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Salads w/o lettuce?

So, apparently I had a REALLY good Thanksgiving weekend (yumming it up in Vegas) and I'd like to get a jump start on some slimming down. I figure if I don't call it a New Year's Resolution maybe I'll stick with it. I know you all have some good recipes up your sleeves, so I'm looking for a good lunch salad.

Something simple, but balanced and filling. I'm not a huge fan of lettuce, so I'm hoping to find something non-lettuce. I make a tasty bulghar wheat salad with tomatoes, chickpeas, cucumber, garlic and lemon, but I can't eat that every day.

I like to bring lunch to work with me, preferably in only one or two containers to make it easier. There's a fridge and microwave in the break room, although salads are something I envision as not needing to be heated.

Any suggestions? It doesn't have to be a recipe, per se, but perhaps some inspiration with the ingredients?

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  1. i make a salad in the summer time with grape tomatoes that i halve and chop up some dill to put on top. then, i sautee pine nuts in olive oil (maybe not too diet friendly but DELICIOUS) and add those, then salt and pepper and mix all together. UGH. delicious. Good with some goat cheese, or cottage cheese or whatever else you want to eat with it. Its like a condiment.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Tal

      It never occurred to me to use cottage cheese as a base. Tomatoes and pine nuts sounds pretty tasty.

    2. This is a list of non lettuce salads from a local deli:

      Potato Salad
      Green Bean Salad
      Greek Pasta
      Pesto Pasta
      Thai Chicken Pasta
      Tuna Cheddar Pasta
      Orzo Pasta
      Tabouli
      Fruit Salad
      Chinese Cabbage Salad
      Broccoli Salad
      Spinach Salad

      This is a list of their "lettuce" salads:
      Seafood Salad
      Chicken Salad
      Caesar Salad w/ Grilled Chicken
      Chinese Salad

      1 Reply
      1. re: Alan408

        I was trying to stay away from pasta-laden "salads" and ones that might be full of mayo (potato, broccoli, etc). I mean, they taste good, but all that tasty stuff usually isn't healthy!

      2. Check out the bagged lettuce section of your favorite supermarket...you will find shredded carrots, broccoli slaw, shredded cabbage...good alternatives to lettuce.

        1. As a REAL quick and REAL easy summer side dish: I mix a can (or 2 depending on your taste) of rinsed chickpeas, a can of rinsed black beans, and a can of Italian style diced tomatoes. A bit of vinegar, olive oil, salt, pepper and you're finished. The longer it sits the better. Of course if you're looking to "fancify" it, add some fresh herbs or doctor as you see fit.

          1 Reply
          1. re: HaagenDazs

            This sounds a lot like my italian friend's beautiful bean salad. chick peas, black beans, chopped red onions, garlic, celery salt, oregano, S&P, balsamic vinegar and olive oil. Absolutely the best!

          2. I like to make a salad w/ cukes/radishes/oranges. Another option is cukes/tomatoes/feta, with a zatar seasoning.

            1 Reply
            1. re: MMRuth

              The cucumber/radish salad is also good with shaved fennel in lieu of or in addition to the oranges. Fresh dill is a good addition. And smoked salmon for protein.