Branch out of your boring salad routine with these out-of-the-bowl ideas. Here are 8 refreshing sides that will make your usual mix green with envy.
1. Kale Salad with Papaya and Gorgonzola
On a popularity scale of greens, kale would be considered the “it” girl; this trendy leaf catches diners’ eyes with delight, especially when topped with nuts, cheese, or the works. Tip: Don’t hold back on the dressing – this thick, fibrous green benefits from a healthy dose of your go-to vinaigrette. Crazy for kale? Then, you must give this variation a try.
Get the recipe.
2. Greek Quinoa Salad
Salads don’t automatically equal greens; in fact, lose the greens altogether in this grain-like salad consisting of the ancient seed, quinoa. Take quinoa on a trip to Greece by mixing it with tomatoes, good ol’ kalamata olives, and plenty of Feta. Get the recipe. 3. Grilled Radicchio Salad
Looking for a new way to get your greens? Grill ‘em! Choose a leaf like radicchio that will hold its shape when torched by the flame, and pair with other grillable veggies like corn and asparagus. Sprinkle with candied nuts and drizzle with balsamic reduction to cut the bitterness of the radicchio. Looking for more grilled salad recipes? Give this one
a try.Get the recipe. 4. Tomato and Herb Salad
Save this colorful beauty for the warm summer months when heirloom tomatoes take your local market by storm. Highlight the season’s fresh produce by keeping the display as simple as possible. Think: a liberal sprinkling of herbs and a light drizzle of oil. Get the recipe. 5. Sautéed Escarole with Chilies
Give spinach and arugula a rest and introduce yourself to a different type of green. Less bitter than other varieties of the endive family, escarole can be served raw or cooked. Spice it up by sautéing with a Fresno pepper and chili flakes for a double kick of heat. Get the recipe. 6. Peach and Cucumber Salad
Who says salads have to be all about vegetables? Pair your veggies with juicy stone fruit to brighten up the usual salad suspects. The simple combination of sweet peaches, thin cucumber rounds, and fresh basil leaves comes together in minutes for a no-fuss side. Get the recipe. 7. Green Bean and Onion Salad
Give your usual steak house salad the night off and opt for this warm green bean side. Grilled until lightly charred, these tender stalks work well with slivers of red onions and a sprinkling of creamy goat cheese. In fact, you’ll be pleasantly surprised that green beans and onions go together like two peas in a -- you guessed it -- pod. Get the recipe. 8. Simple Spring Salad
This simple salad is all about the dressing. Maple syrup provides a unique sweetness not attainable by other sweeteners, while the red wine vinegar adds a punchy kick. Toss peppery arugula with your favorite mix-ins like chickpeas, tomatoes, or olives and drizzle with vinaigrette until the leaves glisten. Get the recipe.