But I've been catching myself stuck in a food rut lately. Every single day at work, I go straight to the salad bar and make a salad. Now, don't get me wrong...I LOVE salads!!! But, I'm feeling myself getting sick of them. My salads are usually the same every day: romaine+tomatoes+olive oil. No fun.
Which brings me to...why we shouldn't get stuck in a food rut! I hope someone relates to me here. I tend to find a food I love, and then proceed to eat it every day for 20 days. Then, I get so sick of this food that I don't eat it again for a good long while! When it comes to peanut butter or tortilla chips, I can afford to get sick of these foods and stay away from them for a while. But I would hate to see this happen with salads! Which is why I've decided to brainstorm some reasons why I love salads and how to make them more exciting for myself!
1.) You can fit so many vegetables into a salad! Up to 4-5 servings!
2.) They are so colorful and pretty! All the different veggies have a unique crunch, taste, and texture that adds so much depth to your plate! And I've always been a sucker for pretty food :)
3.) You can make them spicy (sriacha dressing anyone?) or sweet (adding a chopped apple is my favorite!)
4.) You can smother them in guacamole instead of using dressing. Seriously, I do this all the time. Creamy avocado or a chunky guacamole can replace a salad's dressing any day in my book!
5.) You can use raw AND cooked veggies! I promise! Steamed broccoli or sauteed peppers and onions are so tasty on a bed of raw spinach or romaine. I even add some roasted sweet potatoes sometimes for a little mushy goodness! There are really no rules here...warm salads taste great and add variety to your meal!
6.) You can add different kinds of protein on them. The hospital I am interning at always has grilled chicken, but they also have carne asada, grilled tilapia, and teriyaki salmon that taste really great on a salad!
7.) Salads are filling. I don't care what anyone says, all that fiber in the veggies has to be good for something! Fiber keeps you full, so combined with the chicken, meat, or whatever protein source you add to your salad, plus a healthy fat like avocado, olives, or olive oil for dressing, you've got yourself a well-rounded meal that will be high in nutrients, taste, and will keep you full for a while!
These reasons just got me so excited to eat salad tomorrow at lunch! I think a salad is always a great option, whether it is on the side or the star of the meal. I think the best way I am going to get out of my salad rut is to try a different salad every day. No more romaine+tomatoes+olive oil for me! I have to spice things up and add variety if I want to stay excited to my meals and not get bored, which often leads to turning to other "fun" less nutritious choices.
This definitely helped me get out of my salad rut, and I hope it can help you too! And now for the best part...some pictures of salads I've had recently!
Carne Asada salad with Pico de Gallo dressing
Mediterreanean Chicken Salad with Roasted Eggplant, Squash, and Feta Cheese
Scottish Salmon Salad with Mandarin Oranges
I hope this gives you a few more ideas on how to make salads more interesting and not to get bored of the-best-way-to-eat-veggies ever! :)