If you’re looking for easy salad recipes, these 45 salad ideas will help inspire you.

Salads are perfect as a side dish or an appetizer and can easily be upgraded to a healthy lunch if you add protein.

Browse through this list and take your pick: from vegetarian and healthy salads to pasta salads and easy salads.

45 best salad recipes including grains and raw salads

Best of all, they’re made with wholesome and easytofind ingredients, making them perfect for families and serving as healthy side dishes.

Our most popular salads

These salads are perfect for weeknight dinners as side salads or appetizers.

You’ll find vegan, glutenfree, and vegetarian options with suggestions for upgrading your salads to a meal with healthy protein.

1. Tomato cucumber onion salad

Cucumber tomato salad is refreshing and colorful! Enjoy this crunchy and easy recipe as a summer side dish, add some protein, and upgrade it to a quick and healthy main.

tomato cucumber onion salad

2. Green bean salad with creamy dressing

Our tender-crisp green bean salad is served with cherry tomatoes and a creamy mustard dressing.

The beans are coated to perfection, making this salad indulgent and healthy at the same time.

green been salad

3. Easy avocado salad

Avocado salad is creamycrunchy, and refreshing.

This 10minute salad is all you need for a quick lunch (add chickpeas) or light dinner during the hot summer.

avocado salad in a bowl

4. Moroccan carrot salad

Moroccan carrot salad is a delicious and aromatic recipe with tender boiled carrotsfragrant ground cumin, minced garlic, fresh parsley, and other simple ingredients.

moroccan carrot salad with lentils

5. Quick side salad

Our side salad is a simple recipe for most main meals.

It’s easy, crunchy, fresh, and colorful and goes well with any main.

simple side salad in a bowl

6. Tomato salad

We combine the tomatoes with thinly sliced onion and basil, then season them with extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

This tomato salad is tasty, refreshing, nourishing, and the perfect side dish for most meals.

mixed tomato salad recipe

7. Carrot salad

Carrot salad is a refreshing, crunchy, and sweet French-inspired recipe you can serve as a holiday side dish or bring to picnics and potlucks.

carrot salad with pineapple

8. Shaved brussel sprout salad

Our shaved Brussels sprout salad is easy to make, with just three ingredients for the salad and 4 for a delicious lemon-mustard dressing.

shaved brussels sprouts salad

9. Sweet potato salad

Oven-roasted or air-fried sweet potato salad with ripe avocado, arugula, and creamy mustard dressing.

Adding a bit of feta cheese is a delicious, colorful, and nutritious meal.

sweet potato salad with arugula and feta

10. Chickpea salad in 20 minutes

This 15-minute chickpea salad is an easy and nutritious dish.

Make it in 15 minutes with simple, fresh ingredients and a refreshing lemon vinaigrette.

chickpea salad in a white bowl

11. Zucchini salad

Fresh, bright green, and crunchy, this zucchini salad is the ultimate summer salad.

It’s perfect for picnics and potlucks and as a side dish for BBQs and summer dinners.

vegetarian zucchini salad with shaved parmesan

12. Fennel orange salad with pomegranate

Fennel and orange salad is a crunchy, fresh, and light salad to be served as a side dish or a starter.

Garnish with pomegranate seeds, pine nuts, and fennel fronds for a restaurantworthy side dish.

Fennel salad with pomegranate seeds

13. Watermelon salad with feta

This watermelon salad with feta is a delightful summer salad sprinkled with pistachio nuts and lime.

It’s a cooling and tasty appetizer or side salad for hot summer nights, putlocks, or BBQs.

watermelon feta salad on a serving platter

Grain salads

Salads with grains and pasta are perfect for lunchbox meals, to bring to the office, or for the entire family to enjoy.

14. Rice salad

This rice salad is the perfect summer dish, easy to prepare in advance, and great for meal planning.

Once the rice is cooked, it will take you 10 minutes to mix this wholesome and vegetarian grain bowl.

easy rice salad

15. Pasta salad

Pasta salad is the ideal lunchtime meal because it’s quick to prepare and delicious.

It’s also great to make in advance to have as a readytogo salad to eat at any time.

Italian pasta salad with Italian dressing

16. Quinoa salad

Chickpeas and quinoa are combined to create a simple and healthy chickpea quinoa salad with fresh, seasonal veggies and a simple lemon vinaigrette.

Quinoa chickpea salad with fork

17. Red cabbage salad

This red cabbage slaw is easy, crunchy, and perfectly tangy.

This is a healthier and less caloric summer salad option like a regular coleslaw but without mayonnaise.

no mayo coleslaw, healthy coleslaw

18. Barley salad

This barley salad with roasted vegetables is the perfect grain salad for a picnic, potluck, or a healthy lunch.

Barley salad with crumbled feta

19. Couscous salad

This couscous salad is easy, fresh, crunchy, and nutritious.

Follow our step-by-step recipe for a mealprepfriendly dish ready in 20 minutes.

couscous salad with fresh veggies

20. Macaroni salad

This is a lighter macaroni salad with a creamy yogurtmayonnaise dressing.

Add carrots, bell pepper, and green peas for perfect crunch and added protein.

Macaroni salad with peas

Protein-rich salads

You don’t have to worry about hunger after eating these protein-packed salads! We use wholesome plant-based protein to make nutritious and satiating salads that you can serve with bread and a sprinkle of fresh herbs.

21. Vegan egg salad

Try this vegan egg salad if you want a great, quick, fulfilling vegan lunch or snack idea. 

It’s great on a sandwich and made with tofu, vegan mayo, and herbs.

vegan egg salad on bread

21. Tofu salad

This tofu salad recipe is a crunchy, healthy bowl perfect for lunch or dinner.

Low in calories, high in flavor, and satiating with a velvety creamy tahini dressing.

tofu salad with creamy dressing

22. Eggplant salad

Eggplant salad is an easy and delicious recipe made with roasted or air-fried eggplant, chickpeas, and other crunchy seasonal vegetables.

It’s perfect as a makeahead meal for potlucks and picnics.

roasted eggplant salad with farfalle pasta

23. Vegan tuna salad

Vegan tuna is a quick and easy recipe made with mashed chickpeas.

It’s the perfect replacement for tuna in a sandwich, to fill a baked sweet potato, or as an appetizer.

baked sweet potatoes stuffed with chickpea tuna

24. Chickpea pasta salad

This chickpea pasta salad is a quick and healthy recipe made with fresh and wholesome ingredients ready in less than 20 minutes.

Chickpea pasta salad is one of our best salad recipes

25. Black bean salad

This black bean salad with roasted sweet potatoes, corn, green or red bell pepper, creamy avocado, and a cilantro lime dressing is a winner.

We love this proteinrich salad for lunch and as a post-workout dinner.

black bean salad with cilantro lime dressing

Mediterranean salads

26. Moroccan eggplant salad

Zaalouk is a delicious cooked eggplant salad with tomatoes, garlic, cumin, and olive oil.

Learn how to make it in one pot in about 30 minutes.

zaalouk with crusty bread

27. Couscous with vegetables

Couscous with vegetables is a delicious way of enjoying couscous.

You can make This easy recipe in less than 30 minutes with seasonal veggies and herbs.

couscous with vegetables

28. Panzanella

Panzanella is an Italian bread salad with simple summer vegetables and leftover stale bread soaked in water.

A perfect appetizer for summer and a delightful side dish for an easy dinner.

panzanella salad with lettuce

29. Carrot raisin salad

Carrot raisin salad is a classic side dish. 

We make a creamy old-fashioned one, grandma’s style, with shredded carrots, raisins, and mayo, and a modern one with orange juice, raisins, and without mayo.

carrot and raisins salad

30. Caponata (Sicilian eggplant salad)

Caponata is an Italian eggplant salad with a delicious sweet and sour flavor.

We make it with roasted eggplant (instead of deep-fried) in less than 40 minutes.

Eggplant Caponata in a bowl

31. Italian salad

Our Italian salad is freshcrunchy, tasty, and easy to make.

Serve it as a starter, side dish, or light lunch with a slice of bread or warm homemade focaccia.

Italian salad in a large bowl

32. Lentil sweet potato salad

This salad is the perfect make-ahead meal.

You can enjoy it as a quick and fulfilling lunch at the office or a wholesome dinner and quickly bring it to potlucks.

lentils and sweet potato salad

33. Mediterranean farro salad

This Mediterranean farro salad is unbelievably tasty and fulfilling and great as a healthy lunch idea.

We make it with chewy Farro, roasted veggies, crumbled feta, and an irresistible cumin dressing.

mediterranean farro salad

34. Shirazi salad

Shirazi salad is a refreshing Iranian dish made with chopped cucumber, tomatoes, and onion and seasoned with dried mint.

Shirazi salad with bread

35. Greek salad

Greek salad is a simple, tasty, refreshing dish made with ripe tomatoes, crunchy cucumbers, tangy red onions, crisp bell peppers, and savory and creamy feta cheese.

American Greek Salad

36. Creamy cauliflower salad

Simple and incredibly easy, our cauliflower salad has no bacon, mayonnaise, or dairy.

We roast the cauliflower florets with olive oil and toss them in a creamy dreamy tahini and lemon dressing.

roasted cauliflower salad in a large bowl

37. Tabbouleh

Serve tabouli as a starter on a platter with other Middle Eastern foods, as a side dish, or make it ahead and bring it to picnics and potlucks.

quinoa tabbouleh

38. Mediterranean cauliflower salad

Protein-rich, with earthy lentils, roasted cauliflower, and a cumin dressing, this putlock-friendly cauliflower salad is great for autumn and winter.

lentil and cauliflower salad

39. Lentil tabbouleh

This lentil tabbouleh recipe is easy to make, and you can serve it as a starter or a side dish.

It’s a perfect side salad with Mediterranean or Middle-Eastern dishes such as hummus and eggplant dip.

lentil tabbouleh

40. Red cabbage salad

A perfect holiday salad side dish and a healthy lunch idea.

This crunchy red cabbage salad with juicy orange wedges, mixed green leaves, and nutty pinto beans make a colorful and vibrant salad.

red cabbage and orange in a bowl

41. Pear salad with orange

This pear salad is fruityfreshcrunchy, and delicious; excellent as an appetizer or side salad for a special dinner or holiday dish.

pear salad with ricotta cheese

42. Kale quinoa salad

Leafy greens, roasted pumpkin, and a creamy mustard dressing meet in a wholesome grain bowl.

Make this kale quinoa salad a healthy lunch, or add tofu to upgrade it to dinner status.

kale and quinoa salad with roasted pumpkin

43. Arugula salad

This Arugula side salad and appetizer idea is a 5-minute quick and delicious green side dish.

Try it with walnuts and slices of red apple for a fruit, nourishing, and crispy salad serving.

arugula salad with apples and walnuts

44. Butternut squash salad

This apple and butternut squash salad is packed with leafy greens, pecan nuts, and dried cranberries, perfect for autumn and winter.

Butternut Squash Salad with cranberries

45. Tahini salad

Velvety creamy tahini sauce, crunchy chickpeas, and fresh veggies come together in this MiddleEasterninspired salad bowl.

Tahini salad with lemon and tomatoes

Easy salad dressings

Italian salad dressing

Homemade Italian dressing is a simple vinaigrette recipe to add flavorfreshness, and aroma to many salads, such as Italian pasta salads, big Italian salads, or simple side salads.

Italian dressing

Tahini sauce

Rich, creamy, nutty, and incredibly nutritious, tahini sauce is a favorite drizzle-on-everything sauce. It adds umami, creaminess, and a silky mouthfeel to any dish.

roasted eggplant boats with tahini sauce and lemon juice

Chipotle sauce

Chipotle sauce is a spicy, smoky, savory condiment made from chipotles in adobo (smoked jalapeño peppers). Learn how to make homemade vegan, dairy-free chipotle sauce. A great way to spice up tacos, burritos, salads, and much more.

chipotle sauce


Chimichurri is a quick, delicious, bright sauce you can use as a topping for many dishes. The main ingredients are olive oil, parsley, garlic, vinegar, and red pepper flakes.

oven-roasted carrots with chimichurri on top

Carrot ginger dressing for Asian-inspired salads

Carrot Ginger Dressing is a simple recipe for a vegan, dairy-free, gluten-free, and egg-free salad dressing made with fresh ingredients in only a few minutes.

carrot ginger dressing on salad

Cilantro lime dressing for Mexican-inspired salads and bowls

You can make this cilantro lime dressing in 5 minutes with seven ingredients in a blender.

This recipe is healthy, dairy-free, vegan, gluten-free, and perfect for brightening your favorite meal.

cilantro lime dressing in a bowl

Green goddess dressing

Green goddess dressing is a creamy salad with plenty of fresh herbs. Learn how to make this delicious dressing at home easily.

boiled potatoes and green goddess dressing

Chili oil

Our quick chili oil recipe is inspired by the Italian “olio al pepperoncino”. This is a classic condiment around the Mediterranean and is often added to pizza and grilled dishes.

spoonful of chili oil

Healthy salad toppings

10-minute croutons

Homemade croutons are a simple way to add flavor and crunch to salads, soups, stews, and casseroles.

Make them in 15 minutes in the oven or on the stove top from fresh or stale bread.

Baked croutons

Air fryer croutons

It takes less than 10 minutes to make these air fryer croutons and a few simple ingredients, such as olive oil and your favorite dry herbs. They are perfect for soupssalads, and stews.

air fryer croutons

Grilled vegetables, such as eggplant, zucchini, or asparagus

Grilled and roasted vegetables are a healthy addition to a big salad bowl. Pick your favorite from juicy zucchini, tender eggplant, and crispy asparagus.

grilled asparagus and lemon


Learn how to make a mouthwatering homemade hummus with a few simple ingredients, from both canned and dry chickpeas.



Homemade guacamole is probably the best dip in the world. Tasty, healthy, and a crowd-pleaser, especially when served with some crunchy tortilla chips or on top of a salad.

guacamole in a bowl

Air fryer tofu cubes

Air fryer tofu is a convenient, easy recipe you can make in less than 15 minutes with very simple ingredients. Learn how to turn a block of firm tofu into tastycrispy, and chewy bites of plant-based protein to level up your salads.

Air fryer tofu on a plate

Marinated tofu

Marinated tofu is one of the easiest foods to cook. Our recipe is quick and tasty, and you can make it in less than 30 minutes with simple ingredients.

diced marinated tofu served on rice

What is the secret to making a good salad?

Here are 7 flavor elements that, in combination, level up a mediocre salad to a best-in-class salad:

  1. Bitter: such as lettuce, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, kale, radishes, and arugula.
  2. Umami: such as avocado, tomatoes, broccoli, peas, mushrooms, and beets.
  3. Sweet: such as dried fruits, roasted sweet potato, roasted root vegetables, corn, carrots, onions, and roasted butternut squash.
  4. Salt: is easily added to your favorite proteins by cooking them. Some examples are fried tofu, roasted chickpeas, and tempeh bacon.
  5. Sour: for example, citrus, cranberries, vinegar.
  6. Fat: nuts, seeds, avocado, good quality dressings, such as olive oil and balsamico dressing, green goddess dressing, and tahini sauce.
  7. Spicy: for example a spicy dressing (chili oil, chipotle sauce, chimichurri), or herbs used for the protein, for example, marinated tofu and air fryer chickpeas.

These 7 flavor affinities are a good guideline for making delicious salads, but also work as a checklist for putting together a delicious and satiating meal.

For many more salad ideas, check out our salads category page.

45 best salad recipes including green beans

45 Best Salads

By: Nico Pallotta
5 from 3 votes
Over 45 best and tasty salads that are easy to make, healthy, vegetarian and vegan too. Browse through, and pick your favorite salad and dressing.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 4 people
Course: Main
Cuisine: American Italian


  • Pick your favorite salad recipe
  • Read the recipe for ingredients required
  • Make the recipe by following the instructions


  • How to store: Most of these salads keep for 1 day in the refrigerator, best if stored in an airtight container.


Black Bean Salad with Sweet Potato


Serving: 200g, Calories: 300kcal
Tried this recipe? Leave a comment below or mention @theplantbasedschool on Instagram. We are also on Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube, and TikTok.

If you liked this list of best salad recipes, check out these veggie-packed compilations:

[adthrive-in-post-video-player video-id=”mGXUwtTY” upload-date=”2023-06-12T08:34:41.000Z” name=”Black Bean Salad” description=”This black bean salad with roasted sweet potatoes, corn, green or red bell pepper, creamy avocado, jalapeños, and a cilantro lime dressing with fresh cilantro and lime juice is a winner.” player-type=”default” override-embed=”default”]

Nico and Louise in the kitchen

Hi! We are Nico & Louise

Welcome to The Plant-Based School, a food blog with easy, tasty, and wholesome recipes.

Our aim is to help you and your family eat more veggies through delicious recipes with simple ingredients.

Easy right?

5 from 3 votes (3 ratings without comment)

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