5 Warm Salads to Keep You Lean

(Photos: Sherrie Castellano/LIVESTRONG.COM)

We often opt for salads because “they’re good for us” – they’re loaded with nutrients and, if done right, can help keep us lean – but they can get a little ho-hum with the same old veggies and toppings. An easy way to make a fresh, crisp salad more interesting is to add a little heat (as in temperature)! Here are five warm, plant-based salads that are full of fiber and nutrition. Enjoy them as a side salad or double up the portion and make them a meal.

Root vegetables, particularly beets, are great because they’re typically available year-round. Both red and golden beets are packed with phytonutrients and so much beauty that it’s hard not to love them. This warm salad pairs both varieties of beets with a zesty orange dressing and salty feta cheese. CALORIES: 114. Get the recipe here.

When lightly roasted, red cabbage softens just slightly and releases a subtle sweetness while still retaining most of its crunch. The vinegar lends the right amount of tang, and the pomegranate arils bring the perfect pop of brightness. This salad is wonderful to make in large batches, and it keeps well in the refrigerator all week long. When you’re ready to eat, warm in a skillet for a few minutes before serving. CALORIES: 61. Get the recipe here.

Mushrooms and ghee are a match made in food heaven. This warm salad pairs the two with the whole grain of your choice. Topping with chopped dried apricots adds a sunny finish and a sweetness to the dish. CALORIES: 196. Get the recipe here.

Gently roasted kale is wilted down and topped with a combination of hearty squash, bright, sweet pomegranate seeds, crunchy pumpkin seeds and a drizzling of maple Dijon dressing. CALORIES: 200. Get the recipe here.

Panzanella salads are having a moment right now – and for good reason. Because what’s better than beautiful vegetables tossed with the right amount of dressing and greens and toasty bread? Nothing. Except if it has an egg on it, like this one does! And while we call it a breakfast salad, you can enjoy this any time of day. CALORIES: 361. Get the recipe here.

Click here to get recipes for five more delicious, warm salads.

By Sherrie Castellano

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