I love the brighter mornings and lighter evenings of June and my thoughts turn to salads as the mainstay of my fridge prep rather than soups. That's not to say I don't still make soups in the summer but nothing says sunshine like a brightly coloured salad (even when the sun is not shining).
If you build it following my guidelines below you'll be able to prep ahead, vary the ingredients and won't end up with a soggy salad.
I normally make 3 at a time at least and use them for a lunch or dinner, side or main depending on your ingredients, and energy needs.
You'll also be able to build your salad tailored to your individual dietary requirements or whatever protocol you adhere to. Vegan, vegetarian, flexitarian, pescatarian, low carb, very low carb, high fat, high protein or just moderate everything and whatever you fancy.
No doubt I've missed a few of the fancy names people have for their style of eating now., but really this is a throw in whatever you need or want kinda meal prep.
Most of my clients are women, in the second have of life, mindful of weight, wanting more energy, managing symptoms of fluctuating hormones (mainly lowering levels of estrogen) and wanting to life longer and stronger.
Is that you? Then here's a few guidelines for you when building a salad jar or any meal.
Lower starchy and sugary carbs
Substantial protein at every meal
Heart, joint and brain healthy hormone supporting healthy fats
Tons of colourful veggies
Nuts and pulses and
Lots of herbs and spices
Check out my blog on Poor Diets Deadlier Than Smoking for some tips on the foods that are killing us and what we can add in to keep us living longer and stronger
Enlisting younger family members to help is not essential to success but it's a great way of encouraging future generations to make healthier choices.
My granddaughters Ava and Maeve love helping out. To be honest it makes for a messier looking salad jar but worth it to see them enthusiastic about the food and the colours.
Top tips for building a salad jar
Build it from the bottom - This is the most important tip and might sound obvious but it requires some thought about the order in which you layer and add your ingredients.
Wet items at the bottom and leafy greens at the top - This ensures the salad stays nice and fresh and crisp and avoids soggy salads.
Start with your dressing choices – a drizzle of each balsamic vinegar, lemon juice, olive oil is my go to. But whatever you fancy. Sometimes I'll have some mayo at the bottom. I love the Avocado Mayo from Hunter and Gather Foods. Four simple ingredients avocado oil, egg yolk, himalayan salt and apple cider vinegar.
Add in any of your wet ingredients like tomatoes, cucumber, beetroot.
Next up are the veggies – peppers, onion, scallions, radishes, grated carrot, chopped broccoli, sugar snap peas, sweetcorn, courgettes. Roasted and cooled Mediterranean veg are a good addition here
I love this layer, some sweetness - Strawberries, Blueberries, Apples or Kiwi are my favourites
Pulses (are a great way of adding protein and fab fibre to the salad and my go to choices are chickpeas, butterbeans, kidney beans or green lentils. These are all staples in my cupboards.
Starchy Carb option – cooked brown rice, wholemeal pasta or quinoa. These are good options for adding some bulk and fibre, but not essential.
Animal protein option cooked chicken, salmon, turkey, tuna, sardines, mackerel. Add your protein source to suit your dietary preference.
Finally some green leafy salad on top with a sprinkle of chopped nuts or some seeds. Chopped kale, spinach, rocket or sprouted beans are excellent nutrient dense options.
Seal with a tight lid and store in the fridge for 3-4 days. They may last longer, but mine are always eaten within that timeframe.
When ready to serve, turn upside down to let the dressing drizzle through and tip it into a bowl.
Quinoa Salad Jars
The jars below are made using a quinoa and chopped pepper salad, topped with some cooked mushrooms, some chickpeas and cherry tomatoes. I had these with a grilled salmon and broccoli one day for dinner, with an omelette for breakfast another day and falafels for lunch on the third day.
Choices are endless. Just remember, wet ingredients at the bottom and layer up to the most tender.
If you are interesting in making changes, so that you can live your best life, check out my programmes and 121 packages . Not sure what you want but know you want something to change, why not book a FREE Discovery call with me to find out how I can help.
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