The Ultimate Salad

It's summertime and I don't know about you, but I try not to heat up my house with the oven or even stovetop cooking.  So when I want to eat light, yet keep me full, I turn to my ultimate salad.  

Making a BIG salad is your solution to saving time and offering you variety.  The trick is to have all the ingredients washed, cut and prepped in containers ready to go.  So when it's time to eat (or pack your lunch), it's simply an assembly line.  This also keeps all the salad components separated and fresh.

This is my go-to ultimate salad recipe.  Switch things up by trying different proteins, greens, and salad dressings.  

Ultimate Salad

Ingredients

4 cups lettuce (green and/or red leafy, romaine), washed, spun and chopped into bite sizes

2 cups of baby spinach, washed and spun

2 carrots, peeled and grated

2 bell peppers, chopped

2 celery stalks, chopped

1 cup grape tomatoes, sliced in half

1 cup chickpeas, rinsed and drained 

1/2 cup cucumber, chopped 

1/2 cup roasted beets, chopped (recipe below)

1/2 cup jarred artichoke hearts, chopped

1/2 cup canned hearts of palm, sliced 

1/2 cup olives, sliced in half

4 radishes, thinly sliced

1/4 cup olives, halved

avocado - sliced or diced

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sprouts (pea, broccoli)

Directions:

  1. Wash, dry, cut and place all ingredients in separate containers.  
  2. When ready to eat, assemble the salad with your choice of ingredients.
  3. Drizzle with dressing of choice (recipes below).

Alternative protein options:  cooked chicken breast, baked salmon, cooked shrimp, thinly sliced sirloin steak, tofu or tempeh,  hard-boiled eggs, lentils

Pro tip:  To keep greens fresher for longer, place a damp paper towel over washed greens.  Seal in a bowl or container and place it in the fridge.  

Roasted Beets

Ingredients

4 fresh beets (golden, red or rainbow)

avocado oil

salt and pepper

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375F. 
  2. Wash and pat dry beets.  Cut ends off. 
  3. Cut four pieces of foil paper (large enough for each beet).  Place beets on foil paper.
  4. Drizzle beets with avocado oil, salt and pepper.
  5. Wrap in foil paper.
  6. Place beets directly on a baking sheet and bake for 50-60 minutes.  Beets are ready when you can penetrate them easily with a fork.
  7. Allow to cool, then peel using plastic or latex gloves. 
  8. Chop into pieces for the salad.  Store in an airtight glass container.

 

Everyday Dressing

Ingredients:

    •    1 garlic clove, minced

    •    1/4 lemon, juiced

    •    1 tbsp dijon mustard

    •    1/2 tbsp champagne (or white wine) vinegar 

    •    ½ cup olive oil or avocado oil

    •    salt and pepper

Directions:

  1. In a small mixing bowl or food processor, add garlic.
  2. Add mustard, champagne vinegar, lemon juice.  Whisk.
  3. Slowly drizzle in oil, whisking (or processing) quickly until combined.
  4. Add salt and pepper to taste.

 

Avocado Dressing

Ingredients

    •    2 medium avocados

    •    1 lemon, juiced

    •    ½ cup olive oil

    •    ½ cup water

    •    2 cloves garlic

    •    2 tsp honey

    •    2 tsp parsley (I used dried, but could use fresh)

    •    salt & pepper to taste

    •    cayenne to taste

Directions:

    1    Add all dressing ingredients into a food processor, except the olive oil and water

    2    While the food processor is running, drizzle in oil and water and mix well

Notes:  Only dress salad that will be eaten immediately.  Unused salad should be tightly sealed in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.  Store dressing in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.  Making your own dressing is easy, inexpensive and you know what goes in it.  You’ll never buy again!

Do you have your own ultimate salad recipe?  Please share!