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50 Easy Summer Salads That Aren’t Epically Boring

Salad is rarely my meal of choice. I never make it and I typically won’t order it unless it’s a last-ditch option at a quickie to-go place or deli. Standing in front of a salad bar is something I actually dread. But honestly, these yummy summer salads are game-changers for me in 2021. Look out, world! Lettuce is my new fave thing.

It’s not even that I hate greens, but I just find a bunch of toppings thrown onto a bed of spinach or romaine to be a giant snooze, unless it includes a mountain of parmesan or bleu cheese—and I know I’m not alone! Salad has always lacked appeal to me, but my quest to discover exciting summer salad options has completely flipped my opinion. Now, I might as well be eating salads every single dang day!

Lucky for me, there are tons of people on this planet whose minds are much more talented than mine at dreaming up creative salad recipes that are just as healthy as they are tasty. Read: These salads are so, so good. Call me a convert, because I honestly love and recommend them all.

If you’re in need of some yummy recipes to switch up your meal routine, I got you! Here, 50 recipes to help make your salads a little less pedestrian and a lot more like meals you’ll actually look forward to. Here’s to a summer full of leafy greens!

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Iowagirleats.

1. Best of Summer Kale Salad with Blueberry-Balsamic Vinaigrette

This salad claims to be the “best of summer,” so yes, you need to make it. Just don’t be surprised when you want to drink that blueberry-balsamic vinaigrette like a beverage. It’s that good!

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Floating Kitchen.

2. Summer Stone Fruit Salad with Burrata

Stone fruit and burrata is a match made in Italian food heaven. Who knew they’d work so well for a tasty salad, too? If you haven’t had these ingredients together before, now is the time.

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Iowa Girl Eats.

3. Strawberry-Basil Chicken Salad with Fried Goat Cheese Balls

This salad is topped with fried goat cheese balls. Do I really need to say anything else? It’s a must-try.

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Wendy Polisi.

4. Sweet Potato Pomegranate Salad with Crispy Quinoa

Pomegranates are so good for you, I’m honestly shocked that I don’t eat them more often. This salad is the perfect reason to put ’em in my regular rotation.

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Destination Delish.

5. Balsamic Lentil Salad

Destination Delish really knocked it out of the park with this Balsamic Lentil Salad, don’t you think? A pop of color makes any salad more inviting!

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Foodie Crush.

6. Quinoa & Kale Protein Power Salad

If you’re coming home from a workout and need something to give you a boost, try this recipe from Foodie Crush for a majorly delicious pick-me-up.

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Say Yes.

7. Summer Peach Caprese Salad

Caprese salads are so simple—try something new by adding peaches into the mix this year.

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Chelsea’s Messy Apron.

8. Chicken Spinach Salad

Chicken and spinach with summer fruit may feel like an odd combination, but trust me when I say that in this recipe, it works!

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Foodie Crush.

9. Thai Quinoa Salad

Thai-inspired flavors really kick this simple quinoa salad up a notch. Or, like, 10 notches, if you’re keeping track.

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Foodie Crush.

10. Citrus Fennel & Avocado Salad

Fennel is one of the most underrated items in my fridge and this salad highlights its flavor in the most wonderful way. Eat your greens, people!

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Creme De La Crumb.

11. Apple Cranberry Walnut Salad

Cranberries and apples aren’t normally associated with summer salads, but let’s change that with this walnut-topped dish.

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of The Food Charlatan.

12. Cilantro Lime Cucumber Salad

This cucumber salad could not be easier to make, so what are you waiting for? Perfect for super hot summer days when the idea of a heavy meal is too much to even consider.

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Half Baked Harvest.

13. Loaded Greek Quinoa Salad

Greek salads are too yummy to pass up, so I had to include one on this list—obviously!

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Kitchen Confidante.

14. Seared Ahi Tuna with Chimichurri Sauce Arugula & Avocado

Ahi Tuna is the star of this salad and I am 100 percent okay with that. Spicy arugula and cooling avocado really make it something special.

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Pinch of Yum.

15. Glowing Grilled Summer Detox Salad

Detox who? This grilled summer salad is the perfect side dish to accompany literally any of your favorite meals.

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Damn Delicious.

16. Kale Salad with Meyer Lemon Vinaigrette

Meyer lemons are a bit sweeter than your average lemon selection (and they’re a little harder to find), so they make this kale salad feel anything but basic. It’s worth the hunt!

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Little Broken.

17. California Wedge Salad with Proscuitto Crumbles & Buttermilk Ranch Dressing

Proscuitto crumbles are just *chef’s kiss* on a salad, so yes, I will be adding them to everything I eat right now after trying and loving this recipe.

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Creme De La Crumb.

18. Pina Colada Chicken Salad with Pina Colada Vinaigrette

No, this salad isn’t actually a pina colada. But hey—it’s pretty damn close. Serve it with its namesake drink to seal the deal.

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Closet Cooking.

 19. Roasted Cauliflower & Mushroom Quinoa Salad in Balsamic Vinaigrette

Roasted cauliflower is a great way to trick yourself into eating something healthy, because it’s so tasty! Give this salad a try if you’re craving something hearty.

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Cooking Classy.

 

20. Mexican Grilled Salmon Salad with Avocado Greek Yogurt Ranch Dressing

Grilled salmon and avocado? Sign me up! Or, just make me this salad. That refreshing yogurt dressing is all I need in the summer.

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Carl’s Bad Cravings.

21. Berry Feta Salad

Summer berries and feta cheese are a match made in salad heaven in this recipe by Carl’s Bad Cravings. All those colors will look so good on your table.

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Feasting At Home.

22. Vegan Glow Bowl

Damn, I will eat anything that promises to make me glow afterwards! The antioxidant-rich blueberries in this salad should do the trick.

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Feasting At Home.

23. Israeli Salad

This simple Israeli salad recipe looks (and tastes) so authentic. Even better, it’s both vegan and gluten-free!

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of The Suburban Soap Box.

24. Barbecue Chicken Cobb Salad with Avocado Ranch Dressing

If you love a regular old cobb salad, you’re going to be obsessed with this one from The Suburban Soap Box with BBQ chicken.

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Chef Savvy.

25. Watermelon Feta Salad

Say it with me: It’s not summer without watermelon! This salad contains everyone’s favorite summer treat alongside salty feta.

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Cafe Delites.

26. Grilled Chili Lime Chicken Fajita Salad

The chili and lime combo in this salad brings just enough heat to an otherwise simple grilled chicken salad dish.

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Cooking Classy.

27. Asian Ramen Chicken Chopped Salad

Who needs actual ramen when you can make this chopped salad by Cooking Classy instead? It’s truly the best of both worlds.

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Cafe Delites.

28. Greek Lemon Garlic Chicken Salad

Few things taste better than a dish that combines lemon, chicken and garlic. This salad has all three in it and damn, is it flavorful.

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Simple Roots Wellness.

29. 30-Minute Italian Chopped Salad

If you need to eat dinner ASAP after a day at the office, make this chopped salad that comes together in half an hour or less.

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of The Recipe Critic.

30. Candied Walnut And Pear Salad

This sweet summer salad is the perfect way to start off any summer feast. BRB—making this for everyone I know.

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Minimalist Baker.

31. Garlicky Kale Salad with Crispy Chickpeas

You had me at crispy chickpeas. And some garlicky kale is honestly just too much for my salad-loving heart to handle! I need this salad right now.

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Thenovicechefblog.

32. Copycat Maggiano’s Chopped Salad

If you can’t actually eat at Maggiano’s, make this salad instead! It’s basically the same thing as their famous version (and tastes just as good!).

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Jo Cooks.

33. Easy Thai Steak Salad

This salad looks charming but takes close to no time to create. The longest part of this entire process is the Thai-marinated steak!

 

 STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of MyRecipes, Hector Sanchez; Styling: Buffy Hargett Miller.

35. Thai Chopped Peanut Salad with Crispy Sesame Tofu

If it has peanuts in it, sign me up! I mean, how yummy does crispy sesame tofu sound? Too good not to make tonight, that’s for sure!

 

 STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Detox DIY,

36. Master Cleanse Salad

Feel free to enjoy this master cleanse salad even if you’re not on a diet this summer.  It’s too yummy to pass up on!

 

 STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Love and Olive Oil.

37. Beef Taco Salad with Homemade Tortilla Bowls

If you don’t want to order in Mexican food, make this easy-as-hell taco salad with beef. I’ll eat anything that comes in a tortilla bowl!

 

 STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Lil Luna.

38. Ultimate Chicken Casar Salad

It doesn’t get much better than a chicken Caesar Salad. This “ultimate” version is topped with hard-boiled eggs, bacon and parm, so feel free to throw out your old recipes.

 

 STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Minimalist Baker.

39. Vegan Nicoise Salad

Now just about everyone can enjoy a classic Nicoise salad. Make this baby if you know that you’re going to have people with strict dietary restrictions at your table, or if you’re new to the whole “vegan” thing.

 

 STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Laylita’s Recipes.

Steak and bleu cheese might seem a little odd, but trust me—this salad is so good. The avocado and basil dressing adds a fresh twist.

 

 STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Boy’s Ahoy.

41. Mandarin Almond Salad

This yummy Asian-inspired dish contains mandarin oranges, avocado and slivered almonds (plus some parm!) to create the crunchiest-ever salad to eat on your lunch break.

 

 STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Paleo Leap.

42. Pulled Pork Salad

This pulled pork salad is not your average summer meal! It’s hearty and spicy and will suit any crowd—even your hungriest sports fan friends.

 

 STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of The Mediterranean Dish.

43. Tabouli Salad

You need to try this twist on a classic Mediterranean dish this summer. Because there’s no formal Tabouli recipe to begin with, feel free to add in ingredients to fit your personal tastes.

 

 STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Chelsea’s Messy Apron.

44. BBQ Chicken Salad

Another day, another BBQ chicken salad to munch on this season. This colorful mixed salad is the perfect cheat-day meal (or any day, honestly!)

 

 50 Easy Summer Salads That Arent Epically Boring

Courtesy of Wicked Spatula.

45. Easy Tossed Big Italian Salad Recipe

This classic Italian salad recipe is so good, your friends won’t stop asking you to make it whenever they come over. What’s better than that?

 50 Easy Summer Salads That Arent Epically Boring

Courtesy of The Glowing Fridge.

46. Spicy Kale and Quinoa Black Bean Salad

This salad tastes just like your usual order at Chipotle, but is so much easier (and way more affordable) to make on a daily basis.

 50 Easy Summer Salads That Arent Epically Boring

Courtesy of Cookie and Kate.

47. Colorful Beet Salad with Carrot, Quinoa & Spinach

If you’ve never had a beet salad before, let this be your first. The spinach and quinoa make it feel a little heartier than your average summer salad.

 50 Easy Summer Salads That Arent Epically Boring

Courtesy of Pinch of Yum.

48. Shrimp and Avocado Salad with Miso Dressing

Shrimp salads are the epitome of summertime eating. This version has Miso dressing and works for either lunch or dinner.

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Cotter Crunch.

49. Tabouli Salad With Quinoa

Another day in the summer, another Tabouli salad recipe! This one features crunchy quinoa and lemon for added flare.

 

STYLECASTER | Best Summer Styles

Courtesy of Not Entirely Average.

50. Salmon Salad With Grilled Corn and Heirloom Tomatoes

Summer is tomato season, so here’s a recipe that makes them taste better than you ever thought possible.

A version of this article previously appeared in July 2016.

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