THIS Is What Your Sad Salad Is Missing

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No shade to iceberg lettuce, but most of us don’t salivate over our desk salads. Raw vegetables aren’t quite as seductive as, say, French fries. But in their defense, salads are low-lift, they don’t require that we spend our Sundays engaged in that thing called “meal prep,” and they’re vegetable-heavy, which the internet tells us is good for us.That said, on occasion, we’d like for our lettuce-based lunches to come with a little more pizzazz. So, we’ve gone ahead and come up with five different ways to bring your salads to life without totally overturning your lunch routine. It’s like the culinary form of bedazzling. Ahead, see what inspires you — then go get stoked to pack tomorrow’s lunch.Advertisement1 of 5Add a fruit-based dressing.
It’s a common misconception that salads ought to be restricted to the vegetable family. One of the most effective ways to change up your salad routine — and add both color and flavor — is with some fresh fruit.
But if you don't have time to hit the farmer's market, we suggest you try a fruit-based dressing like Bitten — a decadent dressing made with actual fruit. Whether you go for strawberry, lemon poppy seed, blackberry balsamic, or any number of the brand’s other bold, fresh flavors, the stuff will be just as delightfully creamy as it is delectably fruity — a rare combination in the realm of dressings. It might just make you crave…salad? PreviousINFOBittenLemon Poppy Seed Bitten Dressing$2.47BUYINFOBittenBlackberry Balsamic Bitten Dressing$3.29BUYINFOBittenStrawberry Bitten Dressing$2.47BUY Next2 of 5#PutAnEggOnIt
Salad has traditionally earned its clout in the realm of lunch foods. But who’s to say we can’t repurpose the dish for office breakfast (or brunch, if you prefer)? Next time you’re shoving your chosen variety of lettuce into a tupperware container, rather than top it off with even more roughage, go a little crazy and add an egg on top. You can go hardboiled, sunny side up, scrambled, poached — whatever you prefer.
Take it up a notch, and consider tossing avocado or some Parmesan in there. Add salt, pepper, balsamic, or any of your other traditional breakfast seasonings for flavor.Advertisement3 of 5Repurpose your dinner leftovers — in salad form.
No matter what leftovers you have on hand, odds are you’re not ecstatic to chow down on the same exact meal you had last night. The secret to repurposing leftovers, however, is prizing form over content: Make it a salad.
Take some leafy greens and shake ‘em all up with the remnants of your dinner. Whether that’s cooked salmon and sweet potato, black beans with roasted fajita veggies, or even Chinese takeout, it’ll work — we promise. Pair your dressing to the cuisine at hand (think: ginger-sesame for a leftover Thai chicken dish or a tahini-based vinaigrette for your remaining falafel), and you’ll be left with a hearty salad that’ll feel like a plenty interesting riff on last night’s boring old leftovers.4 of 5Change up your base.
This may come as a shock, but not all salads require a bed of leafy greens. If you’re not in the mood to massage your kale, try switching up your base. On the heartier end, opt for brown rice or barley, and make yourself a harvest bowl (we recommend tossing with roasted root vegetables, cold apple, and goat cheese).
If you’re still looking to keep it light, go for a Greek salad — no lettuce, but plenty of feta to take its place. Or perhaps try spiralized vegetables — zucchini or cucumber noodles will give you that same crunch but with a new spin (or spiral! ha!). If you’re feeling imaginative, it might just give you the illusion that you’re eating pasta.5 of 5Toss in fresh herbs.
While fresh herbs often resemble lettuce, they’re on a whole different playing field when it comes to flavor. A little Thai basil or some fresh cilantro may be precisely the kick your salad needs. For summer, we love a watermelon-feta salad loaded with fresh mint or an Asian-inspired bowl topped with lemongrass. It’s an easy way to give a little nuance to the more basic ingredients in your fridge.
Bonus tip: Any leftover herbs will make for excellent cocktail garnishes when you’re feeling the need to congratulate yourself on your commitment to salad consumption. In fact, one might even make the case that a well-garnished cocktail is a salad.

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