… because what is life without good food?

Making Salads a Sumptuous Meal

with helpful links for salad inspirations, salad questions, health information, and links to over 81 salad and salad dressing recipes

Strawberry Almond Wild Violet Salad ~ Sumptuous Spoonfuls #salad #recipe

Last week I hosted my very first cooking class. My full-time job doesn’t normally involve cooking, but I found a way to combine the two! I went to our HR director and volunteered to do some healthy cooking classes for our coworkers. She got approval from the top, so we’ll be doing them monthly at work. It’s a little challenging because there is no stove or oven (other than a small cookie baking oven–which I think we’ll actually USE next month), so I decided to start with something simple: salads. I thought I’d share with you what I shared with them in the handout.

We made three uber-simple healthy salad dressings in just 30 minutes, then everyone got to make their own saladscape and sample the three dressings.

Kickin’ Raspberry Vinaigrette

Kickin’ Raspberry Vinaigrette Recipe


Honey White Wine Lavender Vinaigrette ~ Sweet Hot Pepper Balsamic Vinaigrette ~ Honey Lemon Ginger White Wine Vinaigrette  ~ Cherry Malbec Vinaigrette ~ Oriental Vinaigrette ~ Tequila Lime Vinaigrette

Salad Suggestions:

  1. Sliced fresh berries, blue cheese crumbles & cinnamon roasted almonds over mixed greens
  2. Honeydew melon & cinnamon roasted almonds with goat cheese crumbles over greens
  3. Peaches, pistachios & chicken over mixed greens with goat cheese crumbles over greens

Cara Cara Orange Chicken Goat Cheese Salad with Butter Rum Sweet Spiced Pecans

Maple Ginger Yogurt Dressing

Maple Ginger Yogurt Dressing Recipe

Salad Suggestions:

  1. Chicken with orange segments, basil, butter rum pecans & sweet onion over mixed greens
  2. Dried cranberries with butter rum pecans, goat cheese crumbles over mixed greens
  3. Black grapes, toasted walnuts, blue cheese over mixed greens
  4. Drizzle over fresh fruit kebabs for a salad on a stick!

Chicken Bacon Ranch Salad with Avocado & Herb Buttermilk Ranch Dressing ~ Sumptuous Spoonfuls #salad #recipe

Healthy Buttermilk Ranch

Buttermilk Ranch Recipe


  • Healthy Greek Ranch: Use plain nonfat Greek Yogurt in place of mayo + 1-2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Avocado Ranch: Blend in ¼ to ½ of an avocado
  • Basil Sundried Tomato Ranch: Add 2 Tablespoons sundried tomatoes and use lots of basil
  • Tahini Ranch: Add 1 ½ Tablespoons tahini (sesame seed paste)
  • Herb Chipotle Ranch: Add ¼ – ½ teaspoon chipotle powder + ½ teaspoon cumin + juice of ½ lemon or lime

Salad Suggestions:

  1. Chicken, bacon, sweet onion & avocado over mixed greens
  2. Slices of cucumber & fresh tomato with edam cheese, walnuts & sweet onion
  3. Use on pizza as a sauce, as a dip with vegies or as a sandwich spread
  4. Mix with plain nonfat Greek yogurt and use as a dressing for potato or pasta salad

I had set out some leafy mixed greens and fresh spinach along with many different toppings including chicken, strawberries, sliced grapes, cinnamon roasted almonds, and various cheeses, bell pepper, sliced sweet onion, smoked turkey strips, sunflower seeds, and chopped fresh garden tomato.

Salad Inspiration

My basic salad formula is this:

{Greens} + {Meat, Beans &/or Nuts} + {Flavorful cheese} + {Fruits/Veggies} + {Homemade Dressing}

For over 81 recipes, see my Salads & Salad Dressings Pinterest Board. There’s lots of good inspiration there! http://www.pinterest.com/sumptuousspoons/sumptuous-salads-salad-dressings/

Salad Questions

Ingredient Health Benefits

About Preservatives

There is some debate about whether or not preservatives are bad for you, but depending on the preservative, it could be harmful to your health. In general, I think you should read the ingredient list of your foods: if you don’t recognize the word as a “real” food, it’s best to avoid it.

This post was shared at Weekend Potluck, What to Do WeekendsMunching MondayTuesday’s TableSimple Supper TuesdayTasty TuesdayTreasure Box Tuesday, Hearth & Soul Bloghop, Full Plate Thursday and The Southern Special.

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2 Responses

  1. Very nice sumptious meal looks delicious thanks for sharing with Hearth and Soul blog hop.pinning it.

    September 1, 2014 at 6:58 pm

  2. Great Post for making a salad a meal. Hope you have a great week and thanks so much for sharing your awesome post with Full Plate Thursday. Your post has been pinned with the party!
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

    September 2, 2014 at 8:15 pm