23 Hearty Salad Recipes Perfect for Your Next Dinner

Make a meal out of your greens (and reds and oranges, too).

hearty salad recipes - Shrimp Salad with Crispy Chorizo and Almonds
Con Poulos

Salads are normally considered a leafy introduction to your meal, something you eat on your way to dinner's main attraction. That or a way to atone for eating that slice of cake the previous night. But the best salad recipes can be speedy, delicious, and, dare we say, exciting. Heck, they can be a meal of their own when packed with savory substantial ingredients.

If it’s filled with proteins or grains (or both!), a salad can become a filling and satisfying dinner choice, especially after an active day. Salad recipes with chicken, steak, sausage, or shrimp will bulk up your salad bowl. And if you’re looking for vegetarian salad recipes, that doesn’t mean you have to settle for just a pile of lettuce. The addition of protein-packed beans, grains, eggs, and — if you eat them — flavorful cheeses, will take your greens to the next level.

These healthy salad recipes are flavorful and will change your idea of salad from a diet food or side dish to a gratifying dinner choice. Say goodbye to boring old mesclun-and-dressing combos and hello to your new favorite meal. Vegetarians, vegans, pescatarians, and meat-eaters alike will enjoy these hearty healthy additions to the table

hearty salad recipes - Steak and Rye Panzanella
Danielle Occhiogrosso Daly
Steak and Rye Panzanella

Caraway seeds and fennel add depth and flavor to this bread-based salad.

Get the recipe for Steak and Rye Panzanella.

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hearty salad recipes - Barley Salad with Strawberries and Buttermilk Dressing Recipe
Mike Garten
Barley Salad with Strawberries and Buttermilk Dressing

Cooking barley in your instant pot will cut down on prep time for this meat-free main.

Get the recipe for Barley Salad with Strawberries and Buttermilk Dressing.

RELATED: 15 Instant Pot Recipes You Can Make in No Time

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hearty salad recipes - White Bean and Tuna Salad with Basil Vinaigrette
Danielle Occhiogrosso Daly
White Bean and Tuna Salad with Basil Vinaigrette

Tons of fresh basil brightens this easy vinaigrette. Make extra and drizzle it over grilled chicken, shrimp, and more.

Get the recipe for White Bean and Tuna Salad with Basil Vinaigrette.

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hearty salad recipes -- Chicken Fajita Salad with Lime-Cilantro Vinaigrette
Con Poulos
Chicken Fajita Salad with Lime-Cilantro Vinaigrette

Forget the tortillas — this fajita salad is filling and satisfying, sans the carbs.

Get the recipe for Chicken Fajita Salad with Lime-Cilantro Vinaigrette.

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hearty salad recipes - Korean Steak Salad with Sugar Snaps and Radishes
Danielle Occhiogrosso Daly
Korean Steak Salad with Sugar Snaps and Radishes

A savory soy-chile dressing with a hint of sweetness doubles as a glaze to give the steak an extra kick.

Get the recipe for Korean Steak Salad with Sugar Snaps and Radishes.

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hearty salad recipes - Ratatouille Salad
Con Poulos
Ratatouille Salad

Your favorite veggie dish gets a salad upgrade with mozzarella and sourdough toast.

Get the recipe for Ratatouille Salad.

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hearty salad recipes - Steak Salad with Honey Lemon Vinaigrette
Chris Court
Steak Salad with Honey-Lemon Vinaigrette

Roasting the cauliflower in a hot oven brings out its inherent sweetness. Tossing it in a salad chock-full of fresh arugula, seared sirloin, and dried cranberries makes it irresistible.

Get the recipe for Steak Salad with Honey-Lemon Vinaigrette.

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hearty salad recipes - Tex-Mex Chicken Salad
Jonny Valiant
Tex-Mex Chicken Salad

The creaminess in this dressing comes from a touch of low-fat sour cream.

Get the recipe for Tex-Mex Chicken Salad.

RELATED: 20 of the Best Grilled Chicken Recipes for Your Next Outdoor Gathering

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hearty salad recipes - wedges with bacon tomatoes and buttermilk dressing
Con Poulos
Wedges with Bacon, Tomatoes, and Buttermilk Dressing

Loaded Iceberg wedges taste even better with a drizzle of our creamy buttermilk dressing.

Get the recipe for Wedges with Bacon, Tomatoes, and Buttermilk Dressing.

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hearty salad recipes - Salmon Niçoise Salad
Con Poulos
Salmon Niçoise Salad

Eggs, potatoes, and green beans give this salmon-topped salad texture and flavor.

Get the recipe for Salmon Niçoise Salad.

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hearty salad recipes - Grilled Watermelon Salad with Steak
Con Poulos
Grilled Watermelon Salad with Steak and Tomatoes

Charred watermelon only enhances juicy sirloin.

Get the recipe for Grilled Watermelon Salad with Steak and Tomatoes.

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hearty salad recipes - Spinach, Potato, and Corn Salad
Con Poulos
Spinach, Potato, and Corn Salad

This simple summer salad is fresh and filling.

Get the recipe for Spinach, Potato, and Corn Salad.

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easy chicken dinner recipes  - Grilled Caesar Salad Flatbread
Con Poulos
Grilled Caesar Salad Flatbread

Eat your greens served atop a slice of chewy flatbread.

Get the recipe for Grilled Caesar Salad Flatbread.

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hearty salad recipes - Fajita Salad with Charred Jalapeño Dressing
Con Poulos
Fajita Salad with Charred Jalapeño Dressing

Spice up your typical salads with hearty ingredients and zesty dressing.

Get the recipe for Fajita Salad with Charred Jalapeño Dressing.

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hearty salad recipes - Shrimp Salad with Crispy Chorizo
Con Poulos
Shrimp Salad with Crispy Chorizo and Almonds

Crispy bits of chorizo beat out croutons any day.

Get the recipe for Shrimp Salad with Crispy Chorizo and Almonds.

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hearty salad recipes - Muffaletta Cobb Salad
Con Poulos
Muffaletta Cobb Salad

Toasted salami and vegetables make this twist on a cobb salad a fresh new summer meal.

Get the recipe for Muffaletta Cobb Salad.

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hearty salad recipes - beet, tangerine, and steak salad
Con Poulos. Food Stylist: Christine Albano. Prop Stylist: Megan Hedgepeth
Beet, Tangerine and Steak Salad

You don't have to cut red meat from your diet: Portions and leaner cuts are key. Pairing steak with oranges and beets helps keep this salad light and refreshing, yet totally satisfying.

Get the recipe for Beet, Tangerine, and Steak Salad.

RELATED: 23 Satisfying Steak Dinners for Easy Weeknight Meals

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hearty salad recipes - Steak with Lentil and Grapefruit Salad
Con Poulos
Steak with Lentil and Grapefruit Salad

This colorful and delicious addition to your table is surprisingly low in calories and packed with fiber.

Get the recipe for Steak with Lentil and Grapefruit Salad.

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hearty salad recipes - Apple, Farro, and Bacon Salad with Warm Feta Cheese
Photo credit: Christopher Testani. Food stylist: Vivian Lui. Props stylist: Megan Hedgpeth.
Apple, Farro and Bacon Salad with Warm Feta Cheese

You can double the farro, let it cool and freeze flat in resealable plastic bags. When ready to use, transfer the frozen farro to a strainer and pour boiling water over it. Stir into soups and stews, or toss with sautéed onions and herbs for an easy side.

Get the recipe for Apple, Farro, and Bacon Salad with Warm Feta Cheese.

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hearty salad recipes - Shaved Squash Salad
Con Poulos
Shaved Squash Salad

No boring mesclun here: Black-eyed peas and grilled green onions add a Southern kick.

Get the recipe for Shaved Squash Salad.

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hearty salad recipes - Gingery Asian Noodle Salad with Ground Turkey and Cucumbers
Con Poulos
Gingery Asian Noodle Salad with Turkey and Cucumbers

This Asian salad offers variety of flavors and textures, but is still quick and healthy, too.

Get the recipe for Gingery Asian Noodle Salad with Turkey and Cucumbers.

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hearty salad recipes - dill crusted pork and farro salad
Danielle Occhiogrosso Daly
Dill-Crusted Pork and Farro Salad

Give quick-cooking pork tenderloin fresh flavor with a dill-and-garlic rub, then serve over arugula studded with tomatoes, olives, and farro.

Get the recipe for Dill-Crusted Pork and Farro Salad.

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hearty salad recipes - Farro, Apple, and Carrot Salad
Antonis Achilleos
Farro, Apple, and Carrot Salad

To cut your time in the kitchen even more, look for quick-cooking farro, which can be ready in 15 minutes.

Get the recipe for Farro, Apple, and Carrot Salad.

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