When you think of salads, does your brain automatically default to the typical side garden salad made with chopped iceberg lettuce and topped with shredded carrots and a wedge of tomato? We know that doesn’t sound all too exciting but luckily, we have put together some unique and flavorful ways to go beyond the greens and create more exciting salad options! Consistently fuelling your body with healthy meals, ensures that you hit your daily nutritional goals while also training your brain to crave the right foods. It’s time to #flavorup with yummy salads – we hope you are hungry!
Let’s think outside the box for a minute – the variety of options and potential flavor combinations in salads are nearly endless and since they contain a substantial number of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, salads also make it easy to enjoy getting your daily dose of vegetables. As you may know, this is important to staying healthy and keeping your body functioning properly. That said, a salad is only as good as its ingredients. If you want fresh, think of Pure Flavor®!
With our network of greenhouses and distribution centers across North America, we are able to pick and ship fresh veggies within 24 hours, to retailers all over North America, at any time of the year! Though the warmer weather often has us thinking of bright, fresh foods, greenhouse grown vegetables make it easy to fuel your body all year round! One of the benefits to eating well, is that healthy foods like salads become the norm and your body will begin to crave those over other sugary snacks or processed treats.
IT STARTS WITH THE BASE
Greens are good for you! And there are a variety of leafy greens that you can use as a base for your salad to up the flavor game. Have you tried kale, swiss chard, spinach, bok choy, or cabbage? They are all delicious and make a great start to your salad! If you are not a fan of the leafy greens, you can switch it up with other crunchy vegetables like Uno Bites™ Nano Cucumbers as the base of your bowl or even make a combo like this Teriyaki Chicken Salad recipe. It’s the perfect match for the salty and sweet taste of teriyaki chicken, with a mix of finely shredded cabbage and juicy, crispy slices of cucumbers.
There is no shortage of ingredients that you can use as a base to build for your salad. You can incorporate healthy grains such as farro, quinoa, couscous, and brown rice. You could even make a salad heavy in legumes such as beans or lentils. For a more refreshing option, use Snacking Tomatoes, sliced in half or Long English Cucumbers spiralled into noodles like in this refreshing recipe Cucumber Tomato Salad. You even can use Sweet Bell Peppers, thinly sliced or diced and then load up the fresh toppings from there.
ADD COOKED TOPPINGS
As much as we love fresh, a layer of cooked ingredients mixed in can add that extra depth of flavor and texture to salads. Salads aren’t always just raw ingredients, you can sauté vegetables or even roast Craft House Collection® Aurora Long Sweet Peppers to bring out their caramelized sweetness before adding them in.
Incorporating grilled fruits and a protein source makes for a satisfying and filling meal-type salad like Hawaiian Chicken Salad. The base has a nutrient-dense mix of salad greens, and is then topped with ever so sweet Cloud 9® Bite-Sized Fruity Tomatoes, healthy fats with sliced avocados, and both chicken and pineapple grilled to perfection in a Hawaiian barbecue sauce. Trust us when we say this is the perfect salad to get you into the grilling mood this season!
INCLUDE SOME COLOR
Colorful foods tend to pique interest and appear more appealing than other foods. This is by natural design as it enhances our moods and our sense of well-being. Add different colours of fruits and vegetables to get a great mix of color. The brighter and richer the colour, the more nutrients and antioxidants the food contains.
Check out this tangy, refreshing and vibrant Authentic Fattoush Salad. Bright red colours of Cloud 9® Bite-Sized Fruity Tomatoes, a hint of pink from pomegranate seeds and radishes and bright beautiful greens of fresh mint and Mini Cucumbers. A fresh Middle Eastern salad with an array of nutrients yet eye-catching that you can’t wait to dive into.
DRESS IT UP
It’s amazing how much flavor can be added to a salad with the right dressing. The dressing can be as simple as a squeeze of lemon with herbs or a drizzle of oil and vinegar. Vinegars now come in a variety of infused flavors, that you can easily find at your local grocery store allowing you to really get creative with making salad dressings. The possibilities are endless – sweet, savory, tangy, salty, or even spicy. Just by mixing and matching dressing ingredients, you have options to flavor it just the way your family likes it!
A tasty dressing that is simple to prepare is a part of our Kale Peanut Salad recipe. This peanut vinaigrette includes soy sauce, honey, peanut butter, garlic, ginger, and lime, and is then drizzled over Aurora Bites Mini Sweet Peppers, edamame, roasted cashews, shredded carrots, and fresh kale. Full of crunch and flavor, it’s perfect for lunch or as a side dish for dinner next to your favorite protein.
As you get creative and experiment with ingredients, we’re sure you will discover new salads and dressings to add to your favourites list. As you can see it doesn’t have to be anything close to boring or the “same old, same old”. There are so many great recipes that will please your tastebuds and have your brain craving the right foods. To avoid repetition or boredom, remember to switch up the salad base, add a mix of both raw and cooked toppings, and #flavorup with fresh herbs and dressings. Make your bowl bright and have fun with color, as veggies contain such a substantial amount of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that are great for your system. Using greenhouse grown vegetables means that you can enjoy fresh flavor all year round! Make sure you add Pure Flavor® produce to your weekly grocery list and challenge yourself to think beyond the greens when you are coming up with your next salad creation.
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