Main-Dish Salads

Curried Potato Salad with Lentils and Tomatoes

Potato and lentil salad recipe

This curried potato salad is a luscious combination of potatoes, lentils, and tomatoes — an offbeat change-of-pace from the standard varieties, and gets a nice protein boost from the lentils. It’s hearty enough to serve as a summer main dish with fresh corn on the cob. Add a cold summer soup for a larger meal. Photos by Hannah Kaminksy. more→

French Lentil and Arugula Salad with Herbed Cashew Cheese

Lentil and arugula salad with herbed cashew cheese

This salad is inspired by that traditional combination of Le Puy lentils, walnuts, and goat cheese, with crisp arugula and radishes adding a welcome crunch and a peppery kick. In place of the goat cheese, I use tangy, salty Herbed Cashew Cheese. Making the cashew cheese requires some forethought, so if you don’t have any on hand or time to make it, you can omit it or substitute a chopped avocado. Reprinted with permission from Food52 Vegan by Gena Hamshaw © 2015, published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC. Photographs © 2015 by James Ransom. more→

Indonesian-Style Vegetable Platter with Peanut Sauce

Indonesian-Inspired composed salad with peanut sauce

This composed platter is inspired by the Indonesian dish gado-gado. Translated literally as “mix-mix” that’s just what this dish is — a mélange of raw and cooked vegetables, arranged in separate mounds and served with a rich peanut-coconut dressing. Characteristic ingredients include cooked potatoes and green beans; mung bean sprouts, green cabbage and cauliflower. With tempeh (or sometimes tofu) as the usual protein on the platter, this is meant to be a one-dish meal, and not the kind of salad that’s served on the side. Though entirely optional, plain cooked rice is often served with gado-gado. If you do so, an aromatic brown Basmati is very nice. more→

Southwestern-Style Salad in Tortilla Bowls

Southwestern salad in tortilla bowl

Here’s a colorful Southwestern-style salad that’s made even more enticing by serving in its own tortilla bowl. It’s a bit awkward to pick the whole thing up, so it’s best to cut or tear pieces off as you eat it. Double the recipe for more servings; these are substantial main dish-sized portions. Photos by Evan Atlas.

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Quinoa and Black Bean Salad with Corn and Avocado

quinoa and black beans salad with corn and avocado

Quinoa and black beans join forces with corn and avocado to make a sturdy salad with southwestern flavors. It’s a perfect main-dish salad, paired with a simple soup or Easy Quesadillas or Soft Tacos. Photos by Evan Atlas.

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Greek-Flavored Lentil Salad with Tofu “Feta”

Greek Flavored Lentil Salad with Tofu "Feta"

This hearty, Greek-inspired cold dish of lentils, tomatoes, olives, and tofu “feta” is easy enough to make for everyday meals, and impressive enough to serve on special occasions. It’s a nice dish to bring to potlucks, as well. Photos by Evan Atlas.
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Chinese-Style Shredded Cold Vegetables and Tofu

Chinese-syle shredded salad

A friend from Shanghai described this to me as a typical dish that comes as close the definition of  salad in both the Eastern and Western interpretations of the word. Its name, literally translated, is the less-than-descriptive “cold mix.” This veganized version features matchstick-cut vegetables and a chewy baked tofu. Serve with a simple noodle or rice dish for a delightful meal. more→

Thai Composed Rice Salad (Kao Yum Pahk Dai)

Thai Composed Rice Salad (Kao Yum Pahk Dai)

Though you won’t find this on domestic restaurant menus as often as you would traditional green papaya salad, the basic ingredients for this southern Thai composed salad are more readily available to the home cook. Central to this gorgeous composition is a mound of rice, which is surrounded by a variety of veggies plus one fruit — usually pineapple or green apple. A feast of flavors, textures and colors, what really pulls it together is the toasted coconut. more→

French Lentil Salad with Cherry Tomatoes

French Lentil Salad by Sharon Palmer from Plant-Powered for Life

Beans aren’t the only member of the legume family worth celebrating. Lentils, packed with fiber and protein, are just as nutritious. Plus they cook up—no soaking required—in only 15 to 20 minutes. A French ami shared her mother’s traditional recipe for lentil salad with me years ago. This simple salad, seasoned with a French vinaigrette, is classic dish in France. It makes a wonderful, protein-rich highlight of any meal. Because the flavors continue to meld, it’s also great the next day. Recipe from Plant-Powered for Life: Eat Your Way to Lasting Health with 52 Simple Steps and 125 Delicious Recipes, © 2014 Sharon Palmer. Reprinted with permission from The Experiment.

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5 Vegan Main-Dish Salads Especially for Summer

Taco Salad recipe

Salad is a lot more fun when it becomes Taco Salad. Incorporating all the lively flavors of tacos, this tasty combination of veggies, black beans, and tortillas is quick and easy to prepare. more→

Vegan Niçoise-Style Salad

Vegan Salad Niçoise

Salade Niçoise is a beautifully composed salad of French origin that looks fancy but is incredibly easy to make. The traditional version is often made with tuna, but here the fish is replaced with baked tofu, which makes a great stand-in. And the array of ingredients—white beans or chickpeas, slender green beans, tomatoes, and olives—makes it a splendid main dish salad for a summer meal, either on busy weeknights or festive occasions. Recipe from Plant Power: Transform Your Kitchen, Plate, and Life with More Than 150 Fresh and Flavorful Vegan Recipes by Nava Atlas. ©2014, published by HarperOne, reprinted by permission. Photos by Hannah Kaminsky.   more→

Wheat Berry, Baby Kale, Grape, and Orange Salad

Straight from the Earth_Wheat Berry Salad

Baby kale is mild and convenient to use because the whole leaf is edible. If you can’t find it, you can substitute full-size kale by removing the stem and slicing the leaf very thinly: 1⁄4 inches wide and not longer than 2 inches. The wheat berries take a full hour to cook, and another 20 minutes or so to cool, but they can easily be cooked a day ahead of time. Recipe contributed by Myra Goodman and Marea Goodman, from Straight from the Earth* © 2014. Photo by Sara Remington. Reprinted by permission of Chronicle Books.

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