This took 5 minutes.
It also inspired deconstructed lettuce wrapped bacon burgers with over easy eggs for dinner ❤
When you begin learning how to balance flavor and texture accordingly, throwing together a chopped salad (or wrap, or grain bowl) becomes as easy as protein, green, cream, and crunch. All things I believe make the perfect chopped salad ♥
〉〉〉∴Hello planet earth on a plate∴〈〈〈
You need it to be filling and fast. Protein is the macronutrient that in my opinion gives you the most bang for your buck. I keep hard boiled eggs, homemade bacon bits (6 strips of bacon cooked low and slow until crispy, chopped and kept in the fridge), and rotisserie chicken meat on hand, in the fridge, almost always. This allows for me to grab an egg and run (sounds more dangerous than it is) when and if I need to. It gives my body the nutrient dense energy it’s craving without taking a major chunk out of my day. If you’re a vegetarian, I recommend making sure you’re getting the right amount of protein from the right sources. There are two ways I go about using hard boiled eggs in chopped salads:
- drizzle that hard boiled eggie with your favorite room temperature fat (avocado oil, mct oil, olive oil, ghee, bacon fat, tallow… you get the idea. While these are all suggestions, I prefer avocado oil myself because of it’s mild flavor). Season it with a little salt and pep then mash it with a fork. You can proceed to add it to your salad pre-toss it with a little less dressing than you normally would (cause the eggie and oil makes it saucccccey).
- Chop it. I know this sounds obvious, but hey, you never know. Slice your hard boiled eggie lengthwise and then proceed to chop it into little bits. Sprinkle it on top of your already dressed salad for added richness.
I can’t get enough butter (bibb, boston) lettuce these days. It’s a great value at Costco. It works amazingly well for wraps and chopped salads. It’s delightful broiled and served warm with lemon and butter, and the texture is akin to that of a perfectly crisp (yet tender) piece of something mind numbingly fresh. I don’t know how else to describe it! If you can’t find it or it’s ridiculously over priced ($5 dollars??? For one?) try romaine in it’s place ❤
I typically use the equivalent of one and a half cups of chopped greens. I cut them no smaller than the surface area of my fork (I loathe not being able to pick up a piece of lettuce cause it’s too small… shredded Iceberg is my nightmare unless I’m eating Mexican). Word to the wise; If you’re using a bitter green (kale, collards, cabbage, escarole…) opt for vinaigrettes. The acidity will help break down how fibrous bitter greens tend to be. You can macerate or “bruise” them at least 10 minutes before you use them by squeezing a little lemon and salt on them and tossing them by hand. Leave them to sit in the bowl up until you’re ready to dress.
I love roasted vegetables from the fridge added to my salad. Chilled roasted veggies are the bomb, and if you’re trying out the 14 day “Duh, you’ll feel better” diet, you should be making enough to keep leftovers in the fridge ready to go.
While I stick to vinaigrettes over creamy dressing, I looooove richness. I like acid and fat to come together and start a party in my mouth. Goat cheese with lemon, avocado with lime, Boursin with berries, rice vinegar with nut butter. These combos are fool proof in a salad. I normally add no more than a tablespoon and a half of buttery, fatty richness to my salads.
Roasted garlic, chopped green onions, homemade bacon bits, no sugar added trail mix, sesame seeds, thinly sliced apple, jicama. I could go on forever. Salads need texture and complexity otherwise they’re just a sad bowl of raw veggies.
Happy combos using these rules:
- Chopped green onions, chopped peanuts (or sunflower or sesame seeds), soy (or tamari), chopped carrots, rice wine vinegar and spring mix topped with pulled chicken
- Roasted garlic, tomatoes, basil, and mozzerella with roasted red peppers, spinach and balsalmic vinaigrette
- Sliced jicama, sliced orange, mint, bacon and butter lettuce with hard boiled egg, a squeeze of lime, and chili powder
⇓NOW FOR THIS MÄGIC DOWN HERE⇓
Or up there ^, rather. And yes, that is the same image twice. Real talk, I’m exhausted. Before I came to finish this post (which I started at 11:00am), I accidentally used Garam Masala instead of cumin to season onions and peppers. As a result, the beef fajitas I had planned on making became (after a few unsavory words) surprise! Beef masala!
I just need to finish this post and wake up my boyfriend so we can enjoy our unexpected Indian food.
I digress. Without further ado–
Come Together Right Now Roasted Broccoli and Butter Lettuce Salad with Creamy Horseradish Dressing (and bacon ❤ )
Large bowl, for tossing salad
Smaller bowl, for eating out of
Tongs, for tossing (or a spatula for folding ingredients together)
1 1/2 cups chopped butter lettuce
1 tablespoon homemade bacon bits
1 1/2 tablespoons fresh, soft, goat cheese; chilled
1 chopped hard boiled egg
1/2 cup roasted broccoli, from the fridge
1/4 cup minced apple (I used pink lady)
For The Creamy Horseradish dressing:
1 tablespoon homemade mayo
1 teaspoon prepared horseradish
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
2 teaspoons avocado oil (or olive oil, whatever you have on hand)
salt and lots of cracked black pepper
1 green onion, minced
1 clove garlic, minced (This is optional. It’s garlic season so I’m putting fresh garlic in everything).
What to do:
- Place a small glass bowl in the fridge
- Place all your salad ingredients in a large bowl, side by side. Like, you’re an ocd kid trying to keep your food all in little piles.
- In a jar with a well fitted lid, put all the ingredients for the dressing inside. Shake shake shake! If you don’t have a jar with a well fitting lid, mixing them in a bowl with a fork will suffice.
- Once your dressing is mixed, drizzle it, little by little, onto your salad.
- Using your tongs, gently toss your salad.
- Grab your now chilled bowl from the fridge and have you quick and satisfying meal ❤
I need to eat.
Happy wellbeing ❤