Like most people, salads are not the first thing that come to my mind when I am hungry. However, a salad can be one of the most nutrient rich dishes and one of the tastiest if it’s made correctly.
To make sure you are making a nutrient rich salad, be sure to choose the best base greens. Iceberg lettuce is 96% water, and provides very few nutrients. Spinach, romaine lettuce, baby kale, and dandelion greens — all of these are healthy things to add to salads, focus on these before you add anything else! There is a great chart for choosing lettuce that I found on greatest.com and included at the bottom of this post.
Once you have a healthy base to your salad, it’s time to find some tasty toppings. Here are five salad enhancers that will give you key vitamins and nutrients and have you craving salads in no time!
1. Add Some Crunch
Almonds, cashews, walnuts, pine nuts and sunflower seeds are just a few examples. Nuts are a great topping to salad that provide a tasty crunch and protein.
2. Add Some Sweetness
Raspberries, clementines and apples are some of my favorite additions to salads, but berries are especially beneficial! Berries add more than just natural sugar and sweetness to your salad- here are 9 health benefits they reap.
3. Add Some Taste
Sometimes a squeeze of lemon or lime can substitute dressing for your salad by enhancing the taste of all the other ingredients of your salad. Plus, 1/4 cup of lemon or lime juice has over 30% of the daily recommended amount of vitamin C.
4. Add Some Color
One of my favorite things to add to a salad is more veggies- especially bright colorful ones. Shredded carrot, cherry tomatoes, and sliced bell peppers are three great examples of veggies that add vitamins and vibrance to a salad.
5. Add Some Fiber
Incorporating beans into your salad is a great way to fit them into your diet. Garbanzo beans (chickpeas) and black beans are wonderful salad additions. I recommend straining your beans and then rinsing them with water before adding them to your salad.
You now know how to make crunchy, sweet, tasty, colorful salads that are full of fiber, protein, vitamin C, and folate. Next time you make a salad, incorporate these five elements and I promise you will enjoy every bite!
Goodbye for now!