Forget take out or fast food this summer. You can eat healthy, easy and delicious salads for lunch that will cost you less and make you feel good. Our Summer Sunshine salads are filled with fresh crisp veggies, protein rich quinoa, and you can choose from three of our favorite salad dressings. Make a batch and have one ready to go for every day of the week.
This post is being republished from a July 2014 post. We improved the pictures and the recipe for you.
What’s your favorite quick, healthy, on the go, summer food? When the temperatures heat up, we prefer to chill out. When it comes to food, nothing says, chill, like salads do. They’re just lighter and fresher, and we don’t have to worry about them spoiling in the heat.
We also love anything that’s portable, because we can take our lunch outside and eat it anywhere we want. Picnics rock, don’t you agree?
One of our favorite ways to pack a fresh vegetable quinoa salad is in a mason jar. It’s environmentally friendly, it looks hella cute, and it stays fresh in the fridge for days. That means that you can make several at a time so you have lunch at the ready. Or, you could eat them for breakfast, like the Breakfast King does. He’s so smart.
Now that my vegetable garden is in full bloom and I can step outside and pick fresh kale, spinach and lettuce, I’ve been putting mason jar salads together every week, and it’s saving me so much time, and forcing me to eat healthier. It’s a total summer time win.
WHY YOU SHOULD EAT MORE VEGETABLES
Has there ever been a mother who didn’t tell her kids to eat their veggies? If yours didn’t, I’d love to know.
Moms know that vegetables are the healthiest food that we can put in our bodies. They’re filled with vitamins and antioxidants, they help prevent and fight disease, they’re full of fiber, and they can definitely help you maintain a healthy weight. What’s not to love?
Now, vegetable haters are going to say, plenty, to the question above. Chances are, those who dislike vegetables were never taught to like them. This is a growing problem, as chicken nuggets, burgers, cheesy dishes and processed foods continue to be chosen over whole foods. As people reach for bad foods, obesity, along with diabetes, heart disease and cancer rates continue to rise.
If ever there was a time to teach children to like eating vegetables, and train yourself (if you’re a veggie hater) to like them, it’s now. And we think that summer is the best time to do that, because when it’s really hot outside, a heavy greasy meal is not particularly appealing. And, crunchy, fresh and light vegetables are.
HOW TO MAKE A MASON JAR SALAD WITH PROTEIN
I tried to go for balance with this salad. I chose foods that have deep color and a variety of texture. I chose crunchy and creamy, and sweet and savory.
I also mixed it up in the jars so each one was a little different. No need to eat the same thing day after day. So…..one jar had spinach, one had kale, and one had both. There are radishes, bell peppers, tomatoes, peas, corn, cucumber, and quinoa for extra protein. If you want extra flavor and texture, add some of our coconut bacon, seeds and nuts of your choice.
GREAT SALAD DRESSINGS
I like to keep it simple and tuck a large lemon wedge on top of the salad and then squeeze it over the vegetables, put the top on, and shake until it’s combined.
If you like a little more excitement than that, then you can make the Lemon Sesame Seed Vinaigrette that’s in the recipe below. Just pack it separately in a small container so you can add it right before you eat it. Unless you like wilted greens, then pour it on before you leave the house. Just don’t put it on the salad and store it for days, or it will not taste great.
For your dining pleasure, here are a few more salad dressings that you might want to try.
Our Blueberry Basil Dressing is made with fresh blueberries and basil. Perfect for a summer salad.
Make this and let us know what you think. We love to hear from you! And, don’t forget to take a picture of your gorgeous creation and tag us @veganosity on Instagram.
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A sunny salad for summer that you can take anywhere. Filled with colorful vegetables and quinoa for the perfect healthy lunch.
- 1 1/2 cups chopped kale
- 1 1/2 cups chopped spinach
- 1 cup cooked quinoa
- ½ bell pepper – chopped
- ½ cucumber – peeled and chopped
- ½ cup cooked peas
- ½ cup cooked corn
- Cherry tomatoes – cut in half amount will depend upon how you put the salads together
- 3 large radishes – cut into bite size pieces
- ½ tsp of salt
- ¼ cup white wine vinegar
- Juice from ½ of a lemon
- 1 tsp of sesame seeds
- 3 drops of stevia or sweetener of choice
- Sea salt and black pepper to taste
In a 32 oz mason jar, layer the salad ingredients any way you want and cover with the lid. Make the dressing and store in a separate container until you’re ready to combine (pour the dressing on the salad, put the lid on tight and shake well). Store the salad and dressing separately in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
Whisk the ingredients until well combined. Store in an air tight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
Double, triple or quadruple the amount of vegetables to make several salads to store.
The Nutrition Facts are an estimate only!