summer salads with fresh fruits and vegetables

When it’s hot out, about the only thing I want to cook is something on the grill or one of my favorite summer salads.  I want something refreshing and light and so does my family.  Plus, it’s a great time to take advantage of whatever is in season and of course, local.  It’s also delicious to combine fruit in my salads for a healthy spin and something unusual for my family.

what are your favorite summer salads

For any of these salads, you can use the type of greens that you choose.  I happen to love arugula for both the watermelon and the panzanella and mixed greens or romaine for the chopped.  But, it’s your choice.  I also use just a basic oil and vinegar dressing for all the salads, because I don’t want it to compete with the wonderful flavors of the fresh fruits and vegetables.

I’m not giving you serving amounts, because it depends on how hungry you are and how many you are feeding.  I’m sure you’re quite capable of judging how much of the ingredients you need for each salad.

Watermelon and Feta Salad

This salad is hands down one of those I could eat almost everyday and sometimes come very close.  It’s refreshing and full of flavor and just screams summer.

how do you make a watermelon and feta salad

Ingredients

  • watermelon, diced
  • feta cheese, crumbled
  • black olives, halved or diced
  • red onion, sliced
  • avocado, diced
  • arugula
  • cucumber, diced – I add for myself, but my husband hates
  • oil and vinegar dressing
  • mint (optional)

Directions

Just throw everything in a big bowl, add the dressing, toss, and serve!

Veggie Chopped Salad

For this salad, I try and just get whatever veggies are either at my local Farmers’ Market or I know are coming straight out of gardens at this time of year.

how to make a veggie chopped salad

Ingredients

  • romaine or mixed green lettuce
  • your choice of vegetables, such as scallions, tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, zucchini, and red onions
  • oil and vinegar dressing

Directions

Chop the lettuce and the vegetables and toss together with the dressing in a bowl.  Feel free to add cheese, chickpeas, or chicken to the recipe for a little protein.

Panzanella Salad

I made this for my husband not too long ago and he said, “The next time you make this can you make more, so I can take it for lunch?”  Trust me, he doesn’t say this that often, so I knew I had a hit.  I also roasted a chicken for my two dogs and “borrowed” some for my husband’s salad.

how to make a panzanella salad

Ingredients

  • croutons – homemade or store bought
  • mozzarella balls
  • red onions, sliced
  • black olives, halved
  • tomatoes, quartered
  • arugula
  • oil and vinegar dressing

Directions

If you have the time and the bread, I think this salad tastes so much better with homemade croutons and they are so easy to make.  Just take your favorite bread – stale preferable – cut in pieces, toss with olive oil and salt and pepper, place on a baking sheet and bake at 400 until golden brown.  Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and toss with the dressing.

A few more summer salads…

If you also want to use some strawberries and/or blueberries that are in season right now, why not toss them with some spinach, feta, sliced almonds, and dressing and savor the flavors.  Then, you could also combine peaches with some heirloom tomatoes, basil, and chopped pistachios and you’ll be in heaven!  There are so many choices for summer salads, use your imagine and have fun coming up with your own wonderful dishes.

spinach salad with fresh fruits

If you are looking for a great summer drink to go with the salad, check out some of the delicious cocktail recipes at WineLoversVillage!

What’s your favorite summer salad?

Sherry is one of the TriWivesClub’s founders. She is also a contributor at TravelingMom & Challenge Family. She has been her triathlete husband’s biggest supporter and co-traveler for over 15 years. She is a former co-owner of the California Apparel News and had a career in the healthcare industry. Her passions include running, traveling, real food, and animal rescue/welfare. She lives a healthy lifestyle and has been a vegetarian since 1987. She and her husband are parents to two rescue pups and reside in Connecticut.