It’s summer berry season! Every time I leave the house I have to make a pit stop at my local berry farm for more fresh berries, and although we tend to use them for dessert or just a snack during the day, there are a world of possibilities out there when you have a fridge full of fresh fruit.

Take salads for example—the reason they call them summer salads is because they’re chock full of fresh-from-the-garden vegetables. But if you haven’t tried mixing things up and adding a few chunks of fruit you’re really missing out on a mind-blowing meal.

Serve up your summer salad as a main course or create your own version of a side-dish classic – however you decide to serve these amazing salads, you and your guests are in for a treat.

Summer Caesar Salad

No, this one doesn’t have fruit, but it’s a summer staple when served with fresh-off-the-BBQ steak or chicken. I found this recipe on Canadian Living once, and although I liked it, I don’t like using vegetable oil in salad. My version subs out the vegetable oil for extra virgin olive oil, and I also like to use shredded fresh parmesan cheese instead of the powdered kind you get in the store.You might even want to slice up your BBQ chicken and add it in.

Ingredients:

1 head romaine_lettuce
2 cups (500 mL) croutons
1/4 cup (50 mL) grated Parmesan cheese
Dressing:
1/4 cup (50 mL) extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp (25 mL) grated Parmesan cheese
1 tbsp (15 mL) white wine vinegar
2 tsp (10 mL) Dijon mustard
2 tsp (10 mL) anchovy paste
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp (2 mL) each salt and pepper
1/2 tsp (2 mL) Worcestershire sauce
3 tbsp (50 mL) light mayonnaise

Directions

Dressing: In bowl, whisk together oil, cheese, vinegar, mustard, anchovy paste, garlic, salt, pepper and Worcestershire sauce. Whisk in mayonnaise until smooth. (Make-ahead: Cover and refrigerate for up to 1 day.)

Tear lettuce into bite-size pieces to make about 20 cups (5 L); place in large bowl. Add dressing, croutons and cheese; toss to combine.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strawberry Summer Salad

I only discovered poppy seed dressing this past spring, but I’ve been making up for lost time by pretty much having it with salad every single day. If you don’t want to use mayo to make your own dressing, I recommend Renee’s Gourmet Poppy Seed Dressing.

Ingredients:

1 head green leaf lettuce torn into pieces

1 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup white sugar
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1 tablespoon poppy seeds
1 bunch fresh spinach, washed, stems
removed
1/2 cup diced red onion
1 (16 ounce) package fresh strawberries, hulled and sliced

Directions

Make a dressing by whisking together the mayonnaise, sugar, and vinegar in a small bowl. Stir in the poppy seeds; set aside.

Toss together the lettuce, spinach, and onion in a large bowl. Drizzle the dressing over the salad and toss to coat. Add the strawberries and lightly toss again. Serve immediately.

 

 

 

 

High Protein Quinoa Almond Berry Salad

This one comes courtesy of OhSheGlows.com, and I had to try it because I absolutely love quinoa. Yes, I know some people say quinoa is to this year what kale was to last year, but there’s just something about it that makes me want to keep trying different recipes over and over. And when you can add some fresh berries to the mix? Well, let’s just say I’m in quinoa heaven.

This recipe is both Vegan, gluten free, and delicious.

Ingredients:

3/4 cup dry quinoa
1 pint strawberries, sliced (2.5-3 cups)
16 oz. fresh blueberries (1.5-2 cups)
1 cup cherries, pitted and sliced
2 tbsp pure maple syrup (or other liquid sweetener)
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
1 tbsp fresh lime juice (or lemon might work!)
Pinch of kosher salt
1/2 cup almonds, chopped

Directions

Cook quinoa according to package directions.

Meanwhile, chop the fruit and place in a large bowl.

Mix the dressing ingredients (maple syrup, balsamic, lime juice, salt) in a small jar and adjust to taste if necessary. Note: You may have to double the dressing recipe if your salad is quite large.

Fluff cooked quinoa with a fork and add to large bowl with fruit. Combine. Pour on dressing and mix well. Serve immediately or chill in the fridge until serving time.

 

 

 

Blueberry Walnut Summer Salad

Blueberries are in season too, and although I’m more inclined to drop them on my oatmeal, they are the perfect addition to any salad. Because blueberries are high in antioxidants and are a well known super food, mixing them into your salad will pack quite a healthy punch into your day.

Ingredients:

1 (10 ounce) package mixed salad
greens
1 pint fresh blueberries
1/4 cup walnuts
1/2 cup raspberry vinaigrette salad dressing
1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese

Directions

In a large bowl, toss the salad greens with the blueberries, walnuts, and raspberry vinaigrette.

Top with feta cheese to serve.

You’ll be summer eating and having a blast with these summer salads.

 

 

 

Check out my favourite salad-making kitchen tools below and don’t forget to take a look at all of the kitchen tools and accessories on Best Buy right now.


Take your summer salad with you on the go with the Home Presence Fuel Salad Container

Clean and dry your lettuce extra quick with the Oxo Good Grips Salad Spinner

Make and serve your own special salad dressing with the Oxo Good Grips Salad Dressing Bottle