Healthy Main Dish Salad Recipes

Find healthy, delicious main dish salad recipes, from the food and nutrition experts at EatingWell.

Staff Picks

Chopped Salad with Chickpeas, Olives & Feta

Rating: 4.5 stars 2
This quick and easy chopped salad is inspired by the flavors of the Mediterranean, including chickpeas, cucumber and feta. A garlicky oil and vinegar dressing brings everything together.
By Carolyn Casner

White Bean & Veggie Salad

Rating: 4.83 stars 8
This meatless main-dish salad combines creamy, satisfying white beans and avocado. Try mixing it up with different seasonal vegetables.

Classic Sesame Noodles with Chicken

Rating: 4.25 stars 4
Classic sesame noodles become a healthy meal with lean chicken and tons of veggies in this quick recipe for Asian noodles. Be sure to rinse the spaghetti until it's cold, then give it a good shake in the colander until it's well drained. Are you a spiralizing pro? Swap 5 cups of raw zucchini, carrot or other veggie “noodles” for the cooked pasta.

Kale & Quinoa Salad with Lemon Dressing

Rating: 5 stars 1
This kale-quinoa salad pops with different flavors and textures. Massaging the kale helps break down its fibrous nature, while add-ins like toasted almonds, feta and cucumber add crunch and saltiness.
By Karen Rankin

Mason Jar Power Salad with Chickpeas & Tuna

Rating: 5 stars 4
This power salad will keep you fueled for hours, thanks to 26 grams of protein and 8 grams of fiber. Tossing the dressing and kale, and then letting it stand in the jar, softens it enough so you don't need to massage or cook it to make it tender.

Mediterranean Tuna-Spinach Salad

Rating: 3.91 stars 12
This tuna salad recipe gets an upgrade with olives, feta and a tahini dressing. Served over baby spinach, this is the perfect easy and light lunch or dinner salad.

Tuna & White Bean Salad

Rating: 4.31 stars 6
The time-honored Italian pairing of canned tuna and cannellini beans makes a super-simple, satisfying lunch. Serve over salad greens, on grilled whole-wheat country bread or tucked in a whole-wheat pita pocket.

Green Goddess Salad with Chickpeas

Rating: 5 stars 2
In this cucumber, tomato, Swiss cheese and chickpea salad recipe, a healthy green goddess dressing is made from avocado, buttermilk and herbs. The extra dressing is delicious served with grilled vegetables.

Crab Louie Salad

At the Bayside Cafe in Morro Bay, California, this classic West Coast salad is made with Dungeness crab caught in the coastal waters. Lump crabmeat is a good substitute.
By Betsy Andrews

Mediterranean Chicken with Orzo Salad

Rating: 4.29 stars 7
Baked chicken breasts cook in the oven while you mix together a Mediterranean salad--packed with veggies, whole-wheat orzo and an easy homemade Greek vinaigrette--for a weekend-worthy dinner on the table in under an hour. The leftovers from this healthy 400-calorie meal make a delicious packable lunch for the next day.

Quinoa Power Salad

Make this satisfying salad in the evening and enjoy one portion for dinner, then pack the remaining portion for lunch the next day. Loaded with protein- and fiber-rich ingredients like chicken, sweet potato and quinoa plus power greens, this meal is nutrition-packed!

3-Ingredient Green Goddess White Bean Salad

Bagged salad and slaw blends are great shortcut ingredients for adding variety without needing to wash and chop lots of different vegetables. Toss a kale-and-broccoli slaw mix with canned white beans and yogurt-based green goddess dressing for a crunchy main-dish salad in minutes.
By Carolyn Hodges, M.S., RDN
Advertisement

Inspiration and Ideas

How to Make Shrimp Pad Thai Salad
Slash calories, not flavor and turn pad thai into this healthy salad recipe by swapping sliced cabbage "noodles" for traditional rice noodles.
Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad Wraps
Grilling romaine lettuce and chicken breast adds smoky flavor to this chicken Caesar salad recipe. Toss with an easy Caesar salad dressing and wrap it all up for a delicious lunch or easy dinner.
Falafel Salad with Lemon-Tahini Dressing
Rating: 4.7 stars
9

Deep-fried falafel can be a total grease bomb. But these pan-seared falafel still get crispy in just a few tablespoons of oil with equally satisfying results. Be sure to use dried, instead of canned, chickpeas in this healthy recipe--canned chickpeas add too much moisture.