10 diet-friendly main-course salads
Salads are so much more than lettuce and vegetables. Get some great ideas for how to rethink this waistline-friendly specialty.
Sometimes all you crave is a fresh salad for dinner - minimal effort, great crunch and a healthy way to stay on track, diet-wise. But though it's a tasty way to eat your greens, sometimes the average salad needs a little 'oomph'. Lettuce and vegetables are all well and good, but add a bit of protein and then you've got dinner to aid your weight loss. Need some easy meals ideas? Check out the heathly salads below - each deceptively healthy recipe is enough for two, but you can double or even triple anything easily for the whole family to enjoy.
Asian chicken and vegetables salad
Rinse 300g frozen Asian vegetable mix under cold water until defrosted; drain and blot dry. Toss in a bowl with 150g cooked cubed skinless chicken breast. In another bowl, mix 1 tablespoon seasoned rice vinegar, 1 tablespoon reduced-salt soy sauce, 2 teaspoons sesame oil and red chilli sauce to taste; pour over the salad and toss to combine.
Tabbouleh salad with salmon
Mix 1/2 cup dry burgul with 1 cup boiling water in a large bowl; set aside 30 minutes or until the water is absorbed. Fluff with a fork and toss with 210g drained, tinned salmon, 2 celery stalks, chopped, 1/4 cup chopped red onion, 2 tablespoons chopped parsley, 2 tablespoons chopped mint and salt and pepper to taste.
White bean salad with shrimp
Drain and rinse a 440g can cannellini beans. Toss with 135g cooked chopped canned prawns, 1 minced shallot, 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar, 2 teaspoons olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon rubbed sage and 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme, as well as salt, pepper and red chilli sauce to taste.
Easy salad Nioise
Rinse 1 cup frozen string beans in a colander under cold water until thawed; drain and blot well. Toss with 4 cups mixed greens, 8 cherry tomatoes, halved, 1 cup canned new potatoes, drained, 165g canned tuna in springwater, drained; and 1/4 cup fat-free vinaigrette.
Chicken taco salad
Place 1 jumbo taco shell on each of 2 plates. Mix together 1 cup shredded lettuce, 1 chopped tomato, 140g chopped cooked smoked chicken breast, 30g grated low-fat cheddar cheese and 1/4 cup jarred salsa. Top each of the tacos with an equal portion of the lettuce mixture.
Rinse 1 cup frozen corn kernels in a colander under cold water until defrosted. Toss in a bowl with 1 seeded and chopped red capsicum, 2 thinly sliced spring onions, 100g cooked crab meat, 1 cup canned borlotti beans, drained and rinsed, 1/4 cup chopped coriander, 2 tablespoons lime juice, 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin and salt and pepper to taste.
Spinach caesar salad
Toss 4 cups baby spinach, 1 red apple, cored and chopped, 4 canned drained anchovies in brine, 1 cup canned kidney beans, drained and rinsed and 40ml Weight Watchers Caesar dressing in a large bowl.
Greek salad with feta
Toss 4 cups shredded Romaine lettuce, 1 cucumber, peeled and chopped, 1 green capsicum, seeded and chopped, 1 small red onion, cut into rings, 90g crumbled reduced-fat feta cheese, 1 tablespoon chopped pitted olives, 1 teaspoon dried oregano and 1/4 cup Weight Watchers Balsamic dressing.
Smoked salmon endive salad
Toss 4 cups endive, 2 minced shallots, 1 seeded and diced red capsicum, 100g chopped smoked salmon and 1/4 cup Weight Watchers Lemon and Cracked Pepper dressing.
Lobster gazpacho salad
Toss 2 roma tomatoes, chopped, 1 cucumber, peeled and chopped, 1 green capsicum, seeded and chopped, 1 small red onion, chopped, 2 celery stalks, chopped, 150g chopped cooked lobster meat, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, 2 teaspoon Worcestershire and salt and pepper to taste. Drizzle the salad with 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil just before serving.
Find more food and recipe tips:
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- 6 common food myths
- Why aren't I losing weight?
- Foods for your heart
- Foods to boost your mood
This article was originally written for Kidspot.com.au in conjunction with Weight Watchers as part of their Positively Life Changing initiative.