When you think salad, you probably think healthy. Generally, salads ARE healthier than say, a burger and fries. But we do things to salads that ruin the healthy status of our field of greens. Lots of things.
Well cover them one at a time, lest we get over whelmed. Since they’re all bad, we’ll go in no particular order.
The first way to ruin a salad: croutons.
They’re pretty good, aren’t they? They add crunch to a salad. Who doesn’t like crunch? Sorry to say, though, these little guys are just refined, white bread baked until crunchy.
Refined white bread = Not so healthy.
A standard serving of croutons adds 180 calories (about 8-10% of your daily amount) to your salad. Lots of those refined carbs in there too. No matter how I could try to spin it, these little buggers aren’t good for you. Well, compared to fries maybe, but you don’t put fries on a salad. Please tell me you don’t put fries on a salad….
Nuts are a great alternative to keep the crunch in your salad and up the flavor and nutritional content. At first the idea of nuts on a salad may seem strange, until you try it. Salad still crunchy (check), more flavorful (check), and a boost of nutrients and heart healthy fats (check, check). They’re also lower in calories (one tablespoon=40 calories).
I’d recommend starting with almonds. They go quite naturally with most any salad. These days they sell flavored sliced almonds in grocery stores called “Almond Accents”. On the bag they’re pictured in a salad. Pretty straightforward, methinks.
You can also try cashews, pecans, or, for an asian flair, peanuts. Try it this week or next and tell me what you think!