I grow purple asparagus, so I'm always looking for new ways to prepare it. Recently, my husband and I discovered how wonderful any color of asparagus tastes when it's grilled. —Sue Gronholz, Beaver Dam, Wisconsin
Dried apricots and golden raisins lend sweetness and pretty color to this flavorful rice mix from Emily Chaney of Penobscot, Maine. "I usually serve this special side dish with fish or chicken," she relates. "Dotted with almonds it gets rave reviews from my family."
Mandarin oranges and a warm glaze transform canned beets into a super side dish. Lemon juice provides a bit of tartness. If your family doesn't like the tart flavor, I suggest adding a little more sugar.
If you're like me, you're always searching for easy side dishes. This vegetable medley in a creamy cheese sauce couldn't be simpler. It uses ingredients you likely have on hand and costs 24¢ a serving.