This week’s Meatless Monday recipe gallery may seem like it’s just living up to the staid stereotypes of vegetarians and vegans: We’re all just people who nosh on carrots and salad and never eat anything rich in protein or fats. Wrong. Not only is the stereotype of vegetarians wrong, but these recipes prove that it’s way off the mark for salad, too. Gone are the days when salad means a wedge of iceberg coated in some kind of cheese and bacon; they’re not just piles of spinach and carrots, either. These salads incorporate grains, protein, tons of fresh vegetables…and did we mention taste?
Check out our roundup of hearty spring salad recipes, below, and don’t be afraid to experiment, either. Try making the beet salad and combining it with a bowl of spinach and almonds; put some roasted vegetables in quinoa on top of your kale. If you’re trying to avoid bad fats or lose weight, ditch your creamy ranch and blue cheese dressings for oil and vinegar or one of Tone It Up’s recipes for fat-burning salad dressings. But here’s our philosophy: Eating a salad topped with fattening dressing is better than eating no salad at all (a low-fat energy bar might have fewer calories, but it definitely doesn’t contain fresh greens, vegetables, or fruit). Just don’t go overboard (limit yourself to one serving of dressing; a little can go a long way).