Super Healthy Salad Recipes for Summer
With longer evenings and rising temperatures, we often become more conscious of healthy eating during the summer months. Whether it’s the prospect of donning our swimwear whilst abroad or just enjoying family gatherings & alfresco dining at home, we often favour cold foods and fresh flavours. These sassy and nutritious summer salads are delicious and sure to be a success whether for a quick packed lunch for one or a crowd pleaser at a party.
Mango, Avocado and Walnut
Slice a ripe mango and a ripe avocado and mix with rocket and walnuts. Toss in a small amount of olive oil and a squeeze of lemon.
Roasted Mediterranean Vegetable Salad
Following a ‘Mediterranean’ diet has reported potential benefits to longevity and reduced risks of certain health conditions such as obesity and heart disease. Bump up your intake of Mediterranean vegetables in this colourful and tasty twist on a salad. Great served with a seared tuna steak or a piece of grilled Halloumi cheese.
Grill a variety of sliced aubergines, courgettes, butternut squash, red onion, artichokes and peppers brushed with 1 tbsp olive oil for roughly 20 minutes at 200C. Add some pureed garlic or herbs to taste. Toss with salad leaves, add a drizzle of balsamic vinegar and a squeeze of fresh lemon and you have a colourful salad bursting with flavour and goodness.
TIP: If you’re trying to lose weight, forego the olive oil and use low calorie cooking spray to save yourself a whopping 120kcal!
Spicy Summer Pasta Salad
The extra fibre from using whole-wheat pasta and chickpeas in this salad will support digestion and help to keep you full for longer. It also makes a great pre work-out meal supplying slow release energy. The vegetables provide antioxidants thought to aid in reducing post-exercise muscle soreness.
Cook and cool some whole-wheat pasta (fusilli works well) and combine with a couple of tablespoons of tinned sweet corn and chickpeas. Mix in some diced multi coloured peppers, chopped fresh tomatoes, rocket leaves and spring onion and make a spicy dressing from olive oil, red wine vinegar, tomato juice, chilli powder and paprika. Delicious!
Fruity Chicken Salad
This zingy salad is packed with protein from the chicken and vitamin C from the fruit. The spinach leaves give iron to support energy and immune defences and the pistachios and olive oil are rich in healthy fats to support brain function and healthy joints.
125g chicken breasts
100g fresh pineapple
500g pistachio nuts (shells removed)
1/2 pink grapefruit
150g baby spinach leaves
1 tbsp chopped fresh mint
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Grill, cool and chop the chicken breast into small pieces. Peel & dice the fresh pineapple. Remove grapefruit segments and set aside any spare juice. Combine all ingredients. Add grapefruit juice to olive oil and toss salad with dressing.
So it just goes to show that although a plate of lettuce, tomato and cucumber can seem uninspiring, with a little imagination & flair these basic items can be turned from a blank canvas to simple, fabulous and flavoursome delights that are all super healthy!