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5 Options to Upgrade Your Summer Salads

Summer salads are a staple for many people during the warmer months. However, they can often become repetitive and bland without proper seasoning and ingredients. Fortunately, there are many healthy options available to make summer salads more tasteful and exciting.

summer salads

One option is to add fresh herbs to the salad. Herbs such as basil, cilantro, and mint can add a burst of flavor and freshness to any salad. They can be chopped or torn and mixed into the salad or used as a garnish. Additionally, herbs are packed with antioxidants and other health benefits, making them a nutritious addition to any meal.

Another option is to incorporate a variety of textures into the salad. Adding crunchy toppings such as nuts, seeds, or croutons can provide a satisfying crunch and contrast to the softness of the greens. Fruits such as apples, pears, or berries can also add a sweet and juicy element to the salad. By incorporating different textures, the salad becomes more interesting and enjoyable to eat.

With all of that in mind, here are our top tips to upgrade your salads this summer!

5 Options to Upgrade Your Summer Salads

#1: Innovative Dressing Ideas

Summer salads are a great way to add some freshness and nutrition to your diet. However, sometimes they can be a little bland and boring. That’s where innovative dressing ideas come in! Here are a few ways to add some flavor and excitement to your salads:

  • Citrus Vinaigrette: This tangy dressing is perfect for a summer salad. Simply mix together some fresh orange juice, lemon juice, olive oil, honey, and dijon mustard. You can also add some minced garlic and herbs for extra flavor.
  • Avocado Dressing: Avocado is a great source of healthy fats and adds a creamy texture to dressings. To make an avocado dressing, simply blend together some avocado, lime juice, olive oil, and salt. You can also add some cilantro or jalapeno for a little kick.
  • Miso Dressing: Miso paste adds a savory, umami flavor to dressings. To make a miso dressing, whisk together some miso paste, rice vinegar, soy sauce, honey, and sesame oil. You can also add some ginger or garlic for extra flavor.
  • Yogurt Dressing: Yogurt is a great source of protein and adds a tangy flavor to dressings. To make a yogurt dressing, simply mix together some plain Greek yogurt, lemon juice, olive oil, and salt. You can also add some herbs like dill or parsley.

By trying out these innovative dressing ideas, you can add some excitement and flavor to your summer salads while still keeping them healthy and nutritious.

#2: Protein Add-Ins for Satiety

Adding protein to a salad is an excellent way to make it more filling and satisfying. Protein has been shown to increase feelings of fullness and satiety, making it a great addition to any meal. Here are some healthy protein add-ins to consider:

Grilled Chicken

Grilled chicken is a classic salad topping that is both delicious and nutritious. It’s low in fat and high in protein, making it an excellent choice for those looking to maintain or build muscle mass.

Hard-Boiled Eggs

Hard-boiled eggs are another great source of protein to add to your salad. They’re easy to prepare and can be stored in the fridge for a quick and easy addition to any meal.

Tofu

For those who prefer a vegetarian or vegan option, tofu is a great source of protein. It’s versatile and can be cooked in a variety of ways, making it an excellent addition to any salad.

Nuts and Seeds

Nuts and seeds are a great way to add protein and healthy fats to your salad. Some examples include almonds, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, and sunflower seeds.

Quinoa

Quinoa is a complete protein, meaning it contains all nine essential amino acids. It’s also a good source of fiber, making it a great addition to any salad for added satiety.

By adding protein to your summer salads, you can make them more filling and satisfying. Try incorporating some of these healthy protein add-ins into your next salad for a delicious and nutritious meal.

#3: Texture and Flavor Enhancers

Summer salads can be made more interesting and tasty by adding texture and flavor enhancers. These ingredients not only add variety to your salad but also provide additional nutrition. Here are some options to consider:

  • Crunchy Vegetables: Adding crunchy vegetables like celery, cucumbers, and radishes can add texture and a refreshing crunch to your salad. These vegetables are also low in calories and high in fiber, making them a healthy addition.
  • Nuts and Seeds: Nuts and seeds like almonds, sunflower seeds, and pumpkin seeds are a great source of protein and healthy fats. They add a nutty flavor and a satisfying crunch to your salad.
  • Stuffed Olives: Stuffed olives are a great way to add a burst of flavor to your salad. They come in a variety of flavors like garlic, jalapeno, and feta cheese, and can be used to replace traditional salad dressings.
  • Fruits: Adding fruits like strawberries, blueberries, and mangoes can add sweetness and a burst of flavor to your salad. They are also a great source of vitamins and antioxidants.
  • Herbs: Herbs like basil, cilantro, and mint can add a fresh and aromatic flavor to your salad. They are also a great source of antioxidants and can help reduce inflammation.

By adding texture and flavor enhancers to your summer salads, you can create a delicious and nutritious meal that will keep you satisfied and energized throughout the day.

#4: Creative Salad Combinations

Summer salads don’t have to be boring. With a little creativity, you can make a delicious and healthy salad that will satisfy your taste buds. Here are some creative salad combinations to try:

  • Fruit and Nut Salad: Combine mixed greens with sliced strawberries, blueberries, and almonds. Drizzle with a balsamic vinaigrette for a sweet and tangy flavor.
  • Greek Salad with Quinoa: Mix together chopped romaine lettuce, cherry tomatoes, cucumber, red onion, feta cheese, and cooked quinoa. Dress with a lemon vinaigrette for a refreshing and filling salad.
  • Taco Salad: Start with a bed of chopped romaine lettuce and top with seasoned ground turkey or beef, black beans, diced tomatoes, shredded cheese, and crushed tortilla chips. Add a dollop of sour cream and salsa for a Mexican-inspired twist.
  • Caprese Salad with Avocado: Layer sliced tomatoes and fresh mozzarella cheese on a bed of arugula. Top with sliced avocado and drizzle with a balsamic glaze for a creamy and flavorful salad.
  • Asian Salad: Combine shredded cabbage, carrots, and edamame with sliced almonds and mandarin oranges. Dress with a sesame ginger vinaigrette for a crunchy and flavorful salad.

These creative salad combinations are just a few examples of how you can make a healthy and delicious salad that will keep you satisfied all summer long.

#5: Health Benefits of Salad Ingredients

Summer salads are a great way to add some freshness to your diet. Not only are they delicious, but they can also be packed with nutrients that can benefit your health. Here are some of the health benefits of the ingredients commonly found in summer salads:

Leafy Greens

Leafy greens such as spinach, kale, and arugula are excellent sources of vitamins A, C, and K, as well as folate and iron. They are also low in calories and high in fiber, making them a great addition to any diet.

Tomatoes

Tomatoes are a good source of vitamin C and potassium, as well as lycopene, an antioxidant that has been linked to a reduced risk of certain types of cancer. They also add a burst of color and flavor to any salad.

Avocado

Avocado is a good source of healthy fats, fiber, and potassium. It also contains vitamins C, K, and B6, as well as folate. Adding avocado to your salad can help keep you feeling full and satisfied.

Nuts and Seeds

Nuts and seeds such as almonds, walnuts, and sunflower seeds are a great source of protein, healthy fats, and fiber. They also contain a variety of vitamins and minerals, including vitamin E and magnesium.

Berries

Berries such as strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries are packed with antioxidants, which can help protect your cells from damage. They are also a good source of vitamin C and fiber.

By incorporating these ingredients into your summer salads, you can not only add some flavor and variety to your diet but also reap the many health benefits they offer.

Salad Preparation Techniques

Preparing salads can be a daunting task, but with a few simple techniques, anyone can make a delicious and healthy summer salad. Here are some tips to help make your salads more tasteful:

1. Properly Wash and Dry Your Greens

Before adding any ingredients to your salad, it’s important to properly wash and dry your greens. This will help remove any dirt or debris and ensure that your salad stays fresh for longer. Use a salad spinner or pat the greens dry with a paper towel to remove any excess water.

2. Cut Your Vegetables into Bite-Sized Pieces

Cutting your vegetables into bite-sized pieces will make your salad easier to eat and also help distribute the flavors more evenly. Use a sharp knife to cut your vegetables into small, uniform pieces.

3. Add a Variety of Textures and Flavors

To make your salad more interesting, try adding a variety of textures and flavors. For example, you could add crunchy nuts, creamy avocado, or tangy feta cheese. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different combinations of ingredients.

4. Make Your Own Dressing

Making your own dressing is a great way to add flavor to your salad without adding extra calories. Try mixing together olive oil, vinegar, and your favorite herbs and spices for a healthy and delicious dressing.

By following these simple salad preparation techniques, anyone can make healthy and flavorful summer salads this season.

this is a contributed article 

Picture of Shelley Whittaker

Shelley Whittaker

Shelley is the Founder of Wander & Luxe. She is an award nominated blogger and has worked in the travel, motherhood and lifestyle space since 2016. Her mission is to inspire family wanderlust by showing her adventures and sharing her knowledge and know how when travelling with kids. All whilst she tries to conquer motherhood and indulge in life’s little luxuries.

Picture of Shelley Whittaker

Shelley Whittaker

Shelley is the Founder of Wander & Luxe. She is an award nominated blogger and has worked in the travel, motherhood and lifestyle space since 2016. Her mission is to inspire family wanderlust by showing her adventures and sharing her knowledge and know how when travelling with kids. All whilst she tries to conquer motherhood and indulge in life’s little luxuries.

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Inspiring and Informing Your Family Wanderlust
Aussie Wife | Yorkshire Mama
Lover of Coffee, Champagne and A Little Luxe
Perth, Western Australia

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