how to make salad for weight loss

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how to make salad for weight loss

Whether you are looking for a plant-based meal or a protein-packed healthy bowl, we’ve compiled a list of mouth-watering healthy salad recipes that will complement a wide variety of palates. Jazz up your diet with these colorful, nutrient-packed combinations perfect for detox and speed up that goal of losing 10 pounds—just in time for spring!

Turkey blt salad
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

By turning the bread into crunchy croutons and the lettuce into the base of a salad, you minimize the refined carbs and maximize the healthiest part of the equation. Toss in a handful of cubed deli turkey to boost the protein, and suddenly you have a salad with substance and style to tuck into.

Get our recipe for Turkey BLT Salad.

Low-calorie grilled caesar salad
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

This recipe transforms the high-calorie dressing into a lighter vinaigrette and adds substance, flavor, and nutrition in the form of sun-dried tomatoes and olives. Think of this as the Caesar salad, reimagined.

Get our recipe for Grilled Caesar Salad.

Healthy grilled calamari salad
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

This salad has all the trappings of the much-adored appetizer—crunch from the peanuts, tomatoes, a bit of spice—but so much more. We don’t want to promise that you’ll never go back to the fried stuff after this, but it’s a distinct possibility.

Get our recipe for Spicy Grilled Calamari Salad.

Vegetarian warm goat cheese salad
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

The warm goat cheese crouton and sweet, crisp pear will make a salad believer out of anyone. It’s basically the goat cheese salad recipe to end all other salads.

Get our recipe for Warm Goat Cheese Salad.

Grilled chicken salad with cranberries avocado and goat cheese
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

This recipe is rich in protein, and it is guaranteed to cut the number of calories you’d have on a salad you order in a restaurant in half.

Get our recipe for Grilled Chicken and Avocado Salad.

Healthy grilled mexican steak salad
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

In this recipe, we choose a leaner cut of meat and paired it with a wide variety of tasty and complex flavors. It’s one of our favorite healthy salad recipes we love to make again and again.

Get our recipe for Grilled Mexican Steak Salad.

Chicken salad sandwich with curry and raisins
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

Make a big batch of the salad as part of your weekly meal planning and work it into other sandwiches, stuffed in pitas, or crowning a bowl of mixed greens.

Get our recipe for Chicken Salad Sandwich With Raisins and Curry Powder.

Healthy chinese chicken salad
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

This Chinese chicken salad is exactly what you want in one of your healthy salad recipes—sweet, savory, and a bit of crunchy, all in one bite.

Get our recipe for Chinese Chicken Salad.

Healthy spinach salad with warm bacon dressing
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

The word “spinach” creates a health halo for cooks and diners alike. People think that because the base of a salad is made with a superfood, the rest of the salad can be filled with whatever troubling toppings they like. That’s how we end up with dozens of 1,000-calorie spinach salads at chain restaurants. This rendition of the shrimp and spinach salad with warm bacon smashes the halo to pieces to give you a seriously healthy salad.

Get our recipe for Shrimp and Spinach Salad With Warm Bacon.

Vegetarian caprese tomato towers
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

The classic tomato salad from Capri, Italy, is a study in simplicity: sweet, acidic tomatoes contrasted with creamy mozzarella slabs and the bright herbal bite of fresh basil, yet with a complex taste you’ll crave.

Get our recipe for Caprese Tomato Tower Salad.

Healthy greek salad
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

This Greek salad recipe is both hearty and healthy without adding any heavy, high-calorie ingredients. It’s great for meal planning as it will keep well in the fridge for a week. Just double the recipe and dole yourself out a few spoonfuls for your lunch each day and you’ll be set.

Get our recipe for Chicken Greek Salad.

Healthy asparagus with fried eggs and prosciutto
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

Get it out of your head now that salads are limited to bowls of lettuce. Sturdy vegetables like green beans, broccoli, zucchini, and asparagus can all play the role of a salad foundation every bit as brilliantly as romaine or iceberg.

Get our recipe for Asparagus Salad With a Fried Egg and Prosciutto.

Healthy spinach & goat cheese salad with apples & warm bacon dressing
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

A great salad should be many things: sweet and salty, crunchy and tender. In short: a full exploration of taste and texture, but not at the cost of a whole meal’s worth of calories. With the addition of caramelized apples, toasted pecans, and creamy goat cheese, this retro spinach salad finally achieves perfect harmony in the 21st century.

Get our recipe for Spinach Salad Topped With Goat Cheese, Apples, and a Warm Bacon Dressing.

RELATED: 150+ recipe ideas that get you lean for life.

Healthy fig and prosciutto salad
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

We pair strips of salty, intense prosciutto with juicy, ripe figs. Add the tang of fresh goat cheese and the subtle, earthy crunch of toasted pine nuts and this makes for one inspired salad.

Get our recipe for Simple and Healthy Fig, Prosciutto, & Goat Cheese Salad.

Healthy avocado-crab salad
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

Adding an avocado half makes the perfect vessel for this salad, its rich, creamy texture boosting the sweetness of the crab. Who said you needed to go out to dinner to have a delicate and fanciful meal? This avocado-crab salad does the trick.

Get our recipe for Avocado-Crab Salad.

pickled cucumber onion salad

This recipe resides in that small but happy space between side dish, condiment, and healthy meal. It’s good enough to eat on its own, but it’s also the type of punchy, assertive salad that can be served over a piece of grilled salmon, chicken, (or even steak) and you can even tuck it into your favorite a wrap or sandwich.

Get our recipe for Quick Pickled Cucumber Salad.

Potato salad

This version is about as classic as potato salad can get, except for the fact that we resist the urge to drown the vegetables in a viscous sea of mayo. Instead, the mayo is bolstered with Dijon and a tangy shot of vinegar. The result: a healthier potato salad that cuts nearly half the fat from the equation and still tastes like the picnic classic we all adore.

Get our recipe for Potato Salad.

warm brussels sprouts salad eggs pickled red onions
Waterbury Publications, Inc.

In this warm Brussels sprouts salad recipe, we add in eggs and pickled red onions for a truly filling veggie-based dish. It’s a savory side you’ll want to make over and over again, and it’s guaranteed to convert anyone into loving Brussels sprouts.

Get our recipe for Warm Brussels Sprouts Salad With Eggs and Pickled Red Onions.

red and green breakfast salad in bowls with eggs and oil
Waterbury Publications, Inc.

Who says you can’t have salad for breakfast? With this red and green breakfast salad recipe, you can enjoy a crunchy bowl of veggies any time of day.

Get our recipe for Red and Green Breakfast Salad.

curried egg salad in pita pocket with spoon and bowl of spinach on wooden serving board with blue linen napkin
Waterbury Publications, Inc.

With 15 grams of protein, this recipe is a great option if you’re looking for a filling, healthy lunch idea. And there’s no stove or oven required—all you have to do is mix the ingredients together.

Get our recipe for Curried Egg Salad.

chefs salad eggs on sticks with yogurt on white plate and gray background
Waterbury Publications, Inc.

If you’re bored of eating healthy salad recipes from a bowl, why not switch it up and serve it on a skewer? These chef’s salad-style eggs on a stick have all the fun of grilled kabobs, without the need to actually fire up the grill. In fact, there’s no heat required for this easy recipe—just build the skewers, and you’re good to go.

Get our recipe for Chef’s Salad-Style Eggs on a Stick.

Waterbury Publications, Inc.

Thanks to eggs and walnuts, along with plenty of veggies, this meat-free, vegetarian-friendly salad recipe packs a healthy 14 grams of protein and five grams of fiber. If you’re trying to eat less meat, even if you’re not vegetarian, this recipe is a tasty way to get some protein and nutrients without sacrificing flavor. (Plus, the variety of colors make it totally Instagram-friendly, which is just an added bonus.)

Get our recipe for Savory Roasted Beet Salad With Barley.

Waterbury Publications, Inc.

With garbanzo beans, salmon, and grapefruit, along with a kale base, this pink and green salad is a nutritional powerhouse.

Get our recipe for Bean, Salmon, and Kale Salad.

Butternut squash pasta salad
Waterbury Publications, Inc.

If you’re looking for easy, healthy recipes, but you’re tired of lettuce-based salads, this butternut squash pasta salad recipe will be a game-changer. Like other Mason jar salads, this recipe can be made in advance, and it’s packed full of nutritious veggies

Get our recipe for Butternut Squash Pasta Salad.

mason jars of sweet potato salad with rice
Waterbury Publications, Inc.

This sweet potato salad puts a new spin on the term, layering cinnamon-roasted sweet potato pieces with shredded chicken, carrots, and plenty of seasoning. Combined with a serving of wild rice, this is a full meal in a jar. You’ll want to keep this on your list of healthy salad recipes for the future—trust us.

Get our recipe for Cinnamon-Roasted Sweet Potato Salad With Wild Rice.

mason jar salad with spinach, turkey, cara cara oranges, and pomegranate seeds on wooden tray with jar of nuts and white plate
Waterbury Publications, Inc.

If you’re looking to add more color to your salad game, this recipe is perfect for you. Thanks to Cara Cara oranges and a burst of pomegranate seeds, this turkey and spinach salad recipe is anything but basic.

Get our recipe for Spinach-Pomegranate Salad With Roasted Turkey.

mexican quinoa and chicken salad on wooden cutting board with bowl of salsa
Waterbury Publications, Inc.

Not sure how to incorporate quinoa into your day-to-day meals? This recipe is a great place to start. With salsa, black beans, corn, onion, and avocado, along with fresh herbs, this Mexican quinoa is a super-flavorful take on the superfood.

Get our recipe for Mexican Quinoa and Chicken Salad.

mixed greens salad with pears and pumpkin vinaigrette
Blaine Moats/Eat This, Not That!

Sure, you could make your own salad and top it with a classic dressing, like Italian or ranch. But why not kick things up a notch and make your own pumpkin vinaigrette dressing?

Get our recipe for Mixed Greens Salad with Pumpkin Vinaigrette.

arugula pumpkin flatbreads
Blaine Moats

Salad on a flatbread? Why not! It’s perfect for slathering on some thin, pizza-like flatbreads, and topping with burst cherry tomatoes and arugula for a truly outstanding cold-weather snack.

Get our recipe for Pumpkin Marinara Flatbread With Arugula Salad.

keto arugula grapefruit salad
Waterbury Publications, Inc.

This arugula and grapefruit salad recipe is meant to be a side dish, but you can easily make it a full meal by adding protein and fat. As pictured, we added avocado and bacon to make this salad even more delicious.

Get our recipe for Arugula and Grapefruit Salad With Dill Ranch Dressing.

keto zucchini noodles in bowl with fork
Waterbury Publications, Inc.

This keto recipe gives us major pasta-for-breakfast vibes (which is something you can definitely do). Creamy from the poached egg, peppery from the radish slivers, and bacony from the, well, bacon, it’s a symphony of flavors similar to those in spaghetti carbonara.

Get our recipe for Keto Zucchini Noodles With Bacon Vinaigrette.

whole 30 roasted vegetable salad with tahini dressing in white bowl
Posie Brien/Eat This, Not That!

The real secret to making this roasted veggie salad a zinger is the garlicky lemon tahini dressing, which is best drizzled on top rather than tossed.

Get our recipe for Roasted Veggie Salad With Tahini Dressing.

whole30 chicken salad on a bed of spinach in a bowl
Posie Brien/Eat This, Not That!

This delicious dressing is as creamy as mayonnaise, but lighter and more complex-tasting with a surprising nuttiness. It’s one of our favorite healthy salad recipes to prep for the week.

Get our recipe for Chicken Salad with Creamy Dressing.

breakfast salad with eggs on pink plate and marble background
Carlene Thomas/Eat This, Not That!

This breakfast salad has a crispy texture thanks to snap peas, radishes, and cucumbers, and adding walnuts is a great way to add healthy fats to your breakfast and curb cravings later in the day.

Get our recipe for Crunchy Breakfast Salad With Eggs.

chicken kale and white bean salad
Gail Watson Photography

The easiest way to make sure you’re eating a healthy dinner is to plan ahead. You can make meal prep even easier by buying a rotisserie chicken and using it in several different ways to create a nutritious plate, like with one of the easiest healthy salad recipes ever!

Get our recipe for Rotisserie Chicken, Kale, and White Bean Salad.

kale salad tandoori chickpeas
Courtesy of Minimalist Baker

A gluten-free, vegan salad doesn’t sound too appealing or like it’ll keep you full for very long, but we challenge you to make this your main lunch course and become a convert. Kale gets slathered with a delicious tahini-based sauce, and crispy, spiced chickpeas offer a nice departure from the usual MO of using them bland, straight out of the can. You’re getting the superfood vitamins and antioxidants, the protein, and healthy fats. Vegan’s looking better and better, no?

Get the recipe from Minimalist Baker.

israeli salad
Courtesy of Gimme Some Oven

This simple salad may seem modest at a glance, but it’s as much a backbone of the Israeli cuisine as is hummus. No joke—some version of this crunchy, fresh salad is eaten at every meal in the Mediterranean country. It makes sense as their climate allows for incredibly flavorful summer bounty of cucumbers and tomatoes. But this easily replicable version calls for vegetables available at every supermarket, and only takes a few minutes of chopping. Try it for breakfast with your eggs, for lunch with hummus and warm pita bread, or for dinner alongside a chicken schnitzel or a lasagna.

Get the recipe from Gimme Some Oven.

kale Brussels sprouts salad
Courtesy of Well Plated

If you’ve never tried shredding your Brussels sprouts, you haven’t been doing them justice. You can use a food processor, a mandoline, or simply a sharp knife to turn these little cabbage-looking heads into a slaw. This recipe combines them with kale and a zesty vinaigrette for a salad that’s equal parts a side dish and equal parts a detox program. And once you’ve tried Brussels sprouts like this, you’ll never go back to roasting them whole.

Get the recipe from Well Plated.

potato salad
Courtesy of Minimalist Baker

This absolutely gorgeous salad is so much greater than the sum of its parts. You can think of it as a lighter version of American potato salad, except the flavors come from a dressing that relies on the acidity of vinegar rather than the fattiness of mayo. Don’t skip the herbs, they’re crucial in lifting up the overall earthy profile of this masterpiece.

Get the recipe from Minimalist Baker.

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