When the temperature soars, enjoying a cool, crisp salad for lunch is refreshing and delicious – and requires no standing around by the microwave or stovetop! Bring some flavorful summer salads to work with you in Fit & Fresh containers and then savor a nutritious lunch that’s also totally tasty.
Meal-prepping lunch salads
Salads are easy to prepare ahead of time. You can chop ingredients and assemble the salads in lunch containers, then store them in the fridge until you need them. To keep the lettuce and other ingredients crunchy, it’s best to pack any dressings in a small, separate container. Most salads will keep in the fridge for 1-2 days.
Celebrate summer with fresh salads made with in-season ingredients.
Make salads special in the summer with ingredients that are in-season. Try to buy them locally whenever possible to support nearby farms and sustainable practices. In-season fruits and vegetables include:
- Bell peppers.
- Swiss chard.
Getting hungry? Here are three summer salad recipes to make for lunch:
- Arugula, Cherry and Goat Cheese Salad
This gourmet-style salad featured in The New York Times is bursting with seasonal flavor. The creamy goat cheese combines perfectly with peppery arugula and perfectly sweet-and-tart cherries for a lovely medley of flavors in every bite. Makes 4 servings.
1 6-ounce bag baby arugula
16 cherries, halved and pitted
1/4 cup pistachios or almonds, lightly toasted and chopped
1 tablespoon fresh tarragon
1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
Salt and freshly ground pepper
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 ounces goat cheese, crumbled
1. Toss together the arugula, half the nuts and tarragon in a large bowl.
2. Whisk together the sherry and balsamic vinegars, salt and pepper and olive oil, and then toss to combine with the salad. Sprinkle with goat cheese and the remaining nuts and enjoy.
- Grilled Nectarine Salad
Make this delectable salad recipe from the Food Network, then bring the leftovers with you to work. Grilling the nectarines brings out their rich, sweet flavor. Makes 4 servings.
2 nectarines, halved and pitted
Olive oil, for drizzling
2 teaspoons honey
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
1/2 cup olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup slivered almonds
6 ounces spring mix salad greens
2 ounces Stilton, Gorgonzola or other blue cheese
1. Heat a grill pan over medium-high heat.
2. Drizzle nectarine halves with olive oil. Then grill the halves cut-side down for 2-3 minutes, turning halfway. Set aside.
3. Whisk together honey, Dijon and vinegar in a small bowl. Whisk in olive oil to emulsify. Add salt and pepper and stir.
4. Toast the almonds in a small skillet over medium-low heat, just until they’ve turned golden brown.
5. Toss the salad greens with the dressing to coat. Sprinkle on almonds.
6. When assembling salad, add a nectarine half to each serving. Drizzle with additional dressing, sprinkle with cheese and enjoy.
- Blackberry Spinach Salad
Get a burst of antioxidants during lunchtime with this Blackberry Spinach Salad from Taste of Home magazine. It’s packed with nutrients to help you power through your day. Makes 6 servings.
6 cups fresh baby spinach
1 cup fresh blackberries
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1 green onion, sliced
2 tablespoons chopped walnuts, toasted
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
2 1/2 tablespoons honey
1 garlic clove, minced
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2/3 cup crumbled feta cheese
1. Combine the spinach, blackberries, tomatoes, onion and walnuts in a large salad bowl.
2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the oil, vinegar, honey, garlic, mustard, salt and pepper. Drizzle dressing over salad and combine to coat. Sprinkle with cheese and serve.