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Non-green veggie salad

I'm looking for a simple, easy/cheap-to-make-in-bulk vegetable salad to serve at a BBQ -- does anyone have any suggestions?

Three Bean Salad would be perfect, but I'm also serving baked beans, which might be 'bean overkill'. I don't want anything I need to cook too much - it needs to be very simple.

Any suggestions are appreciated!

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  1. I'm in love with a panzanella salad this summer. Simple, delish: Tomatoes, cukes or celery, red onion, day ole bread cut into cubes and fresh basil or parsely/cilantro. It's perfect just as is, but of course I play each time by adding stuff like corn (fantastic) or radishes or avacado chunks or mushrooms (awesome), fresh dill & chives. Dressing is simple fresh squeezed lemon juice and olive oil (s&P). You can also add a nice fontina cheese or motz balls (mini). There are many versions of panzanella, some add vinegar in stead of lemon juice but I love the lemon juice best.
    check these out (food network has a nice one with cornbread)


    1. This was in the San Diego Union Tribune yesterday. I hope you find this helpful.

      Tomato, Corn and Avocado Salad
      6 servings

      2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

      2 tablespoons fresh orange juice

      4 teaspoons olive oil

      2 cups fresh or frozen yellow corn

      2 medium tomatoes, coarsely chopped

      2 avocados, peeled and diced

      1 green onion, finely chopped

      Salt and pepper to taste

      2 tablespoon minced fresh cilantro leaves

      6 lime wedges

      In a small bowl, whisk together the lime and orange juices and the olive oil. In a larger bowl, combine the corn, tomatoes, avocados, green onion and cilantro. Toss with the dressing and season with salt and pepper. Chill 1 hour. Serve salad with lime wedges.

      Per serving: 181 calories, 12 g fat, 3.4 g protein, 19 g carbohydrates, 0 mg cholesterol, 208 mg sodium, 6 g dietary fiber.

      1 Reply
      1. Quinoa with veggies &/or fruits -- I do this with mango, avocado, red onion, scallion, and a tangy lime dressing
        Roasted green tomato and feta salad
        Potato salad (with an unusual dressing and fresh herbs)
        Beet salad with vinaigrette...
        Broccoli salad with a light dressing and some other goodies thrown in

        1 Reply
        1. re: foxy fairy

          Rice and veggie salad, or if it's available, an israeli cous cous salad with roasted vegetables would be nice.

        2. Cucumber salad? Carrot salad?

          1. I am a big fan of the orzo with everything recipe on epicurious, and a salad of chopped fennel, apples, fresh mint, candied pecans, blue cheese and basalmic vinegar&olive oil. It might sound like a weird combination, but everyone I've served it to has loved it, even those with less adventurous palates. The original recipe for that salad comes from the surreal gourmet and has beets, which I can't stand so I omit: http://www.foodtv.ca/recipes/recipede...

            1 Reply
            1. re: colfaxBee

              I love that orzo with everything recipe too! I've taken it a few places and everyone always loves it!

            2. coleslaw - i like the variety without mayo. - i usually make one with cabbage, apples, carrots and a rice vinegar and soy dressing with a little ginger, garlic and sesame oil. you can also add sesame seeds.

              1 Reply
              1. re: howchow

                I too love a great coleslaw, particularly with a BBQ - and I love it without mayo too. I like yours with the apples - I would add some walnuts or almonds to it too, maybe even some cranraisins (that sweet, salty, tangy thing).

              2. Some years ago, I was on one of those canal boat trips in France, and the on-board chef had a salad buffet for the 10-or-so of us every day, plus one hot entree. He did not repeat any salad, and only once did we see a lettuce salad. Three salads a meal. It changed my approach to salad making forever, I'm telling you. Basically, it's pretty much a case of standing in the produce department and figuring out what's priced right, what you can put in the vinaigrette or other dressing, and what'll go with it. Apples are coming into season (how about a re-thought Waldorf? apples, walnuts and some cheese?), and so are things like butternut squash, which could becubed and bake and done sort of like a potato salad but maybe with Southwest/Mexican seasonings, cumin and a little chipotle, maybe, plus green onions and pine nuts? I do a carrot salad that dresses warm carrot coins with honey and mint, salt and pepper.

                Or go stand in front of the deli counter at the best store in town for ideas.

                1 Reply
                1. Quinoa salad, pasta salad, or Israeli/Shepherd's salad (mix tahini and lemon juice, add tomatoes, quartered and sliced English/Armenian cucumber, red bell pepper, chopped carrots, parsley.

                  1. I haven't made it recently...but I was on a kick for some time with a pepper salad that's fairly easy to make in quantity. Short story: julienne a variety of bell peppers (mostly red, yellow, and orange, one green, and a purple if you can find it), dice a shallot and a jalepeno (or whatever portion you're comfortable with). Toss with a lime's worth of juice and a pseudo-jerk sauce for dressing (ie allspice, cumin, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, S&P, a little soy sauce, and oil), then garnish with cilantro.

                    Good luck!

                    1. I don't know if this is inexpensive enough for you, but this caprese salad prep is fantastically easy to assemble.

                      mix together:
                      the type of fresh buffalo mozarella that comes in small 'balls'
                      cherry or grape tomatoes
                      shredded basil leaves
                      olive oil
                      balsamic vinegar
                      pepper (optional)

                      it's very simple and very tasty, and you can assemble it in advance.

                      you could also morph it by adding corn, scallions / chives, cucumber, red onion and subbing crumbled feta -- but all that would increase prep time, of course.

                      tabouleh might also be an option you'd like to consider, but might involve more chopping than you have time for.

                      or, instead of a salad, try making a cooked corn dish mixing diced tomatoes (canned if you must or use salsa) into barely cooked corn (frozen, if you must), adding some butter for fragrance, cayenne or sriracha for heat, black pepper, salt, a bit of lime or lemon juice or vinegar for acid. this can be served at room temp and it's good for picnics.

                      1. How about a grilled pepper salad? This is my fav. BBQ salad because it's easy and so yummy.
                        Basically it's just a matter of grilling all the peppers (different colours), onions, and even tomatoes.. then peeling the peppers and tomatoes and dicing them roughly.
                        Add lemon, some fresh herbs if you like, olive oil, salt, and black pepper.

                        The only issue I could think of if you're serving a lot of people would be the cost because peppers (esp, colored ones) tend to be a bit expensive but I think this salad goes a long way and pepper cost depends on where you are I guess. Onions and tomatoes can be pretty cheap.

                        1. How about a simple tomato salad or a pasta salad. Here is a recipe:

                          Pasta Primavera Salad

                          This is a great cook-out or pot luck dish. Its also great for a light summer meal.


                          1 box tri-color bowtie pasta
                          1 box tri-color pasta twists
                          1 zucchini
                          1 red pepper
                          1 green pepper
                          1 purple onion
                          1 bunch green onions
                          1 bunch broccoli crowns
                          3-4 carrots
                          1 bottle Wishbone 3 cheese Italian dressing
                          1/2 C. shredded or grated Parmesan cheese
                          1 sm. can sliced black olives (optional)
                          salt and pepper


                          Dice or slice all veggies. Cook pasta according to box for al dente. Combine pasta, veggies, and dressing in a large bowl. Sprinkle with cheese, add salt and pepper to taste, and toss. Chill before serving.


                          1. BBQ and beans are hearty, so you may not need/want a starchy salad, or tomatoes if those are in the other dishes. If you have a V-slicer, mandoline, or food processor, it's easy to do very thinly-sliced cucumber, radish, and mild onion. Add white, white wine, or rice vinegar, water, and sugar to taste. Oil is optional. Colorful, crunchy, fresh, and clean-tasting.

                            1. A slaw? I've got a recipe here for a slaw made from green and red cabbage, jicama, carrots, red pepper, yellow paper, red onion, cilantro and chives, with a dressing made from lime juice, rice vinegar, honey, garlic, salt, jalapenos, coriander and oil (oil could be replaced with a buttermilk/mayo combo for a creamy slaw). Here is another recipe for a "sui choy slaw with snow peas, carrots and black bean vinaigrette", and there's another for "Thai three-cabbage slaw with spicy red curry vinaigrette". They're all from the Rebar Modern Food Cookbook.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: Jetgirly

                                I made broccoli salad at my DIL's request for her wedding. I never would have tried the recipe because it looks so weird - brocolli, raisins, red onion, cheese, bacon bits and a mayonnaise/vinegar/sugar dressing. I love the stuff. Recently served it to visiting, elderly stodgy New England who don't like change and received compliments. Keeps in the frig so good to make ahead.
                                My first choice would be traditional coleslaw. Your choice really depends on your guests. My husband's family is afraid to try new things. At the same time as the broccoli salad I served a wonderful tomato, cucumber, red onion salad with feta cheese in a balsamic dressing. They didn't dare try it. Not sure why they liked the brocolli.

                                1. "Cheap" is a relative term, so you're on your own figuring out whether this is or isn't. One of my all-time favorite salads is the classic Greek "horiatiki salata," or "village salad." Cut medium ripe tomatoes in large chunks (quarter, then eighth them), peel and seed a cucumber or two and cut it into chunks about the size of the tomatoes, seed a bell pepper or two and cut into triangles, then do the same with a purple onion. Mix it all together and toss in a bunch of pitted (or unpitted) Kalamata olives and biggish chunks of good feta cheese. Traditional "dressing" is just plain old extra virgin olive oil, but in today's world people often mix in things like chopped mint leaves and/or fresh dill. I never actually add vinegar, but for those who do I put cruets of at least two kinds out, along with some lemon wedges.

                                  Always a hit. And the olives disappear fast so if you're feeling flush, have some in reserve to replace the filched. This salad is especially good with barbecue! I've even been known to toss some on the grill just for me. Everyone else is on their own! Warm (or toasted on the barbecue) pita bread is a great addition too. Have fun!

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: Caroline1

                                    Ditto on Caroline1...you can't mess this up and it takes advantage of all the great harvest vegs now available to us.

                                    I've also learned to really like "Nigella's watermelon salad." You can google it, but it's basically cubed seedless watermelon, red onion (having soaked in vinegar to defang it a bit), feta cheese, olives, lime juice and olive oil. It's so interesting to treat watermelon as a savory/veg...makes a whole lot more sense to my taste buds. The crunchy, salty, savory, citrusy flavors with such a light texture is a great foil to anything complex, fatty or sweet.

                                    Even folks I thought would be wierded out loved it (my children included!)