Quick and easy homemade garden salad is simple, delicious, and refreshing. It's loaded with crisp leafy greens, fresh garden veggies, and crunchy croutons, all tossed in any salad dressing that you like. Serve this colorful healthy salad it as a light lunch with added protein, or as a side to any dinner entree.
Why You’ll Love this Garden Salad
- Quick and easy. Chopped salads are the best because they are so easy to make. All it takes is some chopping effort on your part, then throw it all together, pour on some dressing, and toss to combine. Salads are always my go-to for a quick lunch or side because it’s basically ready once all the ingredients are prepped.
- Healthy and nutrient-dense. All these fresh vegetables make for a healthy salad that’s packed with nutrients and clean energy to keep you going.
- Easy to customize. Don’t like what you see? No problem. Use this garden salad recipe as a base, and customize your salad to your liking with your favorite veggies, greens, and salad toppings. You can even pick any dressing that you want. Try Italian dressing, Greek salad dressing, or ranch dressing.
Ingredients and Substitutions
To make this easy crisp garden salad, you will need the following ingredients (full quantities in recipe card below):
- romaine lettuce - you can substitute with any salad greens that you have on hand. Try mixed greens, kale, spinach, iceberg lettuce, or arugula.
- purple cabbage - you could also substitute with regular cabbage.
- grape tomatoes - or cherry tomatoes.
- Persian cucumber - or substitute with ½ an English cucumber, chopped into ½-inch pieces.
- red onion
- seasoned croutons
- salad dressing - feel free to use store-bought dressing or homemade, whichever is easier! These are our favorite homemade dressings that go really well with this salad: Homemade Italian Dressing, Greek Salad Dressing, Ranch Dressing, or even Creamy Sesame Dressing.
The best part about this chopped salad is that it is 100% customizable. Consider adding in some:
- vegetables such as avocado, bell peppers, or green beans.
- cheese such as shredded cheddar, fresh mozzarella, feta, or blue cheese.
- crushed tortilla chips or nuts
- fresh herbs like cilantro, basil, or thyme
- fruits such as berries
- protein such as tofu, chicken, salmon, grilled shrimp, or bacon bits.
How to Make the Best Garden Salad
In a large mixing bowl or serving plate, combine romaine lettuce, cabbage, grape tomatoes, radishes, carrot, cucumber, and red onion. Pour the salad dressing on top and toss to combine. Top with seasoned croutons and serve.
Recipe Tips and Tricks
- How to store: If you’re not going to eat your salad right away, try to finish the croutons before storing as they will get mushy. Also, hold off on adding any dressing that contains vinegar. The dressing will make the greens soft, so it’s best to store them separately. Store the salad in the refrigerator for up to 3 days in an airtight container.
- Make ahead instructions: To make this salad ahead of time, I would suggest prepping the vegetables and storing in an airtight container without the dressing or croutons. When ready to serve, add croutons and toss in the dressing.
More Salad Recipes
- Greek Salad
- Classic Coleslaw
- Tomato and Mozzarella Caprese Salad
- Macaroni Salad
- Tomato Cucumber Avocado Salad
- Potato Salad
Did you make this recipe? I would greatly appreciate a comment and rating below, letting me know what you thought of the recipe. You can also snap a picture and tag me on Instagram @aheadofthyme or share it on the Pinterest pin so that I can follow along.