You rarely hear someone say, "oh man, I would kill for a salad tonight!". And I can't say I'm surprised, for most of our lives we've been eating iceberg lettuce with shredded carrots topped with gooey dressing that comes from a plastic bottle and calling it a salad - yuck!
Luckily, for you lettuce-lovers, times are changing! It's easier than ever to find a variety of salad options worthy of securing one of your coveted three daily meals. Whether you're ordering off a menu, or making a salad at home here are a few tried and true tips for creating a swoon-worthy salad that packs a nutritional punch.
- Choose fresh, dark, leafy greens. A few solid options include kale, arugula, romaine lettuce, swiss chard, and spinach. Although iceberg lettuce is the most popular lettuce (each of us eats 17 lbs/year on things like hamburgers and in taco salads) it's almost entirely devoid of nutrients so choose a darker variety for more nutritional bang for your buck. To learn more fun facts about leafy greens check out Leafy Greens Ranked and Rated.
- Add something that tastes decadent (at least by salad standards) and fills you up. Here are a few ideas:
- Organic cheeses like feta, parmesan, blue cheese, or goat cheese
- Nuts and seeds like almonds, cashews, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds
- Avocados, hummus, or beans
- Leftover grains like quinoa, barley, or brown rice
- Add something extra that gives your salad a punch of flavor, crunch, or zest
- Fresh seasonal fruit like pears, apples, berries, oranges, or grapes
- Olives or banana peppers
- Scallions, radishes, sprouts, or red onion
- Make your own dressing (it's easy and tastes so much better than that gooey bottled stuff!). Here are 8 different vinaigrette variations to get you started.
If you're looking for a little more inspiration, check out my Kale and Avocado Salad with Sesame Seeds. It's one of my favorites because it tastes delicious and can be kept for 2 - 3 days in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
What are your favorite salad combos? Please share in the comments below!