Build a better salad! 5 super-easy steps
Topping ideas and tips galore
A healthy and tasty green salad is a snap to make — no recipe required.
All you need is a bowl of fresh, tender greens from your local grocer or farmer’s market. And from there, let a little creativity and your taste buds be your guide.
What you choose to add gives your salad the color, crunch and flavor that makes it an amazing appetizer — or a magnificent meal in itself.
Salad up like a chef
Light and luscious? Colorful and crunchy? Satisfying and sweet? Use this flexible formula to put together a salad that’s all your own and brimming with goodness.
- Begin with a mix of leafy greens
You can’t go wrong with greens — but darker generally means more nutrients. Good choices include red leaf lettuce, arugula, romaine and spinach. Thin slices of radicchio can add color and crunch.
- Add a variety of colorful veggies
Different colors bring different nutrients. So mix smooth slices of dark red beets and orange-red tomatoes with chunky florets of green broccoli and white cauliflower. Shredded red onion provides a crisp tang — while corn brings the sweet taste of summer.
- Flavor with fruit
It’s not a must — but you can also give your salad a sweet touch. Dot your creation with cherries, grapes, strawberries, dried cranberries or pomegranate seeds.
Chef tip: Fruit and cheese play wonderfully together. Add a little crumbled low-fat feta or blue cheese to enjoy this pleasing pairing.
- Make it a meal
Pump up the protein for a nourishing main dish. Toss in some skinless chicken, sliced boiled egg, low-fat cottage cheese, cubed fat-free mozzarella, tofu or canned tuna.* Or add black beans, chickpeas or kidney beans for substance and protein. Whole grains, such as barley, quinoa and wild rice, make great and hearty additions too.
- Dress lightly
Go easy on the dressing. Drizzle it over your salad to add flavor while letting the other ingredients shine through. A tablespoon or two per serving is plenty.
Chef tip: Almost every salad is improved with added crunch. Sprinkle on unsalted walnuts, almonds, pistachios or soy nuts. Toast them first for extra flavor.
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