Categories
Salads Vegetarian

Mediterranean Chickpea and Egg Salad

In case you haven’t noticed, I have a slight obsession with chickpeas, and have since I was a young child. There’s just something about them. I could eat them every day and never get tired of them. I’m always coming up with new ways to eat them because I just love them so much!

Chickpeas are the star of this delicious Mediterranean chickpea and egg salad that is elevated by the addition of other yummy ingredients from the region, including cucumbers, feta cheese, kalamata olives, fresh mint, and parsley. This salad makes the perfect lunch because it’s quick, filling, and absolutely delicious. It would also be a perfect side item at a barbeque or family event.

Ingredients: 

Salad:

2 cans of chickpeas, drained and rinsed

4 hard boiled eggs, sliced

½ c. kalamata olives, pitted

1 c. cucumber, diced

4 green onions, sliced

¼ c. fresh parsley, chopped

½ c. fresh mint, chopped

½ c. feta cheese, crumbled

Dressing: 

⅓ c. olive oil

Juice from 1 lemon

2 tsp. Dijon mustard

1 clove of garlic, minced

1 tsp. basil

1 tsp. oregano

1 tsp. red pepper flakes

Salt and pepper

Combine all of the ingredients for the dressing in a bowl and whisk to combine. Set aside. 

Combine all of the ingredients for the salad and mix together. Drizzle the dressing over the salad, mix and season with salt and pepper, if needed. Serve immediately. 

Categories
Chicken/Turkey Salads

Greek Chicken Kale Salad with Tzatziki Dressing

My favorite lunch is, without question, a big, satisfying salad full of fresh ingredients that make me actually look forward to my lunch break instead of that dreaded “oh, I have to eat (insert day three of leftovers here)” feeling. I guarantee you’ve all been there. This Greek chicken kale salad with tzatziki dressing is snap-of-a-finger quick to prepare for lunch at home or to make in advance for pre-prepped weekday lunches. 

Greek cooks definitely have the art of chicken flavor down to a science: olive oil, lemon, garlic, onions, oregano. So good. So simple. So fresh. And the ever-present Greek combo of tzatziki dressing and feta? Don’t even get me started. All of this on top of a mixture of lacinato kale, cucumbers and chickpeas. If kale isn’t your jam, you could definitely opt for mixed greens instead. Either way, I’m guessing your salad craving just kicked in.

Ingredients:

Chicken:

2 chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces

1 Tbsp. olive oil

½ yellow onion, chopped

Juice from 1 lemon

3 garlic cloves, minced

2 tsp. oregano

2 tsp. cumin

2 tsp. paprika

Salt and pepper

Tzatziki Dressing:

⅓ c. plain Greek yogurt

1 Tbsp. olive oil

2 tsp. water

Juice from ½ lemon

1 garlic clove, minced

1 tsp. oregano

Salt and pepper

Salad:

1 bunch of lacinato kale, torn into small leaves and massaged

1 cucumber, sliced

¾ c. chickpeas, drained and rinsed

¼ feta cheese, crumbled

Combine all of the ingredients for the dressing and whisk to combine. Set aside 

Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium high heat. Add the chicken, onion, garlic, oregano, cumin, and paprika and cook until the chicken is cooked through and browned. Season with salt and pepper. 

To assemble the salad, place the massaged kale in a large serving bowl. Top with cucumbers, chickpeas, and feta cheese. Drizzle with the tzatziki dressing and top with chicken. Enjoy!

Categories
Fish/Seafood Salads

Mexican Salmon Salad

So dreamy, so summery. This Mexican salmon salad is delicious without the salmon, but addition of the spice-covered seared salmon makes this salad something to write home about. This salad is versatile, and would make a terrific weekend lunch or a quick weeknight meal. It’s super healthy, substantial, filling and the flavors are outstanding. Best of all, it’s incredibly quick and simple to make and takes about 10 minutes from start to finish. 

Ingredients:

Salmon:

2 wild-caught salmon fillets

1 tsp. cumin

1 tsp. chili powder

½ tsp. cayenne

1 tsp. oregano

1 tsp. garlic powder

1 Tbsp. olive oil

Salt and pepper

Salad:

5-6 cups mixed greens

1 avocado, diced

1 c. black beans, drained and rinsed, lightly salted

¼ c. queso fresco, crumbled

¼ c. cilantro, chopped

2 green onions, sliced

1 jalapeno, sliced

Creamy Cilantro-Lime Avocado dressing

Mix together the cumin, chili powder, cayenne, oregano, and garlic powder in a small bowl. Pat the fish dry and then cover liberally with the spice mixture. Salt and pepper the fillets on top of the spice mixture. 

To cook the salmon, high the olive oil over medium high heat in a skillet until the oil is very hot. Place the salmon in the skillet and cook, without moving it, for about 5 minutes. Flip over, and sear the other side for 4-5 minutes, or until it is cooked through. Remove from the pan and set aside on a plate.

To assemble the salad, divide the mixed greens, avocado, black beans, queso fresco, cilantro, green onions, and jalapeno evenly among two plates. Place the salmon fillets on top and drizzle with dressing. Enjoy!

Categories
Salads Sides

Warm Brussel Sprout Salad with Bacon and Gorgonzola

You know I love a warm and hearty salad, and this one is amazingly delicious and satisfying. Roasted brussel sprouts are infused with the flavors of shallots and garlic, tossed in a light vinaigrette and topped with bacon and gorgonzola. This salad is fodder for sexy salad dreams, I tell you. If you try it, you’ll understand. 

Ingredients:

2 c. brussels sprouts, halved

1 shallot, sliced

2 cloves of garlic, minced

2 Tbsp. olive oil 

Salt and pepper

2 slices of bacon, diced

½ c. gorgonzola cheese, crumbled

Dressing:

2 Tbsp. white wine vinegar or champagne vinegar

2 tsp. Dijon mustard 

⅓ c. olive oil

Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. 

Toss together the brussels sprouts, shallots, garlic and olive oil and spread out on a lined baking sheet. Cook for 20-25 minutes, or until the veggies are tender and slightly browned. 

Prepare the dressing by whisking together all ingredients and set aside. 

To assemble the salad, place the still-warm brussels sprouts in a large bowl and toss with dressing. Top with bacon and gorgonzola. Serve immediately!

Categories
Fish/Seafood Salads

Super Green Asian Salad with Shrimp

This lovely green-hued salad is full of so many tasty verdant-colored ingredients: mixed greens, cucumber, wasabi peas, and green onions. What makes this salad so incredibly good is the addition of white rice, shrimp and the spicy soy ginger dressing. The salad is reminiscent of sushi, but so clean, fresh, and light. There’s just enough rice to satisfy that rice-soy sauce feeling and flavor while still keeping the salad veggie-heavy and cleansing for the body and the tastebuds. The shrimp provides the sweet, sea-flavored protein that leaves you feeling satisfied and full after you eat this lovely green salad.  

Ingredients:

4-6 c. mixed greens

½ cucumber, sliced into sticks

1 avocado, cubed

½ c. wasabi peas

¼ c. cooked white rice

16-18 shrimp, cooked and seasoned with salt and pepper

2 green onions, sliced

Spicy Soy Ginger Dressing

Salt and pepper to taste

Sesame seeds, for topping

Place the mixed greens in a large bowl. Top with cucumbers, avocado cubes, wasabi peas, white rice, shrimp, and green onions. Drizzle the dressing on top, toss, and add salt, pepper, and sesame seeds to taste.

Categories
Chicken/Turkey Salads

Romaine Caesar with Garlicky Pan-Fried Chicken

There’s a reason that Caesar salad is wildly popular: it’s rich and decadent, but fresh and so delicious. The creamy, garlicky, umami dressing would taste good on nearly anything, but is so ideal as a BFF for a crispy bowl of romaine. Caesar salad is a near-perfect meal, but when you top a Caesar salad with lots of Parmesan and garlicky chicken, your salad game levels up substantially. 

This salad travels well because everything can be prepped in advance and mixed together when you’re ready to enjoy your bomb salad that you’ve been obsessing about all day. Whether you’re at work, picnicking, or taking it as a side dish for a dinner party with friends, it will definitely be enjoyed by all who try it, unless you decide to hog it all to yourself . . . which is totally acceptable. 

Ingredients:

1 head of romaine lettuce, torn into bite-sized pieces

¼ c. Parmesan cheese

Caesar dressing

1 chicken breast, cut into thin, bite-sized strips

1 Tbsp. olive oil 

2 cloves of garlic, minced

Juice from one lemon

2 tsp.oregano 

Salt and pepper to taste

Make dressing and set aside.

Heat 1 Tbsp. olive oil in a large skillet. Add the chicken, lemon juice, 2 garlic cloves, oregano, salt and pepper and cook until chicken is browned. Set aside on a plate and cover to keep warm. 

To assemble the salad, toss romaine with a generous amount of dressing. Top with chicken and Parmesan cheese and enjoy!

Categories
Salads Vegetarian

Elote (Mexican Street Corn) Arugula Salad with Cotija Cheese

Ever since I made my Mexican street corn shrimp bowls a few weeks ago, I have been craving that creamy, deliciously sweet corn. I keep meaning to make it, but then my easily distracted cooking brain thinks of something else to make and then that thought is gone with the wind. 

Well, today it was so summer-like that I made elote my priority again – this time on a bed of peppery arugula and paired with red and serrano peppers, cotija cheese, avocado, cilantro, and lime. It tasted just like summer feels – sunny, fresh, and happy. 

Feel free to add as much or as little spice as you like with serranos or extra chili powder. I don’t think this salad needs dressing once everything is mixed together, but you could add a little olive oil at the end if you’d like!

Ingredients:

1 Tbsp. olive oil

1 can corn, drained and rinsed

1 shallot, diced

1 jalapeno, diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 Tbsp. mayonnaise 

2 Tbsp. sour cream or Mexican crema

Juice from one lemon

2 tsp. chili powder

1 tsp. cumin

1 tsp. smoked paprika 

5 oz. baby arugula

½ red bell pepper, chopped

2 tsp. serrano peppers, seeded and chopped (if desired)

½ c. cotija cheese

1 avocado, cubed

Chopped cilantro

Squeeze of lime or lemon (if desired)

Salt, pepper and red pepper flakes, to taste

In a small bowl, combine mayo, sour cream, lemon juice, chili powder, cumin, paprika, salt and pepper. Mix the dressing together thoroughly.

Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the corn, shallot, jalapeno, and garlic and cook until the corn is slightly charred. Add the dressing, stir and remove from heat. Do not allow this mixture to burn. Set aside and allow to cool. 

To assemble the salad, place arugula in a large salad bowl. Top with Mexican street corn, red peppers, serranos, avocado, cilantro, and cotija cheese. Mix thoroughly. Add a squeeze of lime  or lemon, if desired, and salt and pepper. Mix again. Serve!

Categories
Pork Salads

Vietnamese Noodle Salad with Caramelized Pork and Nuoc Cham

Right now I’m on a fresh, spring food kick because the weather is warming up. All I can think about is bright green herbs and crunchy veggies. For this reason, I wanted to make a cold veggie-loaded Vietnamese noodle salad with a light, but tangy nuoc cham sauce. 

I am a big fan of noodle salads, no matter what protein I decide to add to it, but this caramelized pork version is definitely at the top of my list when it comes to a noodle salad protein. 

The pork marinade tenderizes and infuses so many delicious flavors into the meat. The key is to very thinly slice the pork before marinating so that the pieces can really soak up all of the good stuff. That way, when you cook the pork it gets caramelized on all sides. If you find yourself salivating as you’re cooking this pork, just wait until you taste it. You’ll crave this often, so you might want to add it to your meal rotation. 

Ingredients:

Pork/Marinade:

1 lb. pork tenderloin or chops

2 cloves of garlic, minced

3 Tbsp. toasted sesame oil

1-2 Tbsp. fish sauce (your preference)

3 Tbsp. honey or agave

1 Tbsp. soy sauce or tamari

Salt and pepper

Nuoc Cham Sauce:

⅔  c. water

1 Tbsp. rice vinegar

2 Tbsp. fish sauce

3 Tbsp. sugar

2 Tbsp lime juice 

½ tsp. Sambal Oelek chile paste

1 garlic clove, minced

2 Thai bird or serrano chiles, seeded and minced (optional)

Salt to taste

Noodle Salad:

12 oz. vermicelli noodles, cooked according to package directions and drained

6 c. mixed greens

2 carrots, julienned or thinly sliced

1 cucumber, thinly sliced

1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped

1 bunch mint leaves, chopped

Lime, for serving

Serrano peppers, if you’re a fan of spiciness

The night before making the noodle salad, place the pork into the freezer for about 30-45 minutes. This will make it easy to slice into really thin pieces. Slice the pork into really thin pieces and place into a glass container. Add all of the marinade ingredients and mixed thoroughly. Store in the refrigerator overnight. 

To make the sauce, combine all of the ingredients in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, stir until the sugar is dissolved and remove from heat. Set aside in a bowl and let it cool for 15 minutes prior to serving. 

To cook the pork, heat a skillet over medium high heat. Add in the pork and marinade and cook until the pork is browned, caramelized and most of the liquid is mostly cooked off. 

To assemble the noodle salads, divide the noodles, vegetables and pork into 4 bowls. Serve with the sauce on the side.

Categories
Salads Vegetarian

Rainbow Salad with Shallot-Dijon Dressing

The nice thing about salads is that you don’t really need a recipe. Sometimes you just need a little ingredient inspiration. For this rainbow salad, I simply chose a few of my favorite salad items and voila – this salad was born. This salad is not only beautiful, it’s also mighty yummy – and healthy to boot!

Ingredients:

8 oz. mixed greens

½  red bell pepper, cut into bite-sized pieces

1 c. fresh blueberries

1 c. chickpeas

½ c. blue cheese

4 hard boiled eggs, cut into wedges or slices

Shallot dressing

Combine all salad ingredients in a bowl. Drizzle with shallot dressing, toss and serve!

Categories
Salads Uncategorized

Best of Winter Salad

It’s winter, which I know doesn’t necessarily cause most of us to conjure up images of salads in our minds. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t salad season all winter long. It just means that salads can include heartier, more comforting combinations of ingredients. Enter the Best of Winter salad. 

This salad is chock full o’ all of the best winter-themed add-ins, like bacon, rich gorgonzola cheese, pears, and salty-sweet pecans lightly drizzled with a light, but savory shallot dressing. Now if that doesn’t sound good, no matter the season, I just don’t get you.

Ingredients:

6 oz. mixed greens

½ c. gorgonzola cheese, crumbled

4-6 slices of bacon, cooked and cut into small pieces

½ c. pecans

2 pears, sliced

Shallot dressing

Combine all of the salad ingredients in a large bowl. Add the shallot dressing slowly, tasting and tossing until the desired amount  of dressing is on the salad. Enjoy!