Eat Empowered, Healthy Recipes

The Best Lettuce-Free Vegetable Salad

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If eating healthy is something that is in your normal routine, you’ve thought about doing, you love doing or you hate doing, you eat salad. We all do salad in some way shape or form.

But even for the healthiest eater, leafy greens Monday through Sunday can start to feel like overkill, and a break from them is actually a good idea when food boredom kicks in.

Making a great salad at home can be too much of a time suck. You don’t always have all of your fave ingredients, want to tie on your apron and spend the time you like to be in the gym whipping up lunch before you head out to work.

And, your greens reliably go bad. Too many times, your lettuce has turned to slime because you didn’t get to it in time. (Hey, that rhymes!)

Can I get an amen?!

I get it. Now here’s what ya gotta do.

I tell all of my clients to make a huge crunchy, lettuce-free vegetable salad one day a week (preferably on Sunday.) This is a philosophy, more than a recipe, and is life changing. For real.

A salad with lettuce in it won’t last more than a few hours because those leaves are full of water and more sensitive than your ex. Lettuce goes from gorgeous to gross pretty quickly, thanks to air, temperature and water all working against it.

Instead, chop up only crunchy veggies. Their sturdy cellular structure is more resilient against breakdown and keeps them fresh longer. Fortitude like that makes sturdy veggies less susceptible to slimedom.

Leave out the meat, beans, and other protein, too, as those ingredients will expire in a couple days. If done right, you can get about 5 days out of your lettuce-free, 10 minutes to prep, brilliant vegetable salad creation.

Your Lettuce-Free Vegetable Salad Game Plan

  • Carve out 15 – 20 minutes. Put a time in your calendar to wash and chop your produce so you know it will get done
  • Cut up your favorite crunchy veggies. I like carrots, radishes, green beans, peppers, celery, cucumbers, jicama, fennel, cauliflower and broccoli
  • Chop properly. I recommend chopping not-too-small for two reasons: first, larger bite sized pieces take longer to eat, slow you down and help you listen to your bod and satiety. Oh, and second, the smaller you cut, the quicker they go bad
  • Store your salad. Do this in an airtight container that is sealed tightly and place in the fridge

3 Awesome Ways to Use Your Vegetable Salad

Make lunch in less than a minute: Pull out two handfuls of your favorite greens, like kale, spinach, arugula or romaine. Add a giant scoop of your lettuce free salad and now top it with a protein, like chicken, turkey, meatballs, salmon, tuna, beans or tofu. Add a fat, too: 1 ounce of cheese, a half of a small avocado, a tablespoon of seeds or two teaspoons of olive oil and lemon

Make a quick super slimming snack: Scoop out a cup of your lettuce free salad and top it with a tablespoon of guac, hummus, bean salad or salsa, or top it with a teaspoon of olive oil and sunflower seeds or even simply rice vinegar

Make a decadent looking starter course: A scoop of lettuce free salad is brilliant as a starter before dinner instead of the traditional lettuce, tomato and cuke salad or added to cucumber soup or gazpacho

I’ve just shared a great philosophy for lettuce-free vegetable salad. Now it’s your turn to share. What are your favorite salad tips and tricks?

 

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