Healthy Salad Recipes

it's ok to put fruit in salad

Healthy salad recipes?  Aren't all salads good for you?

Most of us, especially if we are in a rush, would opt for a salad if we want a healthy option.

At buffets, at meals out, at MacDonald's.  If there is not much choice it is easy to go for the one with a big dollop of leaves to make us feel all warm and virtuous, but it is a good idea to stop and think first.

Or stop and look if there is a food label. (and think also - what is going to happen to that plastic packaging?)

Once I was at the supermarket and had a sugar craving.  Now I know I am against too much sugar as a food, and I know it's not good, but this craving was just too overwhelming.  So there I was reading the labels on various cream doughnuts, jam scones, bakewell pies and chocolate choux buns so I could buy the least naughty.

It was quite a revelation.  The products I thought would have the least calories, sugar and fat had the highest.  I opted for a pastry filled with fruity syrupy stuff with a finger licky portion of cream on top because, unless Sainsbury's had got their maths wrong, it really was the best option.  Yet it was the one I would have avoided like the plague if I hadn't read the label.

And it's the same with salads.   They are not always the best choice.  They might well give you vitamins and minerals, but you need more than that.  A proper balanced meal should also contain proteins, fats, and carbohydrates.  If there is not enough of any one of these elements then your meal will not fully satiate your appetite and you end up later stopping off at a garage for a chocolate bar to fill the gap.

Good combinations for healthy salad recipes

tomato and chives

This is what I personally look for in good healthy salad recipes:

  • A mixture of colours, textures and tastes which will ensure a good variety of good stuff for your body, and will also make the salad more appealing.
  • Minimal Salad dressings  .  Keeping it simple is best, with just a sprinkling of oil and vinegar, maybe a scattering of herbs and spices. if you like mayonnaise, read the ingredients.  Avoid any with unnecessary added ingredients and eggs from caged hens.
  • Add protein foods and good starches with plenty of fibre to satisfy the appetite.  Cold meat, eggs, fish, pulses and nuts are a good source of protein but watch for processed meat such as bacon or ham which will have additives.  Any meat which has been minced and reformed into a uniform, usually square, shape will probably have additives tooThere should be some fats/oils somewhere in the mix.
  • Better still to use home grown and/or organic food.

If you are out and about and buying your salad at a salad bar then you are at an advantage. You can pick and choose and so avoid high starch/low fibre foods and anything slathered in dressings.

Another question you might want to ask - how is your purchased salad produced and packed? - or maybe you might rather stay ignorant (sometimes you wonder if it is better that way) as producers may use methods of growing, transporting and packaging that you might not approve of.

Use the links below for some more ideas for healthy salad recipes

A few salad recipes

Design your own salad

Salads, the best fast food there is

Coming soon:

cook books (t2 draft)

healthy eating tips (t3 draft)



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