Shake up your salad

Ever find yourself in a salad rut?

I don’t, because I know the way to make a salad delicious and different each and every time I make one.   I didn’t always do this.  Back when I learned about calories and calorie counting, I wouldn’t put anything but veggies and light or fat free dressing on my salads.

But if you hate your salads because they’re the same old thing, you’re not going to want to eat them day after day.  Adding just a bit of fun ingredients goes a long way to making salads delicious and this makes eating tons of veggies easy.

Here’s how I make my salads yummy every single time.

Peppery Filet Mignon Salad

1. I add my favorite form of protein.  Think salmon, grilled chicken, nutty spicy tofu, or insert your favorite here.

Strawberry salad with goat cheese and balsamic vinegar reduction

2.  Add some delicious fresh fruit. I’m partial to strawberries but I also like blueberries, raspberries, figs, apples, pears, or dried fruit.

Green Caprese Salad

3. Sprinkle with some good quality cheese. I’m in love with cheese.  Some of my favorites: feta, goat cheese, buffalo mozzarella, goat cheddar, blue cheese…I could go on forever.  Cheese isn’t bad for you, just pay attention to serving size.  I like to use a scale for cheese and other calorie dense goodies.

4. Use leftovers as a topping. I used leftover smoke turkey with barbecue sauce in the photo above, but you can use anything: ravioli and other pasta dishes, curries and other rice dishes, the insides of a hamburger.  Just about anything tastes good on a big bed of greens.  It’s also a good way to use up just a wee bit of leftovers that don’t quite make up a complete meal.

5. Add some nuts or seeds.  I like walnuts, pecan, pistachios, almonds, soy nuts (pictured above), cashews, sunflower seeds.  If it’s nutty and it crunches, then I’m going for it.  Nuts and seeds don’t just add extra crunch and flavor, they also provide good fats which will keep you full until your afternoon snack.  Who wants to eat a salad if it’s going to leave you empty and raiding the office snack machine at 2 pm?

How do you keep salads interesting and delicious?