Seasonal Salad Recipe (Summer)
Hi there! I hope you’ve been well! After some cocktail and booze themed stuff earlier this summer, I’m finally bringing you my seasonal salad recipe. I’d originally intended to also bring you a spring salad recipe (in addition to seasonal winter salad recipe), but alas, I found myself eating some version of that winter salad through the spring and into the summer, too. What can I say? I’m a creature of habit, and I like what I like. 🙂
Since it’s August, I’ve finally come around to changing my salad up enough that it warrants sharing a new recipe with you. The building blocks are similar to the winter salad, but I’ve finished it with summer veggies and flavors. I’ve also taken to eating my lunch salad from a large pasta bowl, instead of a plate. The pasta bowl is smaller than a regular-sized plate but still big enough that I can eat a meal-sized salad from it. Plus it makes me feel a little fancy to use the pasta bowls.
I’ve not talked much on this site about the health and fitness journey that I’ve undertaken in the last year, but I feel it’s appropriate in this post. In the last year, I’ve shed 20 pounds along with several inches from my bust, waist, and hips. I look much better, and more importantly, I feel better, too! Through a combination of healthier eating, incorporating more movement, and limiting alcohol, I’ve brought myself, both mentally and physically, to a place at which I’m content.
Something that’s helped me tremendously on this journey is eating a salad like this for my weekday lunches. I’ve taken to skipping breakfast, instead favoring a larger lunch, which I eat between 9:30am and 10:00am. A salad of this size easily holds me over until dinner, which we eat early anyway (usually done eating by 6:00pm). I snack on healthy snacks, if and when needed. This is not about depriving myself but about making better and healthier choices overall.
Suffice it to say I’m pretty happy with where I am now. I weigh just under 150 pounds, and I’ve shed much of the excess fat that used to surround my middle. My energy levels are great, and I’m generally in a better mood, too. Getting a handle on my eating, and ultimately on my weight and health, has done wonders for me. I’ve figured out a balanced and sustainable approach to weight and health management, and that’s something I can take pride in and feel great about.
And now, on to the salad recipe!
Seasonal Salad Recipe (Summer)
This salad recipe is perfect for summer! It's packed with cucumber, tomatoes, sweet peppers, and avocado. Delish!
- 1/2 cup cooked whole grain, cooled (e.g. millet, bulgur, freekeh, quinoa)
- 1 cup loosely packed hearty leafy greens (e.g. kale, spinach, arugula), cut into thin strips
- 5 to 7 grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1/2 cup chopped cucumber
- 1/4 of a large red, yellow, or orange bell pepper, diced
- 2 tablespoons thinly sliced green onion
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinaigrette
- 2 thin slices of smoked ham
- 1/4 cup cottage cheese*** (not fat free)
- 1 tablespoon of sunflower seeds
- 1 avocado, peeled, pitted, and chopped
- 2 boiled eggs, peeled and quartered
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- If you've not done so already, cook the grain, boil the eggs, and make your dressing. Preparation of these items is not included in the time listed for the recipe.
- Note: I like to prepare this in a pasta bowl, but you can use a dinner plate if you prefer.
- Once you have all the ingredients prepped, chopped, and ready to go, place the cooked whole grain in the bowl (or on the plate) first, then add the leafy greens on top.
- Top that base with the tomatoes, cucumber, bell pepper, and green onion.
- Add this point, add the two tablespoons of dressing. Drizzle over what’s on the plate already.
- Next, top the salad base with the smoked ham, cottage cheese, sunflower seeds, and avocado (add a little salt and pepper to the avocado if you don’t like it plain).
- If desired, sprinkle the quartered eggs with a little salt and pepper then line the edges of the salad with the eggs.
- Serve and enjoy!
*** Feel free to use regular shredded cheese (cheddar, Colby jack, Monterey jack, etc) if you don’t like cottage cheese.