Colorful vegetable salad with beans + pecans (dairy-free, gluten-free, vegan)

Purple cabbage, red radishes, yellow sweet pepper, and green cucumber, fennel, and kale make for an eye-catching, tasty salad, and the beans and tofu make it substantial. For the eye-catching part, chop everything about the same size so they look like jewels. The rice-cake “croutons” add a nice crunch (feel free to use the crumbles at the bottom of the rice cakes bag!).

Ingredients
  • lacinato kale (aka dino kale or cavolo nero)
  • kosher salt
  • fennel bulb, chopped
  • radishes, cut into half-moons
  • green onion, thinly sliced
  • Asian, Mediterranean, or English cucumber, quartered lengthwise and sliced crosswise
  • yellow sweet pepper, chopped
  • red cabbage, cored and chopped
  • extra-firm tofu, cut into small cubes
  • cooked cannellini beans, pinto beans, or beans of choice, drained
  • caraway seeds
  • curry powder
  • toasted pecan pieces
  • chopped parsley or cilantro
  • mayonnaise of choice
  • mustard of choice
  • fruit vinegar, white balsamic vinegar, or vinegar of choice
  • brown-rice rice cakes (optional)
Method
  1. Remove and discard the large ribs from the kale. Chop the leaves into small pieces and place in a colander. Sprinkle with salt and massage until the leaves darken and begin to release their moisture. Rinse off the salt and drain.
  2. In a large bowl, add the kale, fennel, radishes, green onion, cucumber, sweet pepper, cabbage, tofu, beans, caraway seeds, curry powder, pecans, and parsley and toss to combine. Add a spoonful each of mayonnaise and mustard and a splash of vinegar, crumble rice cakes on top, and toss to combine. Taste and adjust the seasonings, toss, and serve.
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Wheat berry + arugula salad with Kalamata olives, fresh herbs + balsamic-mustard dressing (dairy-free, egg-free, vegetarian)

Chewy, tangy, spicy, salty, and sweet—what more could one ask for? Find wheat berries (which are ground to make flour) in the bulk section of well-stocked grocery stores and health food stores. Soaking them in water to cover, like you would dried beans, helps reduce cooking time. This salad is a perfect summer potluck or picnic dish.

Ingredients
  • wheat berries
  • raisins
  • balsamic vinegar
  • fruit vinegar (optional)
  • prepared mustard of choice (such as Dijon, yellow, whole grain, sweet hot, or a combination)
  • fresh orange or lemon juice
  • radishes, diced
  • cucumber, diced
  • green onion, thinly sliced
  • Kalamata olives, pitted and chopped
  • baby arugula leaves
  • cooked or canned pinto beans (optional)
  • fresh mixed herbs (such as mint, cilantro, parsley, and basil), chopped
  • slivered almonds
Method
  1. In a saucepan, add the wheat berries and enough water to cover (you can use the soaking water), bring to a boil, covered, and simmer until soft (they will be chewy). Move off the heat and allow the berries to absorb any leftover water. Let cool.
  2. Meanwhile, in a measuring cup with a spout, add the raisins. Add balsamic and fruit vinegars and prepared mustard and whisk until well combined. Let stand for several minutes. Taste and season with vinegar, mustard and/or orange or lemon juice.
  3. Add the radishes, cucumber, green onion, olives, and arugula to a large bowl. Pour in the raisins and dressing. Add the wheat berries, beans, herbs, and almonds. Toss, taste, and adjust the seasonings.
  4. Serve at room temperature or chilled.

Warm cauliflower salad with almonds, pepitas + mustard-mayo dressing (gluten-free, dairy-free, vegetarian)

A quick, tasty vegetable side dish or snack. If you love cauliflower and haven’t tried Romanesco, a green heirloom cauliflower available at farmers’ markets and now at well-stocked grocers, you are in for a treat. Any prepared mustard (such as Dijon, yellow, hot and sweet, etc.) works with a dollop of mayonnaise to dress this warm salad.

Ingredients
  • cauliflower (Romanesco, yellow, purple, or white)
  • prepared mustard of choice
  • mayonnaise of choice
  • caraway seeds
  • ground turmeric
  • freshly ground pepper
  • slivered almonds
  • pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
Method
  1. Trim the cauliflower, separate into florets, and cut into bite-size pieces. Steam or microwave until soft. Transfer to a bowl.
  2. While still warm, toss the cauliflower with mustard and mayonnaise a tablespoon at a time until the cauliflower is dressed the way you like. Season with caraway seeds, turmeric, and pepper. Toss again, top with almonds and pepitas, and serve.

Chickpea salad with tofu, avocado, peppers, nuts, seeds + pesto (gluten-free, dairy-free, vegetarian)

No cooking is required for this refreshing main-course salad.

Ingredients
  • cooked chickpeas, rinsed and drained if canned
  • super-firm tofu or seasoned tofu, cut into cubes
  • mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • Asian, English, or Persian cucumber, unpeeled, halved lengthwise and thinly cut crosswise
  • red or yellow sweet pepper, chopped
  • jalapeño chile, thinly sliced
  • store-bought or homemade pesto of choice or mayonnaise of choice
  • toasted slivered almonds
  • raw or toasted pumpkin seeds
  • balsamic vinegar or vinegar of choice
  • avocado
  • rice cakes, preferably brown rice
Method
  1. In a large bowl, add the chickpeas, tofu, mushrooms, cucumber, sweet pepper, and jalapeñol. Add a tablespoonful of pesto and the nuts and seeds, season with vinegar and more pesto, and toss well.
  2. Cut the avocado into cubes and place on top of the salad. Break the rice cakes into tiny bits. Gently toss the salad until just combined and serve.

Asian noodle salad entrée (gluten-free, dairy-free, vegetarian)

A tasty main-course salad, this dish’s ingredients are very flexible. Feel free to add or replace with any other chopped raw vegetables that you have on hand—carrots, celery, radishes, daikon, jicama, snow peas or sugar snap peas—it just depends on how much energy you have to prep them. If you have the interest, consider adding chopped grilled vegetables, such as zucchini or roasted potatoes. Blanching the cabbage in boiling water and cooling it in ice water mellows the flavor a bit but retains the crunchiness.

Ingredients
  • small green cabbage, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • frozen shelled edamame
  • soba noodles or brown rice spaghetti
  • green onions, thinly sliced
  • Asian, Persian, or English cucumber, quartered and sliced
  • mushrooms, thickly sliced
  • fresh corn cut from the cob or rinsed canned corn kernels (optional)
  • sweet peppers, chopped
  • jalapeño chile, thinly sliced (optional)
  • rice vinegar or vinegar of choice
  • toasted sesame oil
  • Sriracha chili sauce
  • tamari or soy sauce
  • fresh cilantro, chopped
  • slivered toasted almonds
  • toasted sesame seeds
  • toasted sunflower seeds
  • chia seeds
  • super-firm tofu or seasoned tofu, cubed
  • medium-boiled egg per person, peeled (optional)
Method
  1. Have ready a bowl of ice water. Blanch the cabbage for 1 or 2 minutes in boiling water and immediately transfer to the ice water to stop the cooking. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the cabbage to a large bowl.
  2. Meanwhile, cook the edamame according to the package directions and chill more ice water. Drain the edamame, submerge in the ice water, drain again, and add to the bowl with the cabbage.
  3. Cook the noodles according to the package directions and chill more ice water. Drain the noodles, submerge in the ice water, drain again, and add to the bowl.
  4. Add the green onions, cucumbers, mushrooms, corn, sweet peppers, and jalapeño to the bowl.
  5. Prepare the dressing by drizzling the salad with a little vinegar, sesame oil, Sriracha, and tamari. Sprinkle with cilantro, almonds, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, chia seeds, and tofu.  Toss, taste, and adjust the seasonings.
  6. Serve in individual bowls with an egg and enjoy!

Tofu, cucumber + sweet pepper salad with pesto or hummus dressing (gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free vegetarian)

A juicy, crunchy, sweet, savory, and refreshing summer salad with a choice of two very simple dressings for an easy lunch. Accompany with rice cakes alongside, if you like.

Ingredients
  • super-firm tofu, such as Wildwood brand, cut into cubes
  • Asian, English, or Persian cucumber, unpeeled and cut into cubes
  • red or yellow sweet pepper, chopped
  • mayonnaise of choice
  • store-bought or homemade basil pesto or hummus
Method
  1. Mix together the tofu, cucumber, and sweet pepper in a bowl.
  2. Add a tablespoonful of mayonnaise and a tablespoonful of pesto or hummus on top of the salad. Toss until well combined and serve.

Charred corn + roasted potato salad with sugar snap peas, cucumbers + fresh basil

This refreshing salad is perfect to enjoy as daytime temps warm in early June and when both spring and summer vegetables are available at farmers’ market stalls.

Ingredients
  • small potatoes of choice, halved
  • ears of fresh corn, shucked
  • sugar snap peas, strings removed and quartered
  • Asian or Persian cucumbers, quartered and sliced thinly
  • green onions, thinly sliced
  • fresh basil, cut into shreds
  • mayonnaise of choice
  • prepared mustard or aioli of choice
  • vinegar of choice
  • freshly ground pepper
  • toasted sunflower seeds
Method
  1. Roast the potatoes at 400ºF until browned on the outside and soft in the middle. Transfer to a cutting board. When cool enough to handle, cut each half into smaller pieces and put in a large bowl.
  2. Place the ears of corn in a large dry frying pan over medium heat or over an open flame on a gas stove top and cook, turning frequently with tongs, until corn kernels darken and some are charred. Transfer to a cutting board. When cool enough to handle, cut each ear in half. With the cut end sitting on the cutting board, cut the kernels from each cob and add to the bowl.
  3. Add the snap peas, cucumbers, green onions, potatoes, and basil to the bowl. Add mayonnaise, mustard, vinegar, and pepper and toss well to combine. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Add the sunflower seeds, toss again, and serve.

Kale salad of sugar snap peas, cucumber, fennel + almonds with toasted sesame oil (gluten-free, dairy-free, vegetarian)

Juicy, crunchy, sweet, and tangy—this salad has it all. You can use any salad veggies you like, such as radishes, carrots, and sweet pepper. For bean lovers, add cooked beans, such as pintos or chickpeas. For egg lovers, add a hard-cooked egg. This salad was inspired by a friend (thanks, JS!).

Ingredients
  • Tuscan kale (also known as lacinato, dinosaur, or black kale)
  • kosher salt
  • fruit vinegar or balsamic vinegar
  • sugar snap peas, strings removed and thinly sliced
  • cucumber, quartered lengthwise and thinly sliced
  • fennel bulb, trimmed and diced
  • green onions, thinly sliced
  • super-firm tofu, diced (optional)
  • chia seeds (optional)
  • toasted sesame seeds (optional)
  • toasted unsalted slivered or sliced almonds
  • toasted sesame oil
  • freshly ground black pepper
Method
  1. Strip the kale leaves from their stems (compost the stems). Rinse and dry the leaves (using a salad spinner if you have one). Coarsely chop or cut the leaves into strips and transfer to a large bowl. Lightly sprinkle the leaves with salt and massage with your hands until the leaves wilt and darken. Sprinkle vinegar over the leaves and massage some more.
  2. Add the snap peas, cucumber, fennel, green onions, tofu, chia seeds, sesame seeds, and almonds and toss well.
  3. Drizzle sesame oil over the salad, add a few grinds of pepper, and toss again. Season to taste with salt, vinegar, and sesame oil as needed and serve.

Indian-spiced potato + golden beet salad with pistachios + kalamata olives (gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan)

An exotic yet homey combination of flavors and textures—no doubt!  And easy prep because the potatoes and beets don’t need cleaning or peeling before cooking. The potatoes and beets take up the yummy seasonings, so shake on more spices than you usually would. If you don’t have sugar snap peas or sweet pepper on hand, improvise with other salad veggies hiding in your crisper drawer, and if you would like a heartier salad, garbanzo beans would make a great addition. Consider serving roasted broccoli alongside as a smoky, green complement.

Ingredients
  • golden beets
  • yellow potatoes (such as Yukon gold or Yellow Finn)
  • green onions, thinly sliced
  • sugar snap peas, trimmed and thinly sliced
  • sweet pepper, diced
  • toasted pistachios
  • pitted kalamata olives
  • chopped fresh parsley
  • assorted powdered spices (such as chili, chipotle, coriander, curry, garam masala, cardamom, garlic, ginger, and turmeric)
  • prepared mustard of choice
  • vinegar of choice or fresh lemon juice
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Method
  1. Halve the beets if small or quarter them if large. Put in a saucepan, cover with water, and boil until easily pierced with a fork. Drain and cover with cold water in the same pan. When cool enough to handle, slip off the skins, cut into bite-size chunks and put in a large serving bowl.
  2. Halve the potatoes if small or quarter them if large. Steam them until easily pierced with a fork. Cut into bite-size chunks and add to the bowl.
  3. Add the remaining ingredients, toss to combine, and serve.

Egg salad with veggies, sunflower seeds, green olives + herbs (gluten-free, dairy-free, vegetarian)

Great for filling tacos, stuffing an avocado half, or topping a mound of salad greens, this dish is quick to put together for lunch, an afternoon snack, or a light meal if you have hard-boiled eggs or tofu in your fridge waiting to be eaten. If you like a tangy salad, squeeze in some lemon juice or drizzle in a favorite vinegar.

Ingredients
  • fennel bulb, trimmed and chopped, or celery ribs, thinly sliced
  • greens (such as kale, collards, chard, or beet greens), massaged or lightly steamed/microwaved, then thinly sliced
  • green onion, thinly sliced
  • sweet pepper, chopped
  • hot chile, thinly sliced
  • fresh oregano, cilantro, and/or parsley, minced
  • pitted green olives, chopped
  • hard-boiled eggs, peeled and chopped, or plain or seasoned tofu, mashed or diced
  • prepared mustard of choice
  • mayonnaise of choice
  • toasted sunflower seeds
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Method
  1. In a large bowl, combine the fennel, greens, green onion, sweet pepper, chile, herbs, and olives.
  2. In a small bowl, mash the eggs with the mustard and mayonnaise. Add the eggs and sunflower seeds to the veggie mixture and toss to combine. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve.