Michelle’s Hearty Summer Salad

Jun 23, 2014

photoLazy days of summer… not! My kiddos are keeping me busy this summer. Apparently it takes some serious fuel to keep three kids chugging along under the the So Cal sun (who knew?) because all I hear between swimming lessons, bike riding, and friends, friends, friends is “We’re hungry!”

This salad is a good staple to keep in the fridge for snacks and is also a no-brainer for block parties or summer BBQ’s. It’s hearty, tasty, and a snap to whip up—perfect when you’re running out the door to basketball camp or horseback riding lessons or that free (free!) magic show at the library…

1 package Trader Joe’s Harvest Grains (hate to plug TJ’s but I really do like this stuff)
3½ cups chicken or vegetable broth
1 cup diced tomatoes
1 cup diced cucumbers
1 cup diced bell peppers
2-3 tablespoons chopped red onion
2-3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
A few slugs of balsamic vinegar salad dressing*

Cook Harvest Grains according to directions with broth. Takes, like, 15-20 minutes, tops. Pop it in the fridge to chill and get busy cutting all your yummy summer veggies. YUM!  Feel free to pop a few in your mouth as your work—I encourage this, in fact. When grains have cooled, toss together with veggies, add salad dressing, and serve. Will keep in fridge for quick snacking for days. May need to freshen up with a dash of salad dressing.

Unsolicited tips:
This recipe is a twist on a pasta salad situation. The vegetables listed above are one of our favorite combinations, but I often use other colorful choices like diced carrots, corn, summer squash, and more. Diced cooked chicken may also be added.

*Bottled balsamic salad dressing works well but it’s also easy to make your own: 3-4 tablespoons olive oil, 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar, a pinch of sugar, a few shakes black pepper, and approximately 2 teaspoons garlic salt (or more to taste.)






Michelle can be found at her blog Kickin’ It in the Kitchen. Besides recipes and a good sense of humor, she offers workshops on meal planning, as well as ones titled “Welcome to the Table, Little One,” “Thinking Outside of the Lunch Box,” “Homemade Baby Food,” and the tantalizing “Scrounge.”

THE-Michelle-photo-300x200Try Michell’s other recipes:
Citrus Roasted Chicken
Greek Avgolemeno Soup
Chicken Fajitas
Garbanzo-Bulgar Wheat-Lemon-Herb Salad
Piña Colada Pancakes
Homemade Bruschetta
Simply Delicious Summer Fruit Crisp
Mediterranean Layer Dip
Buttermilk French Toast
Balsamic Glazed Beets
Michelle’s Tortilla Soup
Roasted Brussel Sprouts
Simply Delicious Baked Apples
Michelle’s Cole Slaw

Tumeric Rice with Vegetables (& Chicken if You Like)
Pasta with Broccolini & Chicken




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