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This Rainbow Mediterranean Salad is a crunchy, tangy, nutrient-packed salad loaded with all kinds of colorful veggies. Great as a vegan, plant-based lunch, or top with grilled chicken, fish or tofu for even more protein and make it a complete dinner.
i've really been on a salad kick lately. I've been trying to eat healthier and learn how to make more nutritious meals for me and the family. I'm leaning towards the 80%/20% idea of eating healthy foods 80% of the time, and whatever 20% of the time, because there's no way I can give up my yummy comfort foods.
Anywho, I started taking an online cooking course with Rouxbe and I'm totally loving it. This Rainbow Mediterranean Salad is based on a recipe I learned in my course.
Is Rainbow Mediterranean Salad Healthy?
When you make a salad, and include a good variety of colorful veggies, you're guaranteed to get a nice array of vitamins and minerals.
What sort of vitamins and minerals are abundant in this salad?
- Garbanzo beans are loaded with fiber, which is essential for our digestive tract health. They also have a healthy dose of manganese, folate and copper.
- Kale's beneficial properties include being an antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and a cancer preventative. The dark, leafy green is concentrated with vitamin K, vitamin A and vitamin C.
- Tomatoes are also an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, and also are great for our cardiovascular health since they can help lower our bad cholesterol. Tomatoes are high in vitamin C and biotin.
- Broccoli is another one on the antioxidant, anti-inflammatory list, and it also has some omega-3 fats that our bodies need. Broccoli is packed with vitamin K, vitamin C, chromium and folate.
What Else Can I Add?
If there are some ingredients you don't care for you can substitute them out with:
- quinoa, bulgur or farro
- feta cheese
- red, orange or yellow peppers
- blanched green beans
Tips For Making Rainbow Mediterranean Salad
One of my must-do things when putting kale in a salad, is to massage it first with either olive oil or some of the salad dressing. I know this sounds weird, but it helps to make it softer and less "chewy".
I talked about this in my recent post for Lemony Raw Kale Salad.
Can I Make This Salad Ahead of Time?
If you want to make the salad ahead of time, prepare the entire salad as is, but leave out the romaine lettuce, and add that right before serving.
All of the veggies in the salad, including the kale, can hold up in the refrigerator for a day or two. Romaine lettuce is the one ingredient that starts to wilt, and won't seem as fresh. The dressing will actually marinate the veggies and give them extra flavor.
If I were serving to guests, I would use within one day, but when I made this for myself, I was able to eat it for two to three days.
Rainbow Mediterranean Salad
- 15 ounces garbanzo beans canned, rinsed and drained
- 3 cups kale chopped and stems removed
- 3 cups romaine lettuce chopped
- 2 cups grape tomatoes cut larger ones in half
- 1 cup broccoli cut into tiny florets
- 1 cup cucumber diced
- ½ cup red onion diced small
- 1 clove garlic minced
- 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon agave nectar
- 2 tablespoons fresh basil chopped
- 2 tablespoons Italian parsley chopped
- sea salt to taste
- black pepper to taste
- Clean and prepare all salad ingredients. Do not mix together at this point.
- Combine all salad dressing ingredients. Whisk vigorously or shake in a salad dressing shaker until dressing is combined and emulsified.
- Add kale to a large salad bowl. Add a couple of tablespoons of the salad dressing and massage and rub into the kale for a couple of minutes. This will help the kale become a bit softer.
- Add all remaining salad ingredients and remaining salad dressing and toss until all is coated with the dressing.