I never used to enjoy salads, let alone vegetables. It took me several years of trying new veggies, prepared in all kinds of ways to find stuff I really enjoyed eating. And I’m glad I experimented, because we all know how important veggies are for our health, and that they can help with weight loss because they're low in calories, yet high in fiber and water (both of which help keep you full).
Don't get me wrong: I'm not about to nosh on a bunch of plain steamed broccoli and tell myself it's delicious. (I've done it, but I don't make it a regular thing.) I still enjoy cooking and combining veggies with other foods so that they taste delicious and I actually want to eat them.
That said, I think you can trust me on this simple salad recipe. For me, a good salad has to have three key things: fruit, nuts, and protein—especially if I'm eating it as a meal. My latest salad concoction is so super delicious that I made it every single day while I was on vacation last week—and still came home wanting more of it. It's the perfect combo of bitter, sweet, savory and tang that I think you'll love it, too. Think of it as a delicious delivery device for your daily greens.
Here's what you need:
2 cups mixed salad greens, rinsed and drained
5 large Romaine lettuce leaves, rinsed, drained and torn into pieces
0.5 oz. roasted and salted pecans, coarsely chopped
1 hardboiled egg, chilled and chopped
0.5 oz. goat cheese, crumbled
1/2 cup cooked garbanzo beans (chickpeas)
10 red, purple or black grapes, halved
1-2 thin slices of red onion, finely chopped
Simply combine all ingredients and top with a drizzle of your favorite dressing (mine is a simple balsamic vinaigrette). A little will go a long way since these ingredients alone pack so much delicious flavor!
Here are this superstar salad's stats. Keep in mind, the portion is generous and it's filling and balanced enough to be a full meal. That said, you could always tweak the portions or each ingredient if you need it to be lower in calories, fat, carbs or whatever other nutrient you're trying to scale back on.
20 g protein
47 g carbs
10 g fiber
20 g fat
499 mg sodium (try unsalted pecans to decrease this)
Click here for the full recipe (to add it to your favorites or food tracker with just one click if you have a free SparkPeople account).
Will you try this salad? What's your favorite combination of salad ingredients?