It’s time for another vegan salad with all the delicious goodies you know and love, but this time the focus is on the vegan salad dressing.
Want a unique vegan salad? Check out my vegan sushi salad bowl recipe here!
When I first got on the Salad Train, I can admit that I wasn’t very imaginative, not with my ingredients and certainly not with healthy salad dressing options. I started with simple vinagrettes and then creamy dressings made with vegan yogurt, mustard and even Sriracha. But the oil is a real killer.
I know, I know, life isn’t just about calories. But when you’re trying to lose weight, which was my original goal, much of your eating life is about calories and oil comes in at 120 calories per tablespoon which is INSANE. Add in how much you need to use to make a proper vinaigrette and you can see why I started to explore other options.
So when the weather permits and when the supermarket or farmer’s market has them, I pile up on herbs. Dill, parsley, basil, mint, and pretty much whatever else green I can find. Except cilantro, it is not my jam and never has been.
So, let’s do this, shall we?
This is a hot & cold salad, which means you don’t need to cook everything but that also makes it versatile enough to eat during the hottest day of summer or as the autumn chill sets in.
We have all seen the vegan salad memes and if you’ve been vegan for even a few months, you know how true the meme is.
It’s kind of sad to think that only vegans are privileged enough to enjoy these delicious salads when they are so packed with nutrition, vibrant colors (which is also a clue to nutrition) and tons of raw, high fiber vegetables. But hey, if you need animals in your salad…
Today’s vegan salad recipe is kind of my own creation. In my mind, I love a good backyard barbecue and that probably stems from all the great cookouts spent at my grandmother’s house as a kid. But the reality of charcoal and lighter fluid, the awful smell and burnt food makes it less appealing.
So I decided to veganize and salad-ify the backyard barbecue.
One of the first lessons I learned when I became a vegan and a healthy (ish) eater, was that a salad can be just about anything. I always thought of salad as the pitiful thing you get at restaurants when the choice is soup or salad, you know two quartered tomatoes, iceberg lettuce and a few half-moons of cucumber. That can–and has–turned plenty of people of eating salad.
Have any of you noticed that it’s not as easy to find all the foods you need at one supermarket these days? I used to be able to hit up Kaufland and get most of what I needed, using a delivery service for the rest. But given everything going on in the world, it seems to be hit or miss with lots of things.
At the top of that list I would put lettuce. Romaine lettuce has been gone for months, which leaves very few options because I’m not a fan of bagged lettuce or salad mix. There have just been too many problems over the years so I try to stay away from those. But I LOVE to eat a big, hearty salad for lunch on most days.
So, what am I to do?
Improvise, of course.
This warm couscous salad with graffiti eggplant and zucchini fits the technical definition of a salad, and it was delicious to boot, so here we go!
I came across some beautiful graffiti eggplant and my husband asked me to get some because he loves the stuff. I, on the other hand, have just started to like eggplant and not out of necessity. Here in Romania there’s a dish called vinete, which is basically an eggplant dip. For me, it’s hit or miss but we were recently visiting Sinaia and I actually slathered it on two slices of bread…and ate them both.
As I’ve mentioned before, I have been working on upping my salad game and so, the trend continues into a new week. I had a dental appointment today which was, let’s just say, less than quick & easy. We went grocery shopping today because tomorrow is my release day for my newest novel, and it was 32 degrees Celsius all day.
So what else is an exhausted, overheated vegan, author and wife to do? Salad.
But I wanted to do something a little bit different from what I usually do, while also making a salad that was substantial enough to satisfy.
Enter, vegan sushi salad bowl. We probably need a better name, don’t we?
Yeah, but this is the name we got and I promise, the dish tastes much better than the title.
There are quite a few components to this vegan salad recipe, but it’s not difficult at all. Honestly, this recipe is all about the prep work. If you’re willing to prep, this is another easy vegan recipe you can add to your repertoire.
It’s still hot and last time I checked, salad was still delicious. And today, we have a completely different salad for you test out, tweak and enjoy.
There isn’t much to say about making vegan salads that I haven’t said already, so let’s keep this post short & yummy, shall we?
Grilled corn and smoked tofu…what?
I know, right?
But hear me out, you get to eat corn, which is delicious, and grilled smoked tofu which is smoky and delicious and the perfect thing to eat after an exhausting strength training workout.
I used a grill pan because I REALLY wanted to get the grill marks on the corn, even though I totally cut it all of the fresh corn cob. What can I say, I’m complicated. The grill pan isn’t completely necessary but I was trying to be more creative so there you have it.
With this unbelievable and sometimes, unbearable, heat, I have been working to up my salad game.
We’ve all heard the vegan jokes about munching on lettuce nonstop to fuel our malnourished bodies, but the truth is that if I’d known how amazing I could make salads in my pre-vegan days, my life might be very different today. Thank goodness, I didn’t figure it out until now.
I don’t know about you, my fellow vegans, but when I first went vegan I found it easier to just stick to a whole food, plant based diet. I was worried that eating too many vegan alternatives would make it harder to stick to this new way of life. It helped that 4 years ago there were not as many options as there are in 2021. Back then, there was tofu, vegan sausages and various breaded vegan chicken options and if we’re being honest, they were nothing to write home about.
Okay well, there are much better options. Beyond Burger, I’m talking to you! But, as a lover of food, I knew that I would have to venture outside of my comfort zone to test out all the vegan food options for loyal readers and foodies like you.
So when I happened upon this vegan salmon by Lord of Tofu, I knew I had to try it. Well, the truth is that I knew my husband would want to try it because he loved the vegan lox we got from the same maker.
Anyhoo…here we are.
Since we’ve been going pretty steadily on our Midnight Tokyo Diner thing, the hubs requested this meal. Lemon broccoli pasta with vegan salmon and that’s what I gave him.
I don’t know about your neck of the woods, but here in Romania it has been hot.
Hot as balls, hot.
Did I mention it’s been hot?
Anyway, when it’s too hot to focus on writing, or television or anything else, it is definitely too hot to think about turning on the oven or the stove. Since I love salads, it’s not hardship to go salad crazy when the weather is warm and there’s an abundance of produce options.
With all that’s happening in the world, it’s been a little difficult to get certain produce without ordering online and hopping from one grocery store to the next, so when I found some kohlrabi, I figured it was time to give it a shot. I went to the Google Machine to find out what kohlrabi tasted like and how to make it raw, and came up with his easy vegan summer salad.
You can eat this vegan salad as a side dish with your favorite vegan sandwich, or just make a big ass bowl and eat it on its own. It’s low calorie, nutrient rich and incredibly delicious.
Sandwich. Salad. Soup. Those are pretty much your lunch options, especially if you work in an office or anywhere outside the home, right?
Sandwiches don’t necessarily mean fast food burgers or other greasy, deep-fried sandwich options. Sometimes, I prefer a grilled veggie sandwich with balsamic dressing, or a nice deli sandwich. If I’m feeling super creative/hungry, I’ll whip up a tomato and vegan ricotta sandwich.
Today, I’m going a little exotic with Bahn mi, which is basically a Vietnamese sub sandwich. My noodle obsession is pretty well documented but I have been known, on occasion, to indulge in a sandwich when I hit up any Asian restaurant. This vegan bahn mi sandwich is easy to make, healthy and delicious.
I paired the sandwich with a salad because it’s always nice to have something raw and crunchy each day, and also because the bread is plentiful in calories but not necessarily all that satisfying to get you through an afternoon of writing, editing and researching.
Use your favorite fresh veggies for the salad, because you’re the one who has to eat it.
To me, salad are magic. How else can you eat as much food as your belly can hold, pack your body with nutrients and do it all with very few calories? If there’s another way, I don’t know it and I’m not sure that I want to. But, seriously, if you know another way, I’m all ears because I’m in love with food and I need to know.
Anyway, I was waxing poetic about salad. Going vegan really opened my eyes to what a salad could be and I am happy to report that I never frown at a big bowl of colorful veggies anymore. Well, unless someone else made it and they consider salad best when drenched in oil.
One of my favorite salads had always been Caesar salad. It’s creamy and tangy and really, quite simple. But until recently, I haven’t been bold enough or brave enough to veganize it.
Welcome to today, folks and the chickpea Caesar salad.
This is a simple vegan salad but it will definitely satisfy your appetite and impress your palette.
Let’s start with the list of ingredients. It seems daunting, but I promise it’s not. The dressing requires a few ingredients but that’s mostly measuring and mixing.