Best Tossed Salad Recipe

Need salad ideas? This best tossed salad recipe features colorful veggies, crunchy homemade croutons, and a variety of salad dressing options.

Tossed salad

Need salad ideas? This best tossed salad recipe features colorful veggies, crunchy homemade croutons, and a variety of salad dressing options.

Alex and I used to say that it was easy to just “throw together” a good salad. But the more experienced we’ve gotten in the kitchen, the more I’ve realized that a good salad is not just a throw together type of thing! A good salad has got to have contrasts in texture, flavor, and colors. It’s got to make sense with the season and the occasion. And it’s got to have one mighty fine salad dressing to top it off. All in all, a best salad recipe is hard to come by! So Alex and I have committed to creating a few more side salad recipes for you, that are the perfect balance of textures, colors and flavors. Here’s our best tossed salad recipe, complete with crunchy croutons and a variety of dressing options!

Related:25 Best Salad Recipes

Salad ideas

Salad ideas: what to put in a salad

So, making a salad can sound super elementary. What to put in a salad? Vegetables, right?! But as I mentioned above, making a really good salad is actually quite an art form. A salad recipe has to have the right balances of textures, flavors, and colors. A really good salad has the perfect salad dressing to compliment all of those ingredients, with the right vibe and seasonality.

Here are some salad ideas for our favorite ingredients of what to put in a salad. We’ve pulled from this list to create this best tossed salad recipe. But remember! When creating your own salad, make sure to select ingredients that have contrasts in flavor, texture, and color.

  • Colorful things: Radishes, carrots, strawberries, raspberries, red onion, green onion, bell peppers, peas, all bring a pop of color
  • Tangy things: Olives, pepperoncini, pickled onions, sun dried tomatoes, lemon zest, orange zest, all bring a pop of flavor
  • Crunchy things: Homemade croutons, sunflower seeds, pepitas (pumpkin seeds), pecans, almonds, walnuts, pistachios, all add the perfect crunch
  • Salty / savory things: Cheeses like feta, goat cheese and gorgonzola crumbles, Pecorino Romano, Parmesan, and ricotta salata add a savory flair
what to put in a salad

How to make this best tossed salad recipe

In this best tossed salad recipe, we’ve used some of our favorite ingredients above to create a salad full of contrasts! It features a mix of romaine lettuce and red baby butter lettuce as a base: we love using two types of greens to have even more contrasts, the crisp, crunchy romaine against the more bitter red lettuce. It’s topped with colorful veggies chosen for color and flavor: shredded carrots, purple onion slivers, thinly sliced green onions, and refreshing, crunchy cucumber. A secret ingredient is jarred pepperoncini! We chose it not only for its electric yellow color, but to bring a tangy spice to the tossed salad.

To top it off, some crunchy ingredients: sunflower seeds and our favorite garlicky salty Homemade Croutons. Now for the dressing for this tossed salad, we wanted to give you a few options. We served it with our Creamy Avocado Dressing, which is tangy, savory, and so darn good! But this tossed salad can transform into a totally different salad by using different dressings. Go super classic with our Best Homemade Ranch, tangy with our Balsamic Vinaigrette, or lightly sweet and spicy with our Honey Mustard Dressing. We’ve included a few more options below: and of course you can browse through All Salad Dressing Recipes to see if there’s another that strikes your fancy.

We hope you enjoy this tossed salad recipe: let us know in the comments below! And make sure to tag us on Instagramif you make it.

Tossed salad recipe

Looking for salad recipes?

Outside of this tossed salad recipe, here are some of our other favorite salad recipes:

Tossed salad

This tossed salad recipe is…

Vegetarian, vegan, plant-based, and dairy-free. For gluten-free, omit the croutons.

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Tossed salad, best salad recipe

Best Tossed Salad Recipe


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (2 votes, average: 4.50 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 4 side salads 1x

Description

Need salad ideas? This best tossed salad recipe features colorful veggies, crunchy homemade croutons, and a variety of salad dressing options.


Scale

Ingredients


Instructions

  1. If using, make the Homemade Croutons.
  2. Wash and chop the romaine. If necessary, wash the mixed greens. (You can use any mix of greens here; measure about 2 cups of greens per serving.)
  3. Thinly slice the red onion. Thinly slice the green onion.
  4. Peel and chop the cucumber.
  5. Shred the carrot (we used this  Handheld Julienne Shredder).
  6. Thinly slice and half the radishes.
  7. Choose and make the dressing: select from Creamy Avocado Dressing, Best Balsamic Vinaigrette, Homemade Ranch Dressing, Italian Dressing, Blue Cheese Dressing,Honey Mustard Dressing, or any of our other Salad Dressing Recipes.
  8. Toss together the greens, red onion, green onion, cucumber, carrot, radishes, and pepperoncini. Top with sunflower seeds and croutons, and drizzle with dressing.

  • Category: Salad
  • Method: Raw
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: Tossed Salad, Best salad recipe, Salad ideas, What to put in a salad, Side salad recipes, Salad recipes,

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About the Authors

Sonja Overhiser

Cookbook Author and writer

Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.

Alex Overhiser

Cookbook Author and photographer

Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.

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