The winter holidays are the ones that get a bad reputation for their unhealthy food, but let's not forget the diet-breaking pitfalls of a July 4th Celebration: All those hot dogs and hamburgers, and the buns they come in and condiments that go on them are usually bought with an eye toward quantity, not quality. That means that what's not a great specimen of responsible eating gets knocked down a peg or two in the name of grabbing the cheapest thing at the supermarket and rushing back to the grill. And don't forget the token package of processed veggie burgers made from who knows what and tasting like cardboard to pacify your vegetarian friend. At least at Thanksgiving and Christmas, someone is likely to have put some time and effort into making your doctor mad.
If you've got a pot luck cookout to go to and you don't want to bring one more nondescript pasta salad, here are a few of my favorite corn-free, side dishes from around the internet:
Twice Baked Potatoes with Kale from Smitten Kitchen
Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms with Crispy Goat Cheese from Blogging Over Thyme
Quinoa Salad with Black Beans and Mango from The Post Punk Kitchen
Grapefruit Avocado Salad from Simply Recipes
Broccoli Parmesan Fritters from Smitten Kitchen