If you're new to the plant-based food world, you might be looking for a few amazing vegan salad recipes that are delicious but simple to throw together on any night of the week. There's a whole world of dressings, as well as different lettuces, greens, and vegetables and fruits that you can put together to make a great salad.
I'm showcasing three different styles; a sweet and savory spinach salad that you can modify with any sweet fruit you like and any crunchy nut, a classic Caesar that I bring whenever a friend asks me to make a salad, and a potato salad that is made with a lemon sauce rather than a mayonnaise version. I also show you how to make a basic balsamic vinaigrette if you just want to pile a bunch of vegetables together.
I adapted this vegan salad recipe from a few I saw on the internet. Spinach is super healthy and goes great with a tart vinaigrette and sweet fruit.
It is completely delicious and absolutely a cinch to put together.
You can substitute any nuts, and any other fruit with the same sweet-tart quality of mangoes for this vegan salad recipe.
Toast the almonds for 5 minutes in the oven at 350 degrees.
Mix vinegar, maple syrup, mustard, and tarragon in a bowl. Wisk in the olive oil, and then taste to flavor with salt and pepper.
Combine all ingredients in a salad bowl and toss to mix.
This dish is delicious with fresh strawberries, blueberries, or orange slices. You can also substitute in dried cranberries or blueberries.
The idea for this vegan salad recipe came from Vegan Planet by Robin Robertson. I used to be a big fan of caesar dressing with anchovies and a raw egg. This dressing is delicious with neither. A few of the ingredients are harder to find, but are always at Whole Foods and other health food stores. This vegan salad recipe makes enough dressing for one head of lettuce.
Combine garlic, nutritional yeast, tahini, miso, lemon juice, tamari, and Worchestershire. Whisk in the olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste. You can use a blender like a Vitamix to get a really smooth sauce.
Wash and dry the lettuce and cut into bite-size pieces and toss dressing over lettuce. You can add croutons or nuts or a sprinkle of vegan parmesan if you like. This recipe makes a lot of dressing, probably enough for two whole salads.
I've never been a fan of typical picnic-style potato salad, but I do love potatoes... and salad, so I made up this vegan salad recipe. You have tons of flexibility with the ingredients. I try to stick to things that are even tastier when made with lemons. With these fresh ingredients, they are always better when organic.
After steaming the veggies very quickly, so they are still crisp, put them in an ice bath to stop the cooking.
Juice the lemons, and wisk them together with the zest, mustard, sugar, dill, salt, pepper, and olive oil to emulsify the dressing.
Combine all the ingredients and toss to coat.
Refrigerate and serve cold. This is best if prepared ahead of time and allowed to chill so the tastes combine.
Once you learn to make one vinaigrette, you can make any kind you want for any vegan salad recipe. I almost never buy salad dressings anymore because it's so easy to make vinaigrettes at home and they taste so much fresher. I like being able to control the ingredients, and I like not having all kinds of preservatives in my body.
Again, you can use any other kind of vinegar, and you can also use another acid, like lemon or lime juice, instead of vinegar.
Combine all the ingredients except the olive oil with a wisk.
Here's the [easy] trick to making good dressings-- While wisking the ingredients, slowly stream the olive oil into the mixture. The oil will combine with the vinegar rather than resting on the top of it.
Makes enough dressing for 1 large or 2 medium sized salads.