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Get Inspired with Garden Salsa 

By Marni Sumbal

salsa For my birthday, I received a colorful basket of fresh, garden vegetables from my community nutrition preceptor. I consider myself a lucky person when my friends know exactly what to get me for my birthday. Vegetarian cookbooks and fresh veggies! 

I've been coming up with all sorts of creations with my bag full of veggies. Something great about fresh produce deliveries (if you have the opportunity to have veggies delivered to your door) is that you are forced to be creative and use what you get. 

The other day I made the most delicious salsa which served as a base for salad. If you are a vegetarian or are trying to eat a more powerful diet (filled with nutrition quality), avoid telling your friends/significant other/family that they should eat less meat. Rather, try to be a good role model and share your excitement for fruits and veggies. When we create wholesome and balanced meals, it isn't about eating less meat but rather eating more nutrient-rich foods like fruits and veggies. 

I hope you enjoy my latest salsa creation which you can use as a topping to a bed of dark greens or as a snack with cheese. I used primarily fresh produce as well as canned beans, chickpeas and pickles. Everything else is fresh! Feel free to add your choice of protein (meat, fish, tofu, cottage cheese, greek yogurt, hard boiled eggs, veggie burger) as a perfect balanced meal.

Remember, I don't measure — you can use as much as you want as you can't go wrong with leftovers when it comes to having too many vegetables in your fridge. You can add any ingredient that might sound good to you.

salsaGarden Salsa

  • Celery
  • Carrots
  • Black beans
  • Chickpeas
  • Corn
  • Tomatoes
  • Garlic
  • Onions
  • Pickles
  • Green peppers
  • Garlic (chopped)
  • Fresh basil
  • Fresh cilantro
  • 1 tbsp lime juice
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • Pepper

Marni Sumbal holds a Master of Science in Exercise Physiology, is a Certified Sports Nutritionist (CISSN) and is certified in Adult Weight Management by the American Dietetic Association. Marni is a Level 1 USAT coach and is currently pursuing a registered dietician degree. She enjoys public speaking and writing and has several published articles in Hammer Endurance News, Cosmo Girl and Triathlete Magazine. Marni contributes monthly to and You can check out her blog at

The views expressed in this article are the opinion of the author and not necessarily the practices of USA Triathlon. Before starting any new diet or exercise program, you should check with your physician and/or coach.