I couldn’t be more excited for Spring weather and more fresh veggies available. I like to switch up my salads frequently with a variety of proteins, veggies, healthy fats and omega-3s. I swap out everything from vegan chicken, to sunflower seeds, to beets to keep it from getting boring. Prepping veggies early in the week, make this simple, yet nutrient packed salad easy to throw together for lunch or dinner.
Start out with a base. I love fresh romaine, and I wash and cut it up early in the week so salads are easily accessible. I deseed veggies like cucumbers and tomatoes, and cut up red onion. Healthy fats like fresh avocado, walnuts and sunflower seeds keep it filling. I always add a couple protein options like garbanzo beans, tofu, tempeh or veggie chicken strips. My favorite vinaigrette is equal parts Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Organic Red Wine Vinegar, mixed with Pink Himalayan Salt, Fresh Ground Black Pepper, Granulated Garlic and Oregano.
Quinoa is a great source of a complete protein. I love adding it to salads. (Le Pain Quotidien’s Quinoa Tabbouleh Arugula Salad is my absolute fave) This filling dish is full of nutrients and an array of flavor, sans sodium and oil.
Quinoa (yields 4 servings)
1 C Quinoa
2 C Water
Dried Basil, Oregano, Cilantro, Parsley, Rosemary
Fresh Ground Pepper
Dash of Cayenne (optional)
Mrs. Dash (regular, lemon pepper, or garlic & herb or a combo of the three)
Apple Cider Vinegar
Place Water and quinoa in pot and bring to a boil
Add parsley and seasonings
Cover and simmer for 15 – 20 minutes, or until water is absorbed
Once water is absorbed, drizzle with vinegars and mix well
Creamy Basil Pumpkin Seed Dressing
1/2 C Raw Unsalted Pumpkin Seeds
1/2 C Water
Handful of Fresh Basil Leaves
Juice from 2 Lemons
1 t Garlic, minced
Blend all ingredients in a Vitamix, or high speed blender until smooth.
Toss salad, add 1/4 C quinoa and dressing and mix well. Enjoy!
After trying the Garlicky Kale Salad at Whole Foods, it became an obsession. It’s the kind of salad I could eat everyday. I had to recreate it. This similar recipe is fantastic. It’s simple to make, and can be made ahead of time since it’s recommended to let the leaves marinate. Aside from the amazing antioxidant benefits of kale, it is also rich in fiber.