I have been hankering for dinner salads. A bowl of lettuce or spinach, a dash of yummy, tangy dressing, tossed with who knows what in a big bowl. Perfection on a warm night. But, my kiddo isn't so keen on the leafy things, so how does this mama appease her hankerings and please her picky little one? Think beyond the greens and focus on other types of salad -- pasta, bean, veggie. I scoured some sites and found a few that I am going to try.
Ranch Turkey Pasta Salad (from Family.Go.com)
8 oz. uncooked macaroni pasta
4 cups of a combination of the following:
cubed turkey breast
cubed cheddar cheese
2 cups Ranch dressing
bacon bits for garnish
Cook the pasta until done to desired tenderness and drain well. Al dente is best since soaking in dressing can cause the pasta to become mushy. Cool completely. Toss with turkey, cheese, peas, carrots and dressing. Garnish with bacon bits. Chill for an hour before serving.
Black Bean, Rice, and Sweet Corn Salad (from MyRecipes.com)
1 cup water
1 teaspoon salt, divided
1/2 cup long-grain rice
6 tablespoons fresh lime juice (about 2 large limes)
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 garlic clove, minced
1 cup rinsed and drained canned black beans
1 cup fresh corn kernels (about 2 ears)
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
Combine 1 cup water and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a large, heavy saucepan; bring to a boil. Add rice to pan. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Fluff with a fork. Combine remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt, juice, oil, pepper, and garlic in a large bowl. Add rice and beans; toss to coat. Let stand 15 minutes or until completely cool. Stir in corn and cilantro.
Pasta Hero Salad (From weelicious.com)
16 ox box whole wheat fusilli
1 1/2 cup ham, turkey, salami or any of your favorite cold cuts, cut into thins strips or cubes
1 cup Monterrey Jack, shredded or cubed
1 cup garbanzo beans
3/4 cup pimentos, diced
3/4 cup olives, chopped
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp red wIne vinegar
1 tsp Italian herbs, dried
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp dijon mustard
Cook pasta according to package directions. Strain and rinse with cold water. Place pasta in a bowl. Add the meat, cheese, garbanzo beans pimentos and olives to the pasta. Whisk the remaining dressing ingredients in a bowl to combine. Pour the dressing over the pasta salad and toss.
Which of these will you try? Share your best summer salad recipes!