the traditional recipes call for mayonnaise. If you’re watching your calories this holiday, opt for recipes using seasoned rice vinegar as a low-fat option.
These recipes are from Mizkan, ( the makers of Nakano seasoned rice vinegar.

Skinny mac salad

Combine cooked elbow macaroni, sliced celery, diced red onion, whole kernel corn and diced cucumber. We like canned corn because it’s more flavorful and juicy than frozen. Just before serving, splash generously with Nakano and toss together. Other tidbits to add: sliced olives, diced ham, diced green or red bell pepper, capers.

Naked coleslaw

Traditional coleslaw does not have to have mayonnaise to be delicious. Splash shredded cabbage with Nakano seasoned rice vinegar, any flavor. Toss in crunchy matchstick carrots, radishes and sliced green onion, and you have a delicious fat-free coleslaw. For variety, add celery, parsley or cilantro, pineapple tidbits, sweet pickles, toasted celery seeds or sesame seeds.

Sautéed onion topper

This no-fat onion  topper is great for burgers (meat or veggie); grilled chicken sandwiches; sautéed, baked or grilled fish, steak or chicken; and even hot-cooked veggies. Place a thinly sliced large onion in a large non-stick fry pan. Splash with about 1/4 cup Nakano seasoned rice vinegar (original, roasted garlic, or red pepper). Sprinkle with garlic powder or chili powder, and fresh-ground pepper or red pepper flakes. Stir over medium heat 10 to 12 minutes or until onion is soft and cooked, and rice vinegar has evaporated.

Cherry tomatoes with basil, mint and balsamic blend

1/2 quarts cherry tomatoes
1/4 cup packed chopped basil
2 tablespoons chopped mint
3 tablespoons Nakano seasoned rice vinegar balsamic blend
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
Salt and fresh ground pepper

Cut cherry tomatoes into halves. There should be about 4 cups total. Place tomatoes in serving bowl or a medium size rimmed platter. Stir in basil and mint. Combine rice vinegar, olive oil and garlic; mix well; stir into tomatoes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Makes 6 to 8 servings.


  • Use 4 cups diced tomatoes if cherry tomatoes are not available.
  • Slice 6 large tomatoes and arrange in rimmed serving platter. Sprinkle with basil and mint. Combine rice vinegar, oil and garlic; drizzle over tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper.
  • To make a refreshing pasta salad, use diced tomatoes or cherry tomatoes. Combine as directed above, then toss with cooled, cooked pasta and grated Parmesan cheese. Taste and sprinkle with additional seasoned rice vinegar if desired. Season with salt and pepper.

Cucumber and radish salad with mint

1 large English cucumber, thinly sliced
1 large carrot, peeled, julienne or shredded
6 medium radishes, thinly sliced
1/4 cup seasoned rice vinegar basil and oregano, or original flavor
20 medium fresh mint leaves, thinly sliced

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl; toss gently. Serve chilled. Makes 4 servings.