One of my favorite ways to use quart-sized canning jars is to pack them with salads. I can make them on Sunday night and just grab and go all week. There are a few keys to layering your salad so that it is fresh and crispy when you are ready to eat it.
- Dressing first! —This keeps everything from getting soggy.
- Hardier ingredients next—onions, carrots, beans, peas, bell pepper, olives, etc. These will get great flavor from sitting in the dressing, too! Apples will work in this layer too. Be sure to give them a little lemon juice/water bath before adding to keep them from browning.
- Keep layering—Pack your layers tightly. The less air between layers, the longer it will stay fresh.
- Last layer—Your healthy extras and/or cheeses.
HEALTHY HACK: Freshen up your limp kale or other vegetables by dropping them into ice water. Plants wilt due to water loss. Ice water restores their crispness.
One more thing—If you are using less hardy options like guacamole, avocado, or hard-boiled eggs, you might pack them separately and add right before you serve. Here is a salad that works well in a jar.
Green Salad with Apples & Walnut Dressing
2 tbsp. cider vinegar
2 tbsp. maple syrup
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 tsp. olive oil
1/8 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. ground red pepper
4 tbsp. chopped walnuts
2 cup (2-inch) julienne cut apples
6 cups salad greens
Combine vinegar, maple syrup, Dijon mustard, walnuts, and oil. Place in bottom of a jar. Add apples and then salad greens. Serves 4
NUTRITION: 101 calories; 4g fat (30.2% calories from fat); 3g protein; 16g carbohydrates;
4g dietary fiber; 0mg cholesterol; 120mg sodium.
LIVE IT TRACKER: 1 cup vegetable, ½ cup fruit
This recipe is taken from Healthy Happy Cooking, available now in our online store.
Lisa Lewis is the author of Healthy Happy Cooking. Her cooking skills have been a part of First Place for Health wellness weeks and other events for many years. She provided recipes for 15 of the First Place for Health Bible studies and is a contributing author in Better Together and Healthy Holiday Living. She partners with community networks, including the Real Food Project, to provide free healthy cooking classes to communities.