Favorite Salads

I love salads!

So much so that I probably eat salad for lunch at least 6/7 days a week. You may think this sounds a little crazy… that you could never eat that much salad… that you’d be so bored and sick of freakin salad… right?!

Not if you’re eating my kinda salads 🙂

cheesecake factory

I don’t usually opt for dinner unless I’ve eaten a heavy lunch or I’m at a restaurant, but here are a few reasons why I choose salad for lunch:

  1. Several servings of fruit and veggies
  2. A lighter choice to allow a productive afternoon at a physically demanding job.
  3. Low in calories & carbs
  4. High in nutrients, vitamins & minerals
  5. Instant energy from easily digested, fresh produce
  6. Simple & quick to make the night before work or to take on the road
  7. A dose of essential healthy fats to make nutrients more bioavailable
  8. Often the healthiest option at restaurants but be wary of the dressing and “extras” (see bottom)

June 2 023

So how does one eat salad EVERY day?! When it’s not just salad, but a party on your plate! I could never share all of my favorite combinations in just one post but here are some of my staple combos that will leave you full, satisfied, and ready to take on the rest of your day 🙂

1. Strawberry Spinach Salad

  • 1-2 cups greens of choice
  • 1/3 cup chickpeas
  • 1/2 cup strawberries, sliced
  • 1/4 cucumber, sliced and halved
  • 1 tbsp nuts of choice

Service with raspberry or balsamic vinaigrette dressing.

2. Avocado, Cran-Almond Salad

  • 1-2 cups spinach
  • 1/4 avocado, sliced
  • 12 whole almonds
  • 2 tbsp dried cranberries
  • 1 tbsp sunflower seeds

June 2 017

Serve with balsamic vinaigrette dressing

3. Santa Fe Salad (Boston Pizza Inspired)

  • 1-2 cups spinach or lettuce
  • 1/3 cup black beans
  • 1/3 cup corn kernels
  • 1/3 cup tomato, chopped
  • 1/4 avocado, sliced
  • 1/4 cup corn tortilla chips, broken over top

photo 1

Serve with salsa & (Tofutti) sour cream if desired

4. Quinoa Salad

  • 3/4 cup quinoa, cooked
  • 1 tbsp hummus
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • pinch basil, oregano, sea salt
  • 1 bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/4 cup cucumber, sliced & quartered
  • 8 cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1-2 cups spinach, optional

Option 1: Combine quinoa, hummus, lemon juice & spices then stir in chopped veggies. Serve atop a bed of greens if you wish. Drizzle with balsamic. Nom!

Option 2: Line plate with greens, top with chopped veggies, top with quinoa-hummus mixture, drizzle with balsamic. This is amazing even without the quinoa!

5. Sweet Potato & Sultana Salad

  • 1-2 cups greens
  • 1/2 sweet potato OR 1/2 cup butternut squash, baked
  • 1/3 cup chickpeas
  • 2 tbsp sultana raisins
  • 1 tbsp pumpkin seeds

IMG_2420

Serve with homemade “honey” mustard dressing. I love Dreena Burton’s recipe but a store bought dressing or balsamic works too!

6. Dinner for Lunch Salad

  • 1-2 cups greens
  • 1 serving of any dinner left-overs (baked tofu, veggie burger, fajita filling, sweet potato, etc.)
  • 1/4 cup chopped veggies (cucumber, tomato, mushrooms, etc.)
  • 1/4 cup fruit (orange, apple, berries)
  • 1 tbsp dried fruit (optional)
  • 1 tbsp seeds or nuts
photo 7

Spinach, sesame-orange baked tofu, cucumber, orange, pumpkin seeds, “honey” mustard dressing

whole2

Spinach, lentil burger, mushroom, cucumber, peach-mango salsa

Serve with dressing or left-over side of choice. My mango salsa recipe can be found here!

7. Asian Pear Salad

  • 1-2 cups greens
  • 1/2 Asian pear, sliced
  • 1/3 cup chickpeas, optional
  • 1/2 cup sprouts
  • 1 tbsp slivered almonds

July 12 015

Serve with any of the aforementioned dressings 😉

Tips:

  1. At a restaurant, read all ingredients on the menu and don’t be afraid to ask for healthy substitutions: Sub light dressing like balsamic or Italian for anything creamy. Ask to omit toppings like croutons or cheese. Request extra good stuff like root veggies or salsa to make up for the things you removed.
  2. No fresh fruit on hand? Sub for 1-2 tbsp dried fruit or a few pickled beets to add sweetness.
  3. No dressing? Try olive oil & lemon juice, salsa, hummus, or mashed avocado with spices.
  4. No greens? Use extra chopped veggies and fruit.
  5. No nuts or seeds? Try an oil-based dressing. Always include a healthy fat to help your body absorb the nutrients from your produce.

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You can pretty much do anything you want with a salad and make it different every day. That’s the joy of it. Haul out whatever veggies, fruit, protein, beans, nuts and left-overs you have around and see what combinations work for you.

If you have any questions or requests leave them in the comments box and I’ll be happy to help you amp up your salads 🙂

Liz xo

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4 thoughts on “Favorite Salads

  1. Pingback: Happy “New Year” | Lizzie Fit

  2. Pingback: Tangerine & Avocado Salad with Roasted Sunflower Kernels « Keitochan Says:

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