Peeps, Jelly Beans, Cadbury Eggs…Oh My!

April 03, 2012 - Posted by Sarah D-P

Each Easter I’m tempted by Peeps, jelly beans, and other chocolate/caramel filled treats. However, I look forward each year to treating myself with a caramel filled Cadbury eggs, but it’s packed with 170 calories. No wonder Easter is the biggest candy consuming holiday, preceding Halloween. Did you know that Americans, buy more than 700 million Peeps for Easter? And we eat enough jelly beans that could fill a 9-story building? Crazy! 

This year I wanted to try something new for Easter dinner. I have been looking around for tasty yet something to please everyone at the table. I came across this website featuring the article17 Healthy Easter Dinner Side Dishes. I tried the roasted spring vegetables with arugula pesto recipe shown below. I am excited to show off my culinary skill this year other than serving the same mashed potatoes. The best part is that this recipe it yields 8 servings and only 157 calories per serving/cup.
This dish was so visually appetizing and delicious!


  • 4 cup(s) baby or new potatoes, 1 to 2 inches in diameter, halved or quartered depending on size
  • 5 teaspoon(s) extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 4 cup(s) peeled baby carrots
  • 1 bunch(es) asparagus, trimmed and cut into thirds
  • 1/2 teaspoon(s) salt
  • 1/2 cup(s) baby arugula for garnish
  • 1 clove(s) garlic, peeled
  • 5 cup(s) baby arugula
  • 1/2 cup(s) finely shredded Asiago cheese
  • 1/4 cup(s) toasted pine nuts
  • 1/4 cup(s) extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon(s) salt


  1. To prepare vegetables: Position rack in upper and lower thirds of oven; preheat to 425°F.
  2. Toss potatoes with 2 teaspoons oil in a large bowl and spread on a large baking sheet. Roast in the lower third of the oven for 5 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, toss carrots with 2 teaspoons oil in the bowl and spread on another large baking sheet. After the potatoes have roasted for 5 minutes, place the carrots in the upper third of the oven and roast potatoes and carrots for 15 minutes.
  4. Toss asparagus with the remaining 1 teaspoon oil in the bowl. Add to the pan with the potatoes, toss to combine, and return to the oven. Continue roasting until all the vegetables are tender and starting to brown, 8 to 10 minutes more.
  5. To prepare pesto: Meanwhile, drop garlic through the feed tube of food processor with the motor running; process until minced. Stop the machine and add arugula, cheese, pine nuts, 1/4 cup oil, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Pulse and then process, scraping down the sides as necessary, until the mixture is a smooth paste.
  6. Toss the roasted vegetables with 1/3 cup pesto and 1/2 teaspoon salt in the large bowl (reserve the remaining pesto for another use: refrigerate for up to 1 week or freeze). Transfer to a serving dish and garnish with arugula, if desired.

Remember everything in moderation. Don’t forget when adding treats to the Easter baskets sneak in some healthy ones. It’s always fun to get a little treat after searching for your special basket. Exercise never seemed so fun! What is your favorite Easter treat? Do you have any healthy alternatives?  


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