From Couscous to Quinoa, 25 Fresh Lettuce-Free Salads
Categories: Health

From Couscous to Quinoa, 25 Fresh Lettuce-Free Salads

Warmer weather and more sunshine inspires us to start switching out those winter soups and roasts with bright, fresh salads. Hearty salads with grains or beans make great side dishes, sack lunches and crazy colorful dinner tables. Not only are they beautiful to look at, these grain-based salads are crazy good for you and will definitely put you on the right track for feeling healthy and happy! Check out these 25 gorgeous lettuce-free salads for some fresh menu inspiration.

1. Spring Carrot, Radish and Quinoa With Herbed Avocado: Got a vegan in the house? This salad can easily go that way. Use agave instead of honey and skip the feta cheese. Dinner is done. (via Cookie and Kate)

2. Vietnamese Chicken Avocado Lemongrass Spring Roll: It’s all the goodness of a spring roll — vermicelli, avocado and lots of fresh basil — in deconstructed form.  (via Half Baked Harvest)

3. Arugula, Carrot and Chickpeas With Wheat Berries: Wheat berries add extra protein making this salad a go-to lunch option or a ready-made meal when you get home. (via Cookie and Kate)

4. Spiced Eggplant and Buffalo Mozzarella: Flavored with classic Indian spices and topped with Greek yogurt and mint, this savory sister is delicious served warm or cold. (via Lust Loves)

5. Kale and Quinoa With Ricotta: Get all the right textures and flavors without tons of ingredients. You get the freshness of the leafy greens, heartiness from the quinoa, tartness from the cherries, crunch from the almonds and saltiness from the cheese. (via Smitten Kitchen)

6. Greek Farro and Chickpeas With Herbed Yogurt: Farro, in case you don’t know, is a form of wheat grain that you can find in almost any grocery store. This substantial Greek salad features chickpeas and mint dill yogurt sauce. (via Cookie and Kate)

7. Brown Rice With Green Miso: Brown rice, tofu, avocado and pickled ginger make for one mighty healthy salad. Add grilled chicken if you’re looking for extra protein. (via Lush Loves)

8. Strawberry, Quinoa and Chopped Spinach: Strawberries are almost in season, and when the ripening begins, this delicious summery salad will be the perfect one-bowl meal. (via Cookie and Kate)

9. Three Bean Salad With Artichokes and Feta: Beans are totally underrated. They’re practically fat free and packed with fiber, protein and vitamins. Allow them to marinate in dressing for a few hours for maximum flavor. (via A Hint of Honey)

10. Poached Salmon, Herb and Pearl Couscous: Poached salmon is easier to make than you think, and the results are a tender flaky meat. Poaching is also great because you don’t have to use extra oil while cooking, making for a lean, mean meal. (via Lush Loves)

11. Lemon Parsley Bean Salad With Hummus: Try this Mediterranean bean salad with a side of hummus and lots of pita bread. Both vegan and gluten-free, it’s bursting with lemon, garlic and fresh herbs. (via Cookie and Kate)

12. Spring Quinoa With Avocado and Edamame: Using black quinoa really makes the greens of the avocado, edamame and mint pop in this colorful salad. (via Lush Loves)

13. Israeli Couscous With Smoked Paprika, Tomatoes and Mozzarella: Israeli couscous is actually a type of semolina pasta and is an amazing salad ingredient, especially when mixed with hints of smoky paprika and fresh mozzarella. (via A Hint of Honey)

14. Asian Raw Kale With Red Pepper Dressing: Topped with avocado, purple cabbage, sesame oil and cilantro — kale is a superfood that will have you glowing from the inside out. (via Cookie and Kate)

15. Whole Wheat Pearl Couscous With Cherries and Arugula: There is a plethora of flavors in this easy salad with toasted walnuts, orange zest and, best of all, smoked Gouda. Not into that stuff? It’s easy enough to improvise. Just throw in any dried fruit or nuts that you have on hand. (via The Kitchn)

16. Lemon Orzo With Asparagus and Tomatoes: Orzo, although a pasta, is never heavy making it perfect for a light salad base. Bonus: Asparagus is in season right now, so go ahead. Enjoy those fresh veggies! (via A Big Mouthful)

17. Roasted Cauliflower Chickpea and Quinoa with Jalapeño Lime Dressing: Pickled jalapeños — you better believe they give this salad an extra kick of flavor. (via My Darling Lemon Thyme)

18. Olive Couscous: Make this salad the night before serving to allow all the flavors to marinate. Then, pair it as a tasty side to grilled fish or roasted chicken. (via Kitchen Confidante)

19. Green Bean and Avocado Quinoa: This monochromatic salad has fun with all kinds of flavor and textures, thanks to fresh green beans, avocado, mint, arugula and pistachios. (via Love and Lemons)

20. Couscous With Roasted Asparagus, Artichokes and Spinach: This light, refreshing salad bursts with spring flavors and is topped with parmesan cheese. (via Two Peas and Their Pod)

21. Ginger, Citrus and Black Sesame Carrots With Edamame: While currently missing the grains, you could easily make this Asian-inspired salad a main dish by adding grilled tempeh or tofu and a handful or your favorite grains. (via The First Mess)

22. Quinoa With Feta and Chia Seeds: Chia seeds are a trending ingredient right now; not only are they incredibly good for you, they also add a nutty, toasty flavor to a quinoa salad. (via Fifteen Spatulas)

23. Golden Beets and Barley With Rainbow Chard: Alongside red onion and wilted chard, golden beets add a bright pop of color to this salad, topped with lemony dressing and salty feta cheese. (via The Kitchn)

24. Chickpea, Spring Onion and Tuscan Kale: Chives, leeks and red onions are the epitome of early spring. The chunks of bread soak up the dressing quickly, so serve it right after assembling. (via The First Mess)

25. Everyday Super Food: An explosion of color comes with a complete dose of required vitamins and minerals with kale, broccoli, avocado and beets topped with blueberry ginger dressing and a handful of omega-seed sprinkles. We’re feeling healthier already! (via The First Mess)

Do any of these salads inspire you to start chopping? Let us know in the comments below!