10 Terrific Main-Course Salads
By Bruce Weinstein
Sometimes all you crave is a fresh salad for dinner – minimal effort, great crunch and a great way to stay on track, diet-wise. But sometimes salads need a little "oomph." Lettuce and veggies are all well and good, but add a bit of protein and then you've got dinner. Need some ideas? Check out the meals below – each recipe is enough for two, but you can double or even triple anything easily.
Asian Chicken and Vegetables Salad (POINTS® value = 7): Rinse 10 ounces frozen Asian vegetable mix under cold water until defrosted; drain and blot dry. Toss in a bowl with 8 ounces cooked cubed boneless skinless chicken breast. In another bowl, mix 1 tablespoon seasoned rice vinegar, 1 tablespoon reduced-sodium soy sauce, 2 teaspoons sesame oil and red chili sauce to taste; pour over the salad and toss to combine.
Tabbouleh Salad with Salmon (POINTS value = 5): Mix 1/2 cup dry tabbouleh with 1 cup boiling water in a large bowl; set aside 30 minutes or until the water is absorbed. Fluff with a fork and toss with 6 ounces drained, canned salmon; 2 celery stalks, chopped; 1/4 cup chopped red onion; 2 tablespoons chopped parsley; 2 tablespoons chopped mint and salt and pepper to taste.
White Bean Salad with Shrimp (POINTS value = 8): Drain and rinse a 15-ounce can white beans. Toss with 6 ounces cooked chopped shrimp, 1 minced shallot, 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar, 2 teaspoons olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon rubbed sage and 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme, as well as salt, pepper and red chili sauce to taste.
Easy Salad Niçoise (POINTS value = 4): Rinse 1 cup frozen string beans in a colander under cold water until thawed; drain and blot well. Toss with 4 cups mixed greens; 8 cherry tomatoes, halved; 1 cup canned new potatoes, drained; 6 ounces canned solid white tuna packed in water, drained; and 1/4 cup fat-free vinaigrette.
Chicken Taco Salad (POINTS value = 5): Place 12 low-fat tortilla chips on each of 2 plates. Mix together 1 cup shredded lettuce, 1 chopped tomato, 4 ounces chopped cooked smoked chicken breast, 1 ounce shredded fat-free cheddar, 1/4 cup jarred salsa and 1 tablespoon fat-free sour cream. Top each of the chips with an equal portion of the lettuce mixture.
Crab Salad (POINTS value = 4): Rinse 1 cup frozen corn kernels in a colander under cold water until defrosted. Toss in a bowl with 1 seeded and chopped red bell pepper; 2 thinly sliced scallions; 6 ounces cooked crab meat picked over for shell and cartilage; 1 cup canned black beans, drained and rinsed; 1/4 cup chopped cilantro; 2 tablespoons lime juice; 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin and salt and pepper to taste.
Spinach Caesar Salad (POINTS value = 3): Toss 4 cups baby spinach; 1 red apple, cored and chopped; 5 canned drained anchovies; 1 cup canned kidney beans, drained and rinsed and 1/4 cup fat-free Caesar dressing in a large bowl.
Greek Salad with Feta (POINTS value = 5): Toss 4 cups shredded Romaine lettuce; 1 cucumber, peeled and chopped; 1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped; 1 small red onion, cut into rings; 4 ounces crumbled Feta cheese; 1 tablespoon chopped pitted olives; 1 teaspoon dried oregano and 1/4 cup fat-free vinaigrette.
Smoked Salmon Frisee Salad (POINTS value = 3): Toss 4 cups frisee lettuce, 2 minced shallots, 1 seeded and diced red bell pepper, 4 ounces chopped smoked salmon and 1/4 cup low-fat creamy dill dressing.
Lobster Gazpacho Salad (POINTS value = 3): Toss 2 Roma tomatoes, chopped; 1 cucumber, peeled and chopped; 1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped; 1 small red onion, chopped; 2 celery stalks, chopped; 6 ounces chopped cooked lobster meat; 1 tablespoon lemon juice; 2 teaspoon Worcestershire and salt and pepper to taste. Drizzle the salad with 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil just before serving
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