While regular couscous is one of our household staples since it cooks so quickly, I love the chewy texture of Israeli couscous just as much. It's great warm and cooked like a pilaf, but it works just as well in a salad. Dressed with olive oil, lemon juice, and shallot, the salad is rounded out with white beans, crunchy cucumber, and lots of fresh dill. I like to mix in smoked salmon since it plays so nicely with dill, but tuna would be a tasty, inexpensive substitute. This salad comes together in less than 30 minutes and keeps well, making it a perfect thing to pack for a picnic, barbecue, or satisfying lunch. (Click "Read More" below for the full recipe.)
While I love a creamy chicken salad made with mayo as much as the next person, sometimes I'm in the mood for something lighter, something vibrant that wakes up my taste buds. This recipe is inspired by the noodle salad bowls served at Vietnamese restaurants, but I've kicked out the noodles to lighten it up. Toss shredded chicken, crunchy veggies, herbs, and scallions with a dressing of fish sauce, lime juice, ginger, garlic, and a Thai chile for some zing, then serve in crunchy lettuce cups with roasted peanuts scattered on top. These wraps make a beautiful (and messy!) first course or a low-carb lunch that won't make you feel like you're brown-bagging it. (Click "Read More" below for the full recipe.)
It's time to give yellow beets some attention - they don't stain and won't give you a panic attack in the bathroom after you eat them. If you're lucky enough to find them with the tops, grab a bunch and make this hearty and healthy salad. While the beets roast in the oven, cook up some chewy farro, make a simple dressing, and sauté the greens. Toss everything together with a big handful of salty ricotta salata cheese and a filling lunch or side dish to a chicken dinner is ready to go. (Click "Read More" below for the full recipe.)
While I love the creamy miso dressing served at Japanese restaurants, I hate the limp iceberg lettuce and sad shredded carrots that usually sit underneath it. In this recipe, the lettuce is replaced with hearty raw Swiss chard leaves, and carrots, cucumber, and edamame are added for crunch and texture. Everything's tossed with an easy blender dressing of white miso paste, sesame seed oil, rice vinegar, ginger, soy sauce, and garlic. While this salad is vegan, it's also great served next to teriyaki chicken or a bowl of ramen. (Click "Read More" below for the full recipe.)
I'm a food editor and professionally trained recipe developer and food stylist. You'll usually find me in the kitchen tinkering with new ideas and recipes to share with others.