Salads are a versatile, easy way to transform the ingredients you have on hand into a delicious meal. Just because (most) salads are healthy doesn’t mean they have to leave you feeling hungry. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of not-so-boring, satisfying salads that you can dress up for dinner. These recipes combine a variety of textures, sweet-savory combinations and heart-healthy fats in tasty ways that’ll make you want to eat your greens. Each serving is under 400 calories—feel free to get seconds if your calorie budget allows.
1. BLT Salad with Avocado | Skinnytaste
If you’re a fan of the classic BLT sandwich, check out this BLT salad with avocado. Creamy, mayonnaise-marinated tomatoes, romaine lettuce and diced avocados are topped with pieces of lean bacon. If you’re missing the bun, you can add it back in the form of crunchy croutons, or serve a slice of your favorite crusty bread on the side. Recipe makes 4 servings at 2 cups each.
Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 204; Total Fat: 14g; Saturated Fat: 3g; Monounsaturated Fat: 4g; Cholesterol: 28mg; Sodium: 361mg; Carbohydrate: 11g; Dietary Fiber: 4g; Sugar: 4g; Protein: 10g
2. Shaved Brussels Sprouts Salad | Food Fanatic
You can enjoy Brussels sprouts raw in this salad recipe. Zesty shaved Brussels sprouts are combined with heart-healthy ingredients like walnuts, blueberries and avocados. The lemon-mustard salad dressing makes this salad a satisfying eat. Fun fact: Brussels sprouts packs plenty of glucosinolates, which have antioxidant and anti-carcinogenic effects. Recipe makes 5 servings.
Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 268; Total Fat: 21g; Saturated Fat: 7g; Monounsaturated Fat: 4g; Cholesterol: 0mg; Sodium: 207mg; Carbohydrate: 21g; Dietary Fiber: 8g; Sugar: 8g; Protein 6g
3. Ultimate Superfood Salad | The Roasted Root
If you could take a multivitamin in food form, why wouldn’t you? This is why you need to try the ultimate superfood salad. It’s densely packed with vitamins A and C, folate, potassium and fiber. The salad itself is made from kale, red cabbage, bell pepper, carrots, broccoli, walnuts and avocados tossed in ginger-lemon dressing. Try it as a refreshing entrée salad or serve a smaller portion as a side. Recipe makes 8 servings.
Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 203; Total Fat: 16g; Saturated Fat: 2g; Monounsaturated Fat: 5g; Cholesterol: 0mg; Sodium: 39mg; Carbohydrates: 13g; Dietary Fiber: 6g; Sugars: 3g; Protein: 5g
4. Chopped Green Garden Salad | Veganosity
Eat every shade of green with this garden salad recipe, which tosses together broccoli, peas, pumpkin seeds, spinach, kale, lettuce and green apples. Top with a drizzle of avocado vinaigrette and you have a satisfying salad. Recipe makes 4 servings.
Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 239; Total Fat: 14g; Saturated Fat: 1g; Monounsaturated Fat: 5g; Cholesterol: 0mg; Sodium: 587mg; Total Carbohydrate: 26g; Dietary Fiber: 9g; Sugars: 8g; Protein: 8g
GRAINS, POTATOES & BEANS
5. Coconut Lime Rice Noodle Salad | Clean Eating
The tangy coconut-lime dressing in this cool and colorful rice noodle salad goes hand in hand with naturally sweet mango and red bell pepper. We recommend making it ahead of time, and adding a little lean protein for a fresh and healthy brown bag lunch. Recipe makes 2 servings.
Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 325; Total Fat: 17g; Saturated Fat: 5g; Monounsaturated Fat: 7g; Cholesterol: 0mg; Sodium: 116mg; Carbohydrate: 43g; Dietary Fiber: 8g; Sugar: 12g; Protein: 5g
6. Mediterranean Quinoa Salad | Hummusapien
Enjoy Mediterranean flavors with this meatless dish, which pairs fluffy quinoa with crispy vegetables like cucumber, bell peppers and cherry tomatoes. Serve with your choice of lean protein for a complete meal. Recipe makes 5 servings.
Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 383; Total Fat: 19g; Saturated Fat: 4g; Monounsaturated Fat: 9g; Cholesterol: 12mg; Sodium: 674mg; Carbohydrate: 43g; Dietary Fiber: 6g; Sugar: 5g; Protein: 12g
7. Healthier Potato Salad | The Fig Tree
Plain yogurt is made for potato salad—it helps lighten up traditional potato salad by adding protein and cutting fat. This potato salad recipe also incorporates crisp cucumbers and dill for some fresh flavors. Recipe makes 4 servings.
Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 264; Total Fat: 1g; Saturated Fat: 0g; Monounsaturated Fat: 0g; Cholesterol: 2mg; Sodium: 143mg; Total Carbohydrate: 55g; Dietary Fiber: 6g; Sugars: 5g; Protein: 10g
8. Wild Rice and Kale Salad with Smoky Sweet Potatoes | Amuse Your Bouche
The unexpected pairing of wild rice and smoky sweet potatoes is a taste sensation you should try. Serve with a lean protein of your choice (think chicken breast, fish or hard-boiled egg). Each serving of salad is high in fiber and low in sodium. Recipe makes 2 servings.
Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 366; Total Fat: 20g; Saturated Fat: 2g; Monounsaturated Fat: 10g; Cholesterol: 0mg; Sodium: 138mg; Total Carbohydrate: 41g; Dietary Fiber: 6g; Sugars: 7g; Protein: 8g
9. Mediterranean Chickpea Salad | A Palatable Pastime
This vegetarian-friendly recipe for chickpea salad is especially satisfying because it contains plenty of protein and fiber from chickpeas and beans. You can enjoy it as is, or add a whole-wheat pita to up your carbs and fiber. Recipe makes 6 servings.
Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 384; Total Fat: 19g; Saturated Fat: 5g; Monounsaturated Fat: 11g; Cholesterol: 17mg; Sodium: 219mg; Total Carbohydrate: 41g; Dietary Fiber: 12g; Sugars: 6g; Protein: 16g
MEAT, FISH & EGGS
10. Grilled Steak Salad | Cooking Light
Few people will object to steak for dinner, especially if it’s on a bed of lemony arugula salad. This quick, no-fluff recipe will have you enjoying a savory salad in just 20 minutes! Recipe makes 4 servings at 1 steak + 1 cup arugula salad + 1 lemon half each.
Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 258; Total Fat: 16g; Saturated Fat: 4g; Monounsaturated Fat: 3g; Cholesterol: 75mg; Sodium: 360mg; Carbohydrate: 4g; Dietary Fiber: 1g; Sugar: 1g; Protein: 25g
11. BBQ Chicken Cobb Salad | Damn Delicious
Lighten up your cobb salad without losing the flavor. In most salads, the calories and fat are in the dressing, so this recipe helps you cut calories and fat by using Greek yogurt in the buttermilk ranch dressing. Making your own dressing means you skip the additives, preservatives and coloring that goes into store-bought salad dressings. Recipe makes 4 servings.
Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 390; Total Fat: 19g; Saturated Fat: 8g; Monounsaturated Fat: 2g; Cholesterol: 154mg; Sodium: 446mg; Total Carbohydrate: 31g; Dietary Fiber: 9g; Sugars: 8g; Protein: 26g
12. Super Healthy Salmon Salad| BBC Good Food
Make a meal for two with this recipe for salmon salad, featuring steamed salmon and broccoli served over a bed of fluffy couscous and watercress salad. If you want to add more flavor to the salmon, pan-sear it with some salt and pepper. Recipe makes 2 servings.
Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 320; Total Fat: 10g; Saturated Fat: 4g; Sodium: 880mg; Total Carbohydrate: 30g; Dietary Fiber: 2g; Sugars: 14g; Protein: 30g
13. Greek Yogurt Chicken Salad | i heart eating
What’s more satisfying than creamy chicken salad—especially since you can make it ahead of time and know that lunch prep will be a breeze. This recipe for chicken salad swaps mayonnaise with Greek yogurt so you can skimp on the fat and calories. Slap a serving of chicken salad between two slices of whole-wheat bread, and lunch is served. Recipe makes 4 servings of chicken salad; nutrition information is for chicken salad only.
Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 253; Total Fat: 10g; Saturated Fat: 2g; Monounsaturated Fat: 4g; Cholesterol: 61mg; Sodium: 176mg; Total Carbohydrate: 18g; Dietary Fiber: 2g; Sugars: 14g; Protein: 25g