Mason Jar Salads:
A creative, healthy lunch you can make in advance
Want a healthy salad for lunch you can pack in the fridge way ahead of time? Look no further than the Mason jar salad. You may ask, what’s the point of using a jar, as opposed to a regular bowl or lunch container, other than looking pretty? Mason jars let you layer the salad, and keep ingredients separate until you eat. Firmer vegetables at the bottom of the jar marinate and even pickle a bit in the dressing underneath. Lighter, more fragile ingredients sit on top. Make enough salad on the weekend for your whole week. They stay fresh from Sunday to Friday if you layer them correctly…Really!
When you’re ready to eat, just dump all the ingredients into a big bowl, and toss them gently.
Layers should go like this:
1. Bottom layer is dressing or other wet ingredient. This is key. You need to keep the dressing away from the lettuce to keep it from getting soggy.
2. Second layer needs to be a hearty vegetable like tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, etc. Think about veggies that would taste good marinated in dressing. Hint: you will need a good amount of these vegetables to keep the dressing and lettuce separate.
3. Third layer is proteins or grains. This could be eggs, beans, rice, quinoa, pasta, etc.
4. Next add the lettuce or greens.
5. Add seeds, nuts or even crumbled bacon to the last layer.
What’s in the mason jar salad today? Bottom to top:
· Olive oil/balsamic dressing
· (I often put hot peppers here!)
· Artichokes (canned)
· Pickled beets
· Chopped baby sweet peppers
· Sliced cucumber
· Chick peas
· (Eggs, meat, or cheese would go here if desired)
· Shredded carrots
· Cherry tomato (note: do NOT use chopped tomatoes. They get soggy and tend to spoil.)
· Leafy greens
· (Nuts or seeds can go on top, but I usually leave them separate)