Veggie Challenged - salad help




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lizziep
07-12-2008, 09:45 PM
I want to like salad, really I do. But seriously :p- I'm just not feeling it. Unless there's a bunch of cheese in there to tempt me into eating it, I mostly just push it around on my plate like a child. I'd like to do something a little more interesting then romaine with balsamic on it. It's not bad but YAWN!

Anybody have a favorite salad they are willing to share? :carrot:


PhotoChick
07-12-2008, 10:30 PM
Salads can be anything you want them to be. I can't imagine limiting a salad to romaine with balsamic - which is good in it's own right but would get boring really quickly.

Spinach salad - baby organic spinach, with mandarin oranges, slivered almonds, blue cheese (if you want), a sprinkle of roasted flax seeds. No dressing is needed, but if you *must*, mix a little of the juice from the mandarin oranges with some olive oil.

Or do the same thing with sliced strawberries and/or blueberries and drizzle with a fruit flavored vinagrette.

A for something less fruity, do baby spinach, crumbled bacon (I cook one strip of bacon in the microwave), a diced boiled egg, blue cheese if you want it.

Or a big garden salad: A combination of dark romaine and baby spinach and any or all of the following: sliced grape tomatoes, sliced cucumbers, shredded carrot, celery, zucchini slices, thin slices of beet, mushrooms, broccoli ... basically any veggies you want. Toss with a combination of red wine vinegar, olive oil, and a bit of dijon mustard.

What about coleslaw instead of a leafy salad? Thinly slice or shred some cabbage and some kale and mix with a couple of teaspoons of Kraft Light Asian Sesame dressing.

Mix chopped broccoli, shredded carrots, slivered almonds, and some plain yogurt. Add whatever spices you want - I like to put in a generous tsp of yellow curry powder.

A yummy Greek salad - lots of romaine, tomato, cucumber, bell pepper, green/black olives, feta cheese, drizzled with olive oil and salt and pepper.

A Mexican version - romaine lettuce, chopped tomato, avocado, onion, cilantro, lime juice, again with a little olive oil.

A favorite variation from California Pizza Kitchen: romaine lettuce, sliced pears, walnuts, gorgonzola cheese, and a balsamic vinegarette with a bit of dijon mustard in it. Top it with some grilled chicken or shrimp and it's a great lunch or dinner.

Seriously - you can add all kinds of things to a salad to jazz it up:
Sprinkle a salad with pomegranite seeds, blackberries, blueberries, peaches, pears, whatever fruit you want.
Add some kind of cheese (in reasonable quantities) - not just cheddar, but feta, blue, parmesan, etc.
Add nuts of some kind - slivered almonds, walnuts, pecans.

Salads are amazingly flexible and versatile - you can do just about anything with a salad.

.

stellarwbz
07-12-2008, 11:46 PM
Cilantro to me makes any salad taste better. I like it with chopped romaine lettuce, chopped onions and cucumbers, and some dill. Squeeze some lemon juice on top. Taste good to me.


Hart
07-13-2008, 12:20 AM
my fav is:
Baby Spinach (2 Cups)
Low fat Feta (1 Tbsp)
Strawberries (1/2 Cup)
Green apple slices (1/4 apple)
Grilled chicken (1/2 Cup)
Chopped walnuts (1/2 Tbsp)
FF Poppyseed Dressing (1 Tbsp)

or

Baby Spinach (2 Cups)
Tostitos Chips (6 bite size)
Pineapple Chiplote salsa (3 Tbsp)
Light Mexican shred. cheese (1/4Cup)
Avacado (1/4 Cup)
Optional: Grilled chicken or Boca "ground beef" soy

another is:
Grilled veggies (Zucchini, squash, artichoke, bell peppers, onion)
Grilled Chicken
Spinach

tommy
07-13-2008, 10:33 PM
Great ideas so far. I find the biggest motivator for me is to have my protein for the meal in the salad- my chicken cubed or shrimp or sliced steak. Works best if the protein is warm as I find it tastier that way.

lizziep
07-16-2008, 12:39 AM
thanks for the help!! I actually had a salad for lunch today & ate it! :)

still not my most favorite thing in the world, but I think I can do it. i think protein is the key & having something hidden in there that i am willing to eat the lettuce to find- like avocado!

never thought of adding fruit, or grilled veggies. can't wait to experiment.

EZMONEY
07-16-2008, 11:38 PM
Angie made a taco salad tonight. Green leaf lettuce, tomatoes, chopped black olives, corn and black beans with a dressing of ranch and taco bell mild hot sauce mixed....handful of tortilla chips on the side.

SoulBliss
07-16-2008, 11:56 PM
Angie made a taco salad tonight. Green leaf lettuce, tomatoes, chopped black olives, corn and black beans with a dressing of ranch and taco bell mild hot sauce mixed....handful of tortilla chips on the side.
Yum!!! We had something similar:

Soy crumbles cooked with zucchini, shallots, garlic and red onion (and a lot of spices and herbs) served with black beans, corn, vegan nacho cheese, green salsa, romaine, black olives, avocado and Tofutti Sour Supreme (soy sour cream).

kaplods
07-16-2008, 11:59 PM
My hubby is very picky about veggies and salads. At first, it irked me that if it was "good for you," hubby probably was going to balk unless it contained cheese or bacon or beef or had a high fat dressing or some other higher calorie component to counteract the "healthiness".

And then I realized that as long as he was "budgeting" for the higher calorie "accessories," it wasn't a big deal. If you need a bit of cheese, pick a really good, flavorful cheese and buy it finely shredded (the "fancy" shred) or buy a grater and grate it yourself. Finely grated or even shaved with a vegetable peeler, a little bit of cheese can go a very long way.

There're also really good lower fat alternatives to high fat salad favorites. I buy the dark wheat chex and either use them plain as croutons in a salad or toss a gallon ziploc bag full of wheat chex with a tsp or two of oil (canola or olive), shake like crazy to distribute the oil and then shake with ranch dressing powder and garlic powder and bake in the oven at 350 for about 10 minutes.

Sunflower seeds (just a tbs) also go along way.

I prefer a light dressing to a fat free, and sometimes would rather budget for a full fat dressing than eat the light. Often I will thin a full fat dressing with rice wine vinegar (other vinegars tend to be to acidic).

Sometimes I really have a craving for something that is a calorie nightmare if I eat it the traditional way. For example general tso's chicken, over rice, this is a calorie nightmare. However, I can satisfy my craving by adapting it a bit. I make a giant bed of lettuce and toss with a low calorie asian dressing (I make my own with rice wine vinegar, splenda, and a dash of sesame oil - just a drop or three and maybe some garlic). I usually dice some green onion and if I have them some raw bean sprouts and then put a 1/2 to 1/3 cup of general tso's chicken over the top.

SoulBliss
07-17-2008, 12:03 AM
Sunflower seeds (just a tbs) also go along way.



YES! Especially toasted in soy sauce/Braggs!

lizziep
07-18-2008, 03:06 AM
mmm gread ideas! added some green olive slices and a couple walnut pieces to mine today. nummm.

i think i need to learn how to make dressing- that seems to be the biggest thing for me. most commercial dressings are bleh. especially their light versions. i got a good goddess dressing, but it is in no way GOOD for me- but i'm taking this in baby steps. learn to eat salad w/ a dressing i love... then slow it down.

I like the idea of thinning out the regular dressing, i'm going to have to try that. i bet it would work with yumm! sauce too.

thanks!

WebRover
07-18-2008, 10:34 AM
Salad for me is time to pull "everything" out of the crisper and a lot from the fridge. "What's in your fridge?" = SALAD

Base: Some type(s) of greens: lettuces, spinach, cabbage
Veggies: any raw veggies you like:carrots, tomatoes, cucumber, broccoli, radishes, peppers, onions, snow peas, jicama, cauliflower
any cooked and chilled (or still hot) veggies you like:carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, onions, zuchinni, yellow squash, green beans, edamame, brussels sprouts, corn, peas, grilled or roasted veggie leftovers
Flavor-packed treats in small amounts: beets, nuts, fruit/dried fruit, olives, salsa, fresh herbs
Proteins (hot or cold): chicken, beef, beans, cheese, chili (with lower fat meats or TVP or just beans), tuna, fish
Whole grains: brown rice, ww pasta, barley,
Leftovers: It can be a good way to clean out your fridge of a little of this a little of that.
Dressing: Something low fat and tasty. Thinner oil based dressings go further than creamy mayo based dressings. However put a small amount of dressing on your salad and toss it or cut the salad up, distributing the dressing through the salad. You may find you don't need as much. Plus if there are lots of flavors already in the salad you may need less dressing or even :o NO dressing. Try putting the dressing on the base (lettuce, spinach, cabbage) and tossing - then piling everything else on top. The blander greens get the dressing. The yummier toppings are fine just plain.

SunshineCA
08-19-2008, 05:58 PM
I can pretty much make a salad out of ANYTHING! lol

Try using other greens for variety or flavor choice, I hate iceberg as it's too watery without much flavor. Spinach is my favorite but I use everything but iceberg.

You'll just have to experiment to see what works for you. :)

Good luck and keep experimenting! :)

chickybird
08-19-2008, 07:46 PM
Sometimes I skip the lettuce/spinach all together. I just mix all the other stuff together.

paws2ink
08-20-2008, 11:06 AM
I make a salad base once a week. I chop a med-small head of cabbage, a head of cauliflower and several carrots. I m ix it up, then build that up all week. I'll take a couple handfuls of the base and add whatever I want to it. I almost always add half an apple, chopped, and 2T craisins. I might add garbanzo beans or steamed edamame or a chicken breast. I'll add whatever veggies I have in the drawer as well. I also like to put 2T of shredded parmesan cheese. I have been eating this for months, and because I can tweak it so many ways, I haven't gotten tired of it.

mazza
08-23-2008, 02:17 AM
Here's my fave salad recipe- I eat it several times weekly:
- Base: shredded cabbage and carrot mixed up with wholegrain mustard (about 1 tbs mustard)

THEN

chuck in some green oak leaf lettuce (though any lettuce works, iceberg, cos etc) on top of that.

ADD
Sliced mushrooms
Cut up sundried tomatoes

chopped cucumber(optional)
black pitted olives

25gms reduced fat fetta cheese (only 50 calories! worth it, if you ask me - for cheese)

Dressing:

1 tablespoon flaxseed oil (buy it in health stores etc, is really healthy and has great omega 3s, but is still oil so go easy)
AND
sprinkling of balsamic vinegar (sprinkling for me is drenching, but its yummy and low cal, go easy on it if you're not one for tangy, though)

If you want to cut back on calories, start with the cheese and olives, obviously - but other than that, heaps of changes can be made - like adding capsicum etc or whatever you like.

Hope you got some ideas from this - enjoy!

Magz
08-23-2008, 10:40 AM
Wow, this is a great thread! I may start loving salad again ;).

I use the spritzer dressings. I also like to put the cheese and sunflower seeds on the bottom so my last bites are of the good stuff. Never use iceberg. That stuff is useless ;).

Ufi
08-24-2008, 03:06 PM
I buy a pre-made greens and herb mix. It costs $3 and I can get four or more good-sized salads out of it, so I figure that's not too bad. It has probably 20 things in it. I add nuts or tuna or whatever to it. I've also bought broccoli slaw.

I find that I use less salad dressing if I put it in a container with a lid and give it a good shake, as then the dressing gets all over everything.

brandewijn
08-25-2008, 06:54 AM
You ladies are so creative with your salads. I've always loved salads in the past but they just got so boring. I've never really done anything with them. But today I am going to the store to buy a few things. I would never have thought to use mandarin oranges or pears. Yummy.

Thank you! :D

Caly
09-10-2008, 09:10 AM
Thanks for the ideas! Some of those sound really good.

paperSkin
05-06-2009, 12:36 PM
My favourite is cucumber, tomato and red onion with lime juice, vinegar and cilantro.. sometimes i replace the cilantro for mint.. either way its a salad I can eat at anytime anyplace. Just add salt and pepper to taste and enjoy.

My other favourite is mango salad... take a not so ripe mango and julienne it.. add red pepper, green pepper, red onion, cilantro, lime, vinegar, salt, pepper and a little bit of sugar. Then you can choose to make it even better by adding some crushed peanuts, shredded coconut or green onions. But of course watching your portions :)

For some reason I don't have a big passion for salads with lettuce anymore.. maybe I over did it and need a break.

willow650
05-06-2009, 12:48 PM
my favorite salad at the moment is romaine, Kens Light Cesar Dressing, whole grain croutons and some grated Parmesan. The thought of fruit in salad is very revolting to me and I'm not a balsamic fan either, oh and for my taste, cucumbers and carrots would be out to. I am very picky eater...lol

Azbstsgrl
05-31-2009, 09:48 PM
Walnuts make a salad in my opinion...... absolutely delicious

ladynredd
05-31-2009, 10:04 PM
My all-time favorite salad (sorry, Mandy, you wouldn't like this one):
baby spinach, mixed half & half with cabbage
celery
1 apple, chopped
1/2 grapefruit, sectioned
protein of your choice -- I've tried crab, shrimp and chicken so far. Loved them all.
Top with citrus dressing: 1/3 C. orange juice, 2 tbsp. balsamic vinegar, 1 tbsp. EVOO, salt & pepper to taste.

ladynredd
05-31-2009, 10:09 PM
Was going to tell you my favorite trick with salad. Old hat to most of you, probably, but it may be new to someone:

Fill a large lidded container with your basic salad ingredients -- greens, radishes, celery, peppers, etc., EXCEPT for wet ingredients like tomatoes. Place a couple paper towels on top, put on the lid, then turn container upside down. Each time you use part of the contents, put the paper towels back on top and turn upside down again. Replace the paper towels if they feel wet. Contents of the container will stay fresh and crispy for a week to 10 days and I find I'm much more likely to have a salad if all I have to cut up is a tomato and I don't have to stand there and chop, chop, chop each time.

Hyacinth
05-31-2009, 10:23 PM
Mix chopped broccoli, shredded carrots, slivered almonds, and some plain yogurt. Add whatever spices you want - I like to put in a generous tsp of yellow curry powder.

Yummmm!

I buy the dark wheat chex and either use them plain as croutons in a salad or toss a gallon ziploc bag full of wheat chex with a tsp or two of oil (canola or olive), shake like crazy to distribute the oil and then shake with ranch dressing powder and garlic powder and bake in the oven at 350 for about 10 minutes.

These sound amazing!

Fill a large lidded container with your basic salad ingredients -- greens, radishes, celery, peppers, etc., EXCEPT for wet ingredients like tomatoes. Place a couple paper towels on top, put on the lid, then turn container upside down. Each time you use part of the contents, put the paper towels back on top and turn upside down again. Replace the paper towels if they feel wet. Contents of the container will stay fresh and crispy for a week to 10 days and I find I'm much more likely to have a salad if all I have to cut up is a tomato and I don't have to stand there and chop, chop, chop each time.

I have not heard this tip before, thanks for sharing!

My salad advice is to avoid iceberg (not very nutritious), make a meal out of it by adding other meal ingredients (protein, grain, etc), and make your own salad dressing.

mizski
06-01-2009, 01:29 AM
I like the idea of thinning out the regular dressing, i'm going to have to try that.

For me, if I don't like the dressing, I won't eat the salad. I do like a lot of the lite ones and make some homemade ones using more vinegar/water & less oil. With regular full-fat commercial dressings, I thin them out with skim milk. That also makes them thinner so you still get the great flavor and you don't need that much.

You can throw so many things into salads to keep them interesting. I often toss leftover cooked, cold veggies into my salads. :)