Listen: This "recipe" barely even counts as such. It's much more like a formula -- some crunch from this, some protein power from here, some flavor from a splash of this, etc. But it's a delicious, delicious formula, and it's something I can see myself going back to again and again.
Chopped salads are delightful. They're colorful, crispy, and nutritious, plus they're so flexible. I was inspired by the outrageous hues of this salad when I stumbled upon the blog last week, but I decided to change up some of the ingredients for more of a Thai theme. Using the guide below, you can create your own splashy, crunchy showcase of nutrition!
I've put an asterisk beside the ingredients I used in my salad last night!
1st ingredient: Crisp vegetables
Choose any combination of the following to equal 5-6 cups total. Slice or chop whichever veggies you choose into small pieces and place them in a serving bowl.
- Baby corn
- Bell peppers
- Green beans*
- Napa cabbage
- Red cabbage*
- Snow peas*
2nd ingredient: Protein
Choose enough protein to equal at least one serving per salad portion, or 4 total servings of protein. (I hope that explanation makes sense!) Add the protein to the serving bowl.
- Black beans
- Edamame/soybeans, steamed and cooled
- Flavored baked tofu* (I used Wildwood Royal Thai)
- Fried firm tofu
3rd ingredient: Flavor enhancers
Go ahead and choose a couple "accessories" to jazz up the final product. Sprinkle them on top of the vegetables and protein.
- Asian-style hot sauce, such as Sriracha
- Cashews, toasted and chopped*
- Coconut chips or shreds
- Grated ginger
- Peanuts, toasted and chopped
- Rice noodles
- Sesame seeds, toasted
- Sweet chili sauce*
4th ingredient: Sauce
Start out with a small amount -- just a few tablespoons -- and gently toss everything together. If you need more, you can always add on!
- Salad dressing, such as Newman's Own Sesame Ginger or Briannas Saucy Ginger Mandarin
- Peanut sauce* (I love San-J's Thai Peanut Sauce)
- Teriyaki sauce
- Soy-based marinades
This recipe gives you a great excuse to "shop" the salad bar, especially if you live near a Whole Foods. The salad can be vegan or gluten-free, depending on which ingredients you choose to include. (If you're trying to make it GF, please remember that most soy sauces contain wheat!) I had leftovers for lunch today, and the salad was still nice and crispy!