by Christy Baroni

Ahhh, summer! This time of year demands very little time in the kitchen and lots of time outside with friends. This salad is the perfect tasty summer treat that also happens to pack a huge nutritional punch. Filled with beans and vegetables, this will fill you up, keep you hydrated, and be an easy go-to salad for the whole season.

First, while black beans don’t make the “Paleo Friendly” list, they ARE an awesome source of protein without any of the fat found in other protein sources. Their unique nutritional blend is a great source of fiber that also helps you feel full and have energy for a long time.

Second, early summer (like now) is the perfect time to enjoy radishes. Contrary to childhood memories, they actually don’t need to be drowned in ranch to be yummy. Radishes contain a natural cleansing agent for your digestive system and they can aid in keeping you hydrated.

Summer Squash Black Bean Salad

Ingredients:
• 1 (15oz) can black beans – rinsed and drained
• 1 cup yellow squash – thinly sliced half-moons (steam lightly if desired)
• 1/2 an avocado – peeled, pitted, and cubed
• 1/2 cup red radishes – thinly sliced half-moons
• 1/4 cup (or to desired moistness) olive oil and vinegar mixture
• Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:
Step 1: Place beans, squash, avocado, and radishes into a mixing bowl.
Step 2: Add the oil and vinegar mixture to desired moistness and toss well to combine.
Step 3: Salt and pepper to taste.
Optional: Try adding torn fresh basil leaves or sliced almonds to top off the salad.

This salad is great on it’s own, or would be a perfect side for salmon and asparagus.

If you try this one let me know how it goes!