Baranowskis' salad recipe

In honor of National Nutrition Month, learn to make a salad that members of your family will want to eat.

Tom and Janice Baranowski
Tom and Janice Baranowski

Tom and Janice Baranowski, from the USDA/ARS Children’s Nutrition Research Center at Baylor College of Medicine and Texas Children’s Hospital, offer their salad recipe ideas.

A healthy, tasty salad has several key components that can be individualized to meet a family’s tastes. A great salad will usually include the following general components:

2 cups of your favorite leafy greens

Options include:

  • Spinach
  • Kale
  • Arugula
  • Leaf lettuce
  • Iceberg lettuce

1 cup diced vegetables to taste

The possibilities are only limited by what your family likes! Try

  • Green and/or red peppers
  • Zucchini
  • Yellow squash
  • Butternut squash (roasted)
  • Regular or green onions
  • Celery
  • Asparagus
  • Tomatoes
  • Avocado
  • Corn
  • White beans

1/2 cup crumbled cheese

We like stronger cheeses, like cheddar, feta, or Bleu. Others prefer milder cheeses, like Parmesan or Quattro Formaggio.

1/2 cup berries or other fruit

Choose fruits such as:

  • Blueberries
  • Strawberries
  • Blackberries
  • Apples
  • Pears

1/3 cup chopped nutsSalad

For example:

  • Pecans
  • Pine nuts
  • Almonds
  • Walnuts

Heating nuts for a minute in the microwave will bring out their flavor.

1/3 cup vinaigrette-based salad dressing

Preferably, consider a lower-calorie version using olive oil. If you use a strong cheese, a sweeter dressing will add good flavor. Greek salad dressing, which is usually lime juice, feta cheese and olive oil, is also a tasty, healthy way to proceed. Use pepper to taste.

Mix together those ingredients and serve!

To make the salad super easy to prepare, select precut fresh vegetables from your produce department!

If this salad will be your main dish, add diced cooked chicken, fish, or shrimp. The specific items can be varied to reflect what your family likes and the amounts of each item can also be varied to reflect your family’s tastes.

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