Salad in a Jar – How to

Salad in a jar – have you heard of it?! I’ve seen it a million times on pinterest but didn’t really get excited about it until recently. You guys, this info might just change your life!

What is the appeal of having a salad in a jar you might ask? Well let me tell you friends! Not only does it last forever (the lettuce literally stays nice and crisp for well over a week), but the prep work is done and you have healthy eating right at your fingertips. Prepping a bunch of these one day and eating on them all week long is the perfect little help you might need to eat well. Life gets busy and taking time to eat something beyond the quick and easy can get pushed aside. BUT if all you have to do is unscrew a lid, find a fork, and give a little stir, then there’s no reason to not be eating more salad. Plus, in the jar, it’s perfectly portable. Throw it in a lunch box along with a boiled egg and an apple and you have a delicious healthy lunch to go. Done.

My fellow Hoosier and blogging buddy Cassie over at Wholefully is who you have to thanks for the inspiration. I’m eating 100% clean for the next eight weeks as part of a little challenge I’m doing and Cassie has given me all kinds of great ideas on how to enjoy the challenge and not just live through it. I really feel like I’m making lifestyle changes and these salads in a jar are here for the long run.

I want to take some the mystery out of this fun idea for you today, so this way you might feel a little more like trying it yourself.

How to whip up those salads in a jar (the do and don't) from www.blessthismessplease.com

How to whip up those salads in a jar (the do and don't) from www.blessthismessplease.com

Salad in a Jar Basics

Dressing: Dressing is the icing on top of any salad (and I have two really tasty and totally healthy recipes later in the post), but when it comes to salad in a jar you want that dressing at the bottom. Keeping the dressing as far away from the greens as you can is the way to go. Greens with too much moisture (dressing) will get soggy. So the dressing is first. If you want this to be a healthy salad you are better off avoiding any bottled dressing and making your own. I put 1 1/2 tablespoons of dressing in each pint jar. If you like lots of dressing you could do 2 tablespoons. If making a dressing is keeping you from trying these then by all means, use what you like, but I really recommend making dressing from scratch. It’s SO easy!

Protein: If this is meant to be a meal then you need some protein and/or complex carbs to keep you full. I recommend using cooked quinoa, cooked brown rice, black beans, or kidney beans. Use what you like (grilled chicken, tuna, tofu…). Add 1/4 to 1/3 cup of this.

Fixin’s: This is the fun part. This is where you can add all of the tasty little extras that make salad fun. Here are some ideas: Shredded carrots, red cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, cucumber, sprouts, sunflower seeds, nuts, olives, fruit, dried fruit, strong cheeses (blue/feta). These, after you have added the dressing and protein, should fill the jar to about half or a little more.

Greens: What makes a salad a salad, use what you like. I like chopped Romaine lettuce and/or chopped spinach. Pack this into the jar to fill it up to the top.

Screw on a lid and place in the fridge until you are ready for lunch. I like to use wide mouth pint jars.

Can you see how there would be a million combos? You just have to find what you like. Plus, it’s a really easy way to use up leftover produce or the little odds and ends of things like rice or quinoa left over from dinner. Just play with it until you find a favorite!

How to whip up those salads in a jar (the do and don't) from www.blessthismessplease.com

Here are two of my favorite combos lately!

South of the Border Salad

How to whip up those salads in a jar (the do and don't) from www.blessthismessplease.com

South of the Border Salad in a Jar
 
Ingredients
For the Salad
  • Dressing (recipe follows)
  • Black beans
  • Chopped sweet bell pepper
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Sliced black olives
  • Chopped Romaine lettuce
For the South of the Border Dressing
  • 2 T. Olive oil
  • 2 T. Lime juice
  • 1 t. cumin
  • ¼ t. EACH garlic powder, chili powder, salt, and pepper
Instructions
  1. For the dressing:
  2. Add everything to a small mason jar, put on the lid, and shake until well combined. Makes enough dressing for about 3 salads in a jar.
  3. To assemble the salad:
  4. In a pint mason jar add the dressing, black beans, chopped "extras" and then lettuce (in that order). Pack the jars pretty tight. Add a lid and store in the fridge. When you are ready to eat dump the jar into a bowl and stir to combine or shake the jar very well and eat from the jar.

 

 

Asian Infusion Salad

How to whip up those salads in a jar (the do and don't) from www.blessthismessplease.com

Asian Infusion Salad
 
Author:
Ingredients
For the Salad
  • Asian Infusion Dressing (recipe in the notes)
  • Cooked quinoa
  • Chopped cucumber, red cabbage, broccoli, and shredded carrot
  • Chopped Romaine and spinach
Asain Infusion Dressing:
  • 1 T. Tahini
  • 1 T. lemon juice
  • 1 T. red wine vinegar
  • 1 t. sesame oil
  • 1 t. honey
  • ¼ t. EACH - salt, pepper, ground ginger, garlic powder
Instructions
  1. For the dressing:
  2. Add everything to a small mason jar, put on the lid, and shake until well combined. Makes enough dressing for about 3 salads in a jar.
  3. To assemble the salad:
  4. In a pint mason jar add the dressing, quinoa, chopped "extras" and then greens (in that order). Pack the jars pretty tight. Add a lid and store in the fridge. When you are ready to eat dump the jar into a bowl and stir to combine or shake the jar very well and eat from the jar.

 

 

I make a batch of these on Monday and eat on them all week. I have no excuse not to eat well for lunch when everything is already prepped and ready. And what is amazing is how well they last! It’s a great way to be sure all that produce you bought with good intentions doesn’t got to waste!

And again, I have to give a shout-out to Cassie for the inspiration. The dressing are both based off of hers too. Check out her post about salad in a jar for even more “recipes” and ideas. She has a tasty looking strawberry spinach salad, a living tofu salad, and a citrusy one that looks delicious.

So have I convinced you to try salad in a jar?

Thanks so much for stopping in. Have a great day.

There was an issue loading your exit LeadBox™. Please check plugin settings.

34 comments on “Salad in a Jar – How to

  1. What a great idea! When I first saw the title, I thought you were talking about potato salad, macaroni salad, etc. I never dreamed of putting green salad in a jar. Thanks for the idea!

  2. Hi Melissa, This is just what I need! I’ll have to go buy some mason jars. You are amazing and I love you lots. Xx Kristen Southwick

  3. I love the idea. Have you tried to use avocado? I’m in love with it, but I’m wondering if it would keep in the jar very well. Thanks for the inspiration and the Asian salad above sounds wonderful!!

    1. Avocados also keep well in the mason jars because of the lid. It seals the air out, the avocado is still delicious after several days. I make these all the time!

  4. Love everything I’m seeing here. Ihave 7 ravenous children under 12 and an equally hungry husband. We try to eat clean as much as we can but sometimes the boxed mac’n’cheese makes an appearance. We raise our own meat and grow and can a garden. Finding ideas to quickly, easily and cheaply feed 9 people isn’t always easy. Great job, thanks

  5. This is amazing, I have been struggling to loose the last few (10!) lbs I want to and this will really help I think, think I will be ordering some jars tonight

  6. I use glass salad dressing jars or glass fruit jars. The canning lids and rings fit these jars perfectly. I recycle this way.

  7. No need to “Vacuum” or anything? The lettuce doesn’t turn brown or mushy edged? If not, I’m impressed!!!!!!!!!!! We eat a huge salad (I do it 90% organic, b/c that’s where I will spend the $$ – used to be in the meat dept., now it’s in the Produce Dept!!) every night, and I really hate making them each night. I make two nights’ worth, leaving out the cut cucs and cherry tomatoes, till the second night, but it is still tedious work.

  8. In Hawaii where, where I live, there are lots of Asians who live and work here. The wonderful salad entitled Asian Invasion immediately struck me as offensive. Please think of another name for this fine salad. Please. I love your website. I love my Asian friends, doctor, dentist, etc. and I am embarrassed for them.

  9. OK – I have what may be a dumb question. Is it possible to use another container besides a mason jar? Just wondering because I don’t currently have any of them – and not a lot of storage space. Thanks!

    1. I think there is some kind of magic in the glass… I think you could try another glass container that has a lid! If you do, I’d love to know how it goes! I have lots of luck finding mason jars at the thrift store for like a $.50 each just FYI and then you don’t have to buy a whole dozen. http://amzn.to/1Vmp02P these are my favorite lids too (be mindful when purchasing if you have wide or regular mouth lids!) Good luck!

Comments: