50 Salads For All Seasons

No matter the time of year, sometimes we just crave crunchy greens, tender chard, or peppery arugula — common components of a well-composed salad. If you've ever struggled with reproducing, at home, the balance of flavors you find in your favorite restaurant salads, we're here to help, answering your questions about everything from dressings to greens, and sharing 50 of our favorite salad recipes.

Making a salad can be as easy as dumping a bag of prewashed greens into a bowl and dousing them with bottled dressing, but making a great salad requires some prep work. Look for seasonal ingredients at your local market. Lean on crunchy kale, grains, and citrus fruit salads in the cooler fall and winter months for bright, textured, and balanced salads. Then, transition to tender chard and spinach in the spring with juicy tomatoes, crunchy cucumbers, and sweet corn in the summer. Remember to always season your greens; salt and pepper will go a long way in building layers of flavor.

When it comes to flavor, a well-balanced dressing is essential. For vinaigrettes, remember the rule of ratios: three parts oil to one part vinegar. For a creamy texture, create an emulsion. Whisk together your vinegar with Dijon, honey, or a combination of both (these two ingredients will add body to your dressing and help maintain the emulsion). Then, slowly incorporate the oil, whisking the entire time. Lastly, season the dressing to taste with salt and pepper. Check out this Dijon vinaigrette recipe for exact measurements.

Finally, consider the toppings. Choose a balance of flavors and textures for the most appealing salad. Crunchy croutons, creamy avocado, and smoky bacon can all contribute to a balance of taste and textures. Similarly, you can achieve a similar effect with smooth roasted acorn squash, crunchy pomegranates, and tangy blue cheese crumbles.

This year, we've rounded up 50 salads, including chicken, seafood, pasta, noodle, raw, easy, grain, and classic versions to help you work more fresh produce into your diet no matter the season.

Chicken Salads

Whether grilled, roasted, poached, or seared, chicken salad is an easy and delicious entrée option any time of the year. Here we've included a couple of options that are good year round, like our version of a curry chicken salad and a barbecue chicken salad made with grilled chicken, as well as some seasonal options, like our grilled chicken salad with sweet summer peaches, or our sesame-ginger chicken salad, best served in spring and summer when arugula is at its peak.

Apple and Curry Chicken Salad

Curry is a generic term for any South Asian spice blend, so the flavors and heat can vary. For a spicy curry blend, look for the word "muchi" on the label. — Perdue Chicken

For the Apple and Curry Chicken Salad recipe, click here.


BBQ Chicken Salad

This grilled chicken salad features spicy barbecue sauce, sweet apples, and salty blue cheese over a bed of Asian slaw and arugula.

For the Barbecue Chicken Salad recipe, click here.


Buffalo Chicken Salad and Blue Cheese

Hot Buffalo sauce is paired with cooling blue cheese dressing for this delicious chicken salad recipe served with chopped romaine, celery, and cherry tomatoes.

For the Buffalo Chicken Salad and Blue Cheese recipe, click here.


Grilled Chicken Salad With Spiced Pecans, Gorgonzola, and Peaches

This simple salad features precooked chicken strips. The mingling of spiced nuts with the mildly sweet peaches and sharp, salty gorgonzola makes for a balanced, delicious salad for lunch or dinner.

For the Grilled Chicken Salad With Spiced Pecans, Gorgonzola, and Peaches recipe, click here.


Sesame Ginger Chicken Salad

Shredded chicken tops a salad of arugula, celery, bell peppers, and cilantro tossed with an Asian-inspired soy sauce and sesame oil dressing.

For the Sesame Ginger Chicken Salad recipe, click here.


Classic Salads

There are a few salad recipes that you see time after time on restaurant menus, such as the Caesar salad or a classic Cobb salad. Here, we have rounded up a few of our favorite classic salads that mostly use ingredients you can find any time of year.

Beet Salad

Sometimes, using a little help from the store can mean the difference between ordering takeout and making a home-cooked meal. The introduction of precooked fresh beets to the produce section is a boon to busy home cooks; no longer does anyone have to settle for canned beets when in a hurry. This quick and easy, delicious salad is a healthy starter for busy weeknights. — Maria Zoitas

For the Beet Salad recipe, click here.


Caesar Salad

Italian restaurateur Caesar Cardini invented the Caesar Salad in Tijuana in 1924. Ever since, the salad has been a hit on menus and at dinner tables around the world. Enjoy this version, which uses anchovy paste instead of tinned anchovies for ease.

For the Caesar Salad recipe, click here.


Epic Taco Salad

Serve your taco salad made with shredded greens, sliced chicken, avocado, and jalapeños for heat in a crisp tortilla shell. Here, chef Angela Sellars adds quinoa to her taco salad bowl for texture and extra protein.

For the Epic Taco Salad recipe, click here.


Salade Niçoise

The modern salade niçoise can be many things. I like mine with grilled fresh tuna, green beans and steamed potatoes, multicolored heirloom cherry tomatoes, a few nicely dressed greens, and a soft touch of anchovy.

This composed salad is perfect to serve when entertaining guests at lunch. Serve family-style along with a loaf of fresh crusty bread and sweet butter. — Patricia Wells

For the Salade Niçoise recipe, click here.


The Ultimate Cobb Salad

The definitive "chopped salad," the Cobb was invented in Hollywood, at the Brown Derby restaurant, and quickly became an iconic American dish. At the Derby, it was always presented with its colorful mix of ingredients arranged neatly side by side, then tossed at the table. — Colman Andrews

For the The Ultimate Cobb Salad recipe, click here.


Easy Salads

Believe it or not, salad recipes can become complicated when more advanced cooking techniques, difficult dressings, or garnishes are added. Here we have rounded up five salad recipes that won't give you any grief. These light, fresh salads are perfect for a simple side with lunch or dinner or top them with your favorite protein for an easy entrée idea.

Arugula, Radicchio, and Fennel Salad With Lemon Vinaigrette

This salad is so simple, yet is packed full of so many different flavors: It's peppery, bitter, and citrusy, all at once. 

For the Arugula, Radicchio, and Fennel Salad With Lemon Vinaigrette recipe, click here.


Easy Tuscan Pasta Salad

Savory feta, sun-dried tomato dressing, and fresh cherry tomatoes bring Old World flavor to this easy, yet impressive pasta salad. — Athenos

For the Easy Tuscan Pasta Salad recipe, click here.


Purple and Blue Salad

This sweet and savory salad isn't your average beet and goat cheese salad. The addition of escarole, Japanese cucumber, figs, and pistachios makes it an excellent fresh and vibrant lunch option.

For the Purple and Blue Salad recipe, click here.


Quick and Easy Chicken Salad

For this recipe, you can cook the chicken in the microwave before shredding it and combining it with mayonnaise, celery, onion, and sweet relish for the easiest chicken salad recipe you'll ever make.

For the Quick and Easy Chicken Salad recipe, click here.


The Kale Salad

By now, everyone knows the great health benefits of dark, leafy greens like kale, so why not treat your body to this fresh mix with homemade vinaigrette?

For the Kale Salad recipe, click here.


Fruit Salads

Sweet fruit salads are popular in spring and summer when most fruits are in peak season, but we have also included a few winter citrus salads, so you can enjoy a refreshing fruit salad any time of year.

Citrus & Fennel Salad

This colorful salad is perfect for brightening up a gloomy winter day. In Los Angeles, we have access to amazing fennel and citrus at this time of year, and this salad was created to highlight the seasonal flavors and texture. At Picnic LA, we use exceptional J.J.'s Lone Daughter Ranch Valencia oranges and Underwood Family Farms sweet fennel. Savoy cabbage adds a satisfying crunch, while citrus juice bursts through with tons of flavor. — Chef Alex Resnick

For the Citrus & Fennel Salad recipe, click here.


Crock-Pot Hot Fruit Salad

My old-fashioned fruit salad is convenient to make in the slow-cooker when your oven and stovetop are occupied with other dishes. It's delicious alongside roasted meats, or even served over pound cake for dessert. — Debbie Kimbrough

For the Crock-Pot Hot Fruit Salad recipe, click here.


Grilled Stone Fruit Salad

Using fresh, seasonal stone fruit like peaches or cherries and pairing it with salty ricotta and sweet honey makes for a perfect summer grilled fruit salad. — Karen Hatfield

For the Grilled Stone Fruit Salad recipe, click here.


Roasted Beet & Orange Salad

This simple salad may only have a few ingredients, but it has an absolute abundance of flavor. Tender roasted beets marry perfectly with juicy slices of orange, and black currant glaze adds an extraordinary depth of flavor. Using the best oranges possible is critical for this salad. At Picnic LA, we use a variety of seasonal oranges from many local farms. Pick oranges that are firm without any soft spots, and that smell sweet. Currant juice can be found in many supermarkets and health stores. Fried garlic and star anise are easy to find in a local Asian market. — Chef Alex Resnick

For the Roasted Beet and Orange Salad recipe, click here.


Sangria Fruit Salad

More dessert than appetizer, this sangria-inspired salad uses fruit soaked in wine and orange liqueur for a sweet and boozy end-of-meal treat.

For the Sangria Fruit Salad recipe, click here.


Grain Salads

Grains are a healthy, hearty addition to your usual salad greens. Check out a few of our favorite salads featuring grains, like this season-less Southwestern-inspired quinoa salad or a wintertime blood orange and farro salad. Also, consider other nutritious grains like barley and bulgur when composing your favorite grain salad.

Barley Salad With Grapes and Pecans

For a delicious, balanced grain salad, combine the earthy flavor of barley with sweet grapes bursting with flavor, bitter radicchio, and toasted pecans for crunch.

For the Barley Salad With Grapes and Pecans recipe, click here.


Chile Lime Black Bean and Quinoa Salad

Healthy quinoa serves as the base of this black bean, poblano pepper, and sweet corn salad that is then tossed in Southwestern lime dressing.

For the Chile Lime Black Bean and Quinoa Salad recipe, click here.


Farro and Beet Salad With Blood Orange Vinaigrette

Ancient grains are an excellent way to work more whole grains into your diet. Dressed with a blood orange vinaigrette, this farro salad is a nutty and bright choice for a meatless entrée or side dish with dinner.

For the Farro and Beet Salad With Blood Orange Vinaigrette recipe, click here.


Mediterranean Bulgur Salad

Cucumbers, tomatoes, pine nuts, and olive oil team up for this healthy and delicious Mediterranean bulgur salad recipe.

For the Mediterranean Bulgur Salad recipe, click here.


Spinach and Ricotta Farro Pasta Salad

Nutty farro, zesty lemon, and creamy ricotta all work together to make this Italian-inspired grain salad the perfect light lunch you've been looking for to make at home or pack in a lunchbox for work.

For the Spinach and Ricotta Farro Pasta Salad recipe, click here.


International Salads

Here is a quick look at salads around the world: From Australia to North Africa, we've rounded up some of our favorite international salad recipes. Try seasoning your fresh-cut vegetables with pungent sumac, make a refreshing pea salad, or a simple vinaigrette using Japanese ingredients.

Australian Pea Salad

This pea salad recipe from Australia combines fresh or frozen peas, water chestnuts, and bell pepper with a creamy yogurt-based Dijon mustard dressing.

For the Australian Pea Salad recipe, click here.


Iraqi Summag (Sumac) Salad

Middle Eastern sumac flavors this simple salad of fresh cucumbers, tomatoes, and onions.

For the Iraqi Summag (Sumac) Salad recipe, click here.


Japanese Cucumber Salad

This simple cucumber salad dressed with honey, soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, and sesame oil is the perfect tangy cooling side with homemade sushi or spicy noodles.

For the Japanese Cucumber Salad recipe, click here.


Tabbouleh Salad

Tabbouleh salad is a classic Middle Eastern salad typically served alongside other small plates at dinnertime. This version calls for cracked wheat bulgur, but that can be replaced with quinoa for a gluten-free alternative.

For the Tabbouleh Salad recipe, click here.


Warm Moroccan Spiced Couscous Salad

Coriander, cumin, and cinnamon are tossed with warm couscous, garlic, ginger, and eggplant for a distinctly Moroccan-inspired salad.

For the Warm Moroccan Spiced Couscous Salad recipe, click here.


Noodle Salads

These noodle salads are better with a little time to marinate, which makes them the perfect option for packable lunches. Try a simple soba noodle salad, add prawns to your cold noodle salad for some lean protein, or try our vegetarian tofu noodle salad.

Asian Noodle Salad Jars

Fresh vegetables, soba noodles, and a spicy peanut dressing are layered up in a Mason jar for the perfect healthy, wholesome lunch to take with you to work. — Hannah Hoskins

For the Asian Noodle Salad Jars recipe, click here.


Grilled Prawns, Pea Shoots, and Noodle Salad

This grilled prawns, pea shoots, and noodle salad has all of the components of a meal already in it. Tasty grilled marinated prawns with Asian seasonings sit on a bed of pea shoots and edamame. A drizzle of honey mustard vinaigrette brings the whole dish together. Perfect for summer. — Adora's Box

For the Grilled Prawns, Pea Shoots, and Noodle Salad recipe, click here.


Sesame Chicken Cucumber Noodle Salad

Just about everyone loves sesame noodle salad, including me. This delicious version improves on the traditional one because it uses a mixture of creamy peanut butter and sesame oil in place of the customary sesame paste. The resulting dish is lighter, not only because the noodles are more delicately coated with the dressing, but because there's less of them in relation to the chicken and vegetables. — Ming Tsai

For the Sesame Chicken Cucumber Noodle Salad recipe, click here.

Spice-Crusted Salmon & Soba Noodle Salad

This is an incredibly satisfying noodle dish that balances different textures and a bold mixture of flavors. Creamy miso dressing over soba noodles, tangy pickled vegetables, and a spice-crusted salmon filet makes an exotic and exciting dish. — Jullie Anne

For the Spice-Crusted Salmon & Soba Noodle Salad recipe, click here.


Thai Tofu Noodle Salad

This simple shiratake noodle salad can be served cool, at room temperature, or even warm depending on your mood. Add any vegetables you have on hand like baby bok choy or broccoli. — Nasoya

For the Thai Tofu Noodle Salad recipe, click here.


Pasta Salads

Have leftover pasta from the night before? Try one of these pasta salad recipes from an Italian-inspired herby pesto pasta salad to an Asian-inspired seaweed pasta salad that will have your lunch guests asking for seconds.

Asian Pasta Salad With Seaweed

Infused with Asian flavors like sesame oil, soy sauce, and seaweed salad, this pasta salad is sure to be a home run. — Barilla

For the Asian Pasta Salad With Seaweed recipe, click here.


Farfalle Pasta Salad With Smoked Salmon and Yogurt

Jazz up your pasta salad with smoked salmon. This recipe is packed with flavor, so don't miss out.

For the Farfalle Pasta Salad With Smoked Salmon and Yogurt recipe, click here.


Herby Pesto Pasta Salad With Chard

Loaded with healthy greens and fresh herbs, this chard salad is best in the spring when rainbow chard is in season and at its most tender. Toss your fresh vegetables with cooked and cooled whole wheat penne pasta in a pesto sauce (you can add sour cream for a creamer sauce).

For the Herby Pesto Pasta Salad With Chard recipe, click here.


Italian Pasta Salad With Balsamic Vinegar

You can make this simple Italian pasta in fewer than 30 minutes, and the presentation is super trendy — thanks to Mason jars. The jars make it easy to bring this pasta along to picnics and outdoor events, so start planning your next outing now. — Barilla

For the Italian Pasta Salad With Balsamic Vinegar recipe, click here.


Peanut Butter Veggie Pasta Salad

The peanut butter gives this pasta salad just the kick it needs to go from good to great. The rich, creamy peanut dressing coats the noodles and provides plenty of complex, salty peanut butter flavor to a bowl of noodles and vegetables.

For the Peanut Butter Veggie Pasta Salad recipe, click here.


Raw Salads

Check-out these no-cook salads that use fresh, whole ingredients for lots of flavor. Raw zucchini ribbons take the place of noodles in our healthy shaved zucchini salad, while our raw harvest Kale salad is the perfect vegan way to satisfy your hunger during cooler months.

Cucumber, Avocado, and Seaweed Salad

Seaweed snacks, avocado, and bell pepper are tossed with a soy and sesame oil dressing that is perfect for a light lunch.

For the Cucumber, Avocado, and Seaweed Salad recipe, click here.

Photogenic Shaved Zucchini Salad

A photo of finely cut vegetables inspired this dish. It turns out that when you thinly slice a zucchini lengthwise, it's a total beauty — like a wide ribbon or vegetal pappardelle pasta. You don't need a mandoline to achieve the effect; a vegetable peeler does the job. — Klancy Miller

For the Photogenic Shaved Zucchini Salad recipe, click here.


Radish Salad With Mint and Pistachios

This is a cooling, crunchy salad that is so easy to pull together. The pink radishes and beautiful green mint and pistachios make for a beautiful light lunch or side dish. — Hannah Hoskins

For the Radish Salad With Mint and Pistachios recipe, click here.


Raw Harvest Kale Salad

This detoxifying salad is raw, vegan, and perfect for incorporating seasonal vegetables into your meal. — Lee Gross

For the Raw Harvest Kale Salad recipe, click here.


Simple and Elegant White Carrot Salad

Crispy, sweet and light, this salad can quickly be thrown together as a side dish for carrot buns, easy stir-fries, or other Asian-flavored main dishes. — Yasmin Fahr

For the Simple and Elegant White Carrot Salad recipe, click here.


Seafood Salads

From tuna to crab, we've rounded up five of our favorite seafood salads that are light, refreshing, and perfect for a protein-packed lunch or dinner.

Butter Bean, Tuna, and Celery Salad

In less than 20 minutes, this beautiful, protein-packed salad will be ready to eat. — Hannah Hoskins

For the Butter Bean, Tuna, and Celery Salad recipe, click here.


Jumbo Lump Crab Salad With Seared Watermelon

Here's a refreshing, seasonal starter for an elegant dinner party. Searing watermelon caramelizes some of its sugar and brings out its sweet flavor, and a simple spice mix accentuates it further. Store any extra vinaigrette for another salad. — E. Michael Reidt

For the Jumbo Lump Crab Salad With Seared Watermelon recipe, click here.


Mediterranean Tuna Salad

A great way to serve this salad is to slice a 9-inch round focaccia in half horizontally, fill it with the tuna, and press a plate down on top of the round bread. Place a heavy can or weight on top for an hour, and the dressing will seep into the bread. Slice and serve. — Whole Foods Market

For the Mediterranean Tuna Salad recipe, click here.


Picnic-Perfect Avocado, Prawn, and Cabbage Salad

Picnic-Perfect Avocado, Prawn, and Cabbage Salad

This sweet and spicy Asian-inspired salad is just what you need to add to your weekly summer meal staples.

For the Picnic-Perfect Avocado, Prawn, and Cabbage Salad recipe, click here.


Squid and Fennel Salad With Citrus and Basil