Hello Salad Season!
A few reasons we love salads and you should to…
- You can pack a TON of nutrition into 1 salad – especially with a base of nutrient-dense leafy greens.
- The ingredient combinations are limitless!
- The dressing choices are limitless!
- They’re preeetty.
- They can quickly go from a side to a meal by adding filling ingredients (beans, whole grains, nuts, seeds).
- There are so many different types! Fruit salad, pasta salad, bean salad, potato salad, italian salad, greek salad, southwest salad, asian salad, broccoli salad, chopped salad, cobb salad… you get it.
Although salads are normally a healthy choice, dressings sometimes spoil the fun due to their oil-, dairy-, and sugar-loaded nature.
A quick rundown on oil… Nutritionally speaking, the goal is to consume foods in their natural, least processed forms. Oils are extremely processed as they’ve had all the good stuff (fiber, phytonutrients, vitamins, minerals, water) removed and all that remains is the fat. Rather than using uber processed oils in your salad dressings, the healthier (and tastier) option is to simply add the ingredients that the oils are made from (olives, avocados, flaxseed, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, etc.) to your salad. Then you get all that good stuff in those foods (that is normally processed out), along with a *moderate* amount of fat and calories. For more info on oil click HERE.
When searching for an oil-free salad dressing, you’ll find that they’re few and far between. Fear not! Typically you can make some small tweaks to forgo the oil, while still creating a delicious dressing. Subbing the oil out for a vinegar, lemon juice, tamari, etc. not only allows you to avoid the excess calories (there’s about 120 calories in 1 tbsp of oil), but also creates a more nutrient-dense dressing.
Below are 6 bang-up salad recipes that we will undoubtedly be enjoying this summer. Feel free to put your own spin on them and let us know in the comment section how it goes!
Shan Tofu Salad
from Food Pleasure and Health
Kala Chana Chaat (Black Chickpea Salad)
from Shahzadi at Desi-licious
Queso Tempeh Taco Salad
from Wholly Plants
Vegan Mediterranean Prune Salad with Beets, Almonds, and Edamame
from Amy Gorin Nutrition
Peanut Noodle Salad with Crispy Baked Tofu
from How to Eat