I know, I know. It’s not summer yet. I’m not stupid. But that didn’t stop me from throwing together this super tasty, easy and healthy summer salad with grilled vegetables, fresh greens, tomatoes, and feta cheese…in May. I’m so not eating in season, forgive me, Instagram. Nevertheless, this delicious vegetable salad is full of flavor and is perfect for summer as it’s refreshing, satisfying for lunch or even dinner and your whole family will love it!
I’m going on vacation in a few weeks, so naturally, I panicked and started changing a couple of things during the last, well 2-3 weeks. Like we all do, when summer’s coming and we know we HAVE TO dress differently:
- I started running. Don’t freak out, it’s just for 5-10 minutes (can’t do more) in the morning and it’s all downhill. I’m still the same person, but I feel so much better and I feel like I can fly downhill so it’s fun. Uphill not so much, but I’m kinda doing it as well.
- Started walking for AT LEAST 2 hours every day and spending more time outside. Now, this has changed me. Seriously. I found it takes me around 1.5 – 2 hours to make those 10,000 steps that everyone’s talking about. But more importantly, I figured out, I don’t want to be an indoor person, I’m not made for that. So I’ve been very intentional about spending at least 2-3 hours outside every single day.
- I started making more healthy salads and have been loving them again! Exhibit A:
I also started listening to podcasts, which I hadn’t done in a while. Okay, enough about me and my changes. I hope you’re having a good transition into summer. Much better than the transition that I’m gonna make to this delicious and fresh salad.
Also, are you proud of me, I think I’m getting much better at taking food pictures. Something I never thought I’d say when I was in high school. I had never, EVER thought of taking a picture of what I’m eating. Scary how the internet changed us.
Summer Salad Ingredients
In my experience (said while smoking a pipe and stroking my long beard), the best salads come together when you mix fresh vegetables with something fancier. By fancy, I mean something like grilled vegetables, a bit of feta cheese or chickpeas. That’s especially true for summer salads. Now here are the ingredients for this tasty healthy salad.
Tomatoes. If you don’t put a sweet and juicy tomato into a summer salad you’re not living, really. If you can’t find a good tomato – cherry tomatoes usually have a great flavor.
Arugula. To be honest, here I used spinach and arugula, but if it was summer – it will all be arugula. I love the taste. If you don’t have it – spinach works as well.
Hot Peppers. Fine, I used one hot pepper in here, no idea what kind, it wasn’t that hot, but added a good flavor. You can also use a small bell pepper if you don’t like spicy food.
Zucchini & carrot. I roasted the zucchini, carrot and a little bit of broccoli in a pan with olive oil, but you can also grill them or put them in the oven. I like sauteeing my vegetables in a pan with some garlic and herbs – definitely the quicker option.
Feta cheese. Choose a good feta cheese with fewer ingredients, another cheese of your choice or no cheese at all if you’re vegan.
Olives. Here I used Kalamata olives with the pits in, but you can use any type of olives and I actually think that pitted and chopped would be much better.
Garlic. Yes, we’re going there. Garlic is an important ingredient in this salad and makes it so flavorful, complete and delicious.
Cucumbers. I didn’t add cucumbers to this salad…the reason? Couldn’t find good ones right now, but would definitely add a crisp, crunchy cucumber when I make this in June/July.
Optionally. To make it more filling you can also add chickpeas, beans, seeds, nuts, chicken, fish, quinoa, those are all good options.
How To Make A Summer Salad
- Chop all fresh vegetables.
- Add them to a bowl.
- Add the grilled vegetables and feta.
- Pour some olive oil and vinegar over the salad.
- Mix it all together.
- Add salt to taste and enjoy!
Don’t forget to thank yourself for making this healthy nourishing meal and for not eating pizza.
What Vegetables To Eat During Summer
We’ve got everything we need during that season:
- bell peppers
- green beans
Excuse me, my mouth is watering. Some people would correct me and tell me these foods aren’t vegetables, I know tomatoes, eggplant, but you know what? If I’m putting them in a salad they’re vegetables to me.
You’ve probably got many other choices during summer, but I’m just thinking about my dad’s garden right now and what is usually there. Of course, let’s not forget about those berries, peaches, plums, and watermelons. OMG, watermelon, I’m patiently waiting for you. We’ll be together again.
With fresh tomatoes, arugula, feta cheese, and grilled vegetables this easy and healthy summer salad is refreshing, satisfying and perfect when it’s hot outside!
- 2 tomatoes, chopped
- 1 cup arugula, chopped
- 1 cup spinach, chopped
- handful basil, chopped
- 1 small zucchini
- 1 carrot
- olives, handful
- 1 hot pepper or small bell pepper, chopped
- 2 scallions, chopped
- 1 garlic clove, mashed
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp vinegar or lemon juice
- salt and pepper to taste
- Cut carrots and zucchini into circles. Don’t make them too thin or too thick.
- Grill, roast or saute in a pan the zucchini and carrot. I cooked them in a non-stick pan with olive oil, garlic, and dry basil and added some broccoli. Once ready, let the vegetables cool off, before adding them to the salad.
- Chop tomatoes, spinach, arugula, basil, hot pepper, scallion.
- Add the garlic, fresh and cooked vegetables, olives and feta cheese to a bowl.
- Pour olive oil and vinegar over the salad and mix it all together.
- Add salt and black pepper to taste and enjoy!