From an easy appetizer to a main meal featuring many shades of green, prepare these recipes on March 17 and look forward to dishes that are as fresh and bright as they are on-theme.

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Credit: Christopher Baker

We all know that the unofficial rule of St. Patrick's Day is to wear green, lest you get pinched by a mischievous leprechaun. But it's also a great excuse to go green in your diet, too. Green fruits and vegetables like avocados, spinach, and broccoli consistently make the top ten lists of the healthiest foods you can eat for their high antioxidant and vitamin profiles, to name just a couple of benefits. And as we enter into the early-spring season, during which leafy greens are sprouting up all over, it's a perfect time to include more of these verdant superfoods into your diet.

Broccoli-Spinach Soup

This soup has a silky, almost buttery texture, which is a pleasant surprise considering the fact that it's completely dairy-free. To discover the secret to this vegan soup, just say "open sesame" to a jar of smooth and nutty tahini paste. When paired with an equally green (and good-for-you) side like avocado toast, you won't need the luck of the Irish to feel great.

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Credit: Aaron Dyer

Avocado, Spinach, and Pear Smoothie

Wake up with a super-quick infusion of the good stuff by making this green smoothie. A five-ingredient recipe, it's made with coconut water, mint, pear, avocado, and spinach; the healthy fat from the avocado and fiber from the pear will satisfy any hunger pangs without weighing you down.

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Green Goddess Dip

An easy appetizer like this heavenly Green Goddess Dip is a great way to give a subtle wink at the Irish holiday. Pair the creamy dip with crunchy green vegetables like celery and cucumber and try your luck at being able to share it with others.

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Credit: Kate Sears

Miso-Watercress Green Beans

Picture a side dish so pure and fresh, and a platter of crisp-tender green beans is sure to appear. Here, we've combined sautéed green beans with peppery watercress and a miso-lemon dressing. The watercress leaves end up resembling shamrocks, a fun little nod to St. Patrick's Day. Set it on the table next to heavier fare like corned beef and cabbage and recite this traditional Irish blessing, "For each petal on the shamrock, this brings a wish your way: good health, good luck, and happiness for today and every day."

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Credit: Con Poulos

Shrimp with Spicy Green Rice

Brimming with spring produce like leeks, snap peas, and basil, this entrée gets its look from the Venetian risi e bisi, which is loosely translated to mean that it's a rice and pea risotto. But the flavors take on a Southeast Asian profile with chiles, ginger, cilantro, and fish sauce. The result is a lively, delicious, and very green fusion featuring the best of both cuisines.

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