With Make-Ahead Salad Bar Bowls, you take ideas from your local salad bar to turn your take-along or at-home lunches into a cafeteria-style feast—hold the hefty price tag.
Tip: Bar star
Head to your nearest salad bar and glean inspiration. Many salad bars will list the ingredients, giving you a bit of insider knowledge when you’re ready to mimic the dishes at home.
Make-Ahead Salad Bar Bowls
Kale and Roasted Beet Salad with Pickled Onion Vinaigrette
- 6 medium beets quartered
- 1 red onion peeled and thinly sliced
- 1 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1 cup water
- 2 tbsp coconut sugar
- 8 cups kale from 1 large bunch
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 tbsp Dijon mustard gluten free if desired
- 1 tbsp gluten-free tamari
- 1/2 garlic clove grated
Sun-dried Tomato, Brown Rice, and Chickpea Salad
- 1 garlic clove peeled
- 1 cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes oil reserved
- 1 cup toasted or raw walnuts
- 1/4 cup reserved oil from tomatoes or olive oil
- 1 tbsp sherry vinegar or balsamic vinegar
- 1 tbsp packed fresh oregano or basil leaves
- 2 cups cooked short-grain brown rice or quinoa cold
- 19 oz can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
To serve Salad Bar Bowls
- 2 avocados
- 1 lemon quartered
- 1/8 tsp crushed red pepper flakes or to taste
Kale and Roasted Beet Salad
- Preheat oven to 350 F. To ovenproof ceramic or glass pot with lid, add beets and a splash of water. Cover and bake until tender, about 1 hour. When cool enough to handle, remove skin from beets and cut into manageable (bite-sized) pieces. Set aside.
- To medium bowl, add onion. Alternatively, pack onion into large Mason jar. In small saucepan, bring vinegar, water, and sugar to a boil. When liquid has boiled and sugar has dissolved, immediately pour over onion, cover, and set aside for at least 10 minutes, or up to 1 month if stored in refrigerator. Add pickled onion to large bowl, saving pickling liquid.
- Remove stems from kale and shred; add to large bowl with onion and massage with your hands until kale has darkened in color and begins to become tender, about 15 seconds.
- Take 1/4 cup onion pickling liquid (refrigerate remaining liquid for another use) and add to small bowl or lidded Mason jar, followed by oil, mustard, tamari, and garlic; shake or whisk to combine and add to kale along with beets. Toss everything together until well incorporated. Keep covered in refrigerator for up to 5 days, until ready to serve.
To serve Salad Bar Bowls
- In food processor, pulse garlic until finely minced; add tomatoes, walnuts, oil, vinegar, and oregano or basil.
- Blend until thick paste forms.
- To large bowl, add tomato mixture along with rice or quinoa and chickpeas. Toss everything together until well incorporated. Keep covered in refrigerator for up to 3 days, until ready to serve.
- To bowls or to-go containers, add portions of Kale and Roasted Beet Salad with Pickled Onion Vinaigrette and Sun-dried Tomato, Brown Rice, and Chickpea Salad.
- Halve, pit, and slice avocados, then add on top of bowls or in containers along with a hefty squeeze of lemon to retain color and a sprinkle of chili flakes.
Per serving: 533 calories; 12 g protein; 34 g total fat (4 g sat. fat); 51 g total carbohydrates (12 g sugars, 13 g fiber); 342 mg sodium