As summer is s l o w l y approaching here in Toronto, I am excited and filled with so much optimism for the warmer weather. Yes technically we still have spring coming, but with all the rain we’ve been getting lately, it’s hard to imagine spring is actually coming. But, I did get to experience just a little preview of summer when I was in Vegas a few weeks back for my friend’s bachelorette. I had SO MUCH fun! It was a well needed girls trip that had me laughing so much, I didn’t want to come back to reality. But before I left for Vegas, I made these vegan mason jar salads. And let me tell you, they are all so delicious. They would make a perfect on-the-go, travel lunch too.
Tips and Tricks for Mason Jar Salads:
The thing is when you are making any kind of mason jar salad, you need to make sure that the dressing is always at the bottom. This ensures that the greens or lettuce don’t get soggy because those should go at the top. The second thing is that when you are ready to eat, you want to make sure that you gave it a really good shake. Or you can dump it out into a bowl if you have that option.
Another tip is to use a hearty veggie that can withstand the dressing or is better when it comes in contact with the dressing as the first layer. So for two of these mason jar salads, I used chopped cabbage as the first layer. Other sturdy veggies would be something like celery, cucumber, or carrots.
Last, the best thing about making these vegan mason jar salads is that they hold up well in the fridge. So you can make them in advance and keep them in the fridge for a few days. They make a delicious meal prep option.
If you want to learn more about meal prep and how to meal plan effectively, check out my free meal plan!
Walnut Taco Meat
One of the recipes that I’ve included as part of these vegan mason jar salads has walnut taco meat in it. Does walnut taco meat sound as weird as I think it does? Probably. But to be honest since first making it years ago, I’ve been so into it. When you pulse the walnuts and combine that with some spices, it’s crazy how much it resembles taco meat. And the crunch makes it a perfect salad topper.
Keeping it Balanced:
With each of these salads, I made an effort to include healthy fat, protein, veggies (fibre) and carbs. I find that when I do my best to have all of these bases covered my blood sugar stays stable. The portion sizes on these salads are up to you as I find we all have such different appetites and metabolism. So if you find you need more, use a larger sized mason jar and fill it with more goodness. This is also one of the reasons I don’t provide a nutritional breakdown on my recipe posts. Personally, I don’t find it useful to quantify and count my macros. When I used to track this stuff back in the day, it led to a lot of unhealthy eating habits.
By using a more intuitive eating approach, I am better able to eat foods that I really want to eat and enjoy eating. Over the last couple of years, I have really understood how to be in tune with my hunger and fullness. Depending on so many factors, I gravitate towards different types of foods and meals.
If you want to learn more about intuitive eating, definitely check out this blog post. You can also download my free guide and workbook all about how to beat binge eating.
Mason Jar Salads
I hope you enjoy these vegan mason jar salads as much as I do. They are great for summer and for keeping in your fridge for quick, easy and healthy meals.
If you make any of them, please tag me on Instagram or leave a comment below! I love hearing from you and seeing you recreate my recipes.
Chickpea Pasta Mason Jar Salad with Pesto
For the Pesto
For the Pasta
- 1 cup Chickpea Pasta shells
- 1 1/2 cups Arugula
Add all pesto ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth and creamy.
Cook the pasta according to package directions (reserve some pasta water for the pesto if needed), remove and set aside. In the same pot, add the arugula and cook on low until just wilted. Add the pasta back into the pot and toss with the pesto.
Add the pasta to a mason jar salad, seal and place in the fridge until ready to eat.
Raw Taco Salad with Creamy Cashew Dressing
For the Cashew Dressing
- 1/3 cup Cashews Raw
- 6 tbsp Water
- 1 tbsp Lemon Juice
- Pinch Sea Salt to taste
For the Walnut Taco
- 3/4 cup Walnuts Raw
- 1 tbsp Tamari
- 1/2 tsp Cumin
- 1/4 tsp Chili Powder
For the Tomato Salsa
- 2 Tomatoes small, cocktail tomatoes
- 2 tbsp Red Onion chopped
- 2 tbsp Cilantro chopped
- pinch Sea Salt to taste
For the Salad
- 1 1/2 cups Romaine Lettuce washed and dried
- 1/3 cup Red Cabbage chopped
Once the cashews are soaked and softened add them along with other dressing ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth and creamy.
Add the walnut taco meat ingredients to a food processor (or blender) and pulse until just combined and it resembles taco meat. Don't over process.
Add the tomatoes, onion and cilantro with the sea salt in a small bowl.
Layer the dressing at the bottom of the mason jar, followed by cabbage, lettuce, tomatoes and walnut taco meat. Seal and place in the fridge until ready to eat.
Chickpea and Quinoa Mason Jar Salad with Almond Butter Dressing
For the Almond Butter Dressing
Cook the quinoa according to package directions.
Add all of the ingredients for the almond butter dressing to a blender and blend until smooth and creamy.
Layer the dressing at the bottom of the mason jar, followed by the cabbage, carrots, quinoa, chickpeas and cilantro. Seal and place in the fridge until ready to eat.