One of the simplest ways to get plant foods into your day is a loaded salad. Growing up we had a side salad every night that never changed much. It typically was lettuce (Romaine) with tomatoes, cucumbers and oil and vinegar dressing. I appreciate that my parents always had the extra vegetable servings on the table but really love to add a little more fun to my nightly salads as an adult.
Pairing summer fruits and nuts into a tossed green salad works well…really well. The sweetness of the fruit and crunchiness of the nuts makes it a salad to look forward to. The combination also gives you a few health perks:
- You get the benefit of added nutrients and phytochemicals from the variety of produce
- Healthy fats and protein with the nuts
- Increased fiber for a healthy gut and heart and to help you feel more satisfied (fiber is your best natural appetite suppressant)
- More textures and flavors helps you to slow down your eating pace to help you feel full with less overall food at your meal
Here are some ideas for pairing fruit and nuts with your greens:
- Avocado, Strawberries and Walnuts with Mixed Baby Greens
- Blueberries, Parmesan Cheese and Slivered Almonds with Mixed Greens
- Nectarines, Tomatoes and Pistachios with Mixed Greens
- Pears, Walnuts and Goat Cheese with Arugula
- Peaches, Pine Nuts and Goat Cheese with Kale or Arugula
- Strawberries, Slivered Almonds with Spinach
- Blackberries, toasted hazelnuts with Spinach or Mixed Greens
With all of the flavors you don’t need too much dressing, a little drizzle will do. Try any of these salad combinations with my favorite Honey Mustard Vinaigrette– easy to make and a little goes a long way!
Do you have a favorite fruit/nut/salad pairing? We’d love to hear your best combo below in the comments.