Home » Diet and Nutrition News & Advice » 10 Light Salads That Eat Like a Meal

10 Light Salads That Eat Like a Meal


Just because its winter doesn’t mean you have to forgo all things green and good for you! Typically salad for dinner leaves something to the hungry appetite. However, I’m not talking rabbit food here. I’m talking about hearty, satisfying meal-worthy salads that are not only easy to prepare—they’re good for you too.

And you don’t have to stick with the lowly leaf lettuce, you can create your own salad base with any vegetable you like, or you can really make it filling by adding leftover pasta, rice, couscous, or quinoa.

Here are ten light salads that eat like a serious meal…

1. Grilled Scallop & Strawberry Salad

Grilled sea scallops (yeah, the big ones) are not only tasty; their also an excellent source of healthy omega-3 fats. Succulent and juicy, these scallops are herbed to perfection, served over tasty mixed greens and strawberries, and drizzled with a flavorful herb-infused dressing. Plus, if you’re not a fan of scallops, you can substitute them with grilled shrimp or a salmon filet.

Recipe:
1 pound sea scallops
1/2 cup olive oil
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper
4 teaspoons red wine vinegar
1/2 pound mixed salad greens
3/4 cup loosely packed basil leaves, torn in half
3/4 cup loosely packed flat-leaf parsley leaves
1/2 cup loosely packed mint leaves
1/4 cup chopped fresh chives
4 teaspoons drained capers
1 cup of fresh, sliced strawberries

2. Tortilla Salad

Assembling your own salad can be half the fun! Especially when you invite the whole dang family to create their own tortilla salad—complete with lean ground chicken, romaine lettuce, diced tomatoes, green onions, cheddar, and salsa. Crown your creation with a hearty dollop of low fat, plain yogurt (a healthy substitute for sour cream…and it tastes just as yummy)!

Recipe:
4 cups of shredded romaine lettuce
1 cup of diced tomatoes
1 cup of low fat shredded cheddar
1/2 small, diced green onion
1 pound of lean ground chicken
1 eight-ounce bottle of mild or medium salsa
1 packet of Taco seasoning mix
Garnish with low fat plain yogurt
1 baked soft tortilla, cut into strips

3. Salad Nicoise

Salad Nicoise is one of my absolute favorites because it’s such a balanced, beautiful meal. Jam-packed with fresh green beans, tomatoes, and potatoes; protein-rich tuna and hard-boiled eggs; add some good fats in meaty Kalamata olives and drizzle it all with a tantalizing vinaigrette dressing.

Recipe:
2 hard boiled eggs
1/2 pound of small potatoes
1/2 pound of green beans
1/2 head of green lettuce
1 can of water-packed tuna
4 ounces of tomatoes
10 Kalamata olives
2 tablespoons of capers
1/3 cup of extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup of balsamic vinegar

4. Grilled Steak Salad

This salad is super easy to assemble and grill up on a whim. However, your guests will think you’ve been slaving over it all day long. Just marinate and sear a thin flank stead on the grill for a tasty, lean, filling salad that truly eats as a meal!

Recipe:
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup olive oil
2 medium red onions wedge-cut
1/2 teaspoon coarse black pepper
1 1/2 pounds flank steak
5 ounces baby arugula or spinach

5. Tofu-Miso-Ginger Salad

Vegetarians have hearty appetites too—and that’s why  I’ve included this filling salad bowl layered with the goodness of firm tofu, rice noodles, crunchy cucumbers, shredded carrot, green beans and scallions, all tossed in a tangy miso-ginger vinaigrette, and sprinkled with chopped nuts.

Recipe:
1 medium carrot, shredded
6 ounces green beans chopped
10 ounces firm tofu, cubed
2 diced scallions
1 medium English cucumber, thinly sliced
1 small of romaine lettuce, torn
2 teaspoons of miso paste
2 teaspoons dried ginger
2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
1/4 cup roasted, chopped peanuts

6. Red Potato Salad

Potato salad doesn’t have to be filled with unhealthy fats (like mayonnaise). This healthy rendition of a traditional American red potato salad features a reduced fat lemon vinaigrette-style dressing made with spicy Dijon mustard, white wine, white vinegar, and olive oil.

Recipe:
1 1/2 pounds red potatoes
1/4 cup Dijon mustard
1/4 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 white onion
2 stalks celery
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
2 sprigs fresh dill, chopped
1/2 lb steamed green beans, trimmed

7. Cobb Salad

This gorgeous layered style salad with its colorful rows of vegetables, meats and hard-boiled eggs looks too good to eat!  The bad news is that most Cobb salads are loaded down with unhealthy ingredients—such as fatty dressings, cheese, meats, eggs, and bacon. The good news is this healthy version of the classic Cobb strikes a perfect balance between good nutrition and great taste!

Recipe:
3 tablespoons white-wine vinegar
2 tablespoons finely minced shallots
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
10 cups mixed baby spinach and greens
8 ounces diced chicken breast
2 hard-boiled eggs, chopped
2 medium chopped tomatoes
1 large chopped cucumber
1 avocado, diced
2 slices low fat, low sodium bacon, crumbled
1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese (optional)

8. Greek Salad

Taste the romance Greek Islands with a classic and healthy Greek-style salad—filled with the goodness of the Mediterranean—olives, fresh cucumber, tomatoes, olive oil, and tangy feta cheese!

Recipe:
2oz Kalamata olives
3 medium tomatoes, diced
1 cucumber peeled, diced
½ red onion, sliced
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
5oz feta, crumbled
2 cups romaine lettuce, chopped
2 tbsp torn oregano
3 tbsp balsamic vinegar

9. Bean, Corn and Avocado Salad

Nobody will ever point the finger and cry, “rabbit food” at this delectably colorful bowl of hearty roasted veggies, hearty quinoa grains, and protein-rich pinto beans!

Recipe:
1 can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
2 cups frozen corn
1 cup scallions, thinly sliced
1 ripe avocado, cubed
3 plum tomatoes, cubed
1 bag romaine hearts, torn
3 cups crushed, baked tortilla chips
1/4 cup medium tomato salsa

10. Peanut Pasta Salad

This lip-smacking marriage of peanut butter, soy sauce, rice vinegar, and red-pepper flakes makes a delectable Asian-style sauce for this healthy whole-wheat pasta salad. Pack it for lunch or enjoy it for your evening’s main course—trust me, you’ll be satisfied!

Recipe:
1/2 pound of whole-wheat fusilli
2 heads of broccoli, chopped
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon red-pepper flakes
1/4 cup rice vinegar
2 tablespoons smooth, natural peanut butter
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1 cup scallions, thin sliced
1/2 cup roasted peanuts, chopped

Like this article? Check out these other articles for healthy eating:

ADVERTISEMENT

More on ActiveBeat
  • Fatty Foods With Mega Health Benefits
    Our instinct is to run and hide from any kind of food that contains or causes 'f-word,' also known as fat. But what we don't realize is that not all fatty foods are bad for us.
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • The Incredible Health Benefits of Olives
    Olives are one of those foods that you either love them, or you hate them. I happen to love olives, especially on pizza!
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • The Incredible Health Benefits of Quinoa
    Quinoa is a grain crop that is known for its edible seeds. While it's become quite trendy as of lately, quinoa has actually been around for a long, long time.
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • Most Effective Detoxification Drinks!
    Do you feel like your body needs a cleanse? Spring is just around the corner and there's no better time than now to give your body a fresh start!
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • The Incredible Health Benefits of Radishes
    Radishes are not an uncommon food, but they're often overlooked because they're rarely ever eaten on their own and often added to other dishes as a side or topping.
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • 20 Foods to Reach For in an Energy Slump
    Late afternoon is when my energy is usually at an all time low. I used to think that meant a walk to the coffee shop to grab an extra-large cup of caffeine to get me through the...
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • Foods That Help Banish Bloating
    Bloating: that uncomfortable pants-are-too-tight feeling many people experience after overeating at Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner.
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • 12 Incredible Health Benefits of Flaxseeds
    The flaxseed: it's one of the world's oldest superfoods. Consumed by humans for roughly 6,000 years, the flaxseed has long established itself as a source of important vitamins and...
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • The Incredible Health Benefits of Seaweed
    When you think of seaweed, you're probably not thinking about its benefits – and more about how it's just slimy weeds at the bottom of the ocean or lake that can get tangled up...
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • The Incredible Health Benefits of Ginger
    There are few spices in the world more useful or beneficial to human health than ginger, a root that's typically available in most parts of the world at a remarkably affordable...
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • The Incredible Health Benefits of Cucumbers
    Cucumbers are cool – in more ways than one. Not only are they a nutritious and light addition to salads (not to mention being tasty), they carry a lot of health...
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • The Incredible Health Benefits of Eating Celery
    Celery – it's sometimes the co-star on a plate of chicken wings while watching the big game, but in fact celery should have a pedestal all its own.
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • Healthy Foods You Should Eat in Moderation
    Everything should be enjoyed in moderation – even healthy foods. That's because if you consume too much of them, they're no longer a benefit – and may even become a...
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • The Health Benefits of Eating Pumpkin Seeds
    They're cheap, widely available, and packed with all kinds of helpful nutrients. But pumpkin seeds aren't exactly the world's most popular snack.
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice
  • The Health Benefits of Eating Sunflower Seeds
    Sunflower seeds are one of those snacks we've all tried but probably don't enjoy on a regular basis.
    Diet and Nutrition News & Advice