30 Sumptuous Salads
Sweet and Spicy Steak Salad
Sirloin strips marinated in raspberry-chipotle vinaigrette get caramelized edges on the grill. Pile skewers on mixed greens with goat cheese and veggies, then pass the tongs and dressing.
Spiced Pecan Apple Salad
Pecans, feta cheese, a Red Delicious apple and zesty vinaigrette combine for a memorable salad. "This recipe comes to us courtesy of the Junior League of Chicago. It is from their cookbook, Celebrate Chicago! A Taste of Our Town," says Patty Erd, co-owner the Spice House in Chicago.
Wheat Berry Waldorf Salad
Apples, dried cranberries and grapes meet crunchy celery and wheat berries in this colorful salad tossed with apple-cinnamon dressing.
Winter Pear Salad
The recipe for this simple side salad of yellow tomatoes, tangy cheese, walnuts and greens with Dijon vinaigrette comes from a Des Plaines, Illinois, restaurant.
Dried berries give a burst of fruit flavor to this easy recipe that starts with rotisserie chicken.
Italian Rice Salad
Italian Rice Salad includes fragrant, nutty-tasting brown basmati rice, bell peppers in a variety of colors, red onions and plenty of garlic. "It's kind of soft, kind of crunchy, a little sweet and a little tangy," says Ohio cooking school expert Bev Schaffer, who gave us the recipe.
Midwest-Style Cobb Salad
We gave this Cobb salad a Heartland twist, with steak instead of the usual chicken. Maytag blue cheese stands in for traditional Roquefort. Use cantaloupe for the avocado.
Savory Cabbage Salad
A refreshing ginger vinaigrette seasons this salad with Asian-style ingredients. The uncooked noodles soften some while chilling, but still add crunch.
Wilted Spinach Salad with Hot Bacon Dressing
This recipe, from Cheli's Chili Bar in Dearborn, Michigan, dresses up a classic side-dish wilted salad. "I really enjoyed the addition of fresh mushrooms and hard-boiled eggs," notes a reviewer on our website. "I could easily make a meal of this."
Apple and Couscous-Bulgur Salad
Studded with dried cherries and almonds, this hearty fall salad pairs well with roast pork or even barbecue. Boiled cider and lemon juice add a touch of pucker that keeps the salad from tasting too sweet. You can make your own boiled cider or buy it online or in specialty stores (or substitute regular apple cider).
Duck and Asian Pear Salad
This elegant salad features Napa cabbage, pecan-coated goat cheese, duck and winter pears with honey-peach dressing.
Harvest Root Vegetable Salad
Five root vegetables pack this side salad; fresh beets unite them all with a rosy tint. Tarragon vinaigrette adds sweet-sour flavor.
Pancetta-Feta Red Cabbage
Pancetta (an ultrathin Italian bacon) bumps up the flavor in this multicolored veggie side dish.
New Ham and Rice Salad
The traditional ham and pea salad gets an update with wild rice and a dried tomato vinaigrette.
Warm Asparagus Salad
This warm vegetable salad boasts a flavorful blend of goat cheese, dates, pecans and asparagus tossed with balsamic vinaigrette.
Bistro Duck Salad
A sweet-tangy pear chutney crowns warm duck and cool greens in a recipe from a Cincinnati restaurant. The finishing touch: warm bacon vinaigrette.
Harvest Salad with Walnut Oil Vinaigrette
Walnut oil adds a nutty flavor to vinaigrette on this colorful salad from Clabber Girl Bake Shop in Terre Haute, Indiana. Add cooked chicken for a quick main dish.
Butternut Squash and Apple Salad
Sweet squash and apple pair with sharp Gorgonzola and tangy dressing in this autumn salad from Black Star Farm in Suttons Bay, Michigan. The dressing calls for verjus, a tart pressed grape juice. You can order verjust online or find it as specialty stores, but wine vinegar makes a good substitute.
Toss this light soy-ginger dressing with a bag of slaw mix and roasted peanuts for a nutritious side dish on stir-fry night. The recipe uses canola oil and sesame oil, which are both good choices as part of a balanced diet.
Cranberry Cashew Salad
Sliced apples, roasted cashews and dried fruit combine with mango chutney, spinach leaves and curry for an exotic, fresh-tasting salad. The recipe comes from the New Albany (Ohio) Cooking with Friends community cookbook.
Little Traveler's Chopped Salad
Bacon and French-fried onions punch up the flavor in this crunchy, fresh-tasting, main-dish salad from Little Traveler, a gift shop-cafe in Geneva, Illinois.
Herbed Winter Salad
Roasting intensifies the flavor of roma tomatoes for this herb-splashed salad. Mushrooms, grapes and walnuts round out the flavors.
Shad Kirton, award-winning chef and co-owner of Absolute Flavors Catering/Smokey D's BBQ in Des Moines, created this salad based on the classic sandwich.
The sweet tang of this rosy dressing pairs nicely with nuts, cheese, avocado or grilled chicken breast in a mixed green salad. A full 2 cups of strawberries boost the dressing's vitamin C and fiber; the olive oil is high in omega-3 fatty acids, a healthy fat that fights inflammation and protects against heart disease.
Winter Orange Salad
Croutons made from walnuts or pecans infuse nutty flavor into this tossed salad, with oranges and dried cranberries. Nut producers Barb and Dwight Ittner of Noel, Missouri, created the recipe.
Broccoli Grape Salad
Juicy grapes and crunchy broccoli blend sweet flavors with savory, salty bacon. The side-dish salad recipe comes from the Triangle Ranch B&B in South Dakota.
Fennel Apple Salad
Tangy Granny Smith apples combine with radicchio and fennel in this refreshing side-dish salad. Mustard and citrus flavor the dressing.
Toss red and green cabbage, chopped apple and green onions with a ginger-spiced dressing for a crunchy salad. Sesame oil and rice vinegar add Asian flavor.
Costa Rican Hearts of Palm Salad
Mix avocado, papaya and olives with hearts of palm for an exotic, colorful salad. Hearts of palm look like white asparagus without the tips and taste like artichoke.
Roasted Pear and Clementine Salad
This beauty of a salad blends tangy Gorgonzola and balsamic dressing with sweet roasted fruit.
Persimmon, Blood Orange and Pomegranate Salad
It takes time to peel and section or slice fruit for this salad, but the result is a colorful burst of fresh flavor that's worth the effort. To save time, use 2-3 cups jarred, drained, sectioned citrus fruit in place of the four oranges.
Smoked Salmon Potato Salad
Potato salad, a favorite comfort food, gets classy with smoked fish, radicchio and romaine hearts. Serve warm with a walnut-mustard vinaigrette.