Sick of the same old salad recipes? Raise the bar with six mouthwatering salad combos. We explain how different flavors work together, so you can mix, match and modify your own perfect salad!


This salad's got plenty of bite!  

Here's a combo for people who like their greens and mix-ins spicy.

Start with arugula 

This peppery green makes an assertive salad base.

Keep it going with radish & red onion 

Pungent veggie mix ins build on arugula's strong flavor.

Balance it with grilled steak 

Beef's rich flavor and smooth texture complement the sharp-tasting ingredients.

Accent it with crispy noodles 

The crunch adds texture for more "bite."

Bring it all together with Worcestershire sauce & olive oil dressing 

This spicy, briny mix works both sides of the dish's flavor profile -- and brings out the best in all ingredients. 

If you love piquant mix-ins like radish and red onion, try adding or swapping in these: Pickled jalapeños, brined olives, brined mushrooms, chopped scallions

simple salad

This salad's got simplicity! 

With just a few ingredients, each taste comes through distinctly.

Start with romaine 

Its mildness lets other flavors shine. 

Accent it with fresh cracked pepper 

It's a subtle seasoning, so it adds just the right touch of heat.

Balance it with parmesan 

This rich, smooth cheese contrasts with romaine's low-key flavor.

Bring it all together with lemon juice vinaigrette 

A slightly tart oil-based dressing like this one is all you need to integrate the dish. A stronger one would overwhelm the other ingredients.

If you like mild, crunchy greens like romaine try these: Bibb lettuce, Belgian endive, red-leaf lettuce, bok choy

exciting salad

This salad's got exciting accents! 

With subtle basic ingredients, the sprinkling of cheese takes center stage.

Start with spinach 

Raw spinach makes a mild base.

Keep it going with hard-cooked egg 

This bland but hearty protein blends with the simple flavor of the dark green veggie.

Accent it with parmesan and artichoke hearts 

Parmesan's attention-getting saltiness works to heighten the other flavors. Artichoke hearts elevates excitement.

Bring it all together with balsamic vinaigrette 

This salad has a lot going on, so a lightly sweet dressing brings out the best in all of the contrasting ingredients. 

You're a fan of parmesan? Give these strong cheeses a whirl: Blue, feta, pecorino-romano, grana padano

international salad

This salad's got international flavor! 

Assertive Asian notes perk up a variety of crunchy textures.

Start with bean sprouts, carrots & scallions 

The dish is built on plenty of crunch.

Balance it with chicken & rice noodles 

This neutral meat and starch won't compete with pack-a-punch ingredients.

Accent it with cilantro & basil 

Herbs like these add exotic zestiness. 

Also add peanuts  

Their richness gives another dimension to the crunch factor.

Bring it together with ginger-soy dressing 

A sweet-and-salty combo is the classic finishing touch for an Asian-style salad.

You can get nutty crunch by swapping in one of these: Cashews, almonds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds

salad substitute

This salad's got substance and style! 

Here, the combination is hearty and filling, with plenty of flair.

Start with whole wheat pasta 

A whole grain base provides a simple background for stronger flavors.

Keep it going with tuna 

Like the pasta, it's both substantial and mild.

Accent it with parsley 

A bright-tasting herb like this one perks up a dish.

Also add olives 

This mix-in adds rich saltiness.

Bring it all together with red wine vinaigrette 

A bright and tangy dressing increases the overall amount of flavor.

If you like earthy, satisfying whole wheat pasta, you could swap in: Barley, brown rice, quinoa, wild rice  

american salad

This one's got all-American appeal! 

Old-time ranch dressing pulls together well-loved foods.

Start with iceberg & green-leaf lettuce 

These mild favorites are salad's version of comfort food.

Keep with going with turkey 

Poultry offers another simple, familiar flavor.

Accent it with carrots & raisins 

Sweet mix-ins add to the hometown feel.

Also add sunflower seeds 

Create crunch with this ingredient.

Bring it all together with ranch dressing 

The rich tanginess complements the sweetness, while the creaminess balances out the crunch. 

Like carrots and raisins, these are naturally sweet mix-ins: Corn kernels, chopped dried dates, chopped dried figs, peas