The Super-Simple, Big-Ass Salad

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My favourite lunch (and sometimes dinner) in the whole world is just a big-ass salad. I love the freshness, and the different flavours. I love the way you get to chow down for ages without feeling over-full at the end. I love that I can use whatever I have and change it up. This isn’t so much a recipe as it is a tribute.

Still, I can tell you what I put in my big-ass salad, and maybe it’ll help you to create the one that you love. I’ve been making a version of this salad for about a decade now, and I’m still not tired of it. I can seriously eat this every day and be pretty freaking thrilled about it. What can I say, I’m a veggie lover.

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I’ve always been a good eater. I eat quite a bit, and super often. If you’re like my sister (bird eater, no judgement), you might want to tone this down because like the title says, this makes a big-ass salad.

So, here goes:

Ingredients:

  • About three cups of mixed greens – I like to use a mix of spinach and arugula the best, but lately I’ve also gotten into putting baby kale in there. Romaine also works, and the crunch is nice.
  • 1/2 cup chopped cucumber
  • 1/2 a red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 cup tomatoes of your choice – I use either cherry, or slices of big tomatoes, whatever looks good at the store
  • 1/4 cup corn kernels – I use frozen and defrost them. I find corn gives a bit of sweetness that really balances out the balsamic vinegar, but you could skip it
  • 1/3 – 1/2 cup cooked black beans – these give a ton of fiber and protein. If you’re not as hungry, you could put less, but these will keep you full longer than the veggies alone
  • A tablespoon or so of raw pepitas (pumpkin seeds) – these are full of iron, which is more easily absorbed along with vitamin c (from the pepper, yay)
  • 4 or 5 olives, sliced in half – yeah, these aren’t super nutritious, but the saltiness is pretty crucial and I looooove olives
  • Balsamic vinegar, to taste

That’s it. Throw it all in a big bowl (seriously, a soup bowl can’t hold this salad) and toss. You’re probably thinking, “Just balsamic vinegar? She forgot the oil.” Nope, I didn’t. You seriously don’t need it. My boo agrees, too, now that he’s tried this salad a few times. The oil is nutritionally mostly useless (see every book written by Dr. Joel Fuhrman), and it just fills up space in your stomach that could be used by more awesome, nutritious veggies. Also, once you haven’t had it on your salad for a while, having a salad with oil will feel super greasy and unnecessary.

The other good thing about this salad is that you can put everything except the vinegar in a big tupperware container and take it to work or school. Bring along the vinegar in a little, sealed container, and pour it over right before you eat.

Additional add-ons include, but are in no way limited to, avocados, cilantro, marinated tofu, snap peas, celery, grated carrot, grated beet, onion, sunflower seeds, basically any other seed or nut, shredded cabbage, banana peppers, tahini, cooked quinoa (or other grain), and the list goes on. Whatever you have in your fridge, or whatever you like, you can pretty much always throw it in. Go crazy.

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The Super-Simple, Big-Ass Salad
 
Prep time
Total time
 
You can customize this bad boy however you like, but it's a great way to get a few helpings of raw veggies each day, and it's super delish.
Author:
Cuisine: Salad, vegan
Serves: 1 huge salad
Ingredients
  • About three cups of mixed greens - I like to use a mix of spinach and arugula the best, but lately I've also gotten into putting baby kale in there. Romaine also works, and the crunch is nice.
  • ½ cup chopped cucumber
  • ½ a red bell pepper, chopped
  • ½ cup tomatoes of your choice - I use either cherry, or slices of big tomatoes, whatever looks good at the store
  • ¼ cup corn kernels - I use frozen and defrost them. I find corn gives a bit of sweetness that really balances out the balsamic vinegar, but you could skip it
  • ⅓ - ½ cup cooked black beans - these give a ton of fiber and protein. If you're not as hungry, you could put less, but these will keep you full longer than the veggies alone
  • A tablespoon or so of raw pepitas (pumpkin seeds) - these are full of iron, which is more easily absorbed along with vitamin c (from the pepper, yay)
  • 4 or 5 olives, sliced in half - yeah, these aren't super nutritious, but the saltiness is pretty crucial and I looooove olives
  • Balsamic vinegar, to taste
Instructions
  1. Throw it all into a big-ass bowl and toss.
  2. Chow down.
  3. Additional add-ons include, but are in no way limited to, avocados, cilantro, marinated tofu, snap peas, celery, grated carrot, grated beet, onion, sunflower seeds, basically any other seed or nut, shredded cabbage, banana peppers, tahini, cooked quinoa (or other grain), and the list goes on. Whatever you have in your fridge, or whatever you like, you can pretty much always throw it in. Go crazy.

 

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