5 Tips for Making Holiday Salads Everyone Will Love
Bright and refreshing holiday salads make a great addition to your winter cooking rotation! Loaded salads for the Christmas dinner table or everyday dinner add nutrients and texture to the meal. It’s a nice celebration of seasonal produce and can be so delicious every time. Read on for some tips and ideas on how to make a great salad for the holidays and any time of the year.
Holiday Salads with Winter Produce
Cooking with seasonal ingredients makes holiday salads refreshing and tasty! There is plenty of fresh local winter produce to use in salads that add texture, flavor, and nutrients. Some of the winter produce that’s great in salads includes pomegranate, roasted squash, brussels sprouts, and apples. And just because it’s a salad doesn’t mean it needs to just have lettuce as the base. Think fruit salad and even potato salad! Traditional greek salad is best in the summer and just uses vegetables like tomato, cucumber, and bell pepper. You could also try a quinoa salad like this winter produce one by Pinch of Yum
We love a good salad! Another example of a holiday salad is Half Baked Harvest’s Winter Pomegranate Salad with Maple Candied Walnuts. Or, try this Harvest Salad with Squash and Apple by Ahead of Thyme.
You can even try a warm salad like Tacoma Boys’ Roasted Winter Salad recipe.
How to Make a Great Salad
If you’re not sure how to make a great salad everyone will love, consider a few factors and types of ingredients. Have you ever had a salad made in a restaurant that is so satisfying and delicious it keeps you coming back for bite after bite? Most salads have a variety of textures and flavors. For example, every salad dressing will have a good amount of vinegar or citrus juice for a punch of acidity. This treats the lettuce nicely and brings that tangy flavor to each bite. Consider these ingredients and tips when making your salads:
1. Mix Something Crunchy With Something Soft
Like a mix of pumpkin seeds and goat cheese. Also use crisp and softer vegetables and fruits like cucumbers, tomatoes, apples, and pears.
2. Incorporate Both Acid And Sweetness
A dressing should have a lot of vinegar and might include a spoonful of honey. Or, incorporate some dried cranberries into the salad (for a seasonal element, too!).
3. Use Different Lettuces and Grains
Plain old romaine is good sometimes like in a caesar salad. But it’s nice to have a mix of crunchy and softer lettuce including spinach, arugula, cabbage, or kale. You can also use grains like farro or quinoa in the base of a salad.
4. Add Protein and Fats
If you expect to eat a large salad for lunch with nothing else, you’ll have to pack it with protein, fat, and fiber. A bowl of mostly vegetables will surely be nutritious, but isn’t always very filling just after eating. You can bulk up your salad with extras like grilled chicken, boiled eggs, crispy chickpeas, or salami.
5. Pile On Toppings Galore
A handful of lettuces and veggies are a good base. But don’t be afraid to pile on the toppings like nuts, croutons, dried or fresh fruit, cheese, herbs, olives, etc. Consider toppings such as these from Tacoma Boys for your salads:
- Fresh Gourmet Cornbread Croutons
- Northwest Delights Organic Roasted & Salted Cashews
- Del Real Organic Medjool Dates
- Odyssey Feta Chunk Cheese
- Tacoma Boys Pickled Beets
The Best Salad Dressing Recipes
As mentioned, the best salad dressing recipes have a mix of vinegar and sweetness plus of course oil at the base. Some salad dressings like those with balsamic vinegar can stand on their own with just oil and vinegar. A quick internet search for mix and match salad dressings reflect different ingredients to pair together. Different oils with different acids plus flavor elements are good for a variety of salads.
Mix and match your salad dressing recipes that start with a base of olive oil and vinegar. Then throw in some add-ins like dijon mustard, maple syrup, garlic, dried or fresh herbs, and more. For a creamy factor, you can use mayonnaise, greek yogurt, or sour cream. Just a spoonful or so adds an unctuous flavor and smooth texture and helps emulsify the dressing.
Tacoma Boys Salad Dressings
Tacoma Boys has a wide variety of homemade salad dressings to choose from plus more from other companies. Browse from these Tacoma Boys dressings and more:
- Lemon Peppercorn Dressing
- Roasted Garlic Dressing
- Raspberry Vinaigrette Dressing
- Ranch Lovers Dressing
- Creamy Vidalia Onion Dressing
- Sesame Ginger Dressing
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