Having an extensive collection of salad topping ideas on hand will make it much simpler to prepare an at-home salad bar. The benefit of having plenty of different ingredients lets you create a multitude of healthy lunches and dinners. Having a list of whole and nutritious options ready to go also keeps things interesting. Let’s face it, we all sometimes get into a rut making the same salads over and over. It gets a little monotonous. Let’s shake things up a bit with some new and exciting salad ingredients that will add some interesting flavors and some additional crunch.
25 Healthy Salad Toppings
Farro in a salad is all the rage right now. Its subtle nuttier flavor with chewy texture adds quite a bit of nutrition, with protein, fiber and B Complex vitamins. This robust little grain is not only healthy but offers up some fantastic flavor to your salads. Incorporate some farro into your next salad using one of Charlie Bird’s recipes, one of SoHo’s most successful restaurants.
Peaches are the perfect addition to salads. They give a burst of light, refreshing sweetness amongst a bed of greens. Enjoy them in this Summer Salad Recipe, along with the chewy texture of farro, with the tangy creaminess of goat cheese.
Quinoa (KEEN-wah) is a superfood! If you’re not eating this nutritious seed, get on board! It’s crammed with protein making it a super booster of a meal! Indulge in this Kale and Quinoa Power-Up Salad, stuffed with all the good stuff to keep you on track!
4.Toasted Sliced Almonds
Almonds add some extra crunch to your salad but toasting them brings out more of that delicious nutty flavor. It also makes them extra crunchy and more fragrant! Pair them with sweet mandarin oranges in this delightful salad here for a refreshing, healthy meal.
5. Goat Cheese
Feta cheese is a favorite go-to cheesy topping for salads. To mix things up, try adding some goat cheese instead. Goat cheese is creamy with an earthy, tangy flavor, and would make a lovely addition to any salad. Take a bite of this simple Apple and Goat Cheese Salad, and fall in love with the tangy and sweet notes of this tasty cheese. This salad will quickly become a household favorite.
Halloumi is trending right now, and for a good reason, it’s scrumptious. Most commonly Halloumi is made from goat and sheep’s milk and best prepared grilled, or pan-fried. It’s most comparable to feta in texture, and it’s also salty. See what everyone’s talking about, and whip up this incredible Farro and Halloumi Salad.
Looking for something to do with all of those apples you’ve picked this fall? Throw them in your salad! The crisp sweetness of apples pairs wonderfully with greens, making a terrific salad for the autumn season. Enjoy this simple, colorful bowl of apple, cranberry and walnuts on a bed of greens.
8. Roasted Brussel Sprouts
Looking to add some more greens to your greens? Perhaps you never cared for brussel sprouts. We’re going to let you in on a little secret–to get your love on for brussel sprouts, roast them! Also, add bacon. Find the recipe for roasted brussels sprouts with bacon, pecans, and maple-balsamic vinaigrette here.
9. Butternut Squash
Butternut squash adds some heartiness, light sweetness, and gorgeous color to your fall salads. Butternut squash also has some hefty health benefits with its significant levels of calcium, magnesium, potassium, and various vitamins. It’s an excellent addition to your next salad. Try pairing it with farro for some nutty flavor, and ricotta for some added creaminess in this No-Brainer Grain Salad.
10. Dried Cranberries
Dried cranberries may be small, but they have big flavor. They add some tartness and just the right amount of sweetness when needed. They are versatile and can be added to many different types of salads, whether they be sweet or savory based. Try them mixed in this fantastic Honey Dijon Apple Bacon Cranberry Salad.
Avocado is an excellent addition to any salad because of their creamy texture and buttery flavor. Avocados are especially great salad toppings for those on a keto diet. Since avocado is a favorite amongst those on the keto diet for its high-fat content and low carbs, its a perfect power boosting component for any keto meal. Enjoy your avocado with other savory eats such as bacon and hard-boiled eggs, in this keto friendly salad.
Are you feeling fancy? Toss some lobster on your salad instead of chicken for something a little different. Lobster also adds a subtle sweetness you wouldn’t get from chicken. Treat yourself to this delicious Keto friendly BLT Lobster Roll Salad. You won’t miss the bread, we promise!
13. Flank Steak
Flank Steak is a great topping for salad. It’s inexpensive and provides excellent beefy flavor. Thinly slice the steak and against the grain to keep it tender. When preparing this steak, be careful not to overcook, as it may become tough from having a lower fat content. This cut of steak can be enjoyed as a topping on many salads. Try this keto-friendly recipe with flank steak drizzled in cilantro avocado dressing.
Millet is not just for the birds! Incorporate this gluten-free seed into your salads for some added nutty flavor and to enhance your intake of iron, B vitamins, and calcium. This Cranberry Mango Millet Salad is both gluten and dairy-free. It’s tart, sweet, and nutritious.
15. Gluten-Free Bread
Are you missing croutons on your salad? You can quickly prepare them yourself by using this recipe using gluten-free bread. Try different combinations of seasonings for an extra flavorful effect. Not only will you enjoy having croutons in your salad again, but they also have a healthy twist. These croutons include healthy and nutritious add-ins, such as flax, and chia seeds. Enjoy your croutons on this vegan, gluten and dairy-free, Creamy Honey Dijon Salad.
16. Red Kidney Beans
Red kidney beans are not just for chili, throw them in your salad too. They add a lot of substance and flavor. Beans are also nutrient-rich, especially in fiber. Including more red beans into your diet may help reduce the cause of heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. This recipe can be quickly prepared, combining an assortment of beans and other healthy ingredients. It has the benefit of being both gluten and dairy-free.
17. Dill Pickles
If you love pickles, you’ll love this unconventional salad topping. Dill pickles will give your salad a zippy kick. Dice some up and throw some in your salad for some excellent flavor. Check out this potato salad recipe, where pickles are the secret ingredient. This recipe is both gluten and dairy free.
Have you tried freekah (free-kah) yet? This earthy, nutty grain has stunning flavor and would be a lovely base to any salad. Try the Freekeh, Chickpea and Herb Salad, and fall in love with this tiny little grain.
In a salad both the fronds and bulb of the fennel can be used. The fennel has a subtle taste of anise, and some say the bulb resembles something like celery. It’s very refreshing, light and crisp. Pair it with some citrus in this Orange and Fennel Salad, for a fresh meal.
Lentils are an inexpensive legume that can be dressed relatively quickly in a multitude of ways. They’re densely nutritious and a tasty base for salads. This Lentil and Mint Salad recipe is full of flavor and versatile.
The undressed pumpkin seed, the pepita, is light and nutty. They’re nutritionally dense and offer an extra crunch to your salads. Try these amazing pumpkin seeds out in this refreshingly light Cauliflower, Broccoli & Pepita Salad. You can also prepare pepitas in a number of ways to take advantage of their health benefits.
22. Pomegranate Seeds
Pomegranate seeds make a gorgeous addition to any autumn or winter salad with their deep red hue. They are bursting with sweet-tart flavor, and are packed with antioxidants. Enjoy them in this, Fall Harvest Honeycrisp Apple and Kale Salad. For a change of pace, try making your own pomegranate vinaigrette to use as an amazing flavorful salad dressing
This colorful root has an earthy, subtly bitter flavor and pairs best with fresh sweet tastes. Beets are very nutritious and would fit perfectly into a well-balanced diet. Chow down on this colorful beet salad with carrot, quinoa & spinach.
24. Kalamata Olives
Kalamata olives have a unique, intensely fruity, sharp character. Adding them to salads is an excellent way to add little bursts of deep flavor. Savor this colorful heirloom Caprese salad with kalamata olive vinaigrette, it’s delicious!
Both shallots and onions are part of the allium family. However, the shallot is milder, sweeter and has subtle flavors of garlic. Due to the shallot’s delicate flavor its well suited for salads. Enjoy its delicious taste in this Tomato Salad with Crispy Shallots.
Salads don’t have to be boring. The tried and true, tomatoes, carrots, mushrooms, cucumber, and iceberg lettuce salads are totally fine. However, sometimes its a great idea to attempt something new. You may discover some fresh ingredients you love, become inspired and start including them in your diet.