Love a fresh salad?
I’m a big fan of easy salads that I can prepare ahead of time, usually on Sundays, to eat the rest of the week. It makes me feel organized to have a healthy lunch to grab from the fridge, and it saves money as I’m less likely to opt to eat out!
Today, I’m sharing a couple of strategies that may be helpful if you’d like to prep your salad ahead, too!
Make a big batch of salad as a base.
The first step is to make a large batch of salad as a good base with your favorite chopped veggies and lettuce. I personally love romaine lettuce and feel like it lasts longer so I usually use it. Kale is a good choice, too. Choose veggies that are likely to last like bell peppers, red onion, whole cherry tomatoes, broccoli, radishes, and carrots.
Remove all the moisture!
The key to a long-lasting salad is to get rid of as much moisture as possible from both the lettuce and veggies. Wash everything well and then send all of it through a salad spinner.
Prep any desired salad mix-ins.
This is also how you can make your salad different each day if desired! If you like sliced lunch meat, cheese, sliced hard-boiled eggs, bacon bits, grilled chicken, go ahead and prep those, too. If you like avocado, slice that the day you enjoy your salad.
Store in a covered container!
I store my salad in a large Pyrex mixing bowl with a lid, and use a folded paper towel to suck up any extra moisture. Since I work from home, I can just easily pull out some salad from this large bowl each day. Using this method salads can last 4-5 days in the airtight container.
If you’re packing your lunch to go, individual salads can be portioned out and stored in either mason jars or any other smaller containers with airtight lids. If using a mason jar, you can layer a salad dressing first so it stays on the bottom; otherwise, I’d pack it separately.
P.S. I’m obsessed with these yummy baked Parmesan Crisps instead of croutons! If you’re doing the low carb thing, these are a great option. I bet you could even DIY them by baking small clumps of Parmesan cheese on a baking sheet.
Dress it up!
Make sure to have your favorite dressings on hand to mix with your salads right before eating throughout the week, or make your own. I think homemade salad dressing tastes better, and I love the fact you can control exactly what’s in them.
Make my favorite 5-minute homemade salad dressing!
My mom always had this simple homemade vinaigrette dressing on hand in the fridge growing up, so it’s what I like today. I also love that this dressing has three main ingredients: olive oil, red wine vinegar, and Dijon mustard. The rest you can add to taste and adjust. Just shake all the ingredients together and it’s ready to go in less than five minutes!
Easy Vinaigrette Salad Dressing
This mustard vinaigrette dressing is delicious, full or flavor, and has simple ingredients you'll likely have on hand!
2/3 cup olive oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
1/2 teaspoon honey or other sweetener
salt & pepper to taste
Mix all ingredients in a jar and shake well before serving. Keep refrigerated. This dressing should last about 1-2 weeks.
Yummy, fresh salad & dressing!
I love this basic homemade dressing. You can definitely make it your own and turn it into different flavors by adding lime juice, different herbs, and even prepared pesto for additional flavor. I sometimes even swap out the vinegar for balsamic vinegar. YUM!
Written by Lina for Hip2Save. Lina is a proud mom of 2 kids who loves photography, all holidays, cooking, thrift store makeovers, bargain shopping, and DIY makeovers. Her goal is to create a beautiful life and stylish home on a dime! To see all of Lina’s DIY/Crafts created just for Hip2Save, click here.