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How to Build a Better Salad

We all know that salads are a great go-to lunch when you’re trying to create a healthier diet. A lot of the time, we dread that midday salad because it doesn’t taste as great as the burger that we’re used to, but did you know that it could taste even better than that burger? The key to creating a salad is to take it step by step. When building a salad, we usually go for whatever we can find in our fridge and throw it all together calling it a “salad” so of course it’s not going to taste great! By going on a quick grocery run, you can gather the perfect salad ingredients to create a salad that you’ll be choosing over the burger voluntarily!

     So, so far we know that to create a great salad, we need to choose the right ingredients and build it in steps. What does this mean? Salads often have a base, a protein, and some extra yummy toppings. We need to pick up the right ingredients for each step of the salad. Here are some options for each part that you can choose from:

  1. The base: For the base of your salad, you want to choose a leafy and nutritious green. This can include spinach, mixed greens, kale, or arugula.You can even mix some of these together to add even more flavor and nutrition! 
  2. Protein: It is important to include protein in every meal to give your body what it needs to function and build muscle. Some great protein sources to include in your salad are beans, lentils, salmon, tuna, chicken, eggs, or mozzarella cheese. Not only will this help you gain strength, but it will also keep you fuller for longer.
  3. The toppings: Salad toppings can include anything from veggies to salad dressing! These toppings are what can make or break your salad but luckily, you have a few options.
    1. Veggies: Adding vegetables to your salad is a great way to add even more nutrients without thinking about it. Some great veggie toppings are peppers, mushrooms, broccoli, avocado, and olives.
    2. Carbs: Carbohydrates are usually some of our favorite foods and can make your salad taste even better than it did before. Some great forms of carbs are grains like quinoa, rice, pita and tortilla! Your salads will never be boring when you add one of these.
    3. Add a crunch: Texture may be just as important as taste in your salad. Nobody wants to take a bite of soggy leaves. By adding food with a little crunch, you can avoid this! Some crunchy ideas are chickpeas, nuts or seeds.
    4. Dressing: Finally, the fan favorite salad topping. Salad dressing can add an incredible taste to your salad but is often where many people choose not so healthy options. The best salad dressing choice to keep those calories low is a vinaigrette. Vinaigrettes are just as tasty as other salad dressings but a bit lighter. Luckily, there are many different vinaigrette recipes and store bought options that you can add! 

       Salads don’t have to be boring. It’s easy to create a bad salad when you aren’t following these steps. By putting in the same effort that you do to cook that tasty burger, you can create the salad of your dreams. Simply start with a base, add your favorite protein, and some tasty toppings! The best part of salads is that you don’t have to have the same one every time. If you want something new, you can switch some ingredients easily. Try this salad hack today and you’ll never call a salad boring again.

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