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What can I put on my salads

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Old 03-26-2007, 08:39 PM   #1
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Exclamation What can I put on my salads

I love salads but i tend to overdo the dressing...even the low fat and fat free stuff. And I also put low fat cheese. Just looking for other flavorful additions or ways to stretch the cheese and dressing.
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Old 03-26-2007, 08:56 PM   #2
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I add tons of extra veggies - cucumber, tomato, cauliflower, grated carrots, sometimes avocado. Shredded poached chicken breast or shrimp is great, too. It really bulks up the salad and tastes great. I also make my own dressing - I find it tastes better and is more satisfying so I can get away with using less.

Other things I've done - add some drained black beans, or cannellini beans. In the summer I add in corn kernels that I've cut from the cob. Certain salads, like with butter lettuce and chicken, are tasty with a little fruit added - cubes of mango, or a few raisins, with a dressing made with a touch of curry sauce.

Toasted pine nuts are great, or you could even oven-bake your own croutons using some whole grain bread - toss the cubes with a little olive oil and the seasonings you like, then bake until golden and crisp.
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Old 03-26-2007, 08:57 PM   #3
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well if you like red peppers you can do that or maybe a FEW bacon bits or almonds!
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Old 03-26-2007, 09:01 PM   #4
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I always add a tablespoon of bacon bits - 25 calories and some slices of jalapeno pepper to spice it up some.
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Old 03-26-2007, 09:05 PM   #5
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I use salsa sometimes instead of dressing- you can really pile it on for about 15 calories! Also, about half my meals are on top of salads- you don't need dressing if you've piled ground turkey chili with black beans on top, or roasted chicken and sun dried tomatoes....

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Old 03-26-2007, 09:12 PM   #6
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I eat a huge salad almost every night. Then I eat just a little bit of whatever else is for dinner (in other words, whatever I've fixed for my hubby).

I almost always use Newman's light Balsamic Vinagreitte - sorry, I know that's spelled wrong. I also like the Light Sundried Tomato. I use 1/8 cup (that's 2 T. or one serving) if salad is not too big. If I have a huge salad I double it to 1/4 cup, which is two servings. I do not like my salad dry. One serving is 45 calories, so not too bad there. It has wholesome ingredients -- no HFCS or other junk that you find in lots of fat free dressings. Best of all, it tastes great. I drizzle a little lemon juice or balsalmic vinegar over it to stretch it a little.

I also almost always put a 1/4 cup of some type of bean. Usually chick peas, sometimes the light red kidney beans. These are a good source of protein and fiber and they make the salad seem more substantial. Then I always use a 1/4 c. of low fat (not fat free -- it's horrid) of feta cheese. It has such a tangy flavor that a little goes a long way. I am an olive lover, so I usually throw about 3 green or kalmata olives (chopped) in there too. These also give lots of flavor for just a few calories, and they happen to have the good kind of fat. This all makes for a killer salad. Tastes like a Greek salad that you'd get in a restaurant. Yum. I also second all the things Sugarlove said. I'll throw just about anything in if I have it.

Good luck. Even if you don't try feta, olives, or bean, give the Newman's Own Light dressings a try. They are wonderful!
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Old 03-26-2007, 09:15 PM   #7
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Thanks guys..Next salad is for sure getting beans.. Great idea..And I will try salsa as well..YUM!
Great ideas and I look forward to giving wquite a few of them a try! Thanks
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Old 03-26-2007, 09:28 PM   #8
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I'm another salsa girl. Try various types of salsas to see how you like them. Green salsas versus chunky red salsas, etc.
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Old 03-26-2007, 09:37 PM   #9
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Hi Silver,

I just wanted to add that I love dressing too, and I think the key for me is since I've been losing weight I measure the dressing EVERY SINGLE TIME. The most I'll allow myself, even on a HUGE salad is a quarter cup or two servings. This is 90 cal of the kind I use. If I need any more, it has to come from vinegar or lemon juice. I personally feel measuring is key for me, or I would use too much every time.
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Old 03-26-2007, 09:56 PM   #10
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I absolutely love salad dressings, even with everything else on the salad.....so to decrease any extra added calories (and so I can eat more) I use the no calorie/fat free dressings from Walden Farms......absolutely love em! But the the essential fats required in order for the body cells to work properly, I use unsalted almonds on my salad....
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Old 03-27-2007, 05:21 AM   #11
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The only time I tried salsa on salads wound up to be a disgusting and inedible mess, so never again for me I love it on cooked veggies though.

I'm a big fan of balsamic vinegar and extra virgin olive oil (using measuring spoon, don't trust myself with eyeballing a self-drizzle yet,) grated parmesan and heirloom tomatoes or whatever in-season raw veggies I find at the farmer's market.

To stretch the cheeses, finely grate a very sharp-flavored one. Vinegary dressings can be stretched by mixing with lemon juice. Also, instead of tossing, trying dipping the veggies or better yet, dipping the fork to save a little bit more. You can also add spices & herbs to the salad to reduce your reliance on dressings & cheeses for flavoring (I love giving my salads, and almost everything else, a good cracking of peppercorns!)
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Old 03-31-2007, 09:24 AM   #12
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I'm a big salad eater too. Every single day for lunch, and if I miss it I actually crave it. I usually go with the fat free or low fat dressings. I measure out my 2 Tablespoons (45 cal) and mix it with 1/4 c fat free cottage cheese(40 cal). It helps the dressing stretch and gives me a little more protein. I love it.
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Old 03-31-2007, 10:24 AM   #13
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When I make salads I home, I make it up in a large ziploc bag. I love balsamic vinegar and good olive oil. When everything is in the bag, close and toss and shake to get everything coated!! I also find that if I've added a little grated parm or feta cheese that it gets well distributed this way too.

You really don't need much dressing when you do this! AND all the flavors really get mixed together! (though the greens still seem to be on top at the end.
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Old 03-31-2007, 12:59 PM   #14
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I'm another fan of balsalmic vinaigrette - Trader Joe's has an awesome fat free dressing. One of my favorite salads is: spinach leaves, a few chickpeas, grilled chicken, orange pepper strips, grape tomatoes, chopped purple onion, a small portion of slivered almonds and a small portion of dried cranberries with the fat free balsalmic vinaigrette.
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Old 03-31-2007, 04:59 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gogirl008 View Post
I'm a big salad eater too. Every single day for lunch, and if I miss it I actually crave it. I usually go with the fat free or low fat dressings. I measure out my 2 Tablespoons (45 cal) and mix it with 1/4 c fat free cottage cheese(40 cal). It helps the dressing stretch and gives me a little more protein. I love it.
This is a GREAT idea! Thanks!!!

I don't like a lot of dressing on my salads. I usually make up my own dressing. I mix some Lite Ranch w/some honey and a little yellow mustard. I use 2 tspns. on my big salad. Wyllenn - I LOVE the idea of tossing it all in a bag. Thank you! I usually put in some finely shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese and about 3 oz. of Boar's Head Virginia Smoked ham. Also instead of croutons, I use a small amount of Fresh Gourmet Tortilla Strips. 35 calories per tblspn. You don't need much and they add a great crunch. They are in the lettuce aisle on in Giant.

Jo
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