Salad in a Jar



Foods received in my Week 1 CSA box

“Salad in a Jar” seemed perfect for my second recipe this year using local, seasonal foods. My first share of foods for the summer in a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) box from a local farmer included the cauliflower, radish and lettuce used in this recipe.

Local, seasonal fruits and vegetables are at the peak of freshness when purchased either directly from a farm, at a farmers’ market or in a grocery store. Or harvested from your garden.

In my first post, I gave a recipe for a simple lettuce and radish salad dressed with olive oil and vinegar. So none of these fresh, tasty foods goes to waste, I made two Salads in a Jar to enjoy at work this Thursday and Friday.

These salads are so easy to make! You don’t have to use all the ingredients; however, it is very important to put the salad dressing on the bottom followed with a layer of hard, moisture-resistant vegetables to protect the remaining layers from getting soggy.

My salad includes:

  • Salad dressing (I used a vinaigrette)
  • Chopped cauliflower
  • Sliced radishes
  • Black beans (as a source of protein)
  • Shredded cheese
  • Lettuce

Here are the basic ingredients …


  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Vary the vegetables as different fresh produce becomes available during the summer and fall.


Basic ingredients and directions for Salad in a Jar:

  1. Place salad dressing in the bottom of the jar (about 2 to 3 tablespoons for a quart-sized salad; 1 to 2 tablespoons for pint-size jar). A vinaigrette-type dressing works well.
  2. Top with a layer of hard, moisture-resistant vegetables (e.g. carrots, cucumbers, broccoli, radishes, cauliflower, red and green pepper).
  3. Follow with 1 or more of these protein foods: lentils; garbanzo beans or other beans (e.g. black beans, kidney beans, Great Northern Beans, red beans). Meat, such as canned tuna, previously roasted chicken or ham, may taste best and keep better if added at the time of serving. (Note:Don’t keep previously cooked meat longer than 4 days if saving from a previous meal for adding at the time of serving your salad.)
  4. Softer vegetables and fruits come next, such as corn, olives, grape tomatoes and dried fruit (e.g. raisins, cranberries, blueberries, cherries).
  5. Nuts and seeds follow, for example almonds, walnuts, and sunflower seeds. Chunks of cheese or shredded cheese also can be added at this time.
  6. Add salad greens last. For the most nutrition, use dark green salad greens (e.g. romaine, spinach, leaf lettuce).
  7. Top the jar with lid and store in the refrigerator. Place salad jar in an insulated bag with a gel pack if carrying it to work.
  8. Some people like to shake the jar to distribute the dressing and eat directly from the jar. Many prefer to shake the salad into a large bowl. If shaking the salad from the jar doesn’t mix the salad with the dressing sufficiently, gently toss with a fork until ingredients are coated.


Recipe created by Alice Henneman, MS, RDN, University of Nebraska–Lincoln Extension Educator. For more recipes and tips for fast, healthy and delicious foods, visit


My husband and I enjoy eating healthy foods, but they must taste good and be quick to prepare.

My goal with Cook It Quick is: Making you hungry for healthy food!

Follow along as I share recipes and kitchen tricks that help you enjoy the same types of foods. And though I am a registered dietitian and University of Nebraska-Lincoln extension educator, all my recipes must pass inspection by my toughest critic … my husband!

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