How To Eat Salad Every Day And Like It!

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Love these salad recipes? Check out the eBook for How To Eat A Salad Every Day for more fantastic salad ideas, dressings, and tips to simplify your salad making! 

With this eBook, if you’re grocery shopping, meal planning, or just trying to eat more salads, you’ll have this information at your fingertips whenever you need it.

How To Eat Salad Everyday & LIKE IT! (aka the Fritos everyday diet!) get the recipes for each salad at barefeetinthekitchen.com

“How To Eat Salad Every Day And Like It!” could also be called “My FAVORITE Salads {a.k.a. the Fritos Every Day Diet}.”

This post was first published three years ago and almost immediately it became one of the most popular posts on this site. I’m updating the post today to answer some of the more frequently asked questions.

Many of you have commented on my daily salads that I share on Instagram, and you asked for a post sharing tips for making the daily salad happen.

Today I’m sharing all of my favorite salad recipes, the toppings, fillings, and more in one giant blog post. I promise you now, that if you give it a try, this just might rock your salad eating world.

I made you this video to show how I do this. Be sure to check it out!

While I’d like to say that I’ve always been a fan of salad, that hasn’t always been true.

I’ve always tried to love eating salad, but unless I went to the trouble of making a really great salad (something that often felt like a whole lot of effort in the past), it was hard to get excited about eating a salad most days.

That all changed when I topped my salad with a handful of Fritos for the first time. I know, that sounds completely ridiculous, but I’m telling you now that Fritos are a salad game changer.

Not only does that simple corn chip add great salty flavor and crunch to any salad, the Frito fits perfectly on a fork, it is bite-size, and it’s a fun way to tell all the greens that there is more to the salad life than just vegetables.

How To Eat Salad Everyday & LIKE IT! (aka the Fritos everyday diet) get all the recipes at barefeetinthekitchen.com

Still not convinced? I can’t even tell you how many people have snapped me pictures of their salads with Fritos on top while laughing and telling me that I’m to blame for their newfound love of salads + Fritos.

I swear that there really is no better way to top a salad.

Salad Ideas

There are countless ways to make a killer salad completely your own, so I’m sharing some of my favorites today. The key for me is to prep all the greens and the vegetables for the salads about once a week; I typically do this on Sunday.

It takes me about 30-45 minutes, but in the end, I have lunches made for the week and that keeps my healthy eating on track without having to fuss with it during the week.

I use 6 large containers that I line with a paper towel. The paper towel absorbs moisture and as a result, the greens and other vegetables will stay fresh longer. (I use these containers and these containers to store the prepped salads.)

How To Eat Salad Everyday and LIKE IT! get the recipes at barefeetinthekitchen.com

SALAD RECIPES

(any combination of the below ingredients will keep nicely for several days in the refrigerator)

chopped greens: typically a mix of romaine, spring mix, spinach, arugula, or butter lettuce (rarely all of them, just whichever ones I have on hand at the time)

tomatoes: sliced or chopped

cucumber: sliced or chopped (I often remove the seeds, but it isn’t required)

corn: canned, frozen, or fresh

bell peppers: sliced thin or chopped small

red onions: sliced thin

green onions: sliced thin

The proteins can be made just for the salads or simply be saved as leftovers from dinners through the week.

Anytime we grill steak or chicken I thinly slice the leftovers and save them for my salads.

I’ll cook and crumble a couple pounds of ground beef or ground turkey seasoned generously with Mexican seasoning mix (store-bought taco seasoning works great too) and then portion it into 1/2 cup servings and freeze it to use as needed.

Anytime I make pulled pork, I portion the leftover pork into individual containers and freeze them to be reheated for salads.

SALAD PROTEINS

ground beef or ground turkey: cooked and seasoned generously with Mexican spices or taco seasoning

taco meat: with black beans and corn

pulled pork or carnitas: shredded and chopped bite-size

cooked or roasted chicken: shredded or diced

ham: diced

hard boiled eggs: chopped

canned tuna fish: drained well

cooked shrimp or fish

beans: black, kidney, or pinto beans

How To Eat Salad Everyday & LIKE IT! Just add your favorite proteins - get the recipes at barefeetinthekitchen.com

SALAD TOPPINGS

cheese: shredded, diced, or crumbled

avocado: sliced or diced

fruits: diced apples or pears, orange slices, fresh berries

plenty of crunch: croutons, tortilla chips, or my personal favorite Fritos

fresh lime

salt and pepper

salad dressing of your choiceItalian, Poppyseed, White Balsamic Vinaigrette, and the absolute BEST Homemade Ranch Dressing are a few of our favorites.

WHEN READY TO SERVE

Warm the protein and chop it bite-size, if needed. Add the protein to the pre-made salad greens and vegetables. Add the toppings of your choice, although Fritos are never optional.

Squeeze lime generously over the salad, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Or toss with your favorite salad dressing.

How To Eat Salad Everyday & LIKE IT! get the recipes at barefeetinthekitchen.com

Love these salads? Check out the eBook for How To Eat A Salad Every Day for more fantastic salad recipes, dressings, and tips to simplify your salad making! (link for the eBook is at the top of this post!)

With this eBook, if you’re grocery shopping, meal planning, or just trying to eat a little bit healthier, you’ll have this information at your fingertips whenever you need it.

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How To Eat A Salad Everyday & LIKE IT! (aka the Fritos everyday diet!) get the recipes at barefeetinthekitchen.com

Salad Recipes

4.8 from 43 votes
Make eating salad as easy as can be with these tips for easy salads every day of the week!
Pin Print Review
Prep Time: 30 mins
Total Time: 30 mins
Servings: 1 per salad made

Ingredients 

  • VEGETABLE OPTIONS: any combination of the below ingredients will keep nicely for several days in the refrigerator
  • chopped greens: typically a mix of romaine spring mix, spinach, arugula, or butter lettuce (rarely all of them, just whichever ones I have on hand at the time)
  • tomatoes: sliced or chopped
  • cucumber: sliced or chopped I often remove the seeds, but it isn’t required
  • corn: canned frozen, or fresh
  • bell peppers: sliced thin or chopped small
  • red onions: sliced thin
  • green onions: sliced thin
  • PROTEIN OPTIONS:
  • ground beef or ground turkey: cooked and seasoned generously with Mexican spices or taco seasoning
  • taco meat with black beans and corn
  • pulled pork or carnitas: shredded and chopped bite-size
  • cooked or roasted chicken: shredded or diced
  • ham: diced
  • hard boiled eggs: chopped
  • canned tuna fish: drained well
  • cooked shrimp or fish
  • beans: black kidney, or pinto beans
  • TOPPING OPTIONS:
  • cheese: shredded diced, or crumbled
  • avocado: sliced or diced
  • fruits: diced apples or pears orange slices, fresh berries
  • plenty of crunch: croutons tortilla chips, or my personal favorite Fritos
  • fresh lime
  • salt and pepper
  • salad dressing of your choice: Italian Poppyseed, White Balsamic Vinaigrette, and the absolute BEST Homemade Ranch Dressing are a few of our favorites.

Instructions

  • Prep the vegetables and place in serving size containers. (I use these containers and these containers to store prepped salads. Add a paper towel to each box to help the produce last longer. Place in the refrigerator until ready to eat.
  • WHEN READY TO EAT:
  • Warm the protein of your choice and chop bite-size, if needed. Add the protein to the pre-made salad greens and vegetables. Add the toppings of your choice. Squeeze lime generously over the salad, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Or toss with your favorite salad dressing. Enjoy!

Notes

Try topping your salads with these combinations: Carnitas (or pulled pork), avocado, cotija cheese, lime, salt, and pepper Grilled chicken, bacon, hard-boiled egg, cheddar cheese, ranch dressing Chicken, berries, feta cheese, almonds or walnuts, poppyseed dressing Tuna fish, strawberries, avocado, lime, salt, and pepper Chicken or bacon, red grapes, shaved parmesan cheese, candied walnuts, white balsamic dressing Taco meat, beans, corn, avocado, shredded Mexican cheese blend, lime, salt, pepper * don’t forget to add plenty of crunch to each salad!
  • Nutritional info will vary – calories are calculated here for vegetables alone. The additional toppings you choose will vary the numbers.

Nutrition

Calories: 50kcal
Tried this recipe?Mention @barefeetkitchen or tag #barefeetkitchen!

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{originally published 1/7/17 – recipe notes updated 1/2/20}

How To Eat Salad Everyday & LIKE IT! (aka the Fritos everyday diet!) get the recipes at barefeetinthekitchen.com

Love these salads? Check out the eBook for How To Eat A Salad Every Day for more fantastic salad recipes, dressings, and tips to simplify your salad making! (link for the eBook is at the top of this post!)

With this eBook, if you’re grocery shopping, meal planning, or just trying to eat a little bit healthier, you’ll have this information at your fingertips whenever you need it.

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Mary Younkin

Mary Younkin

Hi, I’m Mary. I’m the author, cook, photographer, and travel lover behind the scenes here at Barefeet In The Kitchen. I'm also the author of three cookbooks dedicated to making cooking from scratch as simple as possible.

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  1. Felix says

    Lol, none of these salads are healthy. All the calories are coming from fat and oil. You’re sabotaging your efforts.

    • Amanda says

      Felix, I’m sure you are more than welcome to move along and find something that you prefer, then.

      These salads are better than fast food and the majority of fats are coming from good sources like avocado. Don’t want the oil? Don’t use oily things.

      The meats you choose can be lean sources (turkey, chicken, 93% lean ground beef, etc) and here’s the fun part – ADD ONLY WHAT YOU WANT.

      She’s giving IDEAS, not forcing anyone to do anything.5 stars

    • Kelly says

      I agree, Contessa is only giving her reader’s several ideas on both creative & easy ways to make salads and everyday part of our diets.
      For me, it goes without saying that I can add, delete and adjust the any of the salad ingredients (low fat dressings/low-fat cheeses/ leans meats etc.) to fit my likes, dislikes and/or the dietary restrictions I may have . Thanks Batefoot Contessa. I’m eating a lot more salads because if your article!!!

  2. Julie says

    Wow! This post is just what I was searching for! With a New Years resolution to eat healthy and save money on lunches at work. This is going to be a great go to pin for me!5 stars

  3. Debbi says

    What do you do with the paper towel in the bottom of your salad container? When I make a large salad I put paper towels on top of the salad and turn the container upside down to pull the water out, and I have done this on individual salads as well. I have never lined the bowl with paper towels because it seems like it could get too moist and break down into your salad as you eat it.5 stars

    • Mary says

      I’ve never had a paper towel break down in a salad container. I remove the paper towel before eating the salad. It works the same way that a paper towel on top of the salad works. I simply found that the containers stacked better right side up vs upside down.

  4. Krystyna says

    If I cook chicken breast seasoned and chop it up, do you think it will still say fresh if I put in freezer? Also what kind of lettuce and toppings do you recommend with a balsamic vinegar/honey/olive oil dressing ?5 stars

    • Mary says

      Yes, cooked chicken will keep in the freezer. However, it often dries out a bit. I typically add a tablespoon or two of water to the chicken when reheating it. Just about any vegetable will work with a balsamic dressing.

  5. KElly says

    Felix, please don’t take this as criticism but, I believe Contessa is “only” giving her readers creative, diverse & easy ideas and ways make & include salads in our everyday. I’ve been a chef for 30 years ( recipe development). If you ever read the recipes on the back of those plastic bags and containers of salad greens, that’s me writing those recipes, yet even I am challenged when it comes to beung inspired to eat salads everyday.
    Contessa’s article & the way she presented the salads in those square plastic containers inspired me to make salads more salads and got my creative juices going again. Contessa gave us several ideas, options, & guidelines for making salads and for me, it goes without saying that Contessa’s salad suggestions were so diverse that it gives the reader the freedom to, delete & adjust the salad ingredients to their liking.
    I’m intelligent enough to know she gave her reader ”carte banche” to add, delete and/or adjust any of
    the ingredients to my dietary likings,
    my diet needs and restrictions.
    With salads, the skies the limit.
    Thank you Barefoot Contessa!! I live where it’s about 12 degrees outside right now and salad ingredients haven’t been at the top of my grocery list these past 3 months. To be honest, making and eating salad has been an effort lately. Reading Contessa’s ontessa’s article seemed to wake up my creative juices & helped me to realize “again” how I can include ingredients in my salads to make them a complete meal so it’s not such an effort to make “ a salad” like before I read her article. But that’s me!! After reading the article, fresh veggies & almost all the other salad ingredients & containers she listed “ARE NOW” at the top of my grocery list.
    I loved, loved, loved the idea of making part of the salads ahead of time & storing them in individual salad containers.
    I’m on my way to the grocery store right now..
    Thank you, thank you, thank you Barefoot Contessa.
    I so enjoy all of your articles.

    • Nicole says

      All of you calling her the Barefoot Contessa are seriously confused. Ina Garten is the famous food network chef with the show Barefoot Contessa. This blog is by some regular person named Mary Younkin.

    • Mary says

      You’re so very right, Nicole. I’m as ordinary as it gets. 😉 Huge respect for the lovely Ina, but I’ve long since stopped trying to clarify the confusion.

  6. anna says

    I think this blog has a lot to offer and could be worth following, but are you aware of the number of popups and intrusive adds? Im not against adds, but they are making it difficult to read.

    • Mary says

      Hi Anna, thank you for understanding that the advertising on this site makes the site possible. That said, there shouldn’t be any pop-up ads. If you do see one, please screenshot it and send it to me, so that I can have my ad company block it.

  7. Beth Rogers says

    Thank you for the ideas on jazzing up a daily salad. I try to make salads for at least the beginning of the work week for me and the mister … but sometimes you just get in a rut. Great ideas and flavor combos. I don’t use paper towels to dry my salad, I invested in a salad spinner years ago. BEST BUY EVER!!!! I’ve gone thru at least 2 during my married life (23 years). The spinner makes it so much easier to process the greens. Thanks again!4 stars

  8. Suzanne says

    This was a good read! It can be such a challenge to have the desire to make a salad and work it into daily meal prep. This is very do-able!5 stars

    • Sunny says

      Using a salad spinner to completely dry the greens, then placing paper towels at the bottom of the containers you store them in helps.

    • Lori says

      All these ideas sound yummy! Question I have always had with salad prepped ahead for on the go meals: You put the protein in your container with salad but then you have to warm the protein? Feels like a dumb ? but never figured out how this works. How do you take these for lunch at the office or school or wherever? Not being sarcastic, serious question:)

    • Mary Younkin says

      Hi Lori, in the post I explain that I store the proteins separately and warm them before adding them to the salads. (In the video they are included, as my family ate the salads at that time.) I hope that helps!

    • Lori says

      Thanks for the response. Your answer is what I guessed. With the increased popularity of jar salads and meal prep for lunch in the go, everyone’s pics make it look like protein is packed with it. I just always wondered if anyone actually ate cold hamburger meat 😉.

  9. jamie says

    Its easy to come up with unhealthy salads that are full of meat, eggs, cheese and high fat toppings/dressing and not get bored. Would be nice to see healthy low fat salad ideas that you could eat everyday. Most of the salads I am coming across are so high in fat and calories dense you might as well skip the lettuce. :0

  10. Stephanie says

    How do you keep the toppings from making the salad soggy? I travel and would love to prep some of these for my meals. Thx for your ideas.

  11. Maliha says

    Thank you very much for sharing these different kinds of salad which is very helpful for us who are on diet. Without salad dieting is impossible. If you take rice, fastfood forget dieting. We need these types of salad recipes. I we eat salad our Granite kitchen floor will nit and clean.5 stars