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50 Bright & Cheery Summer Recipes in Every Color of the Rainbow

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The July farmers market is my kind of fun house.

Instead of distorting mirrors and lurking clowns, there are fruits, vegetables, flowers, and herbs (cheeses, too!) in a dizzying array of shapes, sizes, and colors. The tomatoes are so bright they seem to be glowing from within; the glistening leafy greens might as well be decked out in sequins; and the eggplant are absurdly small and curvy—I can't help but point and laugh. The cucumbers have been stretched like putty; the pattypan squash have been smashed and crimped—nature's pie!

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The whole place is more like Alice in Wonderland than real life. (Is this real life?)

Meet Mr. Roy G. Biv.
Meet Mr. Roy G. Biv. Photo by Mark Weinberg

And while I'd be fibbing if I said I selected my produce based on appearance alone, it can be fun to consider shape and color as seriously as taste and texture. In summer, you can make-believe yourself an artist with every salad you make!

So we dreamt up an edible color wheel featuring sesame leaves, purple-podded peas, gooseberries, turmeric, fresh red currants, itty-bitty eggplant, and watercress (can you spot it?).

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Below, you'll find a recipe for any color you're craving. Scroll down and take a spin around our color wheel.

Purples

Beet Herb Salad (in Jello Form)

Beet Herb Salad (in Jello Form) by Ali Slagle

Charred Radicchio Wedge Salad

Charred Radicchio Wedge Salad by EmilyC

Barbara Kafka's Marinated Eggplant

Barbara Kafka's Marinated Eggplant by Genius Recipes

Rustic Beet Tart and Wilted Greens

Rustic Beet Tart and Wilted Greens by fatgirleating

Kohlrabi Salad

Kohlrabi Salad by sassyradish

Purple Sweet Potatoes and How to Use Them

Purple Sweet Potatoes and How to Use Them by Lindsay-Jean Hard

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Pinks

Radish Top Soup and Slow-Roasted Radish Roots with Fennel Seeds

Radish Top Soup and Slow-Roasted Radish Roots with Fennel... by Viviane Bauquet Farre

Pretty Radish and Broccoli Slaw

Pretty Radish and Broccoli Slaw by Bevi

Yogurt and Berry Tart with a Pecan Crust

Yogurt and Berry Tart with a Pecan Crust by fiveandspice

Bon Appétit's Radicchio Salad with Sourdough Dressing

Bon Appétit's Radicchio Salad with Sourdough Dressing by Genius Recipes

Strawberry Risotto

Strawberry Risotto by Sara Jenkins

Watermelon with Preserved Lemon Vinaigrette

Watermelon with Preserved Lemon Vinaigrette by EmilyC

Reds

Half Roasted Tomato Salad with Salsa Verde

Half Roasted Tomato Salad with Salsa Verde by Sarah Jampel

Roasted Tomatoes and Onions on Toast

Roasted Tomatoes and Onions on Toast by Kenzi Wilbur

Peperonata (Red Pepper Stew)

Peperonata (Red Pepper Stew) by Emiko

Michel Guérard's Sauce Vierge

Michel Guérard's Sauce Vierge by Genius Recipes

Little Flower's Tomato Ricotta Cake

Little Flower's Tomato Ricotta Cake by Sarah Jampel

Brown Butter Raspberries

Brown Butter Raspberries by Amanda Hesser

Honey-Lime Strawberries & Lemon-Buttermilk Sherbet

Honey-Lime Strawberries & Lemon-Buttermilk Sherbet by Sarah Jampel

Deep-Dish Cherry Pie

Deep-Dish Cherry Pie by Erin McDowell

Oranges

Passion Fruit and Mango-Mint Lassi

Passion Fruit and Mango-Mint Lassi by Vy Tran

Rosemary-Roasted Peaches with Salted Caramel Sauce

Rosemary-Roasted Peaches with Salted Caramel Sauce by EmilyC

 Tomato, Peach, Chèvre, and Herb Salad with Apple Vinaigrette

Tomato, Peach, Chèvre, and Herb Salad with Apple Vinaigr... by em-i-lis

Fresh Turmeric Salsa

Fresh Turmeric Salsa by Ali Slagle

Orange Ginger Mint Sodas

Orange Ginger Mint Sodas by gr8chefmb

Grilled Peach and Apricot Salad

Grilled Peach and Apricot Salad by Nicholas Day

Yellows

Tomato Salad with Corn, Summer Squash and Roasted Onions

Tomato Salad with Corn, Summer Squash and Roasted Onions by Merrill Stubbs

Yellow Beet Carpaccio with Sunflower Sprouts

Yellow Beet Carpaccio with Sunflower Sprouts by thirschfeld

Marinated Zucchini, Kalamata Olive, and Mozzarella Salad

Marinated Zucchini, Kalamata Olive, and Mozzarella Salad by Food52

Charred Corn and Avocado Salad with Lime, Chili, and Tomato

Charred Corn and Avocado Salad with Lime, Chili, and Tomato by EmilyC

Mussels in a Yellow Tomato Lemongrass Broth

Mussels in a Yellow Tomato Lemongrass Broth by wildgreens

Tarragon Lemon Summer Squash Soup

Tarragon Lemon Summer Squash Soup by anotherfoodieblogger

Light Greens

Pea Salad with Parmesan and Mint

Pea Salad with Parmesan and Mint by ieatthepeach

Zucchini Pasta Marinara

Zucchini Pasta Marinara by Gena Hamshaw

Chickpea and Green Tomato Salad

Chickpea and Green Tomato Salad by Amanda Hesser

Absurdly Addictive Asparagus

Absurdly Addictive Asparagus by kaykay

Canal House's Marinated Zucchini

Canal House's Marinated Zucchini by Genius Recipes

Lemon-Mint Peas with Burrata and Breadcrumbs

Lemon-Mint Peas with Burrata and Breadcrumbs by Lily Hughes

Dark Greens

Yotam Ottolenghi & Ramael Scully’s Burnt Green Onion Dip with Curly Kale

Yotam Ottolenghi & Ramael Scully’s Burnt Green Onion Dip ... by Genius Recipes

Yoghurt & Spinach Dip, 'Borani Esfanaaj', in the Persian Manner

Yoghurt & Spinach Dip, 'Borani Esfanaaj', in the Persian ... by shayma

Zesty and Zippy Tangled Collards

Zesty and Zippy Tangled Collards by hardlikearmour

Joshua McFadden's Bitter Greens Salad with Melted Cheese

Joshua McFadden's Bitter Greens Salad with Melted Cheese by Genius Recipes

Penelope Casa's Garlic Green Beans (Judias Verdes con Ajo)

Penelope Casa's Garlic Green Beans (Judias Verdes con Ajo) by Genius Recipes

Heidi Swanson's Pan-Fried Giant White Beans with Kale

Heidi Swanson's Pan-Fried Giant White Beans with Kale by Genius Recipes

Blues

Pickled Blueberries with Rosemary Sprigs

Pickled Blueberries with Rosemary Sprigs by Angela Brown

Ricotta Custard Blueberry Tart with Nut Crescent Crust

Ricotta Custard Blueberry Tart with Nut Crescent Crust by AntoniaJames

Marian Burros' Plum Torte

Marian Burros' Plum Torte by Merrill Stubbs

Blueberry Galette with Rosemary Crust

Blueberry Galette with Rosemary Crust by lisina

Waverley Root's Agrigento Red Cabbage with Black Olives and Capers

Waverley Root's Agrigento Red Cabbage with Black Olives a... by Genius Recipes

Richard Olney's Fresh Fig and Mint Salad

Richard Olney's Fresh Fig and Mint Salad by Genius Recipes

What colors do you gravitate to at the market or grocery store? Tell us in the comments below!