Favorite Vegan Summer Salads ☀️ Welcome to our top ten collection of favorite summer-inspired vegan salads. From classic potato and macaroni salads to zesty watermelon mango pico de gallo or fiesta bean salad, here's everything you need to know to create the most refreshing and delish dishes!
Originally published June 13, 2022.
If I had to choose just one type of dish I could eat forever, I would absolutely go with salad. Sure, the word 'salad' is a bit of an umbrella term for almost any combination of ingredients, but that's exactly why I love it. For me, the perfect salad includes crispy, crunchy, soft, and chewy textures, along with savory, sour, sweet, umami and bitter flavors. A little bit of everything.
Salads are the soul food of summer. What could be more appealing and satisfying on a hot summer day than a bright and beautiful melange of crisp fresh veggies, legumes, pasta, quinoa, or fruits tossed with a fabulous homemade dressing?
Table of Contents
- ☀️ Salad Dressing Secrets
- ☀️ Summer Salad Serving Suggestions
- Watermelon Cucumber Salad
- Vegan Israeli Couscous Salad
- Salad Greens with Roasted Root Vegetables
- Mom's Vegan Macaroni Salad
- Fabulous 4 Bean Fiesta Salad
- Southwestern Quinoa Salad
- Vegan Lemon Artichoke Orzo Salad
- Watermelon Mango Pico de Gallo
- Easy Vegan Eggless Salad
- Old Fashioned Vegan Potato Salad
The secret to making great salads is using the freshest ingredients and marrying them together with just the right dressing. Why buy bottled dressing when you can easily and inexpensively make your own? Here's a few tips on making the best homemade salad dressings.
☀️ Salad Dressing Secrets
- Save pretty jars and bottles with lids and stoppers for mixing & storing salad dressings. Mason jars and wine bottles work great.
- Keep a few fresh and dried herbs on hand - like basil, thyme, oregano, dill, mint, rosemary, and sage. A bit of freshly grated ginger root is fantastic in Asian-style salad dressings and red pepper flakes add a nice spicy kick to southwestern-style salads.
- Coarse salt and fresh ground pepper are a salad must-have.
- All-purpose seasonings like Spike or Bragg are super convenient for making dressings, dips and sauces in a pinch.
- Keep a few light oils like olive, avocado, and sesame oil on hand.
- Vegan mayonnaise, yogurts, tahini, hummus, or avocado work beautifully as a base for creamy dressings.
- Lemon or lime juice are delicious in summer salad dressings and make perfect replacers for vinegar. Orange juice is also a very tasty option - adding a touch of sweet and citrus to any salad.
- Sweeteners like maple syrup, agave nectar or vegan honey can add a subtle sweet contrast to tart citrusy dressings and vinaigrettes.
- I always keep a variety of vinegars on hand, like apple cider vinegar, red and white wine vinegar, and balsamic vinegar.
- I love making my own infused vinegars with herbs or fresh citrus peels. They add extra flavor to dressings. (See below)
☀️ Summer Salad Serving Suggestions
- Keep salads refrigerated until you're ready to serve them.
- Salads with leafy greens and fruits are best stored without dressing (they may wilt or get mushy). Add dressing just before eating.
- Fruit salads are best prepared right before serving.
- For tossed green salads (like standard tomato & lettuce) offering a variety of dressing options and toppings like croutons, sunflower seeds, dried cranberries or raisins, chopped nuts, and vegan parmesan is a tasty idea. Have fun making your own salad bar!
So, without further ado, here are my favorite vegan summer salads. Enjoy!
Watermelon Cucumber Salad
Watermelon Cucumber Salad 🍉 This easy & delicious vegan salad is abundant with bright fresh flavors, color and healthy nutrition. You'll love this refreshing combo of sweet watermelon, crisp cucumber, red onion, luscious avocado, and fresh herbs tossed in a zesty, oil-free lime citrus dressing.
Vegan Israeli Couscous Salad
Vegan Israeli Couscous Salad 🌱A delicious and nourishing blend of traditional Israeli couscous, nuts and fruits that feeds the body & soul.
Salad Greens with Roasted Root Vegetables
Easy Roasted Root Vegetables with Balsamic 🥕 It's time to get back to your roots, starting with these delicious, nutritious roasted carrots & beets glazed with balsamic vinegar and maple syrup. They're fabulous served on leafy salad greens and topped with my luscious avocado basil dressing. Vegan & GF.
Mom's Vegan Macaroni Salad
Mom's Vegan Macaroni Salad 🌱 Old fashioned style with a vegan twist. Just like Mom's or Grandma's but even better because it's 100% plant-based! So good, you'll go back for seconds or thirds. Maybe fourths.
Fabulous 4 Bean Fiesta Salad
Fabulous 4 Bean Fiesta Salad 🌱 A festive, flavorful and colorful combo of delish & nutrish beans, peppers, red onion, corn and cilantro in a light & zesty citrus dressing. Perfect for potlucks, patio parties, picnics & outdoor entertaining! GF. Oil-free option.
Vegan Lemon Artichoke Orzo Salad
Easy Lemon Artichoke Orzo Salad 🌱 A delicious & healthy Mediterranean pasta salad loaded with flavor & texture from artichoke hearts, chickpeas, olives, sun-dried tomatoes & plant-based feta in a citrusy lemon basil dressing.
Watermelon Mango Pico de Gallo
Fresh & Easy Watermelon Pico de Gallo 🍉 This lightly spicy, sweet and refreshing combo of fresh watermelon, cucumber, lime and mango will brighten up any patio party, potluck, or picnic. Oil-free & gluten-free.
Easy Vegan Eggless Salad
Easy Vegan Eggless Salad 🌱 An easy & delicious plant-based version of a classic favorite dish made even better since it's 100% vegan. A light and satisfying combo of tofu, crispy celery, pickles & fresh dill tossed in the tastiest dressing.
And last, but certainly not least, my favorite vegan summer salad recipe roundup wouldn't be complete without everyone's favorite. It's delish!
Old Fashioned Vegan Potato Salad
Old Fashioned Vegan Potato Salad 🌱 Potatoes, crisp celery, colorful red onion, sweet gherkin pickles and a few spoonfuls of homemade vegan egg salad combined with a delicious dressing. Experience the best potato salad you've ever tasted!
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