I'm a late adopter with these guys. Salad-In-A-Jar has been trending for years now. But when you own a salad bar, you never really need to pack a lunch. Now that we've sold the business and I go into the office a few days a week, I need to join the majority. And salad in a jar is king.
First Things First
Before you get started, my number one tip is buying big jars.
I started this game with 500ml (17oz) jars and I was left underwhelmed and hungry. If you want to eat more salads and get rid of the stigma that that they're unsatisfying, then go big.
I bought four 1L jars and haven't looked back. I found mine at the local $2 shop but Amazon have some good ones here. Perfect for smoothing, pickling and sauerkrauting too.
Once you have the hardware sorted, follow these steps.
The 5 Steps To Satisfying Salads (In A Jar)
1. Get Dressed First
The dressing sits at the bottom. That way you avoid soggy salads. This cleverness lends itself to longer life salads. You can make five of these on Sunday afternoon and have fresh salads all work week.
If you're looking for salad dressings ideas there are thousands online, including great ones on Pinterest.
Mine normally consist of olive oil, salt, pepper and something acidic like apple cider vinegar, red wine vinegar or lemon. My current go-to is:
Dijon Detox Dressing
- Makes 4 salad in a jar dressings
- Apple cider vinegar - 1/4 cup
- Olive oil - 1/2 cup
- Water - 1/2 cup
- Dijon mustard - 2 teaspoons
- Garlic - 2 cloves
- Sea salt - generous 1/2 teaspoon
- Pepper - generous 1/2 teaspoon
- Peel the garlic and add everything to a Nutribullet or small blender
- Blend for 5 seconds
- Pour evenly into 4 jars
2. Crunchy Plants - Choose 2
The next layer will be soaking in the dressing so you want something crunchy. Something tough. I normally go cucumbers and then shredded carrots, but here's a full list of options:
- Red cabbage
- Broccoli (steamed or raw)
- Cauliflower (steamed or raw)
- Red onion
- Peppers / capsicum
Yes, you read that right. Avocado. Diced. It won't go brown if there is an acidic component to your dressing. Lemon or apple cider vinegar does the trick. Your avocado salad in a jar will last up to four days. Same goes with apple, pear
3. Clean Carbs - Choose 1
Next up we add a couple layers of satisfiers. Proteins and carbs. These are the fibre dense friends that will provide you with energy all afternoon.
- Brown rice
- Black rice
- Diced sweet potato (steamed / roasted)
- Pumpkin (steamed / roasted)
- Roasted beetroots
4. Protein Please - Choose 1
I try to keep it plant based but some grilled roast chicken is damn delicious.
- Black beans
- Kidney beans
- Almonds (diced / roasted / raw)
- Sunflower seeds
- Organic chicken
- Grass fed beef
- Boiled eggs
- Grilled wild caught salmon / tuna / ocean trout
5. Raw Greens
Lastly, add your rabbit food. We keep the greens away from the dressing so everything stays fresh. But you knew that.
- Baby spinach
- Silverbeet / swiss chard
- Rocket / arugula
- Mixed greens
Once you've built your jars, store them in the fridge. When you're ready to indulge, shake the jar up to spread the dressing and pour them into a big bowl. Should be a satisfying serving that truly improves your day.
This salad-in-a-jar formula is bulletproof. Seriously healthy, easy to make, cheap and lasts up to five days in the fridge. Make four or five jars at a time and you'll be eating healthier than you ever have before. Here's my current go to recipe ( ingredients per jar):
- Dijon Detox Dressing (above)
- Avocado - 1/2
- Lebanese cucumber - 1
- Quinoa - cooked with chicken stock Or sautteed brown onion OR coconut milk
- Chickpeas - 1/2 can, rinsed
- Baby spinach - 2 cups
We're talking four servings of vegetables and 20 grams of protein. Plus at least half a day's worth of fibre, vitamin C, E, manganese, magnesium, iron, folate and phosphorus. It doesn't get much better.