Who doesn’t love a good salad? To me, that means a bed of fresh greens with lots of different textures, flavors, and colors. So when I hear someone say “salads are boring” I think of how they must not be doing it right! Using a variety of fruits, veggies, proteins, and even grains helps make every bite different, and can make for a satisfying meal. I personally love a mix of salty, sweet, and herb flavors, so it never gets boring! Keep in mind to go easy on calorie-dense toppings, like cheeses, dried fruit, nuts, and dressings. These additions can give you the best flavors and textures, but can add calories quickly if not portioned properly. Keep nuts and cheeses to around 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) portions. Also keep salad dressings around 2 tablespoons or choose a light dressing and use their recommended portion size. For extra flavor without extra calories, try using dry or fresh herbs, lemon juice, or vinegar. Low calorie veggies that add a lot of flavor include onion, peppers, tomato, and mushrooms. Try roasting your veggies too for even more flavor.

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I don’t know about you, but for me, Thanksgiving leftovers are a gift and a curse. On one end they are free, no-prep, and readily available over the next few days. On the other hand, I get really bored of the same heavy side dishes after about day 2 and I start to crave my fresh greens. This salad recipe is sure to get you out of that food coma with sweet cranberries, juicy pears, crisp onion and crunchy pecans. Enjoy!

 

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Turkey Cranberry Pecan Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette

 by Lisa Kay, MS, RD

Serves 4

 

INGREDIENTS

Salad Ingredients

4 cups spring mix

12 ounces white meat turkey

¼ cup dried cranberries

1 oz. pecans, chopped

1 medium pear

½ large red onion

¼ cup feta cheese (optional)

 

Balsamic Vinaigrette Dressing

¼ cup Balsamic Vinegar

¼ cup Olive Oil

Dash of salt and pepper

 

DIRECTIONS

  1. Gather all ingredients and slice pears and onion.
  2. Combine all salad ingredients into a large serving bowl. Set aside
  3. In a separate bowl, combine dressing ingredients. Top salad with dressing, combine well, and serve

 

SERVING SUGGESTIONS

For a light lunch, serve with our butternut squash soup. For a more filling salad, add cooked quinoa for more protein and fiber!

 

NOURISHING NUTRITION

Per serving (with dressing)

Calories: 384

Fat (g): 20

Sodium (mg): 501

Protein (g): 28

Carbs (g): 20

Fiber (g): 4