Salad dinners may be the healthiest meals you can make for your family. Getting salad from take out restaurants or fast food deliveries may not be the smartest thing to do, since the salad dressings are often laden with sugar and preservatives, cancelling out the healthy goodness of the fresh fruit and veggies in the mix.
This National Salad Month, take the time to learn how to make delicious and healthy homemade salads that are not only low on calorie, but also on additives. Simple salads are packed with nutrients and are easy to modify depending on your family's preferences.
Easy Weeknight Salad and Three Ingredient Homemade Dressing (Live Simply)
If you're not too keen on making your very own salad dressing at home, you might want to check out this recipe called Easy Weeknight Salad and Three Ingredient Homemade Dressing from Live Simply. You will be surprised how olive oil, lemon juice and garlic, when measured in the right proportions could make any greens taste heavenly.
"This salad is super versatile, which makes it a very affordable side dish or even main meal (when served with a protein, like shrimp, sliced meat, or shredded chicken and homemade bread). While my favorite veggies to use in this salad are radishes, green onions, celery, and cucumbers, many other seasonally-appropriate veggies may be used."
- 3 cups chopped lettuce packed, such as: green or red leaf lettuce or butter lettuce
- 1 cup arugula packed
- 1/3 cup chopped cucumbers
- 1/3 cup sliced green onions greens and whites
- 1/3 cup sliced radishes
- 1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 1/3 cup chopped celery
- 2 TB chopped fresh basil
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 lemon juiced (about 2 TB of juice)
- 1 small garlic clove minced*
- 1 pinch salt
3-Ingredient Smoky Dressing With Green Salad Recipe (Reluctant Entertainer)
Reluctant Entertainer has a recipe called 3-Ingredient Smoky Dressing With Green Salad Recipe. This is a good, hearty salad that uses chicken as protein. Garbanzos make this salad heavy enough to have for lunch. The smokey dressing is made from mayonnaise (vegan is preferred), ketchup and liquid smoke - perfect for those who love Thousand Island dressing.
"Served on a bed of fresh organic greens, I added garbanzo beans (or chic beans), carrots, currants, green onions, and chicken. Oh, and avocado on the side."
- 1 1/2 cups mayonnaise (you can use Vegan if you prefer)
- 1/4 cup organic ketchup
- 1 tsp. liquid smoke
- Organic greens
- 1 cup Bush’s garbanzo beans
- 1/2 cup green onions, chopped
- 1/2 cup carrots, finely chopped
- 1/2 cup dried currants
- 1 cup chicken, shredded or diced
- 1 avocado (sliced, and placed on top of the salad after tossing)
A Celebration Salad & Dressing Recipe (In Pursue of More)
In Pursue of More's recipe called A Celebration Salad & Dressing is a very simple yet elegant vegetable dish. The recipe for the dressing calls for just three ingredients - olive oil, balsamic vinegar and soy sauce or tamari. This is a very flexible salad to make. You will never go wrong with a mix of greens and fleshy vegetables like bell peppers.
"Just 3 magical ingredients that most people stock in their kitchens. No mess with salt & dijon & sweetener. No blending & no noise, and best of all no clean up. Just a clean jar, some fresh greens, and you. Here is our salad de-constructed, and as usual the possibilities here are always endless."
- (1) cup olive oil
- (1/2) cup balsamic vinegar*
- (3-4) tbsp soy sauce or tamari (or to taste)
Ludy's Kitchen Healthy Cooking Tip:
Love croutons on your salad? Ditch the store-brought kind and make your own healthy version. Dice up slices of wholewheat bread and toss with a little olive oil and dried herbs. Spread the pieces of bread on a silicone-mat lined baking sheet, and bake in the oven until golden brown.
Make cooking a lot easier and more enjoyable by using good quality silicone baking mats. Not only are silicone mats sturdy and durable. Because they're non-stick, you can also cut your clean-up time in half.