By Team Best Life
As the weather warms up, you might be looking for easy meal solutions that don’t require turning on the oven. We’ve got a suggestion: Salad! Think your salad has to leave you hungry or dissatisfied? We can help! To create a full-meal salad that really fills you up, use the following tips:
Go green. You may be most familiar with iceberg and romaine lettuce, but why not experiment with other greens that offer different flavors and provide different nutrients? Give these greens a shot: arugula, butterhead, escarole, kale, mache, mizuna, spinach and watercress.
Choose a variety of veggies. The classics, like carrots, radishes and celery, are no-brainers. But if you want to be more adventurous, you can sprinkle on some roasted red peppers, canned artichoke hearts, or hearts of palm. Best Life lead nutritionist Janis JIbrin likes blueberries, beets, pomegranate seeds, butternut squash and fresh mint.
Get your fat fix. Stir in just one high-fat addition, such as 2 tablespoons of shredded cheese, 1 tablespoon of nuts, or ¼ cup of sliced avocado. That will help keep you satisfied without adding too many calories to your bowl and help you absorb some of the vitamins from the vegetables.
Pick your protein. This is the most satiating nutrient—it leaves you feeling fuller longer—so don’t skip this step. Aim to add a serving (3 to 5 ounces) of tofu, steamed shrimp, grilled skinless chicken or lean beef to your bowl.
Dress for success. Pour on 80 to 100 calories worth of a full-fat dressing, or about 1½ tablespoons. Or, try making your own dressing with healthy oils, including olive, canola or walnut oil. Prefer a more heavily dressed salad? Go for reduced-fat dressing.
Complement with a carb. Pair your salad with a medium whole-wheat roll or add ½ cup cooked grains, couscous, diced potatoes, corn or legumes right to your salad.
What’s your favorite salad topping?