13 Salad Hacks for Health & Efficiency
Salads are put on a pedestal as the ultimate "diet food." While some are quite nutritious, others may be nutritionally equivalent to its calorically-dense food neighbor on the drive-thru menu. Skip the restaurant lines and embrace these 13 hacks to make your salads faster and healthier!
Salads are put on a pedestal as the ultimate "diet food." While some are quite nutritious, others may be nutritionally equivalent to its calorically-dense food neighbor on the drive-thru menu. Although a healthy lifestyle and a busy schedule may be tough to balance, the words "fast" and "healthy" can still be managed. Skip the restaurant lines and embrace these 13 hacks to make your salads faster and healthier!
Packaging and Storing
1. Mason Jar Salad
Mason jars make convenient storage and traveling containers for your lunchtime salad. Layer from bottom to top: wet ingredients/dressing, veggies, protein sources, and salad greens and anything crunchy. Ultimately, keep dryer goods towards the top to prevent them from getting damp.
2. Bulk Salad
Fill up your largest bowel or container with salad greens and veggies. Keeping salad in bulk allows for quicker access to pack for work or pair with dinner.
3. Dry Storing
After preparing a bulk mix of salad or before placing leftovers in the fridge, place a dry paper towel on top. The towel will act as on absorbent to prevent soggy, undesirable lettuce leaves.
4. Multi-Colored Leaves
Explore all the available salad leaves! The richer the color, generally the more nutrients packed into the leaves. Do not be afraid to experiment with purple or red lettuce leaves, kale, or spinach.
5. Get to Spiraling
Traditional salad leaves getting bland and boring? Spiralize veggies to form the base of your salad - cucumber, carrot, sweet potato, and summer squash are a few common ideas. Add a little sweetness to your salad by spiralizing apples and pears.
6. Greek Yogurt
Go slightly untraditional with a Greek yogurt-based salad. Use plain Greek yogurt, chicken or tuna, and fresh grapes and seeds for a quick, yet healthy salad. Simply eat as is, top on multigrain bread or crackers, or layer in lettuce leaves for lettuce wraps.
7. Make Them 'Hearty'
Bulk up salad greens with grains or beans. The fiber content contributes to good heart health along with improved digestion. High fiber will also keep you feeling fuller for longer periods of time.
8. Pre-sliced Veggies
Having your favorite veggies cut and fresh on hand allows for easy salad assembly. Precut bell pepper, broccoli, carrot, cucumber, and tomato. Keeping veggies separated also allows salads to be individualized for all family members.
9. Shredded Chicken
Shred cooked chicken breasts or rotisserie chicken. Keep cool in the fridge and add to salads for a convenient protein source!
10. Hard Boiled Eggs
Make a batch of hard boiled eggs that can be easily added. Complementing with egg is a high protein salad idea that also provides those notorious healthy fats.
11. Onion Soak
Do you cry a little bit when cutting onions? Most do! Soak onions in cold water for at least 10 minutes then chop and dice. Not only will tears be eliminated, the strong, raw onion aroma will be mellowed to a more pleasant, mild flavor.
12. Keep It Simple
Some salads are full of flavor without gobs of dressing camouflaging those colorful veggies. Lightly drizzling olive oil or sprinkling with favorite seasonings can enhance flavor without significantly tarnishing the nutrition profile.
13. Homemade Dressings
Dressing choices can drench a nutritious salad bowl with unwanted fats and sugars. Making dressings in the comfort of your own kitchen offers control over ingredient quality and quantity. Click below to try these dressing recipes on your next salad!
• Light, Classic Vinaigrette
• Soy and Roasted Garlic
• Cucumber Herb Vinaigrette
• Healthy Ranch Dressing