We love summer for so many reasons, fresh air, local produce, exercise outdoors etc ect. But we also find the warm weather in the summer and our access to fresh, local and organic fruits and veggies makes it so much easier to enjoy our raw vegan diets. Summer salads are perfect, generally easy prep work, the combinations are endless and the nutritional value is just a bonus!!
Now we are not talking about the typical 4 ingredient salad that we vegans find ourselves being forced to enjoy if we want to go out to a “standard” restaurant with our non vegan friends. Ice burg lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers and onions!! Thats about it, no wonder people still have such huge misconceptions about what we eat eh, no one would be happy eating 3 vegan meals a day if thats what it consisted of. But for most of it it just doesn’t even come close to that.
Salads are actually a favourite for us because we can add almost anything to them and we know we are meeting our nutritional requirements while still enjoying what we are eating. Also because of the variety its actually no problem to even have a salad multiple times a day as the choices are endless.
To step up our salads we like to be sure we always have a few things ready in stock in our kitchen, these things include:
Raw nuts and seeds for protein and fat and to help keep us full longer ( almonds, pumpkin seeds, walnuts, hemp seeds etc)
Bean sprouts and other sprouted seeds that we can make at home in a few short days. ( Sunflower is a favourite of ours as it contains lecithin which is packed with brain building choline)
Healthy fats are important too so avocado and raw olives are just great, as well as having a variety of oils on hand to make different dressing choices. ( Flax, hemp, coconut,etc Pumpkin oil is also amazing!)
Sun dried tomatoes and different fresh or dried fruits can really step things up as well and can make for a sweeter option.
We like to stay away from ice burg lettuce when we can since so many other greens out there are just jam packed with nutrition. (kale, chard,spinach,parsley etc.)
Of course an abundance of any and all veggies is always a go!!
Nutrition yeast, which contains B vitamins is also widely used as a sort of cheesy addition, it can be sprinkled on top or mixed in a nice dressing.
Miso, lemon juice,garlic and ginger are wonderful additions along with fresh herbs for salad dressings.
Oh and lets not forget about spirulina, it can sprinkled on top and really adds a nice flavour without being too over powering.
So it really is possible to get full off of a salad, and without having to add meats, high fatty dressings etc. You can make a nice dressing which will keep in the fridge for a few days and just change up the “salad contents” for a quick easy dinner after a long day at work!! Sounds nice and easy eh 🙂
If you are looking for a salad option without using any salad greens thats just a nice change from the norm, we whipped up this awesome spicy corn and radish salad recently in under 10 minutes and would love to share our recipe with you.
We use the kernels from 4-6 cobs of fresh corn
6 or so radishes sliced
A small red onion sliced thinly
A chopped red pepper
A handful each of chopped cilantro and parsley
A small jalapeno chopped really small
1 tbls of Agave
1 tbls of fresh lime juice
1 tbls of some sort of oil, olive oil is fine but we choose pumpkin oil last time 🙂
Mix everything together and enjoy, though if you leave it to sit in the fridge for an hour or so it brings out the flavours.
Simple summer salads are such a staple we think and hopefully we have helped you to realize ( if you have not already) that they do not need to be boring and have you feeling hungry 30 minutes after eating.
Any favourite salad recipes out there that you would care to share? What sort of things do you add to your salads to “bulk” up the nutrition and create a meal out of them?