Veggie Challenged - Salad suggestions (Wow that may be the most boring title ever)

03-23-2007, 04:00 AM
Hi y'all,
So despite the boring title I'm looking for help with salads. I'm trying to start eating right. i have fast food twice a day and I want to cut down. i work at a pizza place and there's no microwave. They do have a salad bar but I hate salad. I want to learn how to eat salad without gagging or whining. Any suggestions on how to make salad palpable? I'm thinking like a beginner's easy peasy, no wussy-whining salad. Or something like that. i'm learning to like veggies in their cold and natural state like carrot sticks, cucumbers sometime broccili (yes I know it's spelled wrong). i don't know a whole lot about salad dressings but if they'll help me eat salad I'd love suggestions. just somethng to make salad good eating. Well thanks fer reading through my wanderings and I can't wait to hear from ya'all. send me questions if I made no sense at all.:D

03-24-2007, 01:30 AM
Hmm. My sister in law dumps a cup of Wendy's chili on salad and swears it's really tasty - sort of like taco salad. Chili is low in fat, has a bit of fiber, and is filling. Does that sound like something you could do?

I'm a salad lover, so I don't know if this will help you, but I like my lettuce chopped up into tiny little pieces. I'll put everything in my salad, then chop it up.

I suggest starting with some iceberg (the beginner's lettuce :lol:) and adding some baby spinach leaves. They don't have a whole lot of taste and they add nutrients. Make sure it's baby spinach though - it's a lot tastier and more tender than "grown-up" spinach. Add shredded carrots, diced cukes, pretty much any veggie you like diced up, LF cheese, beans - if you like them, etc. Go really easy on the dressing. The dressing is where the calories are hiding. That, and the cheese and croutons.

One of my favorite dressings is Newman's Own Balsamic Vinaigrette. It really packs a flavor punch. One tablespoon is more than enough for a very large salad. I put my salad in a tupperware container, dice it up, add dressing, put the lid back on, then shake it to coat everything with the dressing.

Another way to make salad tasty is to wrap it up in a tortilla with some LF cheese or chicken and LF ranch dressing. Like a big soft taco. :)

Good luck!

03-24-2007, 08:12 AM
I swear by Paul Newman's Lighten Up Balsamic Vinaigrette ( It's yummy and really low calorie.

04-10-2007, 01:28 AM
I suggest starting with some iceberg

Ick. I'm also trying to acquire a taste for salad. But texture is a big deal for me, maybe more than taste. I HATE the feel of iceberg lettuce. I've never really tried any other kinds. I do know that I've had food with spinach in it that I've liked. If I were to attempt a spinach-based salad, what would you recommend adding?

04-10-2007, 02:34 AM
What about grilling the other veggies on your salad? Tonight's dinner salad consisted of mixed salad greens, topped off with 4 oz grilled chicken, some grilled bell peppers, zucchinis, and red onions, a tablespoon of reduced fat cheddar cheese, some sliced black olives...topped that off with 2 tbsp of sour cream that I mixed with some cumin and chipotle tabasco sauce, as well as a crumbled corn tortilla that I baked in the oven with some cooking spray until crispy and chip-like. It was great, and very different for a salad.

Spinach-based salads are great with lots of things...nuts, dried cranberries, grilled chicken breast, and asparagus are naturals, but it really works as a base for lots of things.

04-10-2007, 03:23 AM
I eat a salad almost everyday and over time I've built a salad that I LOVE eating everyday, although I've never had much of an issue with eating veggies. I use a mix of spinach and spring mix (that might not be something great to start with, as it has a lot of strange things in there that I got used to eating in Europe haha), then I top it with olives (kalamata to be exact), grape tomatoes (sweeter than regular), mushrooms, some feta cheese, and some Maple Grove Farms Fat Free dressing, usually either Cranberry Balsamic or Raspberry Vinaigrette. They make my favorite dressings, mainly because for only 30 cals a serving you get a dressing that doesn't taste fake or weird like most fat free dressings do.

Other suggestions would be grilled chicken or salmon on top, bell peppers, onions, shredded cheese (use sparingly, lots of cals here), nuts, sunflower seeds (w/o the shells), cottage cheese, salsa, or on a spinach salad maybe some fruit like apples, blueberries, raspberries, diced pears... really almost anything your noggin can come up with. You can go from spicy to tangy to sweet, depending on your tastes. It's fun to experiment!

04-10-2007, 05:15 AM

I wasn't a big salad eater myself but here are two that I love and that, shock!, my husband will eat too. (this is the man who would eat steak with a side of steak)

1. Rocket leaves (you call it arugula?), baby spinach leaves and watercress with shaved parmesan cheese and balsamic dressing. Add grilled chicken to make it a main meal, I usually do the chicken with a lemony yogurt marinade for this.

2. Cavello nero, lollo rosso and corn salad leaves with small balls of marinated mozerella and sundried tomatoes. You can add hot chicken or beef to this.

Top tip: The secret to non slimey salads (which was why I wasn't too keen before) is to use only a little dressing but toss it loads so everything gets a thin coating.

Good luck with it- you will definitely find one you like.

04-11-2007, 03:11 PM
I use straight white vinegar instead of salad dressing. Most people probably wouldn't like that, but I love vinegar and it saves me a lot of calories. My typical salad consists of bagged lettuce (usually a romaine blend of some kind), white onions, grilled chicken breast strips, shredded cheese, and croutons. It's not really a vegetable-heavy salad, but it's pretty low in calories, and the most important thing is that I like it!

04-11-2007, 10:36 PM
I make salads almost everyday and they can be so much fun!
Some suggestions are:
Caesar salad (or chicken caesar) - buy bagged romaine, add caesar dressing , and a bit of parm and bacon bits ..yummy!

Greek- to your favorite greens you can add chopped cucumber, black olives, feta cheese :) and vinegarette or greek dressing.

The one I have every afternoon ( I am on a plan that is moderate carb, but the starches I can only have for breakfast and lunch) SO, I have a warm chicken pasta salad for lunch. I get excited thinking about eating it! lol
I cook up a bunch of chicken breasts, when they are done I slice em up and put them in those gladware square containers , 3.5 oz per container)along with 3/4 c cooked whole wheat fusilli. Then I refrigerate or freeze em. At lunchtime, I take them out of the fridge, or freezer (and zap it to thaw), add 1-2 cups of chopped veggie (red pepper, green pepper, are really good, as are cuke, mushrooms, etc...then take 2T of a lower cal cream based salad dressing (I use lite ranch) and 1T cider vinegar, and a sprinkle of splenda. It sure hits the spot, large, filling, really healthy..awesome!!

04-11-2007, 10:41 PM
Along the lines of bravissima, I also use a vinegar trick on my salad. I don't like straight vinegar except balsamic, BUT I found adding half the vinegar to the dressing you are using, (So 2 parts dressing to one part vinegar) and then a tsp or 2 of splenda really is great becasue you get more milegae out of the dresing, it's easier to cover the salad with a flavorful "glaze" instead of dousing the whole thing with a thick dressing, you get that sweet/sour flavor going on which is awesome, and vinegar is so good becasue if you have vinegar it lowers the GI of the meal you're eating, so you'll digest it slower.
I used to think I used my dressing sparingly (I guess as opposed to dh) but when I measured it I was horrified and rudely awakened! lol What they give you as a salad at McD's (with the dressing) is about double the cal's as a burger!

04-24-2007, 08:00 PM
Are there any tips as to how to make salads less...bitter? My housemate made a salad that I had part of last night, chopped tomatoes, cucumbers, avocado, and red bell pepper, with spinach/spring mix, and a garlic-olive oil-balsamic vinegar dressing. It was just so bitter that I had to force myself with every bite and try not to make faces about it. I don't mind Romaine lettuce, I rather like it, but I hate tomatoes/peppers, don't really like cucumbers, and dislike vinaigrette-type dressings rather vehemently. Makes "healthy" salad-eating difficult.

04-25-2007, 02:35 PM
I'm a seasonal salad eater :sunny:

During winter I will mostly eat cooked veggies (steamed, sauteed, grilled, baked, etc) and only the occasional smallish salad, but as soon as the warm weather rolls around, I usually have at least 1 large salad a day (plus a smaller one or steamed veggies at night).

Here's my basic salad: :hun:

3 cups mixed dark leafy greens (baby spinach, arugula, radicchio, etc)
cherry tomatoes
olive oil
a squeeze of lemon or lime

I often add one or more of the following:
- radishes, peeled and chopped
- kalamata olives
- red onion, sliced very thin
- avocado chunks
- cucumber slices
- steamed peas
- raw, unsalted seeds or nuts
- chunks of apple, orange or blueberries

And if I need more protein:
- organic cheese cubes (small)
- hard-boiled eggs
- grilleed chicken breast

And vary my dressing with one of the following oils or sour elements:
- sesame oil
- flaxseed oil
- squeezed slice of grapefuit
- apple cider vinegar
- balsamic vinegar

Fennel is a very sweet vegetable and it makes a fantastic salad when cut very thin and seasoned with salt and olive oil. You can also add some chopped apple and walnuts and make sort of a Waldorf salad, very yummy! :T

05-01-2007, 01:40 AM
I used to gag everytime I ate raw vegetables, like salads. I started off with baby spinach with the stems twisted off. I ate whatever kinda dressing I liked (really fattening ranch). Then kinda added stuff to it, mandarin oranges, chicken strips, and won ton strips. Then as I got used to it, I lessened the won ton, salad dressing changed to light dressing, etc. I honestly still dont love salads, but iceberg is ousted!! I hate it!! HTH :D

06-19-2007, 04:23 PM
I also add chick peas (garbanzo beans) and red kidney beans to a salad.

02-19-2008, 12:50 PM
I find that grapes and pears in salads is fabulous, no matter what else is in it. Adds a little something that's always missing from lettuce.

02-19-2008, 07:21 PM
I happen to like ice berg with my taco or Chinese chicken salads. The others are too limp.

I like to add a date and some fruit. Pears and apples are great. I like to add light champagne vinegarette.

You can make an easy dressing by mixing vinegar (your favorite type - pear vinegar is wonderful as is rice wine vinegar), adding some oil and sugar or splenda. Go easy on the oil. It does not have to be 50/50 with the vinegar. I like adding dill weed but boobalah doesn't care for dill. Other fresh herbs work well, too. You may need to add some S&P if your vinegar isn't flavorful.

I noticed that this thread was started about 11 months ago. How are you doing with your salads now?

02-29-2008, 12:36 PM
Find a dressing that you like, that should make it easier. I would eat almost anything with Renee's Mighty Ceasar dressing (or is it Mighty Garlic?). There is a ton of garlic in it, and it is not exactly low cal, but she has a "Light" version of it. I buy both and use a bit from each at the same time. The 'Light" version is not as good as the "Mighty" one but when they are mixed, you cannot tell.

I often add things to salads that you would not normally find there. This week (after learning about Super Foods in the Goal forum) I am into baby spinach salads. I add to it finely slices dried apricots and chopped walnuts, and a mango vinaigrette.

Another favorite one of mine is brocoli florets, dried cranberries, sunflower seeds, and light feta cheese. I like this with Mediterranean salad dressing.

I avoid iceberg lettuce though because it is nothing but a filler with hardly any nutrients.

03-06-2008, 09:41 AM
People think I'm nuts for this - but since I hate the smell/taste of vinegar and refuse to eat any kind of salad dressing - I use cottage cheese, also a great protein. I also use cottage cheese on my baked potatoes instead of sour cream (yuk!).

A friend of mine recently made a great salad and the dressing was made using mandarin orange juice, extra virgin olive oil, mint, cilantro and a few other small ingredients that I don't remember, but it was great for someone like me that doesn't like salad dressing!

The salad was very simple as well. Spring mix, grilled chicken seasoned with a cirtus basil rub & mandarin oranges. It was fantastic!

I was never a big salad eater either - but I have been converted!

03-07-2008, 08:30 PM
I usually eat one large and one small salad a day and have done a lot of different expleriments finding some good salad mixes.
1. I'm a big romaine lettuce fan. I buy the mixed bags of romaine lettuce so I get carrots and cabbage as well... Very crunchy and has little, but good taste to it.
2. Terriyaki chicken with just lettuce and a couple other veggies of choice, awesome taste, no need for dressing. I bake the chicken in terriyaki sauce (kikkomans hny. ter. is the best!), cut it up, place in a container with extra terriyaki sauce, shake and let chill. You get protein and don't use any dressing.
3. Canned corn. Weird, I know. About a 1/4 cup of canned corn adds an amazing amount of flavor to any salad.
4. Ken's Lt. Creamy Caesar dressing... you can't even tell that it's a light dressing. Very little needed to add AMAZING flavor! Really good if you add grilled chicken as well.

03-09-2008, 01:10 AM
Wishbone Salad Spritzers and Ken's Steakhouse Sprays are GREAT!!!

They are very light and cover an entire salad in flavor with minimal 'goop'.
I love the Raspberry ones.

Every day for lunch I have bagged iceberg mix, baby spinach, chick peas, a little crumbly blue, raisins, and some crunchy topping (that is near the bacos in the salad dressing aisle.) I put it in a tupperware container, spray a few sprays, and then cover and shake.
It really disperses everything in the salad evenly. Yummmmm!

03-09-2008, 10:32 AM
I adore all salads with olives!

03-09-2008, 11:40 AM
My salad is always dark lettuce mix, like spinach, arugala, whatever they put in the mix that's not iceberg (ew), with crumbled gorgonzola (very little fat and only 100 calories for like 1/4 cup, with craisins or dried cranberries (mmm sweet) and a tablespoon of vinagrette. Throw some chicken breast in if I have it. Sweet and a little tart from the vinegar and savory from the cheese... I think I'll go make it now for lunch!

03-16-2008, 12:44 PM
rocket leaf is kinda tangy, so that's good, it goes well with alot of salad stuff

I have that with spinach, tomatoes and peppers, sometimes add cheese or fish or something too.

Salad dressings - to make your own 2/3 oil (olive, sunflower, any oil really) to 1/3 acid (vinegar, lemon juice etc) with seasoning, put it in a jar and shake it really hard. Magic!

03-16-2008, 01:45 PM
If you really don't like salads, you don't HAVE to eat salad to lose weight. For the first 6 months I was losing weight, I had half a turkey sandwich on whole grain bread with a cup of low fat bean-based soup (which would be hard for you since you have no microwave). A nice turkey wrap on a low cal tortilla would do the trick. No sense pressuring yourself into something you find yucky when you are SURROUNDED by pizza to fall back on. Try the salads at home, with less pressure!

03-16-2008, 03:03 PM
Are there any tips as to how to make salads less...bitter? My housemate made a salad that I had part of last night, chopped tomatoes, cucumbers, avocado, and red bell pepper, with spinach/spring mix, and a garlic-olive oil-balsamic vinegar dressing. It was just so bitter that I had to force myself with every bite and try not to make faces about it. I don't mind Romaine lettuce, I rather like it, but I hate tomatoes/peppers, don't really like cucumbers, and dislike vinaigrette-type dressings rather vehemently. Makes "healthy" salad-eating difficult.

Some varieties/or old cucumbers can be very bitter. Just take them off the salad. The other ingredients shouldn't be bitter unless you have a super sensitive palate.

03-18-2008, 12:45 PM
You know, I am not a salad hater, but I cannot seem to make a REALLY good salad myself. I LOVE salads out at restaurants, but when I make them at home I feel like I have to choke them down. I find pre-cut bagged lettuce to be almost inedible and mostly those stems that I don't want anything to do with. I'll have to try some of these ideas at home to make myself something I can really enjoy.

03-19-2008, 05:50 PM
An easy salad that I love is the bagged mixed lettuce, strawberries, walnuts, kiwi, walnuts, and raspberry vinigarette dressing

03-29-2008, 01:05 PM
My favorite salad...that I eat 3-5 times a week is: About 4 oz spring doesn't weigh much so it's a lot....I use a huge bowl that looks like one you would be making for a party or the family dinner...but it's all mine...I then add sliced mushrooms, sliced red onions, raw sugar snap peas, shredded carrots, grape tomatoes, and cucumber...for my protein...I add garbanzo beans....Love Them!!! you can used the ones in the can or sprout them...I like them sprouted...more crunch and they still have all of the enzymes....I like it with 1/3 Cup of low sugar ranch dressing...with the fat though....and served with sweet potato fries and plain yogurt sweetened with stevia and drizzled with Walden Farms 0 calorie chocolate syrup....Yum Yum Yum :carrot:

04-01-2008, 09:04 AM
I like salad, but hate using my lunch half hour to eat, so I try to be quick about having my lunch meal.

I combine my salad with a sandwich: I take a pita, cut it in half, and fill it with veggies and greens (lettuce, spinach, sprouts, whatever). I may throw a falafel in there, or some chickpeas, sunflower seeds, whatever I fancy. I throw some salad dressing in there .... quick, clean, and you get your salad.

06-23-2008, 11:29 PM
this thread just made me reallllllly hungry for a salad :lol:

My favorite salad of all time

Spinach,romaine ,blueberries, sunflower seeds and cottage cheese sometimes I put balsamic vinegar on it sometimes I just eat it plain ... depends on my mood lol

I pretty much like any salad .. my problem is I will just keep adding and adding stuff and then I can't find the greens in it anymore LOL and I'm sure some of my salads in the past were not so low fat - low cal

salad is one of those great things that you can pretty much add Anything to and you can expierment with things and its fun ! its like the healthier version of pizza :D

06-24-2008, 01:08 AM
I really enjoy salad, but (this is a little embaressing!) I find at times that I just don't want to make it! It's lazy, I know, but I hate the prep work!! Mostly it's the lettuce that I hate to break up, so I buy either the bagged stuff - or the huge tub of mixed greens from Sam's Club. I love spinach and mostly eat all spinach leaf salads w/ grape tomatoes, cucumbers, radish, and hard boiled egg - as my daily lunch salad.

My fav is spinach w/ pecans, tomatoes, blue cheese crumbles w/ a vinagerette. Now I want a salad!

06-27-2008, 01:46 PM
:lol: thats my problem with salads too .. I'm always to lazy to make one .. and I feel like I'm making a huge mess in my kitchen .... the only time I don't ahve that problem is at dinner because it becomes more of a priority for me then .... but when I sit down with it .. it is all worth it ! mmmmmm