Simple Summer Salad & Homemade Dressing Recipe

It’s summer…finally! This is my absolute favorite time of the year when all I want to do is bask in the sun 🙂 So when it comes to meal prep, I try to keep it simple & casual because (1) it’s too hot to cook and (2) it’s too beautiful out to spend my time inside.

This is when salads come in really handy. You can get your veggies and your sunshine too. And when it comes to salads, there are no rules. You can toss in anything you want.

Start with any fresh veggies you have on hand (I usually keep some type of lettuce, carrots and tomatoes). Next toss on some protein (hard boiled eggs, canned beans, tuna, any leftovers, etc). *I recommend draining and rinsing the canned beans to lower the sodium content* Then add some fresh fruit, cheese, rice or quinoa, nuts and seeds, etc. Literally ANYTHING you have in the fridge/pantry/freezer can be added – so be creative. Finally, top it off with a nice light dressing. I prefer homemade because it takes 2 minutes to make and there’s no additives. Check out my recipe below for a 3-ingredient homemade maple dijon vinaigrette. It is also FODMAP friendly for all of my IBS people. Let me know what you think 🙂

xo. L

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Homemade Maple Dijon Vinaigrette

Course Salad
Servings 1
Author Lauren Manganiello, MS, RDN, CDN

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp dijon mustard or any mustard you like
  • 1 tsp maple syrup

Instructions

  1. Mix together all ingredients. Keep refrigerated.

Fresh Tomato & Basil Salad

Growing up in an Italian household, tomatoes and basil were abundant (my parents grew them in their garden) and olive oil was on tap (just kidding ).

Some of my fondest childhood memories of family get togethers always had this tomato and basil salad served as an appetizer. Little did I know at the time, this combo is a total knockout when it comes to nutrition. 

The tomatoes and olive oil provide important vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients on their own but when combined, they are a powerhouse that help fight inflammation and prevent disease. No matter how hard we try, food science can’t recreate what these foods provide on their own. Plus it’s simple to make and delicious.

Buon appetito!

xo. L

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Fresh Tomato & Basil Salad

Servings 4
Author Lauren Manganiello, MS, RDN, CDN

Ingredients

  • 4 large vine-ripe tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 table spoons balsamic vinegar
  • chopped fresh basil to taste
  • oregano to taste

Instructions

  1. Wash and slice tomatoes into 1/4 inch slices.
  2. Drizzle olive oil and balsamic vinegar over tomatoes.
  3. Sprinkle with basil and oregano and serve.