Summer is not only one of the greatest seasons, but it provides us with the most delicious fruits and vegetables that make for the BEST salads. This is a super simple skeleton recipe that can be customized and changed to fit your likings
1) The Base… Choose your Green
Whether you are obsessed with Kale (like me) or not. There are SO many options for the base of your salad.
- Arugula- a little spicy to add a nice contrast of flavor
- Kale- Curly kale is great for preparing the night before because it doesn’t get soggy. Also very high in protein (surprisingly)
- Lettuce (iceberg or romaine)- both delicious and crisp, though they do not offer as much nutritional value.
- Spinach- high in nutritional value, providing daily doses of vitamin A, E & K
- Mixed Greens- make your own mix of any leafy green!
Just to name a few.
2) Fruits- The star of the show
Apples, strawberries, blueberries, oranges, pineapple, kiwis, grapes, pomegranate… the list goes on and on! These are just some of my personal favorites. You never know how your choice “base” may change the flavor profile of a fruit. So get creative & try something you have never tried before!
Depending on when you are eating this salad, your typical diet, and your goals, you can choose to go all out or just keep it simple. I typically use feta or goat cheese crumbles on my lunch salads. But if I am making a salad for dinner, I’ll add some chicken or steak for some extra calories & protein. Avocado and hard boiled eggs are other great alternatives that add nutrients and protein, keeping you fuller, longer!
My boyfriend never used to like salads for dinner because they “weren’t filling”. But that was before we learned how much you can actually do with a salad! Now, he loves all salads (as long as there is a big hunk of protein on top!)
4) Toppings & Dressing
A lot of people don’t realize that dressing can be the least healthy part of your salad. With kale, I like to just drizzle some EVOO and salt and pepper. BOOM a delicious, low cal option. You can also try some lemon juice and/or some vinegar for an extra kick. If you have a blender you can even make your own dressing, which can drastically reduce the chemicals and calories you are consuming.
For additional toppings, I like to put nuts (sliced almonds, chopped walnuts, roasted pecans) or chia seeds or flax seeds for extra nutrients and a little crunch.
There you have it! The perfect skeleton outline for making pretty much any salad EVER! Try it out & let me know your favorite salad recipes in the comments below! And remember to always eat it mindfully! xox