Recipe: Garden Salad

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If you follow me on Facebook, you probably saw me share a photo of my lunch last week. What I love about salads is that they are

1. Quick
2. Colorful
3. Packed with Nutrients
4. Versatile and Customizable
5. Filling, but don’t leave you feeling stuffed and bloated
6. Cost Effective

I use the name Garden Salad here to reference the fact that we like to pile our salads high with all types of veggies and plant based goodness that comes from the earth, and even better, that we grow ourselves during the months that will allow it. I’ve included the costs and measurements based on what we consumed as one meal. Obviously you are welcome to add, subtract or substitute ingredients based on your own liking.

Here’s what we did as pictured:

2 generous handfuls of organic mixed greens ($0.36, Aldi)
1/2 organic hard boiled egg ($0.125, Costco)
1/2 avocado ($0.45, Aldi)
1/8 cup chopped organic carrots ($0.06, Aldi)
1/4 organic bell pepper, chopped ($0.29, Aldi)
1/8 cup organic croutons ($0.22, Costco)
3/4 oz. balsamic vinaigrette ($0.16, homemade)

The total cost of this meal is $1.67 per serving. We usually mix up our inclusions based on what fresh ingredients we have on hand, and will sometimes add leftover shredded or chopped chicken, nuts or seeds, tomatoes, or other produce. As if this price point wasn’t already VERY reasonable (and significantly less than what you could purchase at a fast food joint during your lunch hour) during the summer we are able to grow half of these items ourselves! If you’d like to trim your grocery bill, I highly recommend starting a small garden. Many plants can be grown in little space or even containers. Not only is gardening a fun and practical hobby, but knowing where your food comes from and growing it yourself is super satisfying!