Recipe - Basic Grain Salad x 5


Serves 4

Basic Salad

  • 2 cups cooked whole grain (brown rice, millet, quinoa, barley, bulgur) or legumes (lentils, black-eyed peas, cannellini, kidney, or black beans)
  • 2 cups shredded or chopped vegetables (beets, carrots, scallions, red onion, Brussels sprouts, radishes)
  • ¼  cup dried or ½ cup fresh fruit, nuts, seeds or olives
  1. Cook grain. The rule-of-thumb is 2 parts water to 1 part grain; bring grain and water to boil, reduce to simmer and without stirring, simmer until water is absorbed. (Time varies between grains; 15-60 minutes.)  If you’d like a cold grain salad, try cooking the grain a day ahead and storing in the refrigerator overnight.
  2. Choose the combination of vegetables you’d like. Shred, dice and chop into small pieces and add to grain in a medium sized salad or mixing bowl. Do the same for any dried fruit, nut or olive you’d like.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together olive oil, lemon juice, vinegar and herbs. Pour over salad and stir/toss.
  4. Taste! Adjust ingredients as needed.  Add lemon juice, lemon zest or more herbs/spices for a little more *zing* or 1 tsp honey to add a little sweetness. Salt and pepper are optional.


  • 2-3   tablespoon olive, flax or walnut oil
  • 2   tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1   tablespoon vinegar (apple cider, red or white wine, champagne, balsamic, etc)
  • 1-2   teaspoon dry (1-2 tablespoon fresh) favorite herbs/spices (parsley, dill, basil, oregano, coriander, cilantro, etc)

Per serving using barley salad: 172 calories, 3g protein, 26g carbohydrate, 7g fat (1g sat, 6g mono/ poly), 0mg cholesterol, 4g fiber, 9mg sodium


Using the same quantities from the basic salad and dressing recipes, switch up the ingredients.

Here are 5 ideas:

Grain: barley
Vegetables: cherry tomatoes, grilled squash
Fruit/Nuts: omit
Oil: olive
Lemon juice: yes
Vinegar: red wine
Herbs/Spices: parsley, basil

Grain/Bean: black beans
Vegetables: shredded carrots, napa cabbage
Fruit: substitute 1/4 cup salsa
Oil & Lemon Juice: omit
Vinegar: red wine
Herbs/Spices: chopped cilantro

Grain/Bean: edamame, quinoa
Vegetables: spinach, red onion
Nuts: slivered almonds, dried cranberries
Oil: olive
Lemon Juice: yes
Vinegar: omit
Herbs/Spices: fresh mint

Grain: bulgur
Vegetables: ribbon-cut mixed greens (spinach, kale, basil)
Nuts: substitute red pepper
Oil: olive
Lemon Juice: yes
Vinegar: substitute dijon mustard
Herbs/Spices: garlic, pepper,anchovy

Grain/Bean: green lentils
Vegetables: green onions, red cabbage
Fruit: mandarin oranges
Oil: 4 drops sesame oil
Lemon Juice: substitute aji-mirin (sweet rice vinegar)
Vinegar: rice or white wine (2 Tbsp)
Herbs/Spices: ginger, mint