Crunchy Vegetable Salad has to be one of my favourite meals. I do eat a lot of them and all year round too. My salads are always popular at potlucks and when friends visit. My favorite recipes are quick and easy to assemble and are versatile enough that they go with all kinds of main courses. Or can be turned into a meal with the addition of protein of choice – see my suggestions below.
The Ingredients for Crunchy Vegetable Salad
Some fresh vegetables, some fruits, some leafy greens, and a dressing of choice are all it takes to make this delicious vegetarian recipe.
The Ingredient List for Crunchy Vegetable Salad:
- 2 cups of lettuce – washed, dried well, and left as whole leaves or chopped in whatever way you like.
- 3 carrots – sliced thinly. I use a mandoline, but you can use a sharp knife to slice.
- 2 cups of snow peas – blanched. Boil them for about 3-4 minutes and right away drain and place them into a bowl with ice-cold water. This stops the cooking process right away and it leaves the snow peas crunchy.
- 4 Persian cucumbers – or 1 English cucumber – sliced thinly. I use a mandoline, but you can use a sharp knife to slice. I like to pickle mine, but you can leave them as they are. See pickling instructions below.
- 1 cup of radishes – sliced thinly. I use a mandoline, but you can use a sharp knife to slice. Or cut into quarters.
- 2 nectarines – pitted and sliced or cut into bite-size chunks.
- dressing of choice (see my dressings section here). I use my watercress dressing, but any creamy dressing or vinaigrette goes well with it.
Pickling the Cucumber for Crunchy Vegetable Salad
I like to pickle my cucumber. I find it adds a whole different level of flavour to the recipe. It adds a slightly tangy and yet sweet flavour to it.
Slice the cucumber into thin slices using a sharp knife or a mandoline. Add the slices to a bowl and add:
– 1 tablespoon of rice vinegar
– 1 teaspoon of sugar
– 1/4 teaspoon salt
– a pinch of crushed red chili flakes
Mix everything together and let it sit for about 10 minutes or while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.
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Assembling the Crunchy Vegetable Salad
Once all your ingredients are ready, we can assemble the salad. I like to leave my lettuce leaves in the bottom and then arrange the rest of the ingredients on top. But, you can toss it in a bowl and enjoy it that way. You can also layer it in a bowl. The assembly is all up to one’s liking.
- I love green leafy vegetables. I add arugula, spinach, or kale in place of lettuce to change it up from time to time.
- Try replacing the radishes with white radishes. A little less colourful, but it has a similar taste.
- For a more fruity experience, try adding some cherry tomatoes or even regular field tomatoes chopped into chunks.
- Blanch and chop up some asparagus. That also adds a whole different level of crunch.
- I love tossing in some nuts such as toasted almonds, or pistachios. They too offer a level of crunch to this vegetarian recipe.
- To make it a more hearty gluten free recipe, you can add feta cheese, bocconcini, or even fresh mozzarella cheese.
The sky’s the limit when it comes to customizing salad recipes and there are so many options for protein that one can add. Here are a few of my favourite options:
- I love adding grilled chicken or my oven baked chicken. Chicken is a really good option for this. It turns this healthy side dish into a healthy meal.
- Pan seared shrimp is another really delicious option for this. During the summer months, I make barbequed shrimp and add that to it.
- Steak goes really well with this recipe. In particular, if you add the watercress dressing to it.
- Hard boiled eggs – this is one of my favourites.
- Bacon – I like turkey bacon better than real bacon. I like to crisp it up in a pan first then either crumble it over top or just leave it in slices.
Crunchy Vegetable SaladCourse: SaladCuisine: CanadianDifficulty: Easy
If I could, I would have this crunchy vegetable salad every day. It is fresh, simple, colorful, and delicious. The best bit is, your whole family will love it.
2 cups of lettuce
2 cups of snow peas
1 cup of radishes
3 Persian cucumbers – or 1 English cucumber
dressing of choice (see my dressings section here)
- Ingredients for pickling the cucumber
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
1 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
a pinch of red chili flakes (optional)
- Wash and properly dry the lettuce. Leave as whole leaves or chop them into bits.
- Pickle the cucumbers. Finely slice the cucumber and place the slices into a bowl. Add the vinegar, sugar, and salt to the bowl. Mix well and set aside for about 10 minutes. Sprinkle with red chili flakes if using.
- Wash and thinly slice the carrots and radishes. Use a sharp knife or mandoline.
- Wash and remove the pit from the nectarines. Slice or chop into bite size pieces.
- Assemble the salad to your liking – in a cobb salad like fashion, or tossed in a bowl.
- Dress with a vinaigrette of choice. See my dressings recipes here.
What vegetables are good for a salad?
What type of protein can you add to a Salad?
- grilled chicken or oven baked chicken
- grilled shrimp or pan seared shrimp
- hard boiled eggs
- bacon – regular or turkey bacon