Build a Better Salad

Build a Better Salad

By: Jacqueline Gomes, RDN, MBA

I don’t know about you, but I love summer salads! Summer time produce is abundant and rich with flavor! Think colorful peppers, leafy greens and sweet fruits. Salads are a great way to add variety and a bounty of nutrients to your diet.

Here are some ideas to get you started on a better summer salad:

  • Build your base: Lettuce, spinach and kale are all terrific starters. You can make a salad feel heartier by starting with quinoa, wild rice or barley.
  • Add Crunch: Carrots, cucumber, peppers, snap peas, string beans, broccoli, red onion, cabbage and corn
  • Sweet additions: blueberries, strawberries, apples, dried cranberries, raisins, apricots
  • Power up with protein: Grilled chicken, canned tuna, crab meat, sliced steak, salmon, eggs, cheese, chicken peas, edamamme, tofu, nuts, beans and legumes
  • Fun extra’s: Diced boiled potatoes, whole grain croutons, avocado, sprouts, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds
  • Dressing: Combine a fat with acid; for example Olive oil & Balsamic vinegar, Lemon juice, mustard & sesame seed oil, etc.

Sweet And Savory Chicken Salad

Sweet & Savory Grilled Chicken Salad

Prep: 10 minutes

Cook: 10 minutes

Makes: 4 Servings


  • 2 slices bread (any style)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 pound Greenway skinless Chicken Breast, sliced thin
  • Kosher Salt & pepper
  • Cooking spray
  • 8 ounces Baby Leaf Farms mixed greens
  • ¼ cup dried cranberries
  • 2 Tbsp Sunflower seeds
  • ½ Red Bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 cup Grape tomatoes, cut in half
  • 2 tablespoons store bought dressing such as balsamic vinaigrette


  1. For the croutons: Cut the sliced bread into ½ inch pieces, place a bowl and toss with 1 tablespoon olive oil and Italian Seasoning. Bake at 400 degrees F. for about 10 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, season chicken breast with salt and pepper. Heat an outdoor grill or grill pan over medium-high heat. Spray with cooking spray and cook chicken breast for about 4 to 5 minutes per side or until cooked through. Remove from heat and cut into thin strips, set aside.
  3. Assemble salad: Place Baby leaf Salad into a large bowl, add in craisins, sunflower seeds, bell peppers, tomatoes, croutons and grilled chicken. Drizzle with dressing if desired.
  4. Enjoy immediately.

Recipe by: Jacqueline Gomes, MBA, RDN